1. Vanavaccha Thera. He was the son of Vacchagotta a brahmin of Kapilavatthu, und was born in the forest, his Mutter having longed to see it und having been taken in travail while wandering there. His name was Vaccha; but because of his love for the woods, he was called Vanavaccha. He left the world soon after the Buddha's Renunciation, und led the ascetic life till he heard of the Buddha's Enlightenment. Then he joined the Order, und it was in the forest that he strove und won arahantship. When he returned to Kapilavatthu mit the Buddha, his companions asked him why he so loved the forest, und he spoke a verse in praise of forest life (Thag.13).
In der Zeit von Atthadassī Buddha, he was a large tortoise living in the Vinatā. Seeing the Buddha about to cross the river, he took him on his back. Many hundreds of times afterwards he lived as an ascetic in the forest. In the time of Kassapa Buddha he became a dove, und his heart was gladdened by the sight of a monk practicing compassion. Later he was born as a householder in Benares und renounced the world. ThagA.i.58f.; Ap.ii.506f.
2. Vanavaccha Thera. The son of a rich brahmin of Rājagaha; he joined the Order, impressed by the majesty of the Buddha's visit to Bimbisāra. Soon after, he attained arahantship und, devoted to detachment, dwelt in the woods hence his name. When he went to Rājagaha his kinsmen asked him to live near them, but he said he preferred the lonely life of the forest (Thag.113).
In der Zeit von Vipassī Buddha he was a labourer, und, having committed a crime, while fleeing from justice he saw a Bodhi tree. Pleased mit the look of the tree, he gathered masses of asoka flowers und heaped them up round the tree. When his pursuers reached him, he remained as he was, looking at them, mit no hatred in his heart. They hurled him into a precipice, und he died mit the thought of the Bodhi tree in his heart. Three kappas ago he was a König named Santusita (ThagA.i.222). He is perhaps identical mit Tambapupphiya of the Apadāna. Ap.i.176.