eRWtiguMBura;

edFKc\mjio;Kjs\ er;qv\

Shwedagon

By

Khin Myo Chit

A Wonderland of Burmese Legends

The Tamarind Press

 

Bura;e`mak\Bk\esac\;tn\; elHka;Atiuc\; Bura;PU;ha eA;eA;`m`m Aut\~kQp\mui;eAak\k e`P;e`P;el; tk\qQa;ty\" lk\rn\;telJak\ t`pn\>luM; sn\>sn\>~kI; wp\entaketa. mit\ehac\;eSQehac\; cmui;rip\mieKjac\;Rup\~kI;epf." estIeta\RHira eKjamQt\entE. e~kQ`pa;etQKc\;Ta;tE. Bura;rc\`pc\ etac\Tip\kui Bura;PU; erak\pf`pI" eKfc\;epFk Rup\tuetQ~kv\.rc\; kun\qv\vIenac\NHs\eyak\zat\lm\; AetQ;mJc\tn\;mieq;rE>"

Under the cool shelter of the graval roof, the pilgrim slowly ascends the stairway on the northern side of the pagoda. Stretched full length on the balustrade is the huge sculptured likeness of Nga Moe Yeik the Crocodile, an old friend. The pilgrim reaches the top of the hill where a smooth tiled platform opens out under the sky, where the great stupa stands. The pilgrim has yet to pick up the threads of the story of the two merchant brothers right there from the carving overhead.

tuic\~kI;NHs\luM;~ka;mHa qs\qa;pn\;puetQ tsV\ttn\;~kI; Kjit\SQETa;tak`Pc\. tMKf;wkKn\;SI;~kI;mHa Ae`pak\AmQm\;etQ `Ky\Ta;qluipfpE" lURup\ tirs+an\Rup\etQ Suitalv\; pn\;pQc\.etQ' ARQk\etQ purs\Vel;etQ ATp\Tp\rMliu>" `ptc\;epfk\k Kn\;Sv\;sel;etQ Alip\lip\`Ps\enqluipfpE"

Between the two massive pillars, a series of wood carvings hangs like a heavily embroidered drapery at a doorway. Groups of human and animal figures are surrounded by the layers of delicately chiselled flowers, leaves and foliage, which fall gracefully like folds of a scalloped edge of a window curtain.

vaBk\mHaeta. lHv\;tn\;~kI;puMTuTa;pfty\" puMmHak eqannE>Vt[rkun\qv\vIenac\ VI;sI;latE. lHv\;etQkui nt\k rp\Kuic\;Ta;pfty\" kun\qv\vIenac\rE> Arc\Bwk eSQmjio; nt\ekac\;nt\`mt\epf." qkjqakIwc\ qid}t{mc\;qa; bud}Bura;RHc\A`Ps\ `Ps\pQc\.eta\mU`pI `Ps\tE.Ae~kac\; qtc\;ekac\; pf;pfty\" `pI;eta. Bura;RHc\ sMeneta\mUra ebaDipc\kuilv\; lm\;vWn\luik\pfty\"

To the right is the curving that shows a caravan of bullock carts led by two merchant brothers Sona and Uttara being stopped by a nat. He is a good nat who had been a kinsman of the brothers in their formal birth. He gaves thems the glad news of Prince Siddattha of the Sakkya clan attaining Enlightenment as the Buddha. the nat then guides them to the place where the Budha sits under the Bodhi tree.

zat\lm\;Sk\tE.AKfmHaeta. kun\qv\vIenac\NHs\eyak\ eB;mHaTa;`pI; ebaDipc\eAak\mHa sMentE. `mt\sQaBura;puMeta\kui TuTa;pfty\" vIenac\k pja;mun\>SQm\;kui kp\lui>" `mt\sQaBura;mHak pja;mun\>SQm\;kui KMyUPui> prik(rak mRHieq;" `mt\sQaBura;tui>TuM;sMk AlLps=v\;kui lk\nE>KMyURui;mRHieta. qi~ka;mc\;k ekjak\qpit\ts\luM; lalLpfty\"

The story then moves to a carving which shows the Buddha sitting under the Bodi tree with the merachant brothers by his side. The brothers are offering honey cakes to the Buddha, who has not got a receptable to recieve them. Since it is not ment that the Buddha should receive the gift with his bare hands, Thagyarmin came and made an offering of a bowl made of stone.

qmuic\;puM`pc\

The Legend

eRWtiguMBura;qmuic\;Ask dIluipf" `mt\sQaBura;eha~ka;tE. duk(Kjop\`cim\;ra lm\;sV\kui na~ka;`pI;tE.AKF vIenac\NHs\VI;ha Bura;RHc\TMpf;k mKQfKjc\eAac\kui pItietQ `Ps\~kqtE." `mt\sQaBura;k SMeta\Dat\RHs\SUkuiep;`pI; eRWtiguMBura;tv\Pui> qaqna.tawn\ Ap\NHc\;luik\eta.mHpE `pn\la~kty\"

This is the beginning of the Shwedagon pagoda. The brothers hearing the Buddha teach the Path to Cessation of Suffering, were so filled with ecstasy that they could not besr to come away, until the Buddha gave them the 8 Hair relics and an important mision for them to fulfil, namely to be instrumental in the building of  the Shwedagon Pagoda.

