he is called Adibuddha, he properly being anadi, i. e. existing from eternity, having no beginning. The Buddha most solemnly declares (chap. xv) that he reached Bodhi an immense time ago, not as people fancy, first at Gaya. From the whole manner in which (Jakya speaks of his existence in former times, it is perfectly clear that the author wished to convey the meaning that the Lord had existed from eternity, or, what comes to the same, from the very beginning, from time immemorial, &c.
C^akya has not only lived an infinite number of^Eons in the past, he is to live for ever. Common people fancy that he enters Nirvana, but in reality he only makes a show of Nirvana out of regard for the weakness of men. He, the Father of the world 1, the Self-born One, the Chief and Saviour 2 of creatures, produces a semblance of Nirvana, whenever he sees them given to error and folly. 3 In reality his being is not subject to complete Nirvana; it is only by a skilful device that he makes a show of it; and repeatedly he appears in the world of the living, though his real abode is on the summit of the Grdhraküta. 4 All this is, in other words, the teaching of Narayana in Bhagavad-gïta IV, 6 seqq.:
Ajo 'pi sann avyayatma bhütanam igvaro 'pi san,
prakrtim svam adhisthaya sambhavamy atmamayaya.
yada-yada hi dharmasya glanir bhavati, Bharata,
abhvutthanam adharmasya tadatmanam srjamy aham. paritranaya sadhunam vinagaya ca duskrtam, dharmasamsthapanarthaya sambhavami yuge-yuge.
The Buddha is anthropomorphic, of course; what god is not? The Lotus, far from giving prominence to the unavoidable human traits, endeavours as much as possible to represent the Lord and his audience as superhuman beings. In chap. xiv there is a great pause, as in a drama, of no less than fifty intermediate ka lp as, during which Qakyamuniand all his hearers keep silence.5 A second pause of 1000, or according to a variousreading, 100.000
1 Cf. Krsna declaring of himself in Bhagavad-gïta IX, 17: Pitaham jagato miita dhata pitamahah. Of. XI, 48. The significant title of Pitamaha is given to Buddha in an inscription found at Dooriya (Bitha); Cunningham, Archseol. Survey, vol. iii, pi. xviii; cf. p. 48.
5 Like Narayana in Bhagavad-gïta XII, 7: Tesüm aham samuddharta mrtyusamsarasagarat.
3 Chap. xv, st. 21.
4 Chap. xv, st. 6, 10.
5 One intermediate kalpa is, in the system, equal to 8 yugas. As 4 yugas number 4,320,000 years, it follows that the pause lasted 432 millions of years. Esoterically, kalpa has certainly denoted a short interval of time, but even if we take the «intermediate kalpa» to mean, in reality, a lapse of time equal to a few hours, the pause would not refer to an historical event.