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Six ministers

From Chinese Buddhist Encyclopedia
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six ministers
[六大臣・六臣] (Jpn roku-daijin or roku-shin )

    Also, six royal ministers. The ministers of Ajatashatru, a king of Magadha in India during Shakyamuni's time. In Chinese scriptures, their names are rendered as Famed for the Moon, Virtue Contained, Truly Attaining, Complete Understanding of Meanings, Auspicious Virtue, and Fearlessness. The original Sanskrit names are unknown, although Famed for the Moon is thought to be Chandrakirti or Chandrayashas. According to the Mahaparinirvana Sutra, Ajatashatru was suffering from virulent sores all over his body because of his offense of killing his father, King Bimbisara, a patron of Shakyamuni Buddha. Ajatashatru's six ministers each recommended to him that he consult a different one of the six non-Buddhist teachers. The minister Famed for the Moon exhorted the king to see the teacher Purana Kassapa; Virtue Contained advised him to consult Makkhali Gosala; Truly Attaining, to see Sanjaya Belatthiputta; Complete Understanding of Meanings, Ajita Kesakambala; Auspicious Virtue, Pakudha Kacchayana; and Fearlessness urged him to see Nigantha Nataputta. The great physician Jivaka, however, exhorted the king to see Shakyamuni Buddha and receive his instruction. According to the sutra, when the king decided to seek out Shakyamuni Buddha, the Buddha was far off in a grove of sal trees. Nevertheless, he perceived the king's desire and entered the so-called moon-loving meditation in order to relieve his suffering. A brilliant ray of light then shone forth from the Buddha's body and reached the palace, falling on the king's body. As a result, Ajatashatru was completely cured of his sores.

Source

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