culaavuso wrote:Overeating does not seem to be the sole reason for this claim.
Getting the Message by Ven. Thanissaro Bhikkhu wrote:Even King Pasenadi of Kosala, the king most closely associated with the Buddha, comes across as well-meaning but somewhat dense. An entire discourse, MN 90, is a satire of how his royal position has thwarted his ability to learn the Dhamma. He can't phrase his questions properly, has trouble following a discussion for more than a few sentences, and is unable to come to any certain conclusions about the truth. Still, in other discourses he has his occasional moments of spiritual clarity, and the Buddha uses those moments as opportunities to teach the Dhamma.
I hardly think that the Kaṇṇakatthalasutta was meant to display the king's dim-wittedness. Finding himself in a particular religious culture he had the opportunity to ask the Buddha about the nature of omniscience, whether caste had any bearing on liberation, and whether or not there actually are devas. While some might roll their eyes and see the king as someone stupid asking stupid questions, I see him as a man of his times asking questions that might very well occur to any thoughtful person familiar with other religious teachings of those times.