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Bakkula, The Miracle Babyboy

Postby buddhaflower » Sun Dec 09, 2012 2:03 pm

Dear Members,

This Sunday morning, my town is so cool(58F) and lovely with clear blue sky. And I feel so happy to present this very charming story ,that I translated from my Thai Dhammapada Book (Thai Version), to you all. Please forgive my bad English.

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:heart: Bakkula, The Miracle Babyboy :heart:

Bakkula was born in the family of a councillor of Kosambi... When he was 5 days old,
his rich parents arranged a baby ceremony for him. As a tradition, baby should be bathed in
sacred Ganges River. While his nanny dipped him in the river, a very large fish swam by
and swallowed the baby. Miraculously, the fish could not digest him,it seemed like the baby
just slept happily in the big fish's belly. Later, the fish got caught by a group of fishermen
in Benares. Because the fish was very large,therefore poor people could not buy. It happened
that a rich lady,the wife of a Benares councillor, came to this market and bought this fish
to cook for her big family. When the cook cut open the fish belly,he found a very cute babyboy alive*!
Everybody was so stunned. The rich lady who never had children was very happy, so she took care of the baby
just as her own flesh and blood.

The big news about this miracled babyboy found in the fish belly was heard through
the whole country. Heard the news, the real parents in Kosambi hurried to go to
Benares. They told the rich lady about what happened and asked her to give
the baby back... But the Benareslady loved the baby too much to give him up. So
they brought the case to the king of Benares to decide, and the king told
both families to share the custody of the babyboy, 6 months for each family. That
was how the babyboy got the name "Bakkula" meaning a person who belonged to 2 families.

After a prosperous life and very exceptional healthy life, at the age of eighty, Bakkula heard
about the Buddha's majesty, went to listen to the Buddha's preaching. He was so impressed
with his dhamma and asked to be ordained. For seven days he remained unenlightened, but on the dawn
of the eighth day he became an arahant. Later, the Buddha declared him to be foremost in good health.

Bakkula lived to a very old age, and shortly before his death ordained Acela Kassapa, who had been
his friend in his lay days. Bakkula was one of the four who had great abhinna (mahabhinnappatta),
the others being the two chief disciples and Bhadda Kaccana. He is often mentioned as an example
of a monk who practised asceticism without preaching it to others.

* This preservation of Bakkula was due to the power of the sanctity of his last life; it was a case of psychic power diffused by knowledge (ñánavipphárá iddhi), PS.ii.211; Vsm.379.

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Thera Bakkula's past lives [www.palikanon.com/english/pali_names/b/bakkula.htm]

In the time of Anomadassi Buddha, he was a learned Brahmin who became a holy hermit. He heard the Buddha preach and became his follower, and when the Buddha suffered from stomach trouble, he cured him and was reborn later in the Brahma world.

In the time of Padumuttara Buddha, he was a householder of Hamsavati, and, hearing a monk acclaimed as most healthy, he wished for a similar honour in a future life.

Before the appearance of Vipassi Buddha, he was born in Bandhumati, where he became a hermit. Later, he saw the Buddha, acknowledged him as teacher, and cured a monk of tinapupphakaroga (hay fever).

In the time of Kassapa Buddha, he renovated an old vihara and provided the monks with medicaments.

***************** :heart: :namaste:
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Question: BAKKULA'S SUPERIORITY TO THE BUDDHA??

Postby buddhaflower » Sun Dec 09, 2012 2:17 pm

Dear members,

The Questions Of King Milinda
[Translated ted by T.W.Rhys Davids]

BAKKULA'S SUPERIORITY TO THE BUDDHA??

#8.King: 'Venerable Nâgasena, it was said by the Blessed One:

"A Brahman am I, O brethren, devoted to self-sacrifice 1, pure-handed at every time; this body that I bear with me is my last, I am the supreme Healer and Physician 2."

'But on the other hand the Blessed One said:

"The chief, O brethren, among those who are disciples of mine, in the matter of bodily health, is Bakkula 3."

'Now it is well known that diseases arose several times in the body of the Blessed One. So that if, Nâgasena, the Tathâgata was supreme, then the statement he made about Bakkula's bodily health must be wrong. But if the Elder named Bakkula was really chief among those who were healthy, then that statement which I first quoted must be wrong. This too is a double-edged problem, now put to you, which you have to solve.'9

Nagasena:'Both the quotations you have made, O king, are correct 1. But what the Blessed One said about Bakkula was said of those disciples who had learnt by heart the sacred words, and studied them, and handed down the tradition, which in reference to the characteristics (each of them in some one point) had in addition to those which were found in him himself 2. [216] For there were certain of the disciples of the Blessed One, O king, who were "meditators on foot," spending a whole day and night in walking up and down in meditation. But the Blessed One was in the habit of spending the day and night in meditation, not only walking up and down but also sitting and lying down. So such, O king, of the disciples as were "meditators on foot 3" surpassed him in that particular. And in a similar way, O king, a number of different things have been told, each one of one or other of the disciples. But the Blessed One, O king, surpassed them all in respect of uprightness, and of power of meditation, and of wisdom, and of emancipation, and of that insight which arises out of the knowledge of emancipation, and in all that lies within the scope of a Buddha. It was with reference to that, O king, that he said:

"A Brahman am I, O brethren, devoted to self-sacrifice, pure-handed at every time; this body that I bear with me is my last, I am the supreme Healer and Physician."10

'Now one man, O king, may be of good birth, and another may be wealthy, and another full of wisdom, and another well educated, and another brave, and another adroit; but a king, surpassing all these, is reckoned supreme. just in that way, O king, is the Blessed One the highest, the most worthy of respect, the best of all beings. And in so far as the venerable Bakkula was healthy in body, that was by reason of an aspiration (he had formed in a previous birth) 1. For, O king, when Anoma-dassî, the Blessed One, was afflicted with a disease, with wind in his stomach, and again when Vipassî, the Blessed One, and sixty-eight thousand of his disciples, were afflicted with a disease, with greenness of blood 2, he,
being at those times an ascetic, had cured that disease with various medicines, and attained (thereby) to such healthiness of body (in this life) that it was said of him:

"The chief, O brethren, among those who are disciples of mine, in the matter of bodily health, is Bakkula."11

'But the Blessed One, O king, whether he be suffering, or not suffering from disease; whether he have taken, or not taken, upon himself the observance
of special vows 1,--there is no being like unto the Blessed One. [217] For this, O king, has been said by the Blessed One, the god of gods, in the most excellent Samyutta Nikâya 2:

"Whatsoever beings, O brethren, there may be whether without feet, or bipeds, or four-footed things, whether with a body, or without a body, whether conscious or unconscious, or neither conscious nor not--the Tathâgata is acknowledged to be the chief of all, the Arahat, the Buddha Supreme."'

King: 'Very good, Nâgasena! That is so, and I accept it as you say 3.'

********** :heart: :anjali:
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Question: THE MOCKING OF THE BUDDHA ??

Postby buddhaflower » Mon Dec 10, 2012 1:03 pm

Dear members,

The Questions Of King Milinda
[Translated ted by T.W.Rhys Davids]

THE MOCKING OF THE BUDDHA

King: 'Venerable Nâgasena, it was said by the Blessed One of Six-tusks, the elephant king,

"When he sought to slay him, and had reached him with his trunk,
He perceived the yellow robe, the badge of a recluse,
Then, though smarting with the pain, the thought possessed his heart,--
'He who wears the outward garb the Arahats wear
Must be scatheless held, and sacred, by the good 1.'"

'But on the other hand it is said:

"When he was Gotipâla, the young Brahman, he reviled and abused Kassapa the Blessed One, the Arahat, the Buddha supreme, with vile and bitter words, calling him a shaveling and a good-for-nothing monk 2."

'Now if, Nâgasena, the Bodisat, even when he was an animal, respected the yellow robe, [222] then the statement that as Gotipâla, a Brahman, he reviled and abused the Blessed One of that time, must be false. But if as a Brahman, he reviled and abused the Blessed One, the statement that when he was Six-tusks, the elephant king, he respected the yellow robe, must be false. If when the Bodisat was an animal, though he was suffering severe and cruel and bitter pain, he respected the yellow robe
which the hunter had put on, how was it that when he was a man, a man arrived at discretion, with all his knowledge mature, he did not pay reverence, on seeing him, to Kassapa the Blessed One, the Arahat, the Buddha supreme, one endowed with the ten powers, the leader of the world, the highest of the high, round whom effulgence spread a fathom on every side, and who was clad in most excellent and precious and delicate Benares cloth made into yellow robes? This too is a double-edged problem, now put to you, which you have to solve.'

Nagasena: 'The verse you have quoted, O king, was spoken by the Blessed One. And Kassapa the Blessed One, the Arahat, the Buddha supreme, was abused and reviled by Gotipâla the young Brahman with vile and bitter words, with the epithets of shaveling and good-for-nothing monk. But that was owing to his birth and family surroundings. For Gotipâla, O king, was descended from a family of unbelievers, men void of faith. His mother and father, his sisters and brothers, the bondswomen and bondsmen, the hired servants and dependents in the house, were worshippers of Brahmâ, reverers of Brahmâ; and harbouring the idea that Brahmans were the highest and most honourable among men, they reviled and loathed those others who had renounced the world. It was through hearing what they said that Gotipâla, when invited by Ghatîkâra the potter to visit the teacher, replied: "What's the good to you of visiting that shaveling, that good-for-nothing monk?"

[223] 21. 'Just, O king, as even nectar when mixed with poison will turn sour, just as the coolest water in contact with fire will become warm, so was it that Gotipâla, the young Brahman, having been born and brought up in a family of unbelievers, men void of faith, thus reviled and abused the Tathâgata after the manner of his kind. And just, O king, as a flaming and burning mighty fire, if, even when at the height of its glory, it should come into contact with water, would cool down, with its splendour and glory spoilt, and turn to cinders, black as rotten blighted 1 fruits-just so, O king, Gotipâla, full as he was of merit and faith, mighty as was the glory of his knowledge, yet when reborn into a family of unbelievers, of men void of faith, he became, as it were, blind, and reviled and abused the Tathâgata. But when he had gone to him, and had come to know the virtues of the Buddhas which he had, then did he become as his hired servant; and having renounced the world and entered the Order under the system of the Conqueror, he gained the fivefold power of insight, and the eightfold power of ecstatic meditation, and became assured of rebirth into the Brahmâ heaven.'

King: 'Very good, Nâgasena! That is so, and I accept it as you say.'

************ :heart: :anjali:
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Birthday Gift : SAYHA JĀTAKA

Postby buddhaflower » Mon Dec 10, 2012 2:13 pm

Dear Members,

Today is my dhamma brother,Dr.Han Tun's birthday..I would like to post this Jataka as a gift to him.
:heart: HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!! :heart:

SAYHA-JĀTAKA.

"No throne on earth," etc.—The Master told this story while in residence at Jetavana, about a backsliding brother, who in going his rounds for alms at Sāvatthi caught sight of a beautiful woman, and thenceforth had grown discontented and lost all pleasure in the Law. So the Brethren brought him before the Blessed One. Said the Blessed One, "Is it true, Brother, what I hear, that you are discontented?" He confessed it was so. The Master on learning the cause of his discontent said, "Why, Brother, are you longing for the world, after taking orders in a religion that leads to Salvation? Wise men of old when offered the dignity of family priest rejected it, and adopted the ascetic life." And he told them a story of the olden time.

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Once upon a time when Brahmadatta was reigning in Benares, the Bodhisatta was conceived in the womb of the brahmin wife of the king's chaplain, [31] and was born on the same day as the king's son. And when the king asked his ministers if any child had been born on the same day as his son, they said, "Yes, Sire, a son of your family priest." So the king had him brought and given into the charge of nurses to be carefully tended together with the young prince. And they both had the same ornaments to wear and had exactly the same things to eat and drink.And when they were grown up, they went together to Takkasilā and as soon as they had attained proficiency in all the sciences they returned home.

The king made his son viceroy and bestowed great honour upon him. From that time the Bodhisatta ate, drank, and lived with the prince, and there was a firm friendship between them. By and bye at the death of his father, the young prince ascended the throne and enjoyed great prosperity. Thought the Bodhisatta: "My friend now rules the kingdom; when he sees a fitting opportunity, he will certainly give me the office of his family priest. What have I to do with a householder's life? I will become an ascetic and devote myself to solitude."

So he saluted his parents and having asked their permission to take orders, he gave up his worldly fortune and setting forth quite alone he entered the Himālaya country. There on a charming spot he built himself a hermitage, and adopting the religious life of an anchorite he developed all the Faculties and Attainments, and lived in the enjoyment of the pleasure of the mystic life.

At this time the king remembered him and said, "What has become of my friend? He is nowhere to be seen." His ministers told him he had taken orders, and was living, they heard, in some delightful grove. The king asked the place of his abode, and said to a councillor named Sayha, "Go and bring my friend back with you. I will make him my chaplain." Sayha readily assented, and going forth from Benares in course of time reached a frontier village and taking up his abode there, he went with some foresters to the place where the Bodhisatta dwelt and found him sitting like a golden statue at the door of his hut. After saluting him with the usual compliments he sat at a respectful distance and thus addressed him: "Reverend Sir, the king desires your return, being anxious to raise you to the dignity of his family priest." [32] The Bodhisatta replied, "If I were to receive not merely the post of chaplain but all Kāsi and Kosala, and the realm of India and the glory of a Universal Empire, I would refuse to go. The wise do not again take up the sins they have once abandoned any more than they would swallow the phlegm they have once raised." So saying he repeated these stanzas:—

No throne on earth should tempt me to my shame,
No sea-girt realm, safe-guarded in the deep;
Accurséd be the lust of wealth and fame
That dooms poor man in "Suffering Worlds" to weep.

Better through earth a homeless waif to stray,
And bowl in hand to beg from door to door,
Than as a king, to sinful lusts a prey,
To bear a tyrant rule and vex the poor.


Thus did the Bodhisatta though again and again importuned by him reject his offer. And Sayha, being unable to prevail on him, saluted him, and returned and told the king of his refusal to come.
----
When the Master had brought his lesson to an end, he revealed the Truths and identified the Birth:—At the conclusion of the Truths the backsliding Brother attained to fruition of the First Path. Many others too experienced like fruits of Conversion:—"At that time Ānanda was the king, Sāriputta was Sayha, and I myself was the family priest."

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:heart: Happy Birthday..my dear brother!! :heart:
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Sudhana Jataka: 7Years,7Months,7Days Journey Because Of Love

Postby buddhaflower » Tue Dec 11, 2012 2:03 pm

Dear Members,

I truly love this Jataka, I admire the way the Bodhisatta loved his wife so much he traveled 7 years,7 months and 7 days to find his beautiful wife!! What a wonderful amazing love!! Thai people love this jataka so much that the Nationan Theatre always produces 'Sudhana And Manohara' live shows on important National Days for example; the King's birthday.

I watched SUDHANA AND MANOHARA live show 3 times with my mom when I was young.

Because Of Love: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vpLGcmNzhvE
***********
Kinnari:
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Sudhana Jataka: 7Years,7Months,7Days Journey Because Of Love!
[Translated from Sudhana Jataka Thai version]

Long ago, in the oldest part of India , called Panchala Kingdom, there lived a handsome young man named Prince Sudhana he was the only child of King Athityawong and Queen Chanthathevi. The young prince was a remarkable young man, handsome, intelligent, and kind. It seemed as if he had mastered every grace and showed an aptitude for many skills, but in one sport, archery, he had exceptional ability. In the kingdoms to the east and west of Panchala, Prince Sudhana was called Good Arrow.

Good King Athityawong and Queen Chanthathevi were proud of their son and were determined to find him a wife who was as beautiful as the rose and as gentle as a doe. The king and queen observed many young ladies, but none of them showed promise of being a gracious and noble queen. One spoke with a harsh twang in her voice. Another lacked grace in her walk The third was not clever enough, and the fourth was plain. The fifth could not sing sweetly. The sixth could not dance gracefully. The seventh lacked regal poise. When the eighth princess was rejected because she giggled too much, the entire kingdom became concerned.

One day, Pran (Hunter) Boon, the most famous hunter in Panchala, discovered the secret bathing pool used by King Tumerat seven beautiful daughters King Tumerat was a great king who ruled over the Bird People in the far north. It is said his daughters were the most beautiful young ladies in the world. They all wore soft-feathered wings that could be removed at will. Without the wings the Bird Maidens looked exactly like other girls.

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When hunter Boon saw the seven pairs of feathered wings lying on the grass, he quickly ran to the kind old serpent, the Naga of Champoo Chit, and borrowed his magic noose. Then he stealthily crept along the bank of the bathing pond and snared Manohara, the youngest and fairest of all the Bird Maidens. Hunter Boon carried Manohara to the palace and presented her to King Athityawong and Queen Chanthathevi.

"Princess Manohara will make an ideal bride for our Prince Sudhana," said Boon. Boon's prediction was fulfilled, for Manohara's natural loveliness and gentle charm captivated every member of the royal household.

Prince Sudhana and Princess Manohara fell in love and the entire kingdom rejoiced at the news of their wedding.

On the day they were wed the prince said, ''Manohara, I am the most fortunate man alive. .My beautiful bride, I shall do everything I can to bring you happiness.''

Manohara answered, "Sudhana, my only request is that you never leave my side. When you are near me, I am happy. When I am alone, I think of my father and my sisters and I become sad."

Unfortunately, Prince Sudhana was forced to leave Manohara soon after their wedding.

"I must help my father's soldiers defeat the enemies who attack at the northern boundary. Please understand," said the prince.

"I understand," said Manohara.

The prince asked a trusted friend to take care of Manohara. "Guard her well," he said, "She is the jewel of our kingdom, and the treasure of my life. Friend, do not neglect her. Watch her night and day, and as a reward for your service, I shall make you the Royal Court Counselor."

Sudhana's friend promised and all would have gone well except for one thing, the old court counselor had overheard the conversation.

