Buddhaflowers inspirational tales

Post sayings or stories you find interesting or useful.

Re: Buddhaflowers inspirational tales

Postby buddhaflower » Mon Mar 11, 2013 2:04 pm

Dear Members,

This Uposatha Day, I proudly present: Sankha And Susima

Please click: http://dhammawheel.com/viewtopic.php?f= ... 23#p193923

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Re: Buddhaflowers inspirational tales

Postby buddhaflower » Tue Mar 12, 2013 4:24 pm

Dear Members...... The First Arahant Bhikkhu :heart:

This cold again Tuesday, I have a song and a wonderful story for you all:

Dhammajak Song: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GuD2PMhni_I

Please click: http://dhammawheel.com/viewtopic.php?f=21&t=12828

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Re: Buddhaflowers inspirational tales

Postby buddhaflower » Thu Mar 14, 2013 6:01 pm

Dear Members,

Today's special story THE DEATH OF THE HERDSMAN:

Please click : http://dhammawheel.com/viewtopic.php?f= ... 19#p207919" target="_blank

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Re: Buddhaflowers inspirational tales

Postby buddhaflower » Fri Mar 15, 2013 6:22 pm

Dear Members.......King Asoka / His Past Lives' Merits :jumping:

I'm sure you all learn about King Asoka...but how much do you know?? :reading:

Please click : http://dhammawheel.com/viewtopic.php?f=21&t=14111" target="_blank

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Re: Buddhaflowers inspirational tales

Postby buddhaflower » Tue Mar 19, 2013 12:42 am

Dear Members...THE ARAHANT FAMILY

This beautiful bright sunshiny day, I have a super amazing story that impress me so much..I'm dying to share it with you all.

Sunshiny Day: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w_Dbh3bKdwA

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Thera Dhammika:The Arahant Family
[Translated from the Pali by Daw Mya Tin,M.A.]


While residing at the Jetavana monastery, the Buddha uttered Verse (84) of this book, with reference to Thera Dhammika.

Dhammika lived in Savatthi with his wife. One day, he told his pregnant wife that he wished to become a bhikkhu; his wife pleaded with him to wait until after the birth of their child. When the child was born, he again requested his wife to let him go; again, she pleaded with him to wait until the child could walk. Then Dhammika thought to himself, "It will be useless for me to ask my wife for her approval to join the Order; I shall work for my own liberation." Having made a firm decision, he left his house to become a bhikkhu. He took a subject of meditation from the Buddha and practised meditation ardently and diligently and soon became an arahat.

Some years later, he visited his house in order to teach the Dhamma to his son and his wife. His son entered the Order and he too attained arahatship. The wife then thought, "Now that both my husband and my son have left the house, I'd better leave it, too." With this thought she left the house and became a bhikkhuni; eventually, she too attained arahatship.

At the congregation of the bhikkhus, the Buddha was told how Dhammika became a bhikkhu and attained arahatship, and how through him his son and his wife also attained arahatship. To them the Buddha said, "Bhikkhus, a wise man does not wish for wealth and prosperity by doing evil, whether it is for his own sake or for the sake of others. He only works for his own liberation from the round of rebirths (samsara) by comprehending the Dhamma and living according to the Dhamma."

Then the Buddha spoke in verse as follows:

Verse 84: For his own sake or for the sake of others, he does no evil; nor does he wish for sons and daughters or for wealth or for a kingdom by doing evil; nor does he wish for success by unfair means; such a one is indeed virtuous, wise and just.

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Re: Buddhaflowers inspirational tales

Postby buddhaflower » Thu Mar 21, 2013 2:17 pm

Dear Members.....Kanamata And Sweetmeats

This Thursday morning...I have a song to go with sweatmeats for you all.

:heart: Sweet Carolina: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZLPiYZrwAzU

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Kanamata And Sweetmeats
[Translated from the Pali by Daw Mya Tin, M.A.]


While residing at the Jetavana monastery, the Buddha uttered Verse (82) of this book, with reference to the mother of Kana, Kanamata.

Kanamata was a devoted lay disciple of the Buddha. Her daughter Kana was married to a man from another village. As Kana had been on a visit to her mother for some time, her husband sent a message for her to come home. Her mother told her to wait for one more day as she wanted to send along some sweetmeats with her for her husband. The next day, Kanamata made some sweetmeats, but when four bhikkhus stood at her door for alms, she offered some to them. The four bhikkhus told other bhikkhus about the sweetmeats from Kanamata's house and they also came to stand at the door of Kanamata, as a devotee of the Buddha and his disciples, offered her sweetmeats to the bhikkhus as they came in, one after another. The result was that in the end there was none left for Kana and she did not go home on that day. The same thing happened on the next two days; her mother made some sweetmeats, the bhikkhus stood at her door, she offered her sweetmeats to the bhikkhus, there was nothing left for her daughter to take home, and her daughter did not go home. On the third day, for the third time, her husband sent her a message, which was also an ultimatum stating that if she failed to come home the next day, he would take another wife. But on the next day also Kana was unable to go home because her mother offered all her sweetmeats to the bhikkhus. Kana's husband then took another wife and Kana became very bitter towards the bhikkhus. She used to abuse all bhikkhus so much so that the bhikkhus kept away from the house of Kanamata.

