THE FORTUNATE FISH [DESIRE]


34, 216: THE FORTUNATE FISH [DESIRE]

Buddhist Tales for Young and Old, volume 1, Prince Goodspeaker, Stories 1-50

Once upon a time, King Brahmadatta had a very wise adviser who understood the speech of animals. He understood what they said, and he could speak to them in their languages.

One day the adviser was wandering along the riverbank with his followers. They came upon some fishermen who had cast a big net into the river. While peering into the water, they noticed a big, handsome fish following his pretty wife.

Her shining scales reflected the morning sunlight in all the colors of the rainbow. Her feather-like fins fluttered like the delicate wings of a fairy, as they sent her gliding through the water. It was clear that her husband was so entranced by the way she looked and the way she moved, that he was not paying attention to anything else!

As they came near the net, the wife fish smelled it. Then she saw it and alertly avoided it at the very last moment. But her husband was so blinded by his desire for her, that he could not turn away fast enough. Instead, he swam right into the net and was trapped!

The fishermen pulled in their net and threw the big fish onto the shore. They built a fire and carved a spit to roast him on.

Lying on the ground, the fish was flopping around and groaning in agony. Since the wise adviser understood fish talk, he translated for the others. He said, “This poor fish is madly repeating over and over again:

“My wife! My wife! I must be with my wife!
I care for her much more than for my life!

‘My wife! My wife! I must be with my wife!
I care for her much more than for my life!”

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

The adviser thought, “Truly this fish has gone crazy. He is in this terrible state because he became a slave to his own desire. And it is clear that he has learned nothing from the results of his actions. If he dies keeping such agony, and the desire that caused it, in his mind, he will surely continue to suffer by being reborn in some hell world. Therefore, I must save him!”

So this kind man went over to the fishermen and said, “Oh my friends, loyal subjects of our king, you have never given me and my followers a fish for our curry. Won’t you give us one today?”

They replied, “Oh royal minister, please accept from us any fish you wish!” “This big one on the riverbank looks delicious,” said the adