There is no need to say that we all are very familiar with the “Saranattaya”.
‘‘Buddhaṃ saraṇaṃ gacchāmi,
Dhammaṃ saraṇaṃ gacchāmi,
Saṅghaṃ saraṇaṃ gacchāmī’’
Nevertheless, have we ever thought who uttered this first?
Now, you might be thinking about five-ascetics?
Let’s see what the Aṭṭhakathā says about it.
Where was it spoken?
Bārāṇasiyaṃ isipatane migadāye.
At migadāya of Isipatana in Bārāṇasi.
May be venerable Yasa? or his father?
Let’s move again to the Aṭṭhakathā to get a clue.
When was it spoken?
Āyasmante yase saddhiṃ sahāyakehi arahattaṃ patte ekasaṭṭhiyā arahantesu bahujanahitāya loke dhammadesanaṃ karontesu.
After venerable Yasa with friends attained arahantship, While sixty one arahants preaching Dhamma for the well-fare of many people.
So what is the need for them to utter “Saranattaya”? They all are Arahants!
Aṭṭhakathā, please help me again!
Why was it spoken?
For the purpose of ordination and high-ordination.
Oh, then it should have been spoken by the Arahants when they ordain people!
Then by whom?
Ah, by the ordination-candidates!
Let’s get the support of Aṭṭhakathā again.
Idaṃ saraṇattayaṃ kena bhāsitaṃ?
By whom was this saraṇattaya spoken?
Bhagavatā bhāsitaṃ, na sāvakehi, na isīhi, na devatāhi.
Spoken by the Blessed One, not by desciples, not by rishis, not by gods.
How can this be happen? How can the Blessed One go forth himself?
‘‘Evañca pana, bhikkhave, pabbājetabbo upasampādetabbo. Paṭhamaṃ kesamassuṃ ohāretvā kāsāyāni vatthāni acchādāpetvā ekaṃsaṃ uttarāsaṅgaṃ kārāpetvā bhikkhūnaṃ pāde vandāpetvā ukkuṭikaṃ nisīdāpetvā añjaliṃ paggaṇhāpetvā ‘evaṃ vadehī’ti vattabbo ‘buddhaṃ saraṇaṃ gacchāmi, dhammaṃ saraṇaṃ gacchāmi, saṅghaṃ saraṇaṃ gacchāmī’’’ti
By the way, please don’t tell any one that I didn’t know this.