Late that night King Athityawong had a most strange dream. He called the old court counselor and said, "Last night, in my sleep, I saw my intestine unwind from my body. It rose like an enormous rope and wrapped itself around the entire kingdom of Panchala. What does this mean?"

The jealous old man immediately saw a way to save his position. He rubbed his chin and looked very wise as he said, "Your Majesty, your dream is a sign that a great evil will soon fall upon you, your family, and the kingdom. So great is this evil that all may die in its grasp."

The king sat up very straight and whispered, "How can we prevent this evil from coming?"

"There is only one way to appease the gods, Your Majesty," said the court counselor.

"I'll do anything you say," murmured the king.

"You must make a blood sacrifice. You must sacrifice the Bird Woman."

"No," shouted the king, "Prince Sudhana loves Manohara more than anything in this world."

"Does she mean more to you and the prince than your own beloved queen and all your subjects?"

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The king had no choice; yet, the horror of his decisions drove him into isolation. He placed guards at his door and ordered them to keep everyone away, including the queen.

The queen thought her husband had lost his mind. She spent each day trying to see him and then, when that failed, Consoled Manohara, "Don't worry, child," she said, "we shall find a way for you to escape."

"Good mother, you know Sudhana would not want me to die. Please, bring me my wings," begged Manohara.

The next day a crowd assembled to watch the blood sacrifice. When the gates of the courtyard swung open, Manohara was not tied to the stake. Her graceful wings were attached to her body. She was swaying as gently as a flower in the wind. Her arms moved slowly and her legs guided quick running steps. Suddenly, her wings stretched outward and as quietly as a swallow she flew over the palace and into the sky.

"May she reach her home safely," whispered the Queen.

"I wish her well," said the king.

Manohara flew immediately to the house of the wise old hermit who lived in the clearing near her bathing pound. She paused just long enough to say, "Wise one, if my husband comes to find me, please give him my ring of red rubies."

"Bird Maiden, you know the prince will seek to the ends of the earth for you. I shall give him your ring and my blessing. "

Manohara's eyes filled with tears as she said, "What you say is true. Please, try to protect him from harm. Will you teach him the prayers which will protect him from evil?" "I will do that and more, Manohara. I shall teach him the language of the birds and animals, and I shall give him some powerful magic."

Manohara gently fluttered her wings and flew into the sky, heading in the direction of Mount Krailat where her father and six sisters were waiting to welcome her home again.

As soon as Prince Sudhana discovered what had happened, he set out to seek his wife. For many days he traveled into areas where no one had gone before. Wherever he went he asked, "Can you direct me to the land of the Bird People If But always the answer was the same until the day he discovered the wise hermit of the north country.

"Yes, I can direct you to the land of the Bird People. Tile way is perilous, but if you know the secret prayers, and carry my magic lotion, I think you will be able to arrive there safely. For added protection I shall give you my pet monkey. Never put a berry or a jungle fruit in your mouth unless the monkey eats it first," said the hermit.

"If you do all this, I shall be eternally grateful," said the prince.

The hermit gave Prince Sudhana Manohara's ring of red rubies, taught him special prayers, the language or beasts and birds, and directed him northward. For Seven years and seven months Sudhana traveled through jungles, forests, thorny fields, and over the highest mountains. Then he met a monstrous creature called the Yakka.

The Yakka stood seven times taller than the tallest man. His breath was a flame of blue fire. Smoke sifted through his nostrils and rose into the sky. Prince Sudhana said the secret prayers, and the fierce Yakka knelt down before him.

The next obstacle was a river of blazing, dancing red flames. The prince said the secret prayers and immediately a huge boa constrictor appeared. He stepped upon its back and safely rode over the river of fire to the opposite bank.

The prince had scarcely taken a dozen steps when he discovered his path was blocked bit an enormous tree unlike any he had ever seen before. The thick jungle growth prevented him from going around it. The strong, sturdy roots prevented him from digging under it. With no alternative, the prince climbed the tree, but fell asleep in the branches.

The next morning he was awakened by the chirping of two great birds. They were larger than tigers and wore glittering feathers of sparkling gold and gleaming feathers of shining silver. Prince Sudhana listened carefully, and to his great surprise, he discovered that he was able to understand the birds.

The first giant bird said, "If we go to Mount Krailat tomorrow, we shall have a feast."

"Oh yes, I heard King Tumerat was having a celebration in honor of his youngest daughter. By all means, we should go, but first we must rest. Mount Krailat is far to the north," the second bird replied.

Prince Sudhana unleashed his little monkey and set him free. Then he climbed on the back of one of the huge gold and silver birds and nestled under the metallic feathers.

Early the next morning the great birds stretched their wings and flew directly to the lotus pond in King Tumerat's garden.

Prince Sudhana arrived just in time to see a party of bird hand maidens carrying golden pitchers to the pond.

"Our Princess Manohara cries all day, no matter what we do. She yearns for her prince who is far away beyond the mountain blue," sang one little servant.

"Good maiden, are you carrying your golden pitcher to Princess Manohara's chamber?"

"Indeed, I am," said the little girl.

"It is a heavy burden for one so small," said the Prince.

"Here, let me carry it for you."

The prince slipped off his ring of red rubies and dropped it into the golden pitcher.

When the hand maiden splashed her pitcher of water over Manohara, the ring of red rubies clinked before her.

"Tell me quickly," shouted Manohara, "have you seen a strange man in our garden?"

"Yes, My princess, he helped me carry the golden urn full of water."

Manohara grabbed her servant's hands and danced merrily around the room.

"Quickly, take perfumes, jewels, and silken clothes to him. He is my husband, and he must be dressed properly before he meets my father."

An hour later Prince Sudhana was presented to Manohara's father, the great King Tumerat.

"Prince Sudhana, we Bird People are impressed with your devotion to Manohara; however, before you may claim her as your won, you must prove yourself worthy."

"Your Highness, I have traveled for seven years, seven months, and seven days looking for Manohara. Now that I have found her, I shall do anything you request in order to gain your blessing on our marriage," said the prince.

"Your first test is a test of strength. Can you lift the solid stone bench in my garden?"

Prince Sudhana calmly walked to the bench, knelt before it and prayed to the gods for strength. The next moment he grasped the stone bench and raised it above his head. The gasp of those present was like a swish of wind in the treetops.

"Well done," said the King. "Now, since you wish to take Manohara from her homeland, you must prove that she is the only maiden you desire. Can you select her from a group of seven young ladies."

"I would know Manora anywhere," said the prince.

But he wished he had not spoken so quickly because the next instant seven identical Manoharas danced in front of him. The prince prayed to the gods for help and in response a golden butterfly appeared. It flew three times around the head of the girl in the center. Prince Sudhana took her hand, led her to the king, and said, "This is my Manohara.'' The king smiled with approval.

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"Only one task remains, Prince Sudhana. You must shoot an arrow through seven palm boards, seven figwood boards, seven plates of copper, seven plates of iron, and through seven bullock carts filled with sand. If you can do this difficult task, Manohara shall be yours forever."

The prince did not pause for a moment. After all, his name had come to mean Good Arrow. With one quick, sure stroke he placed his sharpest arrow in his crossbow and let it fly. Like a stroke of lightning the arrow pierced through the palm boards, figwood boards, copper plates, iron plates, and sand-laden bullock carts. It is said that even then the arrow did not waver as it soared straight into the open sky and disappeared from view.

The king watched the arrow fade into the distance and said, "Prince Sudhana, you may take Princess Manohara to your homeland."

From that eventful day until the end of their lives, Princess Manohara and Prince Sudhana lived happily ever after in the prosperous kingdom of Panchala.

********** :heart:
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Why The Buddha Claimed To Be A Brahman/A King?

Postby buddhaflower » Tue Dec 11, 2012 2:37 pm

Dear members,

The Questions Of King Milinda
[Translated ted by T.W.Rhys Davids]

Why The Buddha Claimed To Be A Brahman/A King?
---------
King: 'Venerable Nâgasena, this too was said by the Blessed One:

"A Brahman am I, O brethren, devoted to self-sacrifice 2."

'But on the other hand he declared:

"A king am I, Sela 3."

'If, Nâgasena, the Blessed One were a Brahman, then he must have spoken falsely when he said he was a king. But if he were a king, then he must have spoken falsely when he said he was a Brahman. He must have been either a Khattiya or a Brahman. For he could not have belonged, in the same birth, to two castes. This too is a double-edged problem, now put to you, which you have to solve.'

Nagasena: 'Both the quotations you have made, O king, are correct. But there is good reason why the Tathâgata, should have been both Brahman and also king.'

King:'Pray what, Nâgasena, can be that reason?'

Nagasena: 'Because all evil qualities, not productive of merit, are in the Tathâgata suppressed, abandoned, put away, dispelled, rooted out, destroyed, come to an end, gone out, and ceased, therefore is it that the Tathâgata is called a Brahman 1. A Brahman 2, O king, means one who has passed beyond hesitation, perplexity, and doubt. And it is because the Tathâgata has done all this, that therefore also is he called a Brahman. A Brahman, O king, means one who has escaped from every sort and class of becoming, who is entirely set free from evil and from stain, who is dependent on himself 3, and it is because the Tathâgata is all of these things, that therefore also is he called a Brahman. A Brahman, O king, means one who cultivates within himself the highest and best of the excellent and supreme conditions of heart 1. And it is because the Tathâgata does this that therefore also is he called a Brahman.

A Brahman, O king, means one who carries on the line of the tradition of the ancient instructions concerning the learning and the teaching of sacred writ, concerning the acceptance of gifts, concerning subjugation of the senses, self-control in conduct, and performance of duty. And it is because the Tathâgata carries on the line of the tradition of the ancient rules enjoined by the Conquerors 2 regarding all these things, that therefore also is he called a Brahman. [226] A Brahman, O king, means one who enjoys the supreme bliss of the ecstatic meditation. And it is because the Tathâgata does this, that therefore also is he called a Brahman. A Brahman, O king, means one who knows the course and revolution of births in all forms of existence. And it is because the Tathâgata knows this, that therefore also is he called a Brahman. The appellation "Brahman," O king, was not given to the Blessed One by his mother, nor his father, not by his brother, nor his sister, not by his friends, nor his relations, not by spiritual teachers of any sort, no, not by the gods. It is by reason of their emancipation that this is the name of the Buddhas, the Blessed Ones. From the moment when, under the Tree of Wisdom, they had overthrown the armies of the Evil One, had suppressed in themselves all evil qualities not productive of merit, and had attained to the knowledge of the Omniscient Ones, it was from the acquisition of this insight, the appearance in them of this enlightenment, that this true designation became applied to them,--the name of "Brahman." And that is the reason why the Tathâgata is called a Brahman 1.'

King: 'Then what is the reason why the Tathâgata is called a king?'

Nagasena: 'A king means, O king, one who rules and guides the world, and the Blessed One rules in righteousness over the ten thousand world systems, he guides the whole world with its men and gods, its evil spirits and its good ones 2, and its teachers, whether Samanas or Brahmans. That is the reason why the Tathâgata is called a king. A king means, O king, one who, exalted above all ordinary men, making those related to him rejoice, and those opposed to him mourn; raises aloft the Sunshade of Sovranty, of pure and stainless white, with its handle of firm hard wood 3, and its many hundred ribs 4,--the symbol of his mighty fame and glory. And the Blessed One, O king, making the army of the Evil One, those given over to false doctrine, mourn; filling the hearts of those, among gods or men, devoted to sound doctrine, with joy; [227] raises aloft over the ten thousand world systems the Sunshade of his Sovranty, pure and stainless in the whiteness of emancipation,with its hundreds of ribs fashioned out of the highest wisdom, with its handle firm and strong through long suffering,--the symbol of his mighty fame and glory.

That too is the reason why the Tathâgata is called a king. A king is one who is held worthy of homage by the multitudes who approach him, who come into his presence. And the Blessed One, O king, is held worthy of homage by multitudes of beings, whether gods or men, who approach him, who come into his presence. That too is the reason why the Tathâgata is called a king. A king is one who, when pleased with a strenuous servant, gladdens his heart by bestowing upon him, at his own good pleasure, any costly gift the officer may choose 1. And the Blessed One, O king, when pleased with any one who has been strenuous in word or deed or thought, gladdens his heart by bestowing upon him, as a selected gift, the supreme deliverance from all sorrow,--far beyond all material gifts 2. That too is the reason why the Tathâgata is called a king. A king is one who censures, fines 3, or executes the man who transgressesthe royal commands.

And so, O king, the man who, in shamelessness or discontent, transgresses the command of the Blessed One, as laid down in the rules of his Order, that man, despised, disgraced and censured, is expelled from the religion of the Conqueror. That too is the reason why the Tathâgata is called a king. A king is one who in his turn proclaiming laws and regulations according to the instructions laid down in succession by the righteous kings of ancient times, and thus carrying on his rule in righteousness, becomes beloved and dear to the people, desired in the world, and by the force of his righteousness establishes his dynasty long in the land. And the Blessed One, O king, proclaiming in his turn laws and regulations according to the instructions laid down in succession by the Buddhas of ancient times, and thus in righteousness being teacher of the world,--he too is beloved and dear to both gods and men, desired by them, and by the force of his righteousness he makes his religion last long in the land. That too is the reason why the Tathâgata is called a king.

'Thus, O king, so many are the reasons why the Tathâgata should be both Brahman and also king, that the ablest of the brethren could scarcely in an æon enumerate them all. Why then should I dilate any further? Accept what I have said only in brief.'

King:'Very good, Nâgasena! That is so, and I accept it as you say.'

*********
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Question: GIFTS TO THE BUDDHA???

Postby buddhaflower » Wed Dec 12, 2012 2:38 pm

Dear members,

I think I am a very strange person, I never doubt stories about Buddhas or their arahant disciples/upasakas-upasikas. I love to read suttas/dhammapada stories/jatakas/itivuttakas etc. with ultimate belief!! And when I read Milindapanha my love/saddha overwhelm me million times more...!!
:heart: I love Buddhas more today than yesterday..but I love Bhuddas less today..less than I will tomorrow. :heart:

***********

The Questions Of King Milinda
[Translated ted by T.W.Rhys Davids]

GIFTS TO THE BUDDHA.

King: 'Venerable Nâgasena, it has been said by the Blessed One:

"Gifts chaunted for in sacred hymns
Are gifts I must not take.
All those who see into the Truth
Do this their practice make.
The Buddhas all refused to chaunt for wage;
This was their conduct still
Whene'er the Truth prevailed
Through every age 1."

'But on the other hand the Blessed One, when preaching the Truth, or talking of it, was in the habit of beginning with the so-called "preliminary discourse," in which giving has the first place, and goodness only the second 2. So that when gods and men heard this discourse of the Blessed One, the lord of the whole world, they prepared and gave gifts, and the disciples partook of the alms thus brought about. Now if, Nâgasena, it be true what the Blessed One said, that he accepted no gifts earned by the chaunting of sacred words, then it was wrong that the Blessed One put giving thus

into the foreground. But if he did rightly in so emphasizing the giving of gifts, then it is not true that he accepted no gifts earned by the utterance of sacred words. And why so? Because if any one worthy of offerings should praise to the laity the good results to them of the bestowal of alms, they, hearing that discourse, and pleased with it, will proceed to give alms again and again. And then, whosoever enjoy that gift, they are really enjoying that which has been earned by the utterance of sacred words. This too is a double-edged problem, now put to you, which you have to solve.'

Nagasena: 'The stanza you quote, O king, was spoken by the Blessed One. And yet he used to put the giving of alms into the forefront of his discourse. But this is the custom of all the Tathâgatas--first by discourse on almsgiving to make the hearts of hearers inclined towards it, and then afterwards to urge them to righteousness. This is as when men, O king, give first of all to young children things to play with--[229] such as toy ploughs 1, tip-cat sticks 2, toy wind-mills 3, measures made of leaves 4, toy carts,
and bows and arrows--and afterwards appoint to each his separate task. Or it is as when a physician first causes his patients to drink oil for four or five days in order to strengthen them, and to soften their bodies; and then afterwards administers a purge. The supporters of the faith, O king, the lordly givers, have their hearts thus softened, made tender, affected. Thereby do they cross over to the further shore of the ocean of transmigration by the aid of the boat of their gifts, by the support of the causeway of their gifts. And (the Buddha), by this (method in his teaching), is not guilty of "intimation 1."'

King: 'Venerable Nâgasena, when you say "intimation" what are these intimations?'

Nagasena:'There are two sorts, O king, of intimation--bodily and verbal. And there is one bodily
intimation which is wrong, and one that is not; and there is one verbal intimation which is wrong, and one that is not. Which is the bodily intimation which is wrong? Suppose any member of the Order, in going his rounds for alms, should, when choosing a spot to stand on, stand where there is no room 2, that is a bodily intimation which is wrong. The true members of the Order will not accept any alms so asked for, and the individual who thus acts is despised, looked down upon, not respected, held blameworthy, disregarded, not well thought of, in the religion of the Noble Ones; he is reckoned as

one of those who have broken their (vows as to) means of livelihood. And again, O king, suppose any member of the Order, in going his round for alms, should stand where there is no room, and stretch out his neck like a peacock on the gaze, in the hope: "Thus will the folk see me"--that too is a bodily intimation which is wrong. True brethren will not accept an alms so asked for, and he who thus acts is regarded like the last. And again, O king, suppose any member of the Order should make a sign with his jaw, or with his eyebrow, or with his finger--[230] that too is a bodily intimation which is wrong. True brethren will not accept an alms so asked for, and he who thus acts is regarded the same way.

'And which is the bodily intimation which is not wrong? If a brother, on going his round for alms, be self-possessed, tranquil, conscious of his acts; if he stand, wherever he may go, in the kind of spot that is lawful; if he stand still where there are people desirous to give, and where they are not so desirous, if he pass on 1 ;--that is a bodily intimation which is not wrong. Of an alms so stood for the true members of the Order will partake; and the individual who thus asks is, in the religion of the Noble Ones, praised, thought highly of, esteemed, and reckoned among those whose behaviour is without guile, whose mode of livelihood is pure. For thus has it been said by the Blessed One, the god over all gods:

"The truly wise beg not, for Arahats scorn to beg.
The good stand for their alms, thus only do they beg 1."