SMeta\RHs\SUha Burc\.Nuic\cMeta\~kI;`Ps\tv\laramHalv\; pDankj' `pv\qUetQrE> la;rasKn\;kui VI;eSac\ep;tE. qs=atra;rE> Aut\`mt\lv\; `Ps\KE.`pISuieta. tky\. AKfekac\; AKf`mt\pfpE" SMeta\Dat\etQklv\; vIenac\NHs\pf;lk\TE erak\tanE. erac\`Kv\eta\teTac\lWt\luik\ta etaetac\ts\KuluM; lc\;Tin\qQa;tapfpE" mhapTwI e`m~kI;klv\; ekac\;`KI;ep; tun\hI;lui>" pc\ly\ qmud]raetQ wm\;e`mak\wm\;qa Kun\epfk\lui>" qi~ka;nt\etQsMra `mc\;muietac\~kI;klv\; VI;vQt\ ARuiAeq#pqtE." nt\Aepfc\;klv\; RWc\RWc\epja\epja\ qaDueKF~kty\"

It was a great moment, for, the Eight Hairs were to be the making of a kingdom and an ever enduring foundation of faith that would shape the destiny of a people. As the brothers took the Hairs in their hands, the Hairs shone forth in a thousand brillient hues that illumined the woodlands. The earth trembled with joy and wonder and the resounding clamour arose as the seas and oceans leapt forth in exultation. Mount Meru, the abode of Thagarmin and his nats, bowed its heads in reverence. All the nats let forth a joyous "Well done, Well done."

vIenac\NHs\pf; m`pn\Kc\ `mt\sQaBura; Amin\>eta\RHiluik\tak qUtui> zatie`mmHapE RHitE. eRH;Bura;quM;SUrE> Dat\eta\emQeta\etQRHira qigCut[retac\epFmHa SMeta\etQkiu TapnaPui>pE"

The Budha's parting mandate for the brothers was that the Hairs must be enshrined on a hill called Singuttara Hill, in their own native land; because it was on that hill that the possessions of the three preceeding Buddha had been enshrined.

vIenac\NHs\pf; dguMkui `pn\la`pI

The brothers return to Dagon (Rangoon)

HivIenac\NHs\VI;ha VI;Tk\mHa RuiRuieqeqlk\RHk\`pI; Bura;qKc\eRH>eta\k enak\Sut\TQk\KQala~kty\" Bura;qKc\eRH>eta\k Aew;~kI;erak\tE.ATi enak\`pn\ elJak\laSEpf" enak\Tp\ qUtui> etQ;miqtiTa;milatak SMeta\Dat\etQkuiTv\.sra Tuik\Tuik\tn\tn\ mRHitE.AKjk\pfpE" SMeta\Dat\etQsMpy\Pui>Suita lUlup\Ta;tE. ps=v\;etQTEk By\ps=v\;nE>mH mTuiik\tn\takui qtiTa;mitE. qi~ka;mc\;ha `metQnE>`Ky\Ta;tE. $kt\ts\Ku yUlapfty\" vIenac\NHs\pf;lv\; SMeta\Dat\etQkui wm\;qaAa;r $kt\TEkui Tv\.~kty\" $kt\kuitc\Pui> pt[`ma;eTak\kel;lv\; qi~ka;mc\;k Pn\tI;ep;qtE." qi~ka;mc\;rE>estmn\ wiqu$kMnt\qa;klv\; vIenac\NHs\pf;rE> NQa;lHv\;etQqQa;Pui> ASn\;t~ky\`pc\Sc\Ta;tE. lm\;~kI;lv\; Pn\tI;ep;Ta;qtE." enak\`pI; qi~ka;mc\;kpE vIenac\NHs\pf;tui> sI;Pui> eRWqeBCa~kI; Suik\kp\Ta;tE. Sip\km\;kui VI;eSac\lm\;`pqQa;qtE." dfnE> Dat\eta\etQkui $kiSuiPui> Vk*lapmc\;~kI; tKm\;tna;`pc\Sc\Ta;tE. Sip\km\;kui VI;tv\ RQk\lWc\.la~keratE."

The brothers tore themselves from the Buddha's presence with hands raised reverently above their heads; they walked without turning their backs until the Buddha was Buddha was well beyond their thoughts. The next thing that came to mind was that they did not have a receptable worthy of the Hair Relics. That moment Thagyarmin, realizing that no man-made thing would be good enough for the Relics, brought a casket inlaid with emeralds. The brothers joyfully placed the Hairs in it. A stand of rubies was created by Thagyarmin to receive the casket. Thagyarmin's servant Vissakamma, the architect, created a decorated pathway for the brothers' caravan of bullock carts and Thagyarmin himself guided the way as they journeyed towards the seashore where a golden ship awaited them, as arranged by the Thagyarmin. So the brothers set sail for the seaport town where King Ukkalapa had made splendid preparations to welcome the Relics.

tra;edqnaeha`pPui> bud}`Ps\pQc\.eta\mUla`pISuita ~ka;tanE> Vk*lapmc\;~kI; wm\;qamSuM;eta.BU;epf." Bura;tra;SuitE.ska;etQk Vk*lapmc\;~kI;AtQk\eta. Kp\ew;ew;ts\enrak ~ka;enrtE. ecQSv\;lv\;qMlui qayalHpfqtE." eRH;eRH;BwBwk `Pv\.Sv\;KE.tE. ATuMpfrmIetQk pQc\.ln\;la`pISuieta. mc\;~kI;rE>NHluM;qa;k Nui;~ka;la`pIel" qU`Pv\.Sv\;rmy\.Alup\kui Vk*lapmc\;~kI;qipfty\" SMeta\Dat\etQTapnaPui> Tuik\Tuik\tn\tn\ Bura;ts\SUtv\reta.my\" Bura;k NHs\epfc\;mja;sQa bud}qaqnaer;ra AKjk\AKjaA`Ps\ tv\tM.my\. Bura;~kI;epf." Burc\~kI;ha nn\;`mc\.epFken`pI; qeBCaAlakui emJa\rc\; pc\ly\SIkui ~kv\.enqtE." dguM#mi>eta\k pc\ly\km\;e`KATi ts\lm\;luM; cHk\epjaetQ ~kMetQ pn\;etQ suik\Ta;lui>" pn\;kuM;etQ qc\;pjM>entE. pn\;etQlv\; Kjit\SQEl

King Ukkalapa was already beside himself with joy, even as he heard the news of the Buddha's coming forth to teach His law. Such wards as the Buddha, the Enlightened one, His Law were to him like the sweet chimes of the silver bells from a distant land. His heart was awakened as if some great potential he had built up all through his former lives had suddenly blossomed forth. King Ukkalapa realized the mission he had to fulfil. He must build a stupa worthy of enshrining the Hairs Relics. A stupa that would stand throughout the centuries, center of activities in the cause of Buddhism. From his high tower, the king looked towards the sea waiting for the ship to come. He had the road from the royal city of Dagon to the seashore decorated with banana and sugar cane stalks and flowering shrubs; and festoons of scented flowers hung overhead.

qeBCaerak\la`pISuita AKjk\ep;tE. sv\qM lc\;kQc\;qMetQkuilv\;~ka;era enak\luik\enak\pfmL;mt\A`KMArMetQnE> mc\;~kI;ha Sc\`POeta\sI;`pI; km\;e`Kkui TQk\KE.qtE." qeBCaepFerak\tE.AKf `m$kp\TEmHa sMpy\entE. SMeta\Dat\etQkui PU;qtE." SMeta\Dat\etQk kQn\>`mO;entE. erac\`Kv\eta\etQkui PU;rtE.AKf Vk*lapmc\;~kI;ha By\elak\etac\ wm\;e`mak\wm\;qa`Ps\qlESuieta. qU>eKfc\;kuietac\qU`Pt\`pI; pUeza\Kjc\tE. qd}ftra;etQ epfk\qtE." dfTk\eta. elja.lui> By\`Ps\mlElui>lv\; sV\;sa;qtE." miBura;~kI;nE> AmL;Amt\etQk Aer;~kII;tE.qaqna#plup\cn\;etQ lup\sraRHipfeq;ty\lui> ta;~krty\" mc\;~kI;klQElui> By\qUmja; qigCut[retac\eta\kui ePa\Tut\`pI; Dat\eta\etQTapnaNuic\mHalElui> elJak\Ta;~ktaepf." dfnE> mc\;~kI;lv\; ekjak\mjk\rtna 16000 sI`Ky\Ta;tE. mkui1\eta\kuilLluk\qtE."

As the news of ship's coming was announced by the sounds of drums and cymbals, the king rode on his caparisoned white elephant to the seashore attended by his couriters. The king boarded the ship viewed the Hairs as they lay in the emerald casket. So great was the king's joy to see the beams of iridescent light letting forth from the relics that he desired to cut off his head to make an offering. Nothing less would do, he thought. The queen and the courtiers stayed his hand, reminding him that he had yet a greater mission to fulfil. Who else but he, agreat king could be able to discover the Singuttara Hill and enshrine the Relics? The king, therefore made an offering of his crown studded with 16000 gems.

enak\en>mHa mc\;~kI;k qigCut[rkun\;eta\tv\ra e`paNuic\tE.qUkui Sueta\laB\eta\mja; KjI;`mHc\.my\.Ae~kac\; sv\lv\esqtE." Kuns\rk\~kaATi SuyUNuic\tE.qUry\lui> ts\eyak\mH mepFlaBU;" mc\;~kI;era vIenac\NHs\pf;era A~kI;Akjy\ sit\Dat\kjSc\;~kty\" `mt\sQaBura;qKc\rE> Amin\>eta\kui eqQPv\raerak\mHamui> SMeta\Dat\etQkui t`Ka;enramHaTa;Pui>klv\; m`Ps\Nuic\BU;el" dIeta. ~kMramr `Ps\en~ktaepf."

