This sutta begins in the same way as the first sutta in this chapter.
Bhante Moggallāna said, “This morning, friend, as I was coming down from the Gijjhakūṭa Mountain, I saw a piece of meat moving through the air. Vultures, crows, and hawks were chasing after it. They were stabbing it and tearing it apart. The piece of meat was crying out in pain. I thought then, ‘It is unusual, indeed! It is amazing, indeed! That there exists such a being, that there exists such a non-human, that there exists such a life.”
Then, the Blessed One said to the monks, “Monks, there are disciples who have gained the divine eye and special knowledge. They can know, see, and witness such a non-human. Monks, in the past, I, too, saw that being, but I did not speak of it. If I had spoken about it, there might have been some people who wouldn’t believe my words. If they had not believed my words, it would have led them to their harm and suffering for a long time.”
The Blessed One continued, “Monks, that non-human being used to be a cattle butcher in this same city of Rājagaha. As a result of that bad kamma, he was boiled in hell for many years, for many hundreds of years, for many thousands of years, for many hundreds of thousands of years. As a remaining result of that same kamma, he has been reborn as a ghost and is experiencing such terrible pain.”