'Which is the verbal intimation which is wrong? In case, O king, a brother intimate his wish for a number of things, requisites of a member of the Order--robes and bowls and bedding and medicine for the sick--that is a verbal intimation which is wrong. Things so asked for the true members of the Order (Ariyâ) will not accept; and in the religion of the Noble Ones the individual who acts thus is despised, looked down upon, not respected, held blameworthy, disregarded, not well thought of--reckoned rather as one who has broken his (vows as to) means of livelihood. And again, O king, in case a brother should, in the hearing of others, speak thus: "I am in want of such and such a thing;" and in consequence of that saying being heard by the others he should then get that thing--that too is a verbal intimation which is wrong. True members of the Order will not use a thing so obtained, and he who acts thus is regarded like the last. And again, O king, in case a brother, dilating in his talk 2, give the people about him to understand: "Thus and thus should gifts be given to the Bhikkhus,"

and in case they, on hearing that saying, should bring forth from their store anything so referred to--that too is a verbal intimation which is wrong. True members of the Order will not use a thing so obtained, and he who acts thus is regarded like the last. [231] For when Sâriputta, the Elder, O king, being ill in the night-time, after the sun had set, and being questioned by Moggallâna, the Elder, as to what medicine would do him good, broke silence; and through that breach of silence obtained the medicine--did not Sâriputta then, saying to himself: "This medicine has come through breach of silence; let not my (adherence to the rules regarding) livelihood be broken," reject that medicine, and use it not 1? So that too is a verbal intimation which is wrong. True members of the Order will not use a thing so obtained, and he who acts thus is regarded like the last.

'And what is the verbal intimation which is right? Suppose a brother, O king, when there is necessity for it, should intimate among families either related to him, or which had invited him to spend the season of Was with him 2, that he is in want of medicines--this is a verbal intimation which is not wrong. True members of the Order will partake of things so asked for; and the individual who acts thus is, in the religion of the Noble Ones, praised, thought highly of, esteemed, reckoned among those whose mode of livelihood is pure,
approved of the Tathâgatas, the Arahats, the Supreme Buddhas. And the alms that the Tathâgata, O king, refused to accept of Kasî-Bhâradvâga, the Brahman 1, that was presented for the sake of testing him with an intricate puzzle which he would have to unwind 2, for the sake of pulling him away, of convicting him of error, of making him acknowledge himself in the wrong. Therefore was it that the Tathâgata refused that alms, and would not partake thereof.'

King: 'Nâgasena, was it always, whenever the Tathâgata was eating, that the gods infused the Sap of Life from heaven into the contents of his bowl, or was it only into those two dishes--the tender boar's flesh, and the rice porridge boiled in milk--that they infused it 3?

Nagasena: 'Whenever he was eating, O king, and into each morsel of food as he picked it up--just as the royal cook takes the sauce and pours it over each morsel in the dish while the king is partaking of it [232] And so at Verañgâ, when the Tathâgata was eating the cakes 5 made of dried barley, the gods moistened each one with the Sap of Life, as they placed it near him 1. And thus was the body of the Tathâgata fully refreshed.'

King: 'Great indeed was the good fortune, Nâgasena, of those gods that they were ever and always so zealous in their care for the body of the Tathâgata! Very good, Nâgasena! That is so, and I accept it as you say.'

***********
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The Buddha: Wild In The Country

Postby buddhaflower » Wed Dec 12, 2012 3:33 pm

Dear Members,

This super cold Texas morning I would like to present this wonderful story to you all.
And since I use many Elvis songs in my Dhammapada story presentations, I pray that Elvis also get great merits from the Buddha. I wish Elvis be reborn in one of those high heavens as the most handsome deva ever.

The Buddha: Wild In The Country
[Given to me by 'James the Giant' @ Dhamma Wheel]

Wild In The Country: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RzRbmRlWvyk

Image


The Buddha left Jetavana monastery in Savatthi, and spent the vassa, residence period of the rains, all alone in Rakkhita Grove near Palileyyaka forest.

So then this noble elephant withdrew from the herd and drew near to Parileyyaka, to Protected Forest, to the foot of the beautiful Sal-tree; even to where the Exalted One was, thither did he draw near. And when he had drawn near and paid obeisance to the Exalted One, he looked all about for a broom. And seeing none, he smote with his foot the beautiful Sal-tree below and hewed away with his trunk at the Sal-tree above. And taking a branch, he then swept the ground.
Then he took a water-pot in his trunk and procured drinking-water. And as hot water was required, he prepared hot water. (How was that possible?) First he produced sparks with a fire-drill which he worked with his trunk; then he dropped sticks of wood on the sparks. Thus did he kindle a fire. In the fire he heated small stones; these he rolled along with a stick and dropped into a little depression in the rock. Then, lowering his trunk and finding the water hot enough, he went and made obeisance to the Teacher. The Teacher asked, “Is your water hot, Parileyyaka?” and went there and bathed. After that the elephant brought various kinds of wild fruits and presented them to the Teacher.

Now when the Teacher enters the village for alms, the elephant takes his bowl and robe, puts them on top of his head, and accompanies him. When the Teacher reaches the vicinity of the village, he bids the elephant bring him his bowl and robe, saying, “Parileyyaka, farther than this you are not permitted to go. Fetch me my bowl and robe.” The Teacher then enters the village, and the elephant stands right there until he returns. When the Teacher returns, the elephant advances to meet him, takes his bowl and robe just as he did before, deposits them in the Teacher’s place of abode, pays him the usual courtesies, and fans him with the branch of a tree. At night, to ward off danger from beasts of prey, he takes a big club in his trunk, says to himself, “I’ll protect the Teacher,” and back and forth in the interstices of the forest he paces until sunrise. (From that time forth, we are told, that forest was called “Protected Forest.”) When the sun rises, the elephant gives the Teacher water wherewith to bathe his face, and in the manner before related performs all of the other duties.

Now a monkey saw the elephant up and doing each day, performing the lesser duties for the Tathāgata, and he said to himself, “I’ll do something too.” One day, as he was running about, he happened to see some stick-honey free from flies. He broke the stick off, took the honey-comb, stick and all, broke off a plantain-leaf, placed the honey on the leaf, and offered it to the Teacher. The Teacher took it. The monkey watched to see whether or not he would eat it. He observed that the Teacher, after taking the honey, sat down without eating. “What can be the matter?” thought he. He took hold of the stick by the tip, turned it over and over, carefully examining it as he did so, whereupon he discovered some insect’s eggs. Having removed these gently, he again gave the honey to the Teacher. The Teacher ate it.

The monkey was so delighted that he leaped from one branch to another and danced about in great glee. But the branches he grasped and the branches he stepped on broke off. Down he fell on the stump of a tree and was impaled. So he died. And solely because of his faith in the Teacher he was reborn in the World of the Thirty-three in a golden mansion thirty leagues in measure, with a retinue of a thousand celestial nymphs.

Buddha's Verse 118. If a man(in this case"a monkey/elephant") does what is good, let him do it again; let him delight in it: happiness is the outcome of good.

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Channa: The Arrogant Bhikkhu!!

Postby buddhaflower » Thu Dec 13, 2012 1:44 pm

Dear Members,

This cold cold Uposatha day, I have a nice story of Thera Channa to share with you all.

Image

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Channa: The Arrogant Bhikkhu
[Translated from the Pali by Daw Mya Tin,MA]

While residing at the Jetavana monastery, the Buddha uttered Verse (78) of this book, with reference to Thera Channa.

Channa was the attendant who accompanied Prince Siddhattha when he renounced the world and left the palace on horseback. When the prince attained Buddhahood, Channa also became a bhikkhu. As a bhikkhu, he was very arrogant and overbearing because of his close connection to the Buddha. Channa used to say, "I came along with my Master when he left the palace for the forest. At that time, I was the only companion of my Master and there was no one else. But now, Sariputta and Moggallana are saying, 'we are the Chief Disciples,' and are strutting about the place."

When the Buddha sent for him and admonished him for his behaviour, he kept silent but continued to abuse and taunt the two Chief Disciples. Thus the Buddha sent for him and admonished him three times; still, he did not change. And again, the Buddha sent for Channa and said, "Channa, these two noble bhikkhus are good friends to you; you should associate with them and be on good terms with them."

Then the Buddha spoke in verse as follows:

Verse 78: One should not associate with bad friends, nor with the vile. One should associate with good friends, and with those who are noble.

In spite of repeated admonitions and advice given by the Buddha, Channa did as he pleased and continued to scold and abuse the bhikkhus. The Buddha, knowing this, said that Channa would not change during the Buddha's lifetime but after his demise (parinibbana) Channa would surely change. On the eve of his parinibbana, the Buddha called Thera Ananda to his bedside and instructed him to impose the Brahma-punishment (Brahmadanda) to Channa; i.e., for the bhikkhus to simply ignore him and to have nothing to do with him.