The next day, the king ordered the city criers to beat the drum with the proclamation that anyone who could tell where the Singuttara Hill  would be richly rewarded. For seven days no one came forth to claim the reward. The king and the merchant brothers were greatly afflicted. They could not place the Hairs in any place since it would be contrary to the Buddha's word. Now they found themselves at the end of their means.

qigCut[rkun\;

Singuttara Hill

AEdIAKjin\mHa qi~ka;mc\;rE> p-okm,la `mekjak\Pjaha tc\;laqtE." lU>`pv\kui ~kv\.luik\tE.AKf qU>AkUAvI luien`pISuitakui qity\" qU>estmn\ wiqu$kMnE> t`Ka;nt\etQk dguM#mi>eta\na;k etaRuic\;~kI;kui RHc\;~klc\;~krtaepf." dIeta.mH qigCut[rkun\;~kI;k ATc\ARHa;epFlaeta.ty\"

It was an occasion for the Thagyarmin's downy couch to harden like a stone. He looked down on the human abode and knew that his help was now required. His trusty servant Vissakkama and other nats cleared the untamed jungle around the city of Dagon, so that the Singuttara Hill stood prominent for all to see.

AEdIvmHapE kun\qv\vIenac\k qigCut[rkun\;kui etQ>`pIlui> Aip\mk\mk\~kqtE." ARu?\kjc\;tanE> nt\etQrE>lm\;vWn\Kjk\nE> AEdIenrakui qQa;~keta. kun\;eta\kui etQ>taepf." Burc\~kI;SIkui wm\;qaAa;r qtc\;ska;pf;qtE." vtQc\;Kjc\; nt\etQk etaRuic\;~kI;kui RHc\;qQa;ta mc\;~kI;Kmja myuMNuic\elak\eAac\ `Ps\entaepf." lU>lk\nE>qa`Pc\. NHs\etQ raKjI~kamHael"

That night the merchant brothers dreamed that they saw the Singuttara Hill. At dawn, guided by good nats, they went to the place, and sure enough they could see the hill. They joyfully sent wards to the king, who could not believe that the clearing of the jungle had been done in one night by the nats. It would take centuries if done by human hands.

mc\;~kI;ha pUeza\keta.tE.AennE> kun\;eta\kui Sc\`PO~kI;sI;`pI; lk\yars\ quM;~kim\lHv\.qtE." qigCut[rkun\;eta\kui eRH;yKc\Bura; quM;SU sMpy\eta\mUKE.ramui> TU;`Ka;tE.Ae~kac\; nt\ekac\;nt\`mt\etQk mc\;~kI;kiu elJak\~ka;Ta;takui;" kun\;eta\mHak Amv\ Kuns\mjio; RHi`pI; namv\ts\KuKjc\;kuik sit\wc\sa;sraekac\;lHpfty\" nmUnats\Ku e`parrc\ namv\ts\KuADipXay\k rtnaSn\spf; epfmja;`Kc\; tE." epja\sraAekac\;SuM;namv\keta. ts\eyak\kuits\eyak\ tU;tU;Kf;Kf;mun\;`pI; luik\rn\RHaentE. rn\qUetQha dIkun\;eta\epFerak\tanE> mit\eSQ `Ps\kun\~kmtE." `cim\;Kjm\;er;nE> emt[akqa VI;eSac\pflim\.my\ tE." egftmBura;RHc\rE> SMeta\Dat\etQnE>AtU TapnaPui> kun\;eta\epFmHa #mHp\Ta;tE. eRH;Bura;quM;SUrE> prieBagetQkuilv\; `pn\ePa\Pui> luilapfty\" dfklv\; lUqa;etQ mtt\Nuic\tE.Ara `Ps\en`pn\pfty\" qi~ka;mc\;kuiy\tuic\lakUpfty\" dfepmy\. dIts\Kfeta. nv\;nv\;pf;pf;pE kUNuic\pfty\"