The Buddha heard about Kana and went to the house of Kanamata; there Kanamata offered him some rice gruel. After the meal, the Buddha sent for Kana and asked her, "Did my bhikkhus take what was given them or what was not given them ?" Kana answered that the bhikkhus had taken only what was given them, and then added, "They were not in the wrong; only I was in the wrong." Thus, she owned up her fault and she also paid homage to the Buddha. The Buddha then gave a discourse. At the end of the discourse, Kana attained Sotapatti Fruition.

On the way back to the monastery, the Buddha met King Pasenadi of Kosala. On being told about Kana and her bitter attitude towards the bhikkhus, King Pasenadi asked the Buddha whether he had been able to teach her the Dhamma and, make her see the Truth (Dhamma). The Buddha replied, "Yes, I have taught her the Dhamma, and I have also made her rich in her next existence." Then the king promised the Buddha that he would make Kana rich even in this existence. The king then sent his men with a palanquin to fetch Kana. When she arrived, the king announced to his ministers, "Whoever can keep my daughter Kana in comfort may take her." One of the ministers volunteered to adopt Kana as his daughter, gave her all his wealth, and said to her, "You may give in charity as much as you like." Everyday, Kana made offerings to the bhikkhus at the four city-gates. When told about Kana giving generously in charity, the Buddha said, "Bhikkhus, the mind of Kana which was foggy and muddled was made clear and calm by my words."

Then the Buddha spoke in verse as follows:

Verse 82: Like a lake which is deep, clear and calm, the wise after listening to the Teaching (Dhamma) become serene.


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Re: Buddhaflowers inspirational tales

Postby buddhaflower » Sat Mar 23, 2013 3:22 pm

Dear Members,

This morning I have an amazing story for you all: Sujata: The Seven Types Of Wives.

Please click: http://dhammawheel.com/viewtopic.php?f=21&t=16114

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Re: Buddhaflowers inspirational tales

Postby buddhaflower » Wed Mar 27, 2013 5:08 pm

Dear Members King Asoka/Past Lives/Bodhi Tree/Bodhi Temple

This Uposatha Day is the right time to end the story of King Asoka. I must admit that I hate King Asoka's cruel behaviors..he killed his brothers/harem women etc. Oh I pray I'll never be near any king/harem...I hate people with too much power..I hate kings with many queens/harem..I know why The Gautama Buddha abandoned kingship in many jatakas...power is the big root of all evil !!!

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Constructions credited to Ashoka
[King Asoka And Buddhism Book]


Mahabodhi Temple, constructed by Ashoka the Great, approximately 250 BCE; restoration by the British and India post independence
The British restoration was done by under guidance from Ven.Weligama Sri Sumangala[citation needed]

Sanchi, Madhya Pradesh, India

Dhamek Stupa, Sarnath, Uttar Pradesh, India

Mahabodhi Temple, Bihar, India

Barabar Caves, Bihar, India

Nalanda University (Vishwaviddyalaya), (some portions like Sariputta Stupa), Bihar, India

Taxila University (Vishwaviddyalaya), (some portions like Dharmarajika Stupa and Kunala Stupa), Taxila, Pakistan

Bhir Mound, (reconstructed), Taxila, Pakistan

Bharhut stupa, Madhya Pradesh, India

Deorkothar Stupa, Madhya Pradesh, India

Butkara Stupa, Swat, Pakistan

Sannati Stupa, Karnataka, India: The only known sculptural depiction of Ashoka
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Ashoka Chakra

Indian FLAG
Image

The Ashoka Chakra, "the wheel of Righteousness" (Dharma in Sanskrit or Dhamma in Pali)"
The Ashoka Chakra (the wheel of Ashoka) is a depiction of the Dharmachakra (see Dharmacakra) or Dhammachakka in Pali, the Wheel of Dharma (Sanskrit: Chakra means wheel). The wheel has 24 spokes which represent the 12 Laws of Dependent Origination and the 12 Laws of Dependent Termination. The Ashoka Chakra has been widely inscribed on many relics of the Mauryan Emperor, most prominent among which is the Lion Capital of Sarnath and The Ashoka Pillar. The most visible use of the Ashoka Chakra today is at the centre of the National flag of the Republic of India (adopted on 22 July 1947), where it is rendered in a Navy-blue color on a White background, by replacing the symbol of Charkha (Spinning wheel) of the pre-independence versions of the flag. The Ashoka Chakra can also been seen on the base of Lion Capital of Ashoka which has been adopted as the National Emblem of India.

The Ashoka Chakra was built by Ashoka during his reign. Chakra is a Sanskrit word which also means "cycle" or "self-repeating process." The process it signifies is the cycle of time- as in how the world changes with time.

A few days before India became independent on August 1947, the specially formed Constituent Assembly decided that the flag of India must be acceptable to all parties and communities.[29] A flag with three colours, Saffron, White and Green with the Ashoka Chakra was selected.