After the parinibbana of the Buddha, Channa, learning about the punishment from Thera Ananda, felt a deep and bitter remorse for having done wrong and he fainted three times. Then, he owned up his guilt to the bhikkhus and asked for pardon. From that moment, he changed his ways and outlook. He also obeyed their instructions in his meditation practice and soon attained arahatship.

---------- :anjali: :heart:
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Question: ON THE BUDDHA'S AFTER-DOUBT

Postby buddhaflower » Thu Dec 13, 2012 2:08 pm

Dear Members,

I truly love how Thera Nagasena explained/answered to King Milinda.

************
The Questions Of King Milinda
[Translated ted by T.W.Rhys Davids]

Question: ON THE BUDDHA'S AFTER-DOUBT

King: 'Venerable Nâgasena, your people say:

"The Tathâgata gradually, through millions of years, through æon after æon 3, brought his omniscient wisdom to perfection for the sake of the salvation of the great masses of the people 4."

'But on the other hand (they say) 5:

"Just after he had attained to omniscience his heart inclined, not to the proclamation of the Truth, but to rest in peace."

'So that, Nâgasena, just as if an archer, or an archer's pupil, who had practised archery for many days with the object of fighting, should, when the day of the great battle had come, draw back--just so did the Tathâgata, who through countless ages had gradually matured his omniscience for the sake of bringing safe to the shore (of salvation) the great masses of the people, turn back, on the day when that omniscience had been reached, from proclaiming the Truth. just as if a wrestler who through many days had practised wrestling should, when the day of the wrestling match 1 had come, draw back--just so did the Tathâgata, who through countless ages had gradually matured his omniscience for the sake of bringing safe to the shore (of salvation) the great masses of the people, turn back, on the day when that omniscience had been reached, from proclaiming the Truth.

'Now was it from fear, Nâgasena, that the Tathâgata drew back, or was it from inability to preach 2, or was it from weakness, or was it because he had not, after all, attained to omniscience? [233] What was the reason of this? Tell me, I pray, the reason, that my doubts may be removed. For if for so long a time he had perfected his wisdom with the object of saving the people, then the statement that he hesitated to announce the Truth must be wrong. But if that be true, then the other statement must be false. This too is a double-edged problem,now put to you,--a problem profound, a knot hard to unravel,--which you have to solve.'

Nagasena: 'The statements in both the passages you quote, O king, are correct. But that his heart inclined, not to the preaching of the truth, but to inaction, was because he saw, on the one hand, how profound and abstruse was the Doctrine 1, how hard to grasp and understand, how subtle, how difficult to penetrate into; and, on the other, how devoted beings are to the satisfaction of their lusts, how firmly possessed by false notions of Individualism 2. And so (he wavered) at the thought: "Whom shall I teach? And how can I teach him?"--his mind being directed to the idea of the powers of penetration which beings possessed.

'Just, O king, as an able physician, when called in to a patient suffering from a complication of diseases, might reflect: "What can be the treatment, what the drug, by which this man's sickness can be allayed?"--just so, O king, when the Tathâgata called to mind how afflicted were the people by all the kinds of malady which arise from sin, and how profound and abstruse was the Doctrine, how subtle, and how difficult to grasp, then at the thought: "Whom can I teach? And how shall I teach him?" did his heart incline rather to inaction than to preaching--[234] his mind being directed to the powers of penetration which beings possessed.

'And just, O king, as a king, of royal blood, an anointed monarch, when he calls to mind the many
people who gain their livelihood in dependence on the king--the sentries and the body-guard, the retinue of courtiers, the trading folk, the soldiers and the royal messengers, the ministers and the nobles 1--might be exercised at the thought: "How now, in what way, shall I be able to conciliate them all?"--just so when the Tathâgata called to mind how profound and abstruse was the Doctrine, how subtle, and how difficult to grasp, and how devoted beings were to the satisfaction of their lusts, how firmly possessed by false notions of Individualism, then at the thought: "Whom shall I teach? And how shall I teach him?" did his heart incline rather to inaction than to preaching--his mind being directed to the powers of penetration which beings possessed.

'And this, too, is an inherent necessity in all Tathâgatas that it should be on the request of Brahmâ that they should proclaim the Dhamma. And what is the reason for that? All men in those times, with the ascetics and the monks, the wandering teachers and the Brahmans, were worshippers of Brahmâ, reverers of Brahmâ, placed their reliance on Brahmâ. And therefore, at the thought: "When so powerful and glorious, so famous and renowned, so high and mighty a one has shown himself inclined (to the Dhamma), then will the whole world of gods and men become inclined to it, hold it fitting, have faith in it"--on this ground, O king, the Tathâgatas preached the Dhamma when requested to do so by Brahmâ. For just, O king, as what a sovran or a minister of state shows homage to, or offers worship to, that will the rest of mankind, on
the ground of the homage of so powerful a personage, show homage to and worship--just so, O king, when Brahmâ had paid homage to the Tathâgatas, so would the whole world of gods and men. For the world, O king, is a reverer of what is revered. And that is why Brahmâ asks of all Tathâgatas that they should make known the Doctrine, and why, on so being asked, they make it known 1.'

King:'Very good, Nâgasena! The puzzle has been well unravelled, most able has been your exposition. That is so, and I accept it as you say.'

************ :heart: :anjali:
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Re: The Famous Case Of A Pregnant Bhikkhuni

Postby windsweptliberty » Thu Dec 13, 2012 5:55 pm

What a touching story of devotion.
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Question: THE BUDDHA'S TEACHER.

Postby buddhaflower » Fri Dec 14, 2012 2:17 pm

Dear members,

I love this question/answer :heart:
************

The Questions Of King Milinda
[Translated ted by T.W.Rhys Davids]

Question: THE BUDDHA'S TEACHER.

King: 'Venerable Nâgasena, this too has been said by the Blessed One:

"I have no teacher, and the man
Equal to me does not exist.
No rival to me can be found
In the whole world of gods and men 1."

'But on the other hand he said:

"Thus then, O brethren, Âlâra Kâlâma, when he was my teacher and I was his pupil, placed me on an equality with himself, and honoured me with exceeding great honour 2."

'Now if the former of these statements be right, then the second must be wrong. But if the second be right, then the first must be wrong. This too is a double-edged problem, now put to you, which you have to solve.'

Nagasena: 'Both the quotations you have made, O king, are accurate. But when he spoke of Âlâra Kâlâma as his teacher, that was a statement made with reference to the fact of his having been his teacher while he (Gotama) was still a Bodisat and before he had attained to insight and to Buddhahood; and there were five such teachers, O king, under whose tuition the Bodisat spent his time in various places--his teachers when he was still a Bodisat, before he had attained to insight and to Buddhahood. And who were these five?

King: 'Those eight Brahmans who, just after the birth of the Bodisat, took note of the marks on his body--[236] Râma, and Dhaga, and Lakkhana, and Mantî 1, and Yañña 2, and Suyâma, and Subhoga 3, and Sudatta 4--they who then made known his future glory, and marked him out as one to be carefully guarded-these were first his teachers 5.

Nagasena: 'And again, O king, the Brahman Sabbamitta of distinguished descent, who was of high lineage in the land of Udikka 1, a philologist and grammarian, well read in the six Vedangas 2, whom Suddhodana the king, the Bodisat's father, sent for, and having poured out the water of dedication from a golden vase, handed over the boy to his charge, to be taught--this was his second teacher .

'And again, O king, the god who raised the agitation in the Bodisat's heart, at the sound of whose speech the Bodisat, moved and anxious, that very moment went out from the world in his Great Renunciation--this was his third teacher 4.

'And again, O king, Âlâra Kâlâma--he was his fourth teacher.

'And again, O king, Uddaka the son of Râma--he was his fifth teacher.

'These, O king, are the five who were his teachers when he was still a Bodisat, before he had attained to insight and to Buddhahood. But they were teachers in worldly wisdom. And in this Doctrine that is transcendental, in the penetrating into the wisdom of the omniscient ones--in that there is no one who is above the Tathâgata to teach him. Self-dependent for his knowledge is the Tathâgata, without a master, and that is why it was said by the Tathâgata:

"I have no teacher, and the man
Equal to me does not exist.
No rival to me can be found
In the whole world of gods and men."'

King:'Very good, Nâgasena! That is so, and I accept it as you say.'

************ :namaste: :heart:
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Sleeping With The Enemy:TAKKA JATAKA

Postby buddhaflower » Fri Dec 14, 2012 3:07 pm

Dear Members,

This cruel cold Texas Friday, I have a hot/spicy story :jumping: 'Sleeping With The Enemy : TAKKA-JĀTAKA' :jumping: for you all.

Please click: http://dhammawheel.com/viewtopic.php?f= ... 28#p183128

Buddhaflower :twothumbsup: :heart:
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Why Must There Be Only One Buddha At A Time?

Postby buddhaflower » Sat Dec 15, 2012 2:13 pm

Dear members,

Does this question ever enter your mind??