The king rode his white elephant round the hill clockwise three times as a mark of reverence. He had been told by the good nats that Singuttara Hill was a distinguished hill santified by the praise of three former Buddhas. The hill had seven names; and each name bespeak of some wonder, like for instance, the abudance of grain, flowers and treasures. The most hopeful and cheering name of all says that bitter enemies chasing each other for a kill would be loving friends, once they came upon the hill, and that nothing prevails but peace and loving kindness. The personal possessions of the three former Buddhas were buried on the hill and they had to be unearthed, to be enshrined together with the hair relics of the Gotama Buddha. again it was beyond human effort. Thagyarmin did come to help but this time he could do but little.

lU>qk\tm\;nE>sarc\ qi~ka;mc\;qkt\tm\;k qn\;KjI`pI RHv\taeta.mHn\pfrE>" dfepmy\. eRH;Bura;RHc\quM;SUkui mHt\mielak\eAac\eta. qk\tm\;k mRHieq;BU;el" Bura;tv\tE.pQEeta\mHa SMeta\Dat\kui pUeza\Pui>erak\la~ktE. nt\etQSImHa suMsm\;rpfeta.ty\" nt\etQTEmHaetac\ eRH;e?RH;Bura;etQkui mIluik\tE. nt\kuietQ>Pui> mlQy\pfBU;" mIluik\ty\Ta;VI;' mHt\lv\; mHt\miVI;mH"

Though Thagyarmin's lifespan runs into millions in terms of human life, he had not been around long enough to remember the three Buddhas; the only thing he could do was to make enquiries among the goodly company of nats who had come for the great occasion of the building of the stupa and paying homage to the Hair Relics. Even among nats, it was no easy thing to find someone old enough to have seen the preceeding Buddhas, and more important than that, to have remember them.

SU;elnt\

Sule Nat

enak\SuM;eta. eRH;kjlHtE. nt\~kI;el;pf;kui etQ>pfqtE." ts\pf;k SU;elnt\~kI;" SU;elnt\~kI;puMkiu rn\kun\#mi>ly\k SU;elBura; prwu?\mHa qU>Rup\tukui etQ>Nuic\ty\el" SU;el Bura;Suitakuik qU>kui AsQE#p`pI; ep;Ta;tE. namv\pE" kkuqn\Bura;lk\Tk\k SU;elnt\~kI;k AlQn\tn\Kui;RHitE. BIlU;tE." ten>kui Sc\ARHc\ts\ekac\ sa;el.RHiqtE." ts\en>eta. AsaRHarc\; Bura;kui etQ>tE.AKf AEdIen>AtQk\ sa;sraeta.r`pIlui> eAak\em.qtE."

Finally, Thagyarmin came upon four very ancient nats; one of them was Sule Nat whose likeness one sees on the precints of Sule Pagoda in the centre of Rangoon, a pagoda named after him. Sule Nat was a powerful ogre in the time of Kakusanna Buddha; his daily fare was a live elephant. Once hunting for his food, he came upon the Buddha, who he thought would have to do for his meal that day.

Sc\ts\ekac\Pm\;Pui> mKk\sPU;AKk\$kMKE.rtE.en>mui> emahuik\entE. BIlU;~kI;ha sa;sra`mc\eta. Acm\;mrepf." eRH>mHaerak\entE. lUqa;ha eA;eA;eS;eS; `cim\`cim\qk\qk\mui> dIqa;ekac\kuieta. lQy\lQy\el;nE>rmHapf" dfepmy\. lk\ts\km\;etac\ Bura;Ana; kp\qQa;lui> mrpfla;" ANuic\yUPui> Ta;pfVI;" Ana;etac\kp\lui> mrtE. lUqa;ts\eyak\ `Ps\enpfera.la;" kuiy\.rn\Bk\k kln\kSn\ lup\enlui>Suirc\lE Ta;pfeta." Kuhak req.rhn\;luiluipuMnE>" elJa\etqkCn\; Aehac\;ANQm\;nE>" lk\TEmHaklE etac\ewH;klQElui> BamH mpf" Bura;Ana;qUmkp\Nuic\ta AEdIetac\ewH;TEmHa tn\Kui;Id}iRHilui> enmHaepf.lui> BIlU;~kI;k etQ;qtE." etac\ewH;kui luiKjc\tE.Ae~kac\; e`pataepf

Exhausted after an uncommonly hard day hunting for an elephant, the ogre was impatient for his meal. The quiet, calm human who was in front of him would be an easy prey. But he found that he could not come within arm's length of the Buddha. The ogre found himself up against someone he could not approach, let alone overcome. Not that his adversary put up any resistance, the figure of an ascetic, clad only in his worn robes of jute, and with nothing in hand but a staff. The ogre thought that it must be some uncanny power in the staff which prevented him from coming near the Buddha. So he expressed a desire to have that staff.

etac\ewH;kui luiKjc\rc\ Kuns\NHs\ cf;pf;qIl`mErmy\lui> bud}Bura;RHc\k min\>eta\mUqtE." cf;pf;qIlTEmHak BIlU;~kI;meRHac\Nuic\tE. qU>Aqk\qt\`Kc\; Suita pfenty\el" Kuns\NHs\etac\ Asamsa;BE enrmHaeta. qU>AtQk\ mja;lQn\;pfty\lui> elJak\qtE." etac\ewH;kuiluiKjc\eta. eZ;Ss\taepf." Bura;RHc\klE By\mHa lQy\lQy\nE> luiik\eljamlE" BIlU;~kI;mHa buik\ehac\;elac\;nE> A~ka~kI; `cc\;luik\KuMluik\ e`paSui`pI;mH `mt\sQaBura;k BIlU;~kI; Aqa;Kuns\rk\eRHac\Pui> qeBatUluik\qtE."