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Re: Buddhaflowers inspirational tales

Postby buddhaflower » Fri Mar 29, 2013 3:38 pm

Dear Members,

This Friday..I proudly present a wonderful jataka story THE GREAT ASCETIC. :heart:

Please click: http://dhammawheel.com/viewtopic.php?f=21&t=16665

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Re: Buddhaflowers inspirational tales

Postby buddhaflower » Sat Mar 30, 2013 11:57 pm

Dear Members,

Thera Anuruddha:Devi Jalini
[Translated from the Pali by Daw Mya Tin,M.A.]


While residing at the Jetavana monastery, the Buddha uttered Verse (93) of this book, with reference to Thera Anuruddha.

Thera Anuruddha was one day looking for some discarded pieces of cloth in a rubbish heap to make into a robe as his old robe was getting soiled and torn. Jalini, his wife of a previous existence, who was now in a deva world, saw him. Knowing that he was looking for some cloth, she took three pieces of good deva material and put them in the rubbish heap, making them barely visible. The thera found the pieces of cloth and took them to the monastery. While he was making the robe, the Buddha arrived with his Chief Disciples and senior disciples and they also helped stitch the robe.

Meanwhile, Jalini, assuming the form of a young lady, came to the village and learnt about the arrival of the Buddha and his disciples and also how they were helping Thera Anuruddha. She urged the villagers to send good delicious food to the monastery and consequently there was more than enough for all. Other bhikkhus, seeing so much surplus, put the blame on the thera and said, "Thera Anuruddha should have asked his relatives and lay disciples to send just enough food; may be, he just wanted to show off that he had so many devotees." To those bhikkhus, the Buddha said, "Bhikkhus, do not think my son Anuruddha has asked his relatives and lay disciples to send rice gruel and other foods. My son the thera did not ask for anything; arahats do not talk about such things like food and clothing. The excessive amount of food brought to the monastery this morning was due to the promptings of a celestial being and not of a man."

Then the Buddha spoke in verse as follows:

Verse 93: The arahat is free from moral intoxicants (asavas); he is not attached to food. He has as his object liberation from existence, i.e., Nibbana which is Void and Signless. His path, like that of birds in the air, cannot be traced.


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Re: Buddhaflowers inspirational tales

Postby buddhaflower » Wed Apr 03, 2013 3:09 pm

Dear Members....The Duties of Children/King Ajatasattu

This lovely Uposatha Day..I have a very nice story to tell you all:

Please click: http://dhammawheel.com/viewtopic.php?f=21&t=16711

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Re: Buddhaflowers inspirational tales

Postby buddhaflower » Mon Apr 08, 2013 2:05 am

Dear members,

This Sunday night..I have a nice story to share with you all.

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Thera Sappadasa:The Snake(slave)
[Translated from the Pali by Daw Mya Tin, M.A.]


While residing at the Jetavana monastery, the Buddha uttered Verse (112) of this
book, with reference to Thera Sappadasa.

Once a bhikkhu was not feeling happy with the life of a bhikkhu; at the same
time he felt that it would be improper and humiliating for him to return to the
life of a householder. So he thought it would be better to die. So thinking, on
one occasion, he put his hand into a pot where there was a snake but the snake
did not bite him. This was because in a past existence the snake was a slave and
the bhikkhu was his master. Because of this incident the bhikkhu was known as
Thera Sappadasa. On another occasion, Thera Sappadasa took a razor to cut his
throat; but as he placed the razor on his throat he reflected on the purity of
his morality practice throughout his life as a bhikkhu and his whole body was
suffused with delightful satisfaction (piti) and bliss (sukha). Then detaching
himself from piti, he directed his mind to the development of Insight Knowledge
and soon attained arahatship, and he returned to the monastery.

On arrival at the monastery, other bhikkhus asked him where he had been and why
he took the knife along with him. When he told them about his intention to take
his life, they asked him why he did not do so. He answered, "I originally
intended to cut my throat with this knife, but I have now cut off all moral
defilements with the knife of Insight Knowledge." The bhikkhus did not believe
him; so they went to the Buddha and asked. "Venerable Sir, this bhikkhu claims,
that he has attained arahatship as he was putting the knife to his throat to
kill himself. Is it possible to attain Arahatta Magga within such a short time?"
To them the Buddha said, "Bhikkhus! Yes, it is possible; for one who is zealous
and strenuous in the practice of Tranquillity and Insight Development,
arahatship can be gained in an instant. As the bhikkhu walks in meditation, he
can attain arahatship even before his raised foot touches the ground."

Then the Buddha spoke in verse as follows:

Verse 112: Better than a hundred years in the life of a person who is idle and
inactive, is a day in the life of one who makes a zealous and strenuous effort
(in Tranquillity and Insight Development Practice).


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Re: Buddhaflowers inspirational tales

Postby buddhaflower » Wed Apr 10, 2013 1:49 pm

Dear Members......No Place To Hide/Vidhurapandita Jataka

At 5 AM this Uposatha day..I went out walking meditation...according to the calender we should see new moon...but the sky was so cloudy that I couldn't see new moon/stars...but Texas weather is so wonderful !! And I have a nice jataka for you all.

