Scene 3

(The Buddha with his disciples. Enter King Prasenjit.)

PRASENJIT: Master, I am so sorry that I have not been able to come to you for such a long time. My body remains in the palace, but my heart remains with you.

BUDDHA: Yes, my son, I know. Your heart of dedication and aspiration is here, but your physical body is needed by your kingdom.

PRASENJIT: Master, the world is so corrupt. But your dream will one day be fulfilled, and then this world will have no suffering. One day the world will come to know that the cause of suffering is desire. Now people are still quarrelling, fighting and killing each other. I have some sad news for you: just last week a member of the royal family was stabbed to death by Angulimal, the dacoit. I am sure you have heard about Angulimal. He removed the right thumb of my relative and is now wearing it around his neck. How hard my soldiers are trying to capture him! But that criminal will never be caught. This is very sad news for me. Master, I pray to you to do something for my relative in the inner world.

BUDDHA: I shall certainly do something for him.

PRASENJIT: I am sure, Master, that a day will come when even a murderer like Angulimal will be transformed by your Light and Compassion.

(Angulimal is now a disciple. He is seated among the other disciples, listening to this conversation. He is clean-shaven and wears the ordinary simple dress of a mendicant.)

BUDDHA: Prasenjit, Angulimal’s transformation has already taken place.

PRASENJIT: How? When? Where?

BUDDHA (pointing to Angulimal): There is Angulimal.

PRASENJIT: This is Angulimal? He who has killed hundreds of people? This is Angulimal? This is the murderer? I see light around his face! How can it be?

BUDDHA: His transformation has already taken place.

Sri Chinmoy, Siddhartha becomes the Buddha, Sky Publishers, New York, 1973