Devadatta repents his wrongdoing; while going to ask forgiveness, the earth swallows him up

When Devadatta's first plan to kill the Buddha failed, Devadatta tried to do the job himself. He went to the top of Gijjhakuta Mountain, knowing that at that moment the Buddha was staying on its lower slopes. Then he rolled a large rock down the hill, hoping to crush the Buddha. But on its way down the rock smashed into smaller pieces, one of which flew passed the Buddha and grazed him, causing a small wound.

The second plan had failed. After that, Devadatta persuaded King Ajatasattu to have his elephant trainers release a pack of fierce war elephants onto the streets while the Buddha was going for alms round, but this plan also failed as the elephants did not dare hurt the Buddha.

It was at this time that Devadatta's deeds and evil reputation began to become widely known. All the townsfolk were gossiping about how the hiring of the hunters, the rolling of the rock and wounding the Buddha, the releasing of the herd of elephants, and even the death of King Bimbisara, were all masterminded by Devadatta, and they decided that their King had done evil deeds because of his association with this evil monk.

King Ajatasattu heard of the talk of the townsfolk and was struck with shame. He gave up going to see Devadatta, and gave orders to stop taking the tray of palace food to offer to him as had been done in the past. In the town, no one would offer food to Devadatta. But Devadatta had still not given up his pride. He went to see the Buddha, asking him to change his religion with a number of reforms, such as making the monks compulsory vegetarians, but the Buddha refused. As a result Devadatta established a new sect of monks, putting himself at the head as a second Buddha.

But later the monks who had mistakenly followed Devadatta all left him and went back to the Buddha, leaving only a handful staying with Devadatta. Devadatta was filled with sorrow and vomited blood. Knowing that he was going to die, his conscience struck him, and he asked the few remaining monks with him to carry him to the Buddha so that he could ask forgiveness before dying. However Devadatta did not get a chance to see the Buddha, for when they reached the perimeter of the monastery, he developed a desire to bathe. As soon as he put his feet on the ground, the earth opened up and swallowed him down.

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