Please click: http://dhammawheel.com/viewtopic.php?f= ... 21#p240021

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Re: Buddhaflowers inspirational tales

Postby buddhaflower » Tue Apr 16, 2013 7:29 pm

Dear Members ...The Bhikkhu With 5 Boons From The Buddha

This Tuesday afternoon..I have an amazing story to tell you all.

Please click: http://dhammawheel.com/viewtopic.php?f=21&t=13158

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Re: Buddhaflowers inspirational tales

Postby buddhaflower » Fri Apr 19, 2013 4:04 pm

Dear Members.....Ratthapala:The Faith Etadagga/Litta Jataka

This beautiful Friday..I have 2 amazing stories to present to you all:

Please click: http://dhammawheel.com/viewtopic.php?f=21&t=13099

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Re: Buddhaflowers inspirational tales

Postby buddhaflower » Mon Apr 22, 2013 8:48 pm

Dear Members,

This Monday afternoon..I proudly present an amazing story of The THREE GROUPS OF PEOPLE..as fun as Hollywood movies.

Image

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The Buddha And The Three Groups of People
[Translated from the Pali by Daw Mya Tin,M.A.]


While residing at the Jetavana monastery, the Buddha uttered Verse (127) of this book, with reference to questions raised by three groups of bhikkhus concerning three extraordinary incidents.

The first group: A group of bhikkhus were on their way to pay homage to the Buddha and they stopped at a village on the way. Some people were cooking alms-food for those bhikkhus when one of the houses caught fire and a ring of fire flew up into the air. At that moment, a crow came flying, got caught in the ring of fire and dropped dead in the central part of the village. The bhikkhus seeing the dead crow observed that only the Buddha would be able to explain for what evil deed this crow had to die in this manner. After taking alms-food they continued on their journey to pay homage to the Buddha, and also to ask about the unfortunate crow.

The second group: Another group of bhikkhus wore travelling in a boat; they too were on their way to pay homage to the Buddha. When they were in the middle of the ocean the boat could not be moved. So, lots were drawn to find out who the unlucky one was; three times the lot fell on the wife of the skipper. Then the skipper said sorrowfully, "Many people should not die on account of this unlucky woman; tie a pot of sand to her neck and threw her into the water so that I would not see her." The woman was thrown into the sea as instructed by the skipper and the ship could move on. On arrival at their destination. the bhikkhus disembarked and continued on their way to the Buddha. They also intended to ask the Buddha due to what evil kamma the unfortunate woman was thrown overboard.

The third group: A group of seven bhikkhus were also on their way to pay homage to the Buddha. On the way, they enquired at a monastery whether there was any suitable place for them to take shelter for the night in the neighbourhood. They were directed to a cave, and there they spent the night; but in the middle of the night, a large boulder slipped off from above and effectively closed the entrance. In the morning, the bhikkhus from the nearby monastery coming to the cave saw what had happened and they went to bring people from seven villages. With the help of these people they tried to move the boulder, but it was of no avail. Thus, the seven bhikkhus were trapped in the cave without food or water for seven days. On the seventh day, the boulder moved miraculously by itself, and the bhikkhus came out and continued their way to the Buddha. They also intended to ask the Buddha due to what previous evil deed they were thus shut up for seven days in a cave.

The three groups of travellers met on the way and together they went to the Buddha. Each group related to the Buddha what they had seen or experienced on their way and the Buddha answered their questions.

The Buddha answer to the first group: "Bhikkhus, once there was a farmer who had an ox. The ox was very lazy and also very stubborn. It could not be coaxed to do any work; it would lie down chewing the cud or else go to sleep. The farmer lost his temper many times on account of this lazy, stubborn animal; so in anger he tied a straw rope round the neck of the ox and set fire to it, and the ox died. On account of this evil deed the, farmer had suffered for a long time in niraya, and in serving out the remaining part of his punishment, he had been burnt to death in the last seven existences."

The Buddha's answer to the second group: "Bhikkhus, once there was a woman who had a pet dog. She used to take the dog along with her wherever she went and young boys of the city poked fun at her. She was very angry and felt so ashamed that she planned to kill the dog. She filled a pot with sand, tied it round the neck of the dog and threw it into the water; and the dog was drowned. On account of this evil deed that woman had suffered for a long time in niraya and in serving the remaining part of her punishment, she had been thrown into the water to drown in the last one hundred existences."

The Buddha's answer to the third group: "Bhikkhus, once, seven cowherds saw an iguana going into a mound and they dosed all the seven outlets of the mound with twigs and branches of trees. After closing the outlets they went away, completely forgetting the iguana that was trapped in the mound. Only after seven days, they remembered what they had done and hurriedly returned to the scene of their mischief and let out the iguana. On account of this evil deed, those seven had been imprisoned together for seven days without any food, in the last fourteen existences."

Then, a bhikkhu remarked, "O indeed! There is no escape from evil consequences for one who has done evil, even if he were in the sky, or in the ocean, or in a cave." To him, the Buddha said, "Yes, Bhikkhu! You are right; even in the sky or anywhere else, there is no place which is beyond the reach of evil consequences."