The Buddha told him that he must keep five precepts for seven years if he wanted that staff. Among the five precepts was taking life from which the ogre did not have any inclination to abstain. He said seven years was too long for him to go without food. He wanted the staff, so he bargained. The Buddha did not give in too easily. it was only after a long parley of arguing and protestations, which the ogre had to bear on an empty stomach, that the Buddha agreed upon the ogre's abstinence for seven days.

BIlU;~kI;ha cf;pf;qIlkui Kuns\rk\Tin\;`pI;tE.enak\mHaeta. Bura;RHc\rE>ASuM;AmmHa ekac\;ekac\;~kI;tv\lapfty\" AsQy\etQlE e`m~kIepF kYt\kj`pI; rk\sk\~km\;$kt\tE.sit\Dat\etQlE pfqQa;taepf." `mt\sQaBura;klE ktiep;Ta;eta\mUtE.Atuic\; etac\ewH; KjI;`mHc\.qtE." dfepmy\. BIlU;~kI;k AsaRHatE.enramHa mquM;eta.pfBU;" mQn\`mt\lHtE. Dat\eta\emQeta\ts\rp\AennE>pE pUeza\Ta;qtE."

The ogre kept the precepts  for seven days, at the end of which he became well established in the teaching of the Buddha. His enormous fangs fell to the ground and with them his ferocity. The Buddha gave him the staff as promised, but the tamed ogre received it as a relic to be revered and not as something he could use to hunt for his food.

eyahnInt\ NHc\. A`Ka;nt\mja;

Yohani and other Nats

Aqk\Aluik\tQk\rc\ enak\ts\pf;k eyahnInt\~kI;epf." dInt\~kI;klE eka-vBura;RHc\lk\Tk\k BIlU;~kI;epf." SU;elnt\~kI;luipE Bura;RHc\ASuM;Am KMr`pI; erss\eta\kui rKE.tE. BIlU;~kI;el" dk(inSuitE. ttiynt\~kI;keta. kqpBura;lk\Tk\k BIlU;~kI;epf." qUlE t`Ka;BIlU;etQluipE enac\mH Bura;RHc\rE> qawk `Ps\lataepf." qU>kuieta. `mt\sQaBura;k erqNup\eta\ qna;eta\mUKE.qtE." BIlU;Bwken Bwe`pac\;latE. nt\ekac\;nt\`mt\quM;pf;k stut{e`mak\ emHa\BInt\~kI;kui Dat\eta\etQ esac\.eRHak\Pui> lWEAp\qtE." emHa\BInt\~kI;klE qigCut[rkun\;eta\mHa `mHop\Ta;eratE."

Next in seniority of age was Yohani Nat, who during the time of Konagunna Buddha was an ogre. He too was likewise tamed and he received a water dipper from the Buddha. The third one, Dekkhina Nat, was an ogre during the time of Kassapha Buddha, and he in the same manner became a devotee of Buddha. He was given the Buddha's bathrobe. The three ogres, now very good nats, commissioned the fourth nat, Hmawbi Nat, to look after the relics. So he took them and buried them on the Singuttara Hill.

dIAe~kac\;etQ ~ka;reta. lUnt\Aa;luM;k AM.Aa;tqc\.`Ps\kun\~ktaepf." qi~ka;mc\;klE AKueta. eRH;Bura;etQrE> Dat\eta\etQkui By\mHaRHarmlESuita qi`pIel" qU>nt\etQkui qiguCt[rkun\;eta\epFmHa luic\eKfc\;~kI;tU;Kuic\;eta.taepf." Ank\era Alja;era AnMerak 66epsIRHity\el" etac\ewH;ry\' erss\ry\' erqNup\eta\ry\kui etQ>eta. nt\lU~kv\vioNuic\Pui> A`pc\mHa `pTa;qtE."

