Page:Sacred Books of the East - Volume 21.djvu/171

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123
ON PLANTS.

horizon shrouds all space (in darkness) and covers the earth.

6. That great rain-cloud, big with water, is wreathed with flashes of lightning and rouses with its thundering call all creatures.

7. By warding off the sunbeams, it cools the region; and gradually lowering so as to come in reach of hands, it begins pouring down its water all around.

8. And so, flashing on every side, it pours out an abundant mass of water equally, and refreshes this earth.

9. And all herbs which have sprung up on the face of the earth, all grasses, shrubs, forest trees, other trees small and great;

10. The various field fruits and whatever is green; all plants on hills, in caves and thickets;

11. All those grasses, shrubs, and trees are vivified by the cloud that both refreshes the thirsty earth and waters the herbs.

12. Grasses and shrubs absorb the water of one essence which issues from the cloud according to their faculty and reach.

13. And all trees, great, small, and mean, drink that water according to their growth and faculty, and grow lustily.

14. The great plants whose trunk, stalk, bark, twigs, pith, and leaves are moistened by the water from the cloud develop their blossoms and fruits.

15. They yield their products, each according to its own faculty, reach, and the particular nature of the germ; still the water emitted (from the cloud) is of but one essence.

16. In the same way, Kâsyapa, the Buddha