Then the Buddha spoke in verse as follows:

Verse 127: Not in the sky, nor in the middle of the ocean, nor in the cave of a mountain, nor anywhere else, is there a place, where one may escape from the consequences of an evil deed.

At the end of the discourse all the bhikkhus attained Sotapatti Fruition.

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Re: Buddhaflowers inspirational tales

Postby buddhaflower » Wed Apr 24, 2013 3:11 pm

Dear Members,

This lovely Wednesday morning..Please let me share this nice story with you:

Image

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The Story of Thera Attadattha
[Translated from the Pali by Daw Mya Tin,M.A.]


While residing at the Jetavana monastery, the Buddha uttered Verse (166) of this book, with reference to Thera Attadattha.

When the Buddha declared that he would realize parinibbana in four months' time, many puthujjana bhikkhus* were apprehensive and did not know what to do; so they kept close to the Buddha. Attadattha, however, did not go to the Buddha and, having resolved to attain arahatship during the lifetime of the Buddha, was striving hard in the meditation practice. Other bhikkhus, not understanding him, took him to the Buddha and said, "Venerable Sir, this bhikkhu does not seem to love and revere you as we do; he only keeps to himself." The thera then explained to them that he was striving hard to attain arahatship before the Buddha realized parinibbana and that was the only reason why he had not come to the Buddha.

The Buddha then said to the bhikkhus, "Bhikkhus, those who love and revere me should act like Attadattha. You are not paying me homage by just offering flowers, perfumes and incense and by coming to see me; you pay me homage only by practising the Dhamma I have taught you, i.e., the Lokuttara Dhamma."

Then the Buddha spoke in verse as follows:

Verse 166: For the sake of another's benefit, however great it may be, do not neglect one's own (moral) benefit. Clearly perceiving one's own benefit one should make every effort to attain it.

At the end of the discourse Thera Attadattha attained arahatship.

*Puthujjana bhikkhus: bhikkhus who have not yet attained any Magga.

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Re: Buddhaflowers inspirational tales

Postby tidathep » Fri Apr 26, 2013 4:47 pm

Dear Members,

This Friday, I proudly present THE LIFE/LOVE STORY OF SAKKA, KING OF TAVATIMSA HEAVEN..fun/cute/romantic/happy ending !!

Image

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The Heaven of 33 : Tavatimsa Deva World
Ugly Gods Called 'Asuras'
The Love Story Of Sakka, King Of The Deva

[I got this story From BuddhaVihara, NY]

Once upon a time, when King Magadha was ruling in the land, there was a young noble called, 'Magha the Good'. He lived in a remote village of just 30 families. When he was young, his parents married him to a girl who had qualities of character similar to his own. They were very happy together, and she gave birth to several children.

The villagers came to respect Magha the Good because he always tried to help improve the village, for the good of all. Because they respected him, he was able to teach the five steps of training, to purify their thoughts, words and deeds.
Magha's way of teaching was by doing. An example of this happened one day when the villagers gathered to do handicraft work. Magha the Good cleaned a place for himself to sit. Before he could sit down though, someone else sat there. So he patiently cleaned another place. Again a neighbor sat in his place. This happened over and over again, until he had patiently cleaned sitting places for all those present. Only then could he himself sit in the last place.

By using such examples of patience, Magha the Good taught his fellow villagers how to cooperate with each other, without quarreling. Working together in this way, they constructed several buildings and made other improvements that benefited the whole village. Seeing the worthwhile results of patience and cooperation, based on following the gentle ways of the Five Training Steps, all in the village became calmer and more peaceful. A natural side effect was that former crimes and wrong-doing completely disappeared!
You would think this would make everybody happier. However, there was one man who did not like the new situation at all. He was the head of the village, the politician who cared only about his own position.
Formerly, when there were murders and thefts, he handed out punishments. This increased his position of authority, and caused the villagers to fear him. When husbands or wives had affairs with others, the head man collected fines. In the same way, when reputations were damaged by lies, or contracts were not lived up to, he also collected fines. He even got tax money from the profits of selling strong liquor. He did not mind that drunkenness led to many of the crimes.
It is easy to see why the head man was upset to lose so much respect and power and money, due to the people living peacefully together. So he went to the king and said, "My lord, some of the remote villages are being robbed and looted by bandits. We need your help."
The king said, "Bring all these criminals to me."
The dishonest politician rounded up the heads of all 30 families and brought them as prisoners to the king. Without questioning them, the king ordered that they all be trampled to death by elephants.

All 30 were ordered to lie down in the palace courtyard and the elephants were brought in. They realized they were about to be trampled to death. Magha the Good said to them, "Remember and concentrate on the peacefulness and purity that come from following the Five Training Steps, so you may feel loving-kindness towards all. In this way, do not get angry at the unjust king, the lying head man, or the unfortunate elephants." The first elephant was brought in by his mahout. But when he tried to force him to trample the innocent villagers, the elephant refused. He trumpeted as he went away. Amazingly, this was repeated with each of the king's elephants. None would step on them.