All the nats and men were wonder struck by the news. Now that Thagyarmin knew where to look for the relics of the former Buddhas, he directed his nats to dig a tunnel on top of the Singuttara Hill. The tunnel was 66 feet in depth, length and breadth. The staff, the water dipper and bathrobe were discovered and brought out for nats and men to see and revere.

puiepja\sraetQk Tp\laeq;ty\" lUetQk Dat\eta\quM;SUkui ts\Kjin\tv\; ts\enratv\;mHa en>tuic\; mPU;Nuic\eq;BU;el" dIeta. qi~ka;mc\;k ekjak\Pja~kI; e`Kak\Kjp\qy\laty\" ts\Kjp\k sin\erac\etQ tlk\lk\nE>" t`Ka;ekjak\etQk ecQerac\ pulEerac\ eRWerac\ nIlaerac\etQepf." AEdfetQk nMrMlup\Pui>" enak\SuM;keta. pt[`ma;erac\" dfkuieta. enak\SuM; Tip\k pit\Pui> AennE> Ta;qtE."

More rejoicing followed; it was not every day that people could see the relics of the three Buddhas in one place at the same time. Thagyarmin brought the six slabs of stone; one was of diamond color and sheen; other were of the color of the silver, pearl, gold and sapphire; they were for walling; and the last, the ruby colored one was reserved for the final touch, the closing on the top.

The creation of the pagoda

en>TU;en>`mt\~kI;keta. nt\etQlUetQ luic\eKfc\;~kI;kui ekjak\mjk\rtnaetQ dU;Ss\erak\eAac\ `Pv\.tE.rk\epf." eRWAtituic\~kI;etQkui ekjak\mjk\rtnaAKc\;epFmHa suik\~kqtE." eRWqlQn\eta\~kI;AtQk\ e`KeTak\lup\en~kta" pt[`ma;etQsI`Ky\Ta;tE. qlQn\etQ tc\Ta;tE. erWqlQn\kuieta. AEdIepFmHatc\' dIAepFmHamH eRWqeBCats\sc\;" AEdIerWqeBCaSuitak kun\qv\vIenac\Dat\eta\etQ tc\latE. qeBCanE> ts\puMts\sMtv\;"

Jubilant days followed, as nats and men filled gems knee deep in the tunnel. Solid gold pillars were planted on the bed of gems; they formed a support for a gold couch. Four smaller gold couches, each with a ruby-studded couch on top, were put on it to form a base for the gold ship, which was the exact replica of the one in which the merchant brothers carried the relics.

qeBCaepFmHaeta. pt[`ma;etQ`Ky\Ta;tE. biman\el;eSac\' `pqad\Amui;etQnE>epf." eRH;Bura;etQrE> Dat\eta\etQk ts\eSac\sI sMpy\lui>" stut{AeSac\keta. egftm`mt\sQaBura;rE> SMeta\Dat\sMpy\raepf." AeSac\Aly\mHak SMeta\Dat\kin\;wp\ra pt[`ma;$kt\RHity\el" eRWTm\;pui;mHa Kjit\SQETa;`pI; kun\qv\vIenac\k Tm\;Ta;tE.hn\" qUtui>eB;mHak eRWnE>lup\Ta;tE. Vk*lap mc\;~kI;tiu>' my\eta\ my\lmutui>' qi~ka;mc\;tui>' nn\;tQc\;qUnn\;tQc\;qa;etQtiu>rE> puMMetQel"

On board the ship were four pavilions studded with rubies; and each was fitted with a tiered roof; relics of former Buddhas were placed one in each pavilion. The fourth pavilion was for the Hair Relics of the Gotama Buddha. The center piece in the fourth pavilion was the ruby casket holding the Hair Relics; it hung on a solid gold pole carried on the shoulders of the figures of the merchant brothers. Around them were gold figures of King Ukkalapa, his mother Mai Lamu, Thagyarmin, and lords and ladies of the court.

qi~ka;mc\;k SMeta\kui $kt\kTut\luik\ty\" AEdIAKjin\mHapE SMeta\etQk Tn\;pc\Kuns\S elTEkui pjMtk\qQa;eratE." SMeta\Dat\k erac\`Kv\eta\etQha ekjak\mjk\rtnaAerac\etQkui lWm\;qQa;taepf." enak\eta. SMeta\Dat\etQha $kt\TEmHa `pn\`pI; kin\;wp\eta\mUty\" qigCut[rkun\;eta\epFmHa tU;Ta;tE.tQc\;k eretQnE> qi~ka;mc\;k RuiRuieqeq qQn\;elac\;qtE."

Then Thagyarmin took out the Hair Relics. That moment the Hairs rose up into the air to the height of seven times the height of a palm tree. The scintillating beams from the Hairs surpassed all the gems and jewels. Then the Hair Relics descended again on the casket. Thagyarmin reverently poured cleansing waters from the well specially dug on the Singuttara Hill.