**************
The Questions Of King Milinda
[Translated ted by T.W.Rhys Davids]

Why Must There Be Only One Buddha At A Time?

King: 'Venerable Nâgasena, this too was said by the Blessed One:

"This is an impossibility, an occurrence for which there can be no cause, that in one world two Arahat Buddhas supreme should arise at one and the same time [237]--such a thing can in no wise be 1."

'But, Nâgasena, when they are preaching, all the Tathâgatas preach (the Doctrine as to) the thirty-seven constituent elements of insight 2; when they are talking, it is of the Four Noble Truths that they talk; when they are instructing, it is in the three Trainings 3 that they instruct; when they are teaching, it is the practice of zeal 4 that they teach. If, Nâgasena, the preaching of all the Tathâgatas is one, and their talk of the same thing, and their training the same, and their teaching one, why then should not two Tathâgatas arise at the same time? Already by the appearance of one Buddha has this world become flooded with light. If there should be a second Buddha the world would be still more illuminated by the glory of them both. When they were exhorting two Tathâgatas would exhort at ease; when they were instructing two Tathâgatas would instruct at ease. Tell me the reason of this, that I may put away my doubt.'

Nagasena: 'This world system, O king, is a one-Buddha-supporting world; that is, it can bear the virtue of only a single Tathâgata. If a second Tathâgata were to arise the world could not bear him, it would shake and tremble, it would bend, this way and that, it would disperse, scatter into pieces, dissolve, be utterly destroyed. just as a boat, O king, might be able to carry one passenger across. Then, when one man had got on board, it would be well trimmed and able to bear his weight 1. But if a second man were to come like to the first in age and caste and strength and size and stoutness of body and build of frame, and he too should get on board the boat--would that boat be able, O king, to carry them both?

King:'Certainly not, Sir! it would shake and tremble; it would bend, this way and that; it would break into pieces, be shattered, dissolved, and utterly destroyed; it would sink into the waves.'

Nagasena: 'Just so, O king, with this world, if a second Tathâgata were to appear. Or suppose, O king, that a man [238] had eaten as much food as he wanted, even so that he had filled himself with nourishment up to the throat, and he--thus satiated 2, regaled, filled with good cheer, with no room left for more, drowsy and stiff as a stick one cannot bend--were again to eat as much food as he had eaten before--would such a man, O king, then be at ease?'

King:'Certainly not, Sir! If he were to eat again, but once more, he would die.'

Nagasena:'Well, no more could this world bear a second Tathâgata, than that man could bear a second meal.'

King: 'But how is that, Nâgasena? Would the earth tremble at a too great weight of goodness?'

Nagasena :'Suppose, O king, there were two carts quite filled with precious things up to the top 1, and people were to take the things from the one cart and pile them up on the other, would that one be able to carry the weight of both?'

King:'Certainly not, Sir! The nave of its wheels would split, and the spokes would break, and the circumference would fall to pieces, and the axle-tree would break in twain 2.'

Nagasena: 'But how is that, O king? Would the cart come to pieces owing to the too great weight of goods?'

King: 'Yes, it would.'

Nagasena: 'Well, just so, O king, would the earth tremble owing to the too great weight of goodness. But that argument has been adduced to make the power of the Buddhas known 3. Hear another fitting reason why two Buddhas could not appear at the same
time. If, O king, two Buddhas were to arise together, then would disputes arise between their followers, and at the words: "Your Buddha, our Buddha," they would divide off into two parties--just as would the followers of two rival powerful ministers of state. This is the other [239] reason, O king, why two Buddhas could not appear at the same time.

'Hear a further reason, O king, why two Buddhas could not appear at the same time. If that were so, then the passage (of Scripture) that the Buddha is the chief would become false, and the passage that the Buddha takes precedence of all would become false, and the passage that the Buddha is the best of all would become false. And so all those passages where the Buddha is said to be the most excellent, the most exalted, the highest of all, the peerless one, without an equal, the matchless one, who hath neither counterpart nor rival--all would be proved false. Accept this reason too as in truth a reason why two Buddhas cannot arise at once.

'But besides that, O king, this is a natural characteristic of the Buddhas, the Blessed Ones, that one Buddha only should arise in the world. And why? By reason of the greatness of the virtue of the all-knowing Buddhas. Of other things also, whatever is mighty in the world is singular. The broad earth is great, O king, and it is only one. Sakka (the king of the gods) is great, and he is only one. Mara (the Evil One, Death) is great, and he is only one. Mahâ-Brahmâ is mighty, and he is only one.

A Tathâgata, an Arahat Buddha supreme, is great, and he is alone in the world. Wherever any one of these spring up, then there is no room for a second. And therefore, O king, is it that only one Tathâgata, an Arahat Buddha supreme, can appear at one time in the world.'

King:'Well has the puzzle, Nâgasena, been discussed by simile adduced and reason given. Even an unintelligent man on hearing this would be satisfied; how much rather one great in wisdom as myself. Very good, Nâgasena! That is so, and I accept it as you say.

************** :heart: :anjali:
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The Ascetic In Love !!

Postby buddhaflower » Sat Dec 15, 2012 3:17 pm

Dear All,

This Saturday morning, I proudly present a great jataka with Youtube clip and a beautiful song for you all :heart:

Please click: http://dhammawheel.com/viewtopic.php?f= ... 70#p181570

Buddhaflower :anjali: :heart:
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Re: Why Must There Be Only One Buddha At A Time?

Postby Indrajala » Sat Dec 15, 2012 4:55 pm

Nāgārjuna in his Mahāprājñāpāramitā Upadeśa addresses this:


For example, when a deer is not yet wounded by an arrow it does not know fear. Once it has been wounded it leaps around and flees. People are also like this. When there is the suffering of old age, illness and death, they hear there is just one buddha and that it is very difficult to encounter them. Their mind then experiences fear. Diligently practicing they quickly attain liberation from suffering. Consequently, the buddha in the śrāvaka-dharma did not speak of there being buddhas in the ten directions. He also did not say they did not exist. If there are the buddhas of the ten directions and you say they do not exist, then you are guilty of limitless transgressions. If there are no buddhas of the ten directions though I say there are, then I produce immeasurable thoughts of the buddha and obtain the merit of veneration. Why is this? It is because the meritorious power of the causes and conditions of a virtuous mind is great.
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"Hui gives me no assistance. There is nothing that I say in which he does not delight." -Confucius
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Re: Buddhaflowers inspirational tales

Postby buddhaflower » Sun Dec 16, 2012 4:15 pm

Dear Members,

After I read this story I think anybody who finds lots of money hidden somewhere should report to the police, it might be drug money/mafia money.

************
The Buddha And A Farmer
[Translated from the Pali by Daw Mya Tin, MA]

While residing at the Jetavana monastery, the Buddha uttered Verse (67) of this book, with reference to a farmer who handled poison.

One day, some thieves having stolen some valuables and cash from the house of a rich man came to a field. There, they divided the stolen property among themselves and dispersed; but a packet containing one thousand in cash, having dropped from one of the thieves, was left behind unnoticed.

Early in the morning on that day, the Buddha, on surveying the world with his supernormal power, perceived that a farmer, cultivating near that field, would attain Sotapatti Fruition on that very day. So, the Buddha went there, accompinied by the Venerable Ananda. The farmer on seeing the Buddha paid obeisance to him and continued to plough the field. The Buddha seeing the packet of money said to the Venerable Ananda, "Ananda, look at that very poisonous snake," and Ananda replied, "Venerable Sir, yes, it is, indeed, a very poisonous snake!" Then, both the Buddha and the Venerable Ananda continued their way.

The farmer, hearing them, went to find out if there really was a snake and found the packet of money. He took the packet and hid it in a place. The owners of the property coming after the thieves came to the field, and tracing the footprints of the farmer, found the packet of money. They beat the farmer and took him to the king, who ordered his men to kill the farmer. On being taken to the cemetery, where he was to be killed, the farmer kept on repeating, "Ananda, look at that very poisonous snake. Venerable Sir, I see the snake; it is, indeed, a very poisonous snake!" When the king's men heard the above dialogue between the Buddha and the Venerable Ananda being repeated all the way, they were puzzled and took him to the king. The king surmised that the farmer was calling upon the Buddha as a witness; he was therefore taken to the presence of the Buddha. After hearing from the Buddha everything that had happened in the morning, the king remarked, "If he had not been able to call upon the Buddha as a witness of his innocence, this man would have been killed." To him, the Buddha replied, "A wise man should not do anything that he would repent after doing it."

Then the Buddha spoke in verse as follows:

Verse 67: That deed is not well done, if one has to repent for having done it, and if, with a tearful face, one has to weep as a result of that deed.

At the end of the discourse, the farmer attained Sotapatti Fruition.

