spiritual weal of others. 1 The higher unity embracing the three separate Vehicles is the Buddha-vehicle.
The title ofBodhisattvaisnotalwaysusedin the same acceptation. Apart from a broad distinction we can draw between human and superhuman Bodhisattvas 2 — the latter are here left out of account — we find sometimes the word applied to those persons who in the passage of our Sütra alluded to are styled ^ravakas, hearers, learners. This appears to be the case at least in Nepal, as we know from the followirig passage 3: «The Buddha is the adept in the wisdom of Buddhism (Bodhijnana), whose first duty, so long as he remains on earth, is to communicate his wisdom to those who are willing to receive it. These willing learners are the «Bodhisattvas», so called from their hearts being inclined to the wisdom of Buddhism, and «Sanghas», from their companionship with one another, and with their Buddha or teacher, in the viharas or coenobitical establishments. The Bodhisattva or Sangha continues to be such until he has surmounted the very last grade of that vast and laborious ascentby which he is instructed that he can «scale the heavens», and pluck immortal wisdom from its resplendent source: which achievement performed, he becomes a Buddha, that is, an Omniscient Being.»
Here the Bodhisattvas are plainly distinguished from the coenobitical monks, the) are so likewise in the Lotus in which we find them also in the function of learned or wise men (Panditas), or preachers or ministers of religion. Vassiljev 1. c. remarks about the Bodhisattva — the terrestrial one of course — that «from one side, he seems to be the substitute of the ancient Bhiksu» ; from which we ought not to infer that the mendicant monks, as such, ceased to exist, for that is notoriously not the case, but that the Bodhisattvas were charged with the office of preaching. They are persons who deserve to be honoured both by mendicant monks and laydevotees 5,
1 See chap. iii, p. 80. Something similar in Bhagavad-gïta XII, 12: <jreyo lii jnanam abhyasaj jnanad dhyanam vifisyate, dhyanat karmaphalatyagas tyagac chantir anantaram; and IV, 5: labhante brabmanirvanam rsayah kslnakalmasah, ohinnadvaidba yalatmanah sar vab h ü tahi t e ratah. Neither in these passages of the Bhagavad-gïta nor in the three Vehicles is there anything new; abhyasa, study, denotes the period of one's studying under a rnaster, the Brahmacarisliip, which the Lotus calls the Vehicle of Disciples, the period of dhyana, alias the Vehicle of Pratyekabuddhas, eoincides with the third At^rama, that of\anaprasthaj the tyaga, alias Bodhisattvaship, is virtually the same with the Iife of a Sannyasin, Yati, or Mukta. Jnana characterise3 the second A?rama; in the Lotus it is merged in or combined with dhyana.
J Cf. Vassiljev, Buddhismus, p. 124.
3 B. H. Hodgson, Essays, p. 62. Cf. Stanislas Julien, Voyages des Pèlerins bouddliistes, II (1858), p. 436 note.
4 See espeeially the whole of chapter x.
5 Lotus, chap. x, st. 27 seq.