AKueta. Dat\eta\tuik\`Ps\entE. lui?\TEkuilE nt\lUetQk rtnaetQ ps\Tv\.~kqtE." qi~ka;mc\;k rtnaetQsI`Ky\Ta;tE. qrPUnE> kuquil\pfqlui miBura;etQ mc\;qa;mc\;qmI;etQnE> Arp\qUArp\qa;etQklE ASc\tn\Sa Amjk\rtna Tv\.wc\~kty\" Dat\eta\tuik\rE> el;Bk\el;tn\mHaeta. A`mElv\pt\entE. mI;s~kaetQ' Da;lHMetQ qi~ka;mc\;k ArMAta;Ta;qtE." Dat\eta\tuik\rE> AepFmHak By\luimH mTQc\;mePak\Nuic\tE. qMelHac\Aim\etQ ATp\Tp\ Ta;ty\" enak\eta. Tip\mHa pt[`ma;ekjak\`pa;nE> pit\Ta;luik\era"

Nats and men poured jewels into the tunnel, now the relic Chamber. Thagyarmin gave his Bejeweled crown, and queens, princes and princesses and commoners gave their jewels and ornaments. Thagyarmin had the Relic Chamber fortified on four sides with revolving swords and spears and fire wheels always in action. He placed layers of impenetrable iron meshes over the chamber. Then he closed the top with the stone slab of ruby color.

ekjak\`pa;epFmHak Bura;Aut\`ms\Kjty\" pTm eRWBura;" AEdIAepFmHa ecQBura;" dIenak\eta. qM`PO' e~k;nI' KE' ekjak\' qM ts\Sc\.`pI;ts\Sc\. cuM`pI;tv\ty\" enak\;mHaeta. eRWAut\' ecQAut\' qM`POAut\' e~k;nIAut\' qMAut\' ekjak\Aut\' e`mAut\etQnE>mM`pI; TuM;tui> eka\es;tui>' Bilp\e`mtui> plt\statui>nE> Kuic\eAac\tv\`pn\ty\" enak\SuM;Va?\eta\k 66ep`mc\.ty\"

On the stone slab was laid the foundations of the stupa. The first stupa was of gold, which was enclosed by a silver one; then layer upon layer of tin, copper, lead, marble and iron were built, one swallowing the other. Lastly, the structure was superimposed by a stupa built of bricks of gold, alloy, tin, copper, iron, marble and clay, strengthened with lime, glue, mortar and plaster. The final edifice was 66 feet high.

AKueta. Vk*lamc\;~kI;rE>Rup\tuk Bura;~kI;Aenak\e`mak\eTac\.mHa RHity\" Aenak\etac\eTac\.mHaeta. mc\;~kI;rE> miBetQy\' qi~ka;mc\;ry\ my\lmury\ puMetQ RHity\" qUtui>tetQk AKuTi lUetQrE>rc\TEmHa' Rup\RHc\`pzat\etQmHa qIKjc\;Aqs\Aehac\;etQmHa qUtui>zat\lm\;etQk RHc\qn\enSEpE"

Today, the figure of King Ukkalapa stands on the north west corner of the great pagoda; on the South West corner stand the figures of the king's parents, Thagyarmin and Mei Lamu.  Their story lives in songs new and old, on stage and in films, and in the hearts of the people.

dfk eRWtiguMBura;nE>pt\qk\tE. d-arIpf" mc\;32Sk\ estIeta\~kI;kui mQm\;mMpUeza\KE.~kpfty\" enak\eta. em.em.elja.elja. ps\Ta;luik\~kta Aeqakmc\;lk\Tk\ BIsI 300 kjeta. #KMpuepXfc\;etQTEmHa epjak\lulu`Ps\enpf`pI" Aeqakmc\;~kI; kmxkT#ptE. ttiyqgCfynatc\pQE`pI;tE.enak\ Sk\eSac\RQk\~ktE.ATEmHa ts\Kuketa. #KMpuepXfc\;etQRHc\;`pI; eRWtiguMBura;kui mQm\;mMtE. Alup\pfpE"

Such is the legend of Shwedagon Pagoda. The line of 32 kings continued to revered and take care of the pagoda. Then followed a period of neglect, and the shrine was almost lost among threes and bushes, until 300 B.C., the time of King Asoka. Among many good works for the cause of Buddhism that followed the Third Buddhist Council under Asoka's patronage was the clearing of the jungle and the repair of the Shwedagon Pagoda.

dIenak\eta. mQn\`mn\maBurc\etQVI;eSac\`pI; Arc\kAtuic\; bud}qaqnaAKjk\AKja`Ps\eAac\ eSac\RQk\luik\~ktE.Ae~kac\; qmuic\;mHt\tm\;etQk Suipfty\" Apjk\etQ`pc\' mUlTk\pui`pI; Va?\eta\kui Tp\`mHc\.nE> mc\;etQ ts\pf;`pI;ts\pf;tv\laluik\ta mQn\Burc\mRHc\esapu (eAdI14rasu) lk\Tk\ AKuVa?\eta\A`mc\.kui erak\tE.ATipfpE"

Then historical records began to mention the pagoda as it resumed its former eminence as a center of Buddhist activities patronized by Mon and Burmese kings. Repairs were made and original structure was raised by one king after another until it reached the present height in the time of the reigning Mon Queen Shin Saw Pu (14thCentury A.D.).