The mahouts complained to the king that this was not their fault. "It must be," they said, "that these men have some drug that is confusing the elephants."
The king had the villagers searched, but they found nothing. Then his advisers said, "These men must be magicians who have cast an evil spell on your mighty elephants!"
The villagers were asked, "Do you have such a spell?" Magha the Good said, "Yes we do." This made the king very curious. So he himself asked Magha, "What is this spell and how does it work?"
Magha the Good replied, "My lord king, we do not cast the same kinds of spells that others cast. We cast the spell of loving-kindness with minds made pure by following the Five Training Steps."
"What are these Five Training Steps?" asked the king. Magha the Good said, "All of us have given up the five unwholesome actions, which are: destroying life, taking what is not given, doing wrong in sexual ways, speaking falsely, and losing one's mind from alcohol.
"In this way we have become harmless, so that we can give the gift of fearlessness to all. Therefore, the elephants lost their fear of the mahouts, and did not wish to harm us. They departed, trumpeting triumphantly. This was our protection, which you have called a 'spell'."
Finally seeing the wholesomeness and wisdom of these people, the king questioned them and learned the truth. He decided to confiscate all the property of the dishonest village head man and divide it among them.

The villagers were then free to do even more good works for the benefit of the whole village. Soon they began to build a big roadside inn, right next to the highway crossroads.
This was the biggest project they had yet undertaken. The men were confident because they had learned so well how to cooperate with each other for a common goal. But they had not yet learned how to cooperate in this work with the women of the village. They seemed to think it was 'man's work'.
By this time Magha the Good had four wives. Their names were Good-doer, Beauty, Happy and Well-born. Of these, the first wife, Good-doer, was the wisest. She wanted to pave the way for the women to benefit from cooperating in doing good work. So she gradually became friendly with the boss in charge of the roadside inn project.
Because she wanted to contribute by helping in a big way, she gave a present to the boss. She asked him, "Can you think of a way that I may become the most important contributor to this good work?"
The boss replied, "I know just such a way!" Then he secretly constructed the most important part of the building, the roof beam that would hold the roof together. He wrapped it up and hid it with Good-doer, so it could dry for the time necessary to become rigid and strong. Meanwhile, the men of the village continued happily in the building project. At last they got to the point of installing the roof beam. They began to make one, but the boss interrupted them. He said, "My friends, we cannot use fresh green wood to make the roof beam. It will bend and sag. We must have an aged dry roof beam. Go find one!"
When they searched in the village, they found that Good-doer just happened to have a perfect roof beam. It was even the right size! When they asked if they could buy it from her, she said, "It is not for sale at any price. I wish to contribute the roof beam for free, but only if you let me participate in building the inn."

The men were afraid to change their successful ways. So they said, "Women have never been part of this project. This is impossible."
Then they returned to the construction boss and told him what had happened. He said, "Why do you keep the women away? Women are part of everything in this world. Let us be generous and share the harmony and wholesomeness of this work with the women. Then the project and our village will be even more successful."
So they accepted the roof beam from Good-doer, and she helped to finish the building of the inn. Then Beauty had a wonderful garden built next to the inn, which she donated. It had all kinds of flowers and fruit trees. So too, Happy had a lovely pond dug, and planted beautiful lotuses in it. But Well-born, being the youngest and a little spoiled, did nothing for the inn.

In the evenings, Magha the Good held meetings in the roadside inn. He taught the people to assist their parents and elders, and to give up harsh words, accusing others behind their backs, and being stingy.
It is said that the lowest heaven world contains the gods of the four directions, North, East, South and West. Because he followed his own teachings, Magha the Good died with happiness in his heart. He was reborn as Sakka, king of the second lowest heaven world.
In time, the heads of all the other families of the village, as well as Good-doer, Beauty and Happy, also died. They were reborn as gods under King Sakka. This was known as the 'Heaven of 33'.

------------
Ugly Gods Called 'Asuras'

At that time, so very long ago, there were some unfortunate ugly gods called 'Asuras'. They had taken to living in the second heaven world.

The one who had been Magha the Good in his previous life, was now Sakka, King of the Heaven of 33. He thought, "Why should we, who are the 33, live in our Heaven of 33 with these unfortunate ugly Asuras? Since this is our world, let us live happily by ourselves."

So he invited them to a party and got them drunk on very strong liquor. It seems that, in being reborn, King Sakka had forgotten some of his own teachings as Magha the Good. After getting the Asuras drunk, he got them to go to a lower world, just as big as the Heaven of 33.

When they sobered up and realized they had been tricked into going to a lower heaven world, the Asuras became angry. They rose up and made war against King Sakka. Soon they were victorious, and Sakka was forced to run away.

While retreating in his mighty war chariot, he came to the vast forest where the Garulas have their nests. These are gods who, unfortunately, have no super powers. Instead they are forced to get around by flapping huge heavy wings.

When King Sakka's chariot drove through their forest, it upset their nests and made the baby Garulas fall down. They cried in fear and agony. Hearing this, Sakka asked his charioteer where these sad cries were coming from. He answered, "These are the shrieks of terror coming from the baby Garulas, whose nests and trees are being destroyed by your powerful war chariot."

