“Then, monks, wandering by stages, I eventually came to Baranasi, to the Deer Park at Isipatana, and I approached the monks of the group of five. The monks saw me coming in the distance, and they agreed among themselves thus: ‘Friends, here comes the ascetic Gotama who lives luxuriously, who gave up his striving and reverted to luxury. We should not pay homage to him or rise up for him or receive his bowl and outer robe. But a seat may be prepared for him. If he likes, he may sit down.’ However, as I approached, those monks found themselves unable to keep their pact. One came to meet me and took my bowl and outer robe, another prepared a seat, and another set out water for my feet; however, they addressed me by name and as ‘friend.’

“Thereupon I told them: ‘Monks, do not address the Tathagata by name and as “friend.” The Tathagata is an Arahant, a Perfectly Enlightened One. Listen, monks, the Deathless has been attained. I shall instruct you, I shall teach you the Dhamma. Practicing as you are instructed, by realizing it for yourselves here and now through direct knowledge you will soon enter and dwell in that supreme goal of the holy life for the sake of which clansmen rightly go forth from the home life into homelessness.’

“When this was said, the monks of the group of five answered me thus: ‘Friend Gotama, by the conduct, the practice, and the performance of austerities that you undertook, you did not achieve any superhuman distinction in knowledge and vision worthy of the noble ones. Since you now live luxuriously, having given up your striving and reverted to luxury, how could you have achieved any superhuman distinction in knowledge and vision worthy of the noble ones?’ When this was said, I told them: ‘The Tathagata does not live luxuriously, nor has he given up his striving and reverted to luxury. The Tathagata is an Arahant, a Perfectly Enlightened One. Listen, monks, the Deathless has been attained… from the home life into homelessness.’

“A second time the monks of the group of five said to me: ‘Friend Gotama… how could you have achieved any superhuman distinction in knowledge and vision worthy of the noble ones?’ A second time I told them: ‘The Tathagata does not live luxuriously… from the home life into homelessness.’ A third time the monks of the group of five said to me: ‘Friend Gotama…how could you have achieved any superhuman distinction in knowledge and vision worthy of the noble ones?’

“When this was said I asked them: ‘Monks, have you ever known me to speak like this before?’—‘No, venerable sir.’—‘Monks, the Tathagata is an Arahant, a Perfectly Enlightened One. Listen, monks, the Deathless has been attained. I shall instruct you, I shall teach you the Dhamma. Practicing as you are instructed, by realizing it for yourselves here and now through direct knowledge, you will soon enter and dwell in that supreme goal of the holy life for the sake of which clansmen rightly go forth from the home life into homelessness.’

“I was able to convince the monks of the group of five. Then I sometimes instructed two monks while the other three went for alms, and the six of us lived on what those three monks brought back from their alms round. Sometimes I instructed three monks while the other two went for alms, and the six of us lived on what those two monks brought back from their almsround.

“Then the monks of the group of five, thus taught and instructed by me, being themselves subject to birth, having understood the danger in what is subject to birth, seeking the unborn supreme security from bondage, Nibbana, attained the unborn supreme security from bondage, Nibbana; being themselves subject to aging, sickness, death, sorrow, and defilement, having understood the danger in what is subject to aging, sickness, death, sorrow, and defilement, seeking the unaging, unailing, deathless, sorrowless, and undefiled supreme security from bondage, Nibbana, they attained the unaging, unailing, deathless, sorrowless, and undefiled supreme security from bondage, Nibbana. The knowledge and vision arose in them: ‘Our liberation is unshakable; this is our last birth; now there is no more renewed existence.’”