Bodhisatta -- The Pali Tradition

The protagonist of every Jataka story is the Bodhisatta, which means a being who aspires to attain the bodhi or Enlightenment to become a Buddha. Further, resolving without declaring his objective to others, i.e., manopanidhi he makes a solemn resolution before a Buddha ( abhiniharakarana or mulanidhana ) for the welfare and liberation of all creatures. As regard to Gotama Buddha his abhinihara was made before Dipankara Buddha; and at that instance his name was Sumedha. The Buddha then approves of the abhinihara by the declaration ( vyakarana ) that the Bodhisatta can become a Buddha. Then the Bodhisatta tend to achieve the Buddhakarakadhamma .

Thus he discovers in ten perfections , namely, dana, sila, nekkhama, panna, viriya, khanti , saccha, aditthana, metta, upekkha. In the case of Sumedha Bodhisatta, who became Gotama Buddha, these perfections were most excellent exemplified in Ekaraja, Khantivadi, Chulla Sankhapala, Maha Janaka, Mahasutasoma, Mugapakkha, Lomahamsa, Sattubhattaka, Sasa and Sutasoma Jatakas.

In additional, a Bodhisatta has to develop four bhumis, namely, ussaha or viriya, ummagga or panna, avatthana or adhitthana and hitachariya or metta. Then he has to practice six ajjhasayas or the factors conducive to the maturing of the Bodhi.

Budhaghosa: The greatest scholar of the Pali literature was born in Bodh Gaya in the fifth century AD. He had written commentaries on most of the texts of the Tipitaka. He translated many Singhalese commentaries into Pali and his mangnum opus is the Visuddhimagga, which is regarded as the Encyclopedia of Buddhism.

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