Hearing this suffering, King Sakka realized that all lives, including his own, are only temporary. Hearing this suffering, the compassion of the Great Being, which passes from life to life, arose within him and said, "Let the little ones have no more fear. The first training step must not be broken. There can be no exception. I will not destroy even one life for the sake of a heavenly kingdom that must some day end. Instead I will offer my life to the victorious Asuras. Turn back the chariot!"

So the chariot returned in the direction of the Heaven of 33. The Asuras saw King Sakka turn around, and thought he must have reinforcements from other worlds. So they ran, without looking back, down to their lower heaven world.

----------------

The Love Story Of Sakka, King Of The Deva

The Glory Of Love]: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q5zc-E6hQu0

King Sakka returned victoriously to his palace in the Heaven of 33. Next to it stood the mansion of his first wife, the reborn Good-doer. Outside the mansion was the garden of his second wife, the reborn Beauty. And there was the heavenly pond of his third wife, the reborn Happy.

However, Well-born had died and been reborn as a slender crane in the forest. Since he missed her, Sakka found her and brought her up to the Heaven of 33 for a visit. He showed her the mansion and the garden and the pond of his three wives. He told her that, by doing good work, the other three had gained merit. This merit had brought them happiness, both in their previous lives and in their rebirths.

He said, "You, my dear crane, in your previous life as Well-born, did no such good work. So you did not gain either merit or happiness, and were reborn as a forest crane. I advise you to begin on the path of purity by following the Five Training Steps." After being taught the five steps, the lovely crane decided to follow them. Then she returned to the forest.

Not long afterwards, King Sakka was curious about how the crane was doing. So he took the shape of a fish and lay down in front of her. The crane picked him up by the head. She was just about to swallow the King of the Heaven of 33, when the fish wiggled his tail.

Immediately the crane thought, "This fish must be alive!" Remembering the first training step, she released the living fish back into the stream. Rising from the water, King Sakka returned to his godly form and said, "It is very good, my dear crane, that you are able to follow the Five Training Steps." Then he returned to the second heaven world.

In the fullness of time, the crane died. Following the Five Training Steps had brought her both merit and a peaceful mind. So she was reborn in the wonderful state of mankind, into a potter's family in Benares, in northern India.

Again King Sakka was interested in finding out where the one who had been Well-born, and then the crane, was now reborn. He found her in the potter's family, and wanted to help her in gaining merit and finding happiness.

So he disguised himself as an old man and created a cart full of golden cucumbers. He went into Benares and shouted, "Cucumbers! Cucumbers! I have cucumbers!"

When people came to buy these amazing cucumbers, he said, "These golden cucumbers are not for sale. I will give them away, but only to one who is wholesome, that is, one who follows the Five Training Steps."

The people said, "We never heard of the Five Training Steps. But we will buy your golden cucumbers. Name your price!" He repeated, "My cucumbers are not for sale. I have brought them to give to any person who practices the Five Training Steps." The people said, "This man has come here only to play tricks on us." So they left him alone.

Soon Well-born heard about this unusual man. Even though she had been reborn, she still had the habit of following the Five Training Steps. So she thought, "This man must have come to find me."

She went to him and asked for the golden cucumbers. He said, "Do you follow the Five Training Steps? Have you given up destroying life, taking what is not given, doing wrong in sexual ways, speaking falsely, and losing your mind from alcohol?" She answered, "Yes sir, I do follow these steps, and I am peaceful and happy."

Then the old man said, "I brought these cucumbers especially for you, to encourage you to gain more merit and future happiness." So he left the cart of golden cucumbers with her, and returned to the Heaven of 33.

Throughout the rest of her life, the woman was very generous with all this gold. Spreading her happiness to others, she gained merit. After she died, she was reborn as the daughter of the King of the Asuras. She grew up to be a goddess of great beauty. To the Asuras this seemed like a miracle, since the rest of them were the ugliest of all the gods.

The Asura king was pleased with his daughter's goodness, as well as her famous beauty. He gathered all the Asuras together and gave her the freedom to choose a husband.

Sakka, King of the Heaven of 33, knew of the latest rebirth of the one who had been his wife Well-born, then a crane, and then a potter's daughter. So he came down to the lower heaven world and took the shape of an ordinary ugly Asura. He thought, "If Well-born chooses a husband whose inner qualities of wholesomeness are the same as hers, we will be reunited at last!"

Because of her past associations with Magha the Good, reborn as King Sakka, now disguised as an ordinary Asura, the beautiful princess was drawn to him. So she picked him from among all the Asuras.

King Sakka took her to the Heaven of 33, made her his fourth wife, and they lived happily ever after.


The moral is:
"The Five Training Steps are the beginning of wholesomeness.
Wholesomeness is the beginning of peace and happiness."


**********
Love love this story :heart:
tidathep/buddhaflower :heart:
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Re: Buddhaflowers inspirational tales

Postby tidathep » Sun Apr 28, 2013 5:40 pm

Dear Members,

There is nothing-else I love to do more than tell this wonderful story of Erakapatta the Naga King to you all.

Image

:heart: Erakapatta The Naga King, Uttara And The Buddha :heart:
[Translated from the Pali by Daw Mya Tin,M.A.]