*************** :heart: :anjali:
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Re: Buddhaflowers inspirational tales

Postby buddhaflower » Wed Dec 19, 2012 8:38 pm

Dear Members,

Theri Khema had done so many splendid meritorous deeds in her past lives, That was why she was so very beautiful and was born into royal family...I proudly present this amazing story to you all:

:twothumbsup: Please click : http://dhammawheel.com/viewtopic.php?f=21&t=12329

Buddhaflower :heart: :anjali:
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Udayabhadda Jataka:True Love Promise

Postby buddhaflower » Fri Dec 21, 2012 4:41 pm

Dear Members,

Here it may be told of the most loving and happy lives that Prince Siddhartha and his wife Yasodhara led together from the time of Dipankara Buddha to his final enlightenment as a Buddha that in almost every rebirth they lived together in a very happy and peaceful state.

Pledging My Love : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a4XhLuXFJpQ

*****************
:heart: Udayabhadda Jataka: True-Love Promise :heart:
[From The Dhamma Encyclopedia]

Once upon a time, when king Kasi was reigning over the realm of Kasi, in Surundha his city, neither son nor daughter had he. So he bade his queens offer prayer for sons. Then the Bodhisatta, passing out of Brahma’a world, was conceived in the womb of his chief queen. And because by his birth he cheered the hearts of a great multitude, he received the name of Udayabhadda, or Welcome. At the time when the lad could walk upon his feet, another being came into this world from the world of Brahma, and became a girl child in the womb of another of this king’s wives, and she was named with the same name, Udayabhadda.

When the Prince came of years, he attained mastery in all branches of education: more, he was chaste to a degree and knew nothing of the deeds of the flesh, not even in dream, nor was his heart bent on sinfulness. The king desired to make his son king, with the solemn sprinkling, and to arrange plays for his pleasure; and gave command accordingly. But the Bodhisatta replied, “I do not want the kingdom, and my heart is not bent on sinfulness.” Again and again he was entreated, but his reply was to have made a woman’s image of red gold, which he sent to his parents, with the message, “When I find such a woman as this, I will accept the kingdom.” This golden image they dispatched over all India. One day they saw princess Udayabhadda so beautiful just like 'the image'. Then the Bodhisatta agreed to marry Princess Udayabhadda, his own sister , born of a different mother, and sprinkled him to be king.

These two lived together a life of chastity. In course of time, when his parents were dead, the Bodhisatta ruled the realm. The two dwelt together in one chamber, yet denied their senses, and never so much as looked upon one another in the way of desire; nay, a promise they even made, that which of them soever should first die, he should return to the other from his place of new birth, and say, ‘In such a place am I born again.

Now from the time of his sprinkling the Bodhisatta lived very long life, and then he died. Other king there was none, the commands of Udayabhadda were promulgated, the courtiers administered the kingdom. The Bodhisatta had become Sakka in the Heaven of the Thirty-three, remembered his promise, and said to himself, “To the king’s daughter Udayabhadda I will go, and I will test her with riches, I will discourse, and will fulfil my promise!”

Now at that time, it being the time of night, the palace doors were fast closed, and the guard set, and the king’s daughter was sitting quiet and alone, in a magnificent chamber upon the fine terrace of her seven-storeyed mansion, meditating upon her own virtue. Then Sakka took a golden dish filled with coins all of gold, and in her very sleeping-chamber appeared before her; and standing on one side, began speech with her by reciting the first stanza:

Thee flawless in thy beauty, pure and bright,

Thee sitting lonely on this terrace-height,

In pose most graceful, eyed like nymphs of heaven,

I pray thee; let me spend with thee this night”


And then he offered the golden dish of coins to the princess. The princess replied:

“I ask for none, since Udaya has died,

Nor god nor goblin, no nor man, beside:

Therefore, I mighty Goblin, get thee gone,

Come no more hither, but far off abide.”

Hearing her, Sakka disappeared.

Next day at the same hour, he took a silver bowl filled with golden coins and offered to the princess. Then the princess began to think, “If I allow him to talk and prate, he will come again and again. I will have nothing to say to him now.” So she said nothing at all. Sakka finding that she had nothing to say, he disappeared.

Next day, at the same time, he took an iron bowl full of coins, and said, “Lady, if you will bless me with your love, I will give this iron bowl full of coins to you.” When she saw him, the princess asked why first he offered gold dish filled with coins, next a silver dish and now an iron bowl.

The Sakka replied, “Lady Princess, I am a wary trader, and I waste not my substance for nought. If you were increasing in youth or beauty, I would also increase the present I offer you; but you are fading, and so I make the offering dwindle also.” So saying, he repeated three stanzas:

“O woman! Youthful bloom and beauty fade

Within this world of men, thou fair-limbed maid.

And thou to-day art older grown than erst,

So dwindles less the sum I would have paid.

“Thus, glorious daughter of a king, before my gazing eyes

As goes the flight of day and night thy beauty fades and dies.

“But if, O daughter of a king most wise, it pleases thee

Holy and pure to aye endure, more lovely shalt thou be!”
------

Then the princess said:

“The gods are not like men, they grow not old;

Upon their flesh is seen no wrinkled fold.

How is’t the gods have no corporeal frame?

This, mighty Goblin, I would now be told!”

Then Sakka explained the matter by repeating another stanza:

“The gods are not like men: they grow not old;

Upon their flesh is seen no wrinkled fold:

To-morrow and to-morrow ever more

Celestial beauty grows, and bliss untold.”

When she heard the beauty of the world of gods, she asked the way to be there.Then Sakka explained the matter in another stanza:

“Who keeps in due control both voice and mind,

Who with the body loves not sin to do,

Within whose house much food and drink we find,

Large-handed, bounteous, in all faith all true,

Of favours free, soft-tongued, of kindly cheer–

He that so walks to heaven need nothing fear.”

When the princess had heard his words, she thanked him:

“Like a mother, like a father, you admonish me:

Mighty one, O beauteous being, tell me, tell me who you be?”

Then the Bodhisatta repeated another stanza:

“I am Udayabhaddha, fair lady, for my promise come to thee:

Now I go, for I have spoken; from the promise I am free.”

The princess drew a deep breath, and said, “You are King Udayabhadda, my lord!” then burst into a fold of tears, and added, “Without you I cannot live! Instruct me, that I may live with you always!”. Then Sakka having thus discoursed to her, and he went back to his heaven.

The princess next day entrusted her courtiers with the government; and in that very city of hers, in a delightsome park, she became a recluse. There she lived righteously, until at the end of her days she was born again in the Heaven of the Thirty-three, as the Bodhisatta’s handmaiden.
-----------
When the Buddha had ended this discourse, he declared the Truths and identified the Birth: “At that time Rahula’s mother was the Princess, and Sakka was I myself.”
------
Note***
Matali a deva, asked Sakkadevaraja a question that being a king himself of the sakka world, what kind of a virtue in am man would he respect. “I pay homage to the layman whose ordinary life is one of purity and wholesomeness; is a strict preceptor and a lover of truth; is charitable with regard to his outlook of the suffering world and one who performs his duty well to his family,” was the answer given.

***************** :anjali: :heart:
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Re: Buddhaflowers inspirational tales

Postby buddhaflower » Fri Dec 28, 2012 7:14 pm

Dear Members,

The Stingy Millionaire
[Translated from the Pali by Daw Mya Tin, MA]

While residing at the Jetavana monastery, the Buddha uttered Verse (62) of this book, with reference to a miserly rich man, named Ananda.

There was once a very wealthy man named Ananda in Savatthi. Although he possessed eighty crores, he was very reluctant to give anything in charity. To his son, Mulasiri, he used to say, "Don't think the wealth we have now is very much. Do not give away anything from what you have, for you must make it grow. Otherwise your wealth will dwindle away." This rich man had five pots of gold buried in his house and he died without revealing their location to his son.

Ananda, the rich man, was reborn in a village of beggars, not far from Savatthi. From the time his mother was pregnant, the income of the beggars decreased; the villagers thought there must be a wicked and unlucky one amongst them. By dividing themselves up into groups and by the process of elimination, they came to the conclusion that the pregnant beggar woman must be the unfortunate one. Thus, she was driven out of the village. When her son was born, the son proved to be extremely ugly and repulsive. If she went out begging by herself, she would get as before, but if she went out with her son she would get nothing. So, when the boy could go out by himself, his mother placed a plate in his hand and left him. As he wandered about in Savatthi, he remembered his old house and his past existence. So he went into the house. When the sons of his son Mulasiri saw him, they were frightened by his ugly looks and began to cry. The servants then beat him and threw him out of the house.

The Buddha who was on his alms-round saw the incident and asked the Venerable Ananda to fetch Mulasiri. When Mulasiri came, the Buddha told him that the young beggar was his own father in his previous existence. But Mulasiri could not believe it. So, the Buddha directed the beggar boy to show where he had buried his five pots of gold. Then only, Mulasiri accepted the truth and from that time he became a devoted lay-disciple of the Buddha.

Then the Buddha spoke in verse as follows:

Verse 62: "I have sons, I have wealth"; with this (feeling of attachment) the fool is afflicted. Indeed, he himself is not his own, how can sons and wealth be his?

Putta1 ma'tthi dhanam ma' tthi
iti balo vihannati
atta hi attano natthi
kuto putta kuto dhanam.

1. putta: sons also means both son and daughter.

**************
:heart: Love Buddha's dhamma :heart:
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