While residing near Baranasi the Buddha uttered Verse (182) of this book, with reference to Erakapatta, a king of nagas (dragons).

Once there was a naga king by the name of Erakapatta. In one of his past existences during the time of Kassapa Buddha he had been a bhikkhu for a long time. Through worry (kukkucca) over a minor offence he had committed during that time, he was reborn as a naga. As a naga, he waited for the appearance of a Buddha. Erakapatta had a very beautiful daughter, and he made use of her as a means of finding the Buddha. He made it known that whoever could answer her questions could claim her for a wife. Twice every month, Erakapatta made her dance in the open and sing out her questions. Many suitors came to answer her questions hoping to claim her, but no one could give the correct answer.

One day, the Buddha saw a youth named Uttara in his vision. He also knew that the youth would attain Sotapatti Fruition in connection with the questions put by the daughter of Erakapatta the naga. By then the youth was already on his way to see Erakapatta's daughter. The Buddha stopped him and taught him how to answer the questions. While he was being taught, Uttara attained Sotapatti Fruition. Now that Uttara had attained Sotapatti Fruition, he had no desire for the naga princess. However, Uttara still went to answer the questions for the benefit of numerous other beings.

The first four questions were:

1. Who is a ruler?
2. Is one who is overwhelmed by the mist of moral defilements to be called a ruler?
3. What ruler is free from moral defilements?
4. What sort of person is to be called a fool?

The answers to the above questions were:

1. He who controls the six senses is a ruler.
2. One who is overwhelmed by the mist of moral defilements is not to be called a ruler; he who is free from craving is called a ruler.
3. The ruler who is free from craving is free from moral defilements.
4. A person who hankers after sensual pleasures is called a fool.


Having had the correct answers to the above, the naga princess sang out questions regarding the floods (oghas) of sensual desire, of renewed existence, of false doctrine and of ignorance, and how they could be overcome. Uttara answered these questions as taught by the Buddha.

When Erakapatta heard these answers he knew that a Buddha had appeared in this world. So he asked Uttara to take him to the Buddha. On seeing the Buddha, Erakapatta related to the Buddha how he had been a bhikkhu during the time of Kassapa Buddha, how he had accidentally caused a grass blade to be broken off while travelling in a boat, and how he had worried over that little offence for having failed to do the act of exoneration as prescribed, and finally how he was reborn as a naga. After hearing him, the Buddha told him how difficult it was to be born in the human world, and to be born during the appearance of the Buddhas or during the time of their Teaching.

Then the Buddha spoke in verse as follows:

Verse 182: Hard to gain is birth as man; hard is the life of mortals; hard to get is the opportunity of hearing the Ariya Dhamma (Teaching of the Buddhas); hard it is for a Buddha to appear.

The above discourse benefited numerous beings. Erakapatta being an animal could not attain Sotapatti Fruition then and there.

**********
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Re: Buddhaflowers inspirational tales

Postby tidathep » Wed Jun 26, 2013 4:48 pm

Dear Members,

This lovely Wednesday, I have one of the most beautiful love story "Pipphali Kassapa And Baddha Kapilani to post in series...I'll start with 'MahaKassapa's Early Years'.

Image

Mahakassapa recieving robes from the Buddha by Andree Francois

******
:heart: MahaKassapa's Early Years :heart:
[by Hellmuth Hecker revised and enlarged translation from the German by Nyanaponika Thera]


Among those of the Buddha's disciples who were closest to him, there were two friends, Sariputta and Maha Moggallana, who were the chief disciples of the Buddha, the exemplary pair of disciples. There were also two brothers, Ananda and Anuruddha, who were likewise eminent "Fathers of the Order." In between these two pairs stands a great solitary figure, Pipphali Kassapa, who later was called Maha Kassapa, Kassapa the Great, to distinguish him from the others of the Kassapa clan, such as Kumara Kassapa and Uruvela Kassapa.

After Sariputta and Maha Moggallana had passed away, predeceasing the Buddha, it was Maha Kassapa who was held in greatest respect and reverence in the Order. But even after the Buddha's passing away, Maha Kassapa did not become the elected head of the Order of Monks, as it had been the Buddha's express wish that there should not be a supreme authoritative head of the Sangha. Shortly before his passing away, the Buddha had said: "That which I have proclaimed and made known, Ananda, as the Teaching and the Discipline (Dhamma-Vinaya), that shall be your Master when I am gone" (D.16).

Yet the natural authority emanating from Maha Kassapa made him particularly honored and venerated in the Sangha. There were many factors that contributed to his pre-eminent position after the death of the Master. He had been praised by the Buddha as being equal to him in many respects[1] and he shared with the Master seven of the thirty-two "Marks of a Great Man." He had been the only monk with whom the Buddha had exchanged robes. Maha Kassapa possessed to the highest degree the ten "qualities that inspire confidence."[2] He was also a model of a disciplined and austere life devoted to meditation. So it is no wonder that he was elected to preside over the First Council of the Sangha which had been summoned on his urgent advice. It may have been on account of all these features of his personality and his life that, much later in China and Japan, Maha Kassapa came to be regarded as the first patriarch of Ch'an or Zen Buddhism.

***********************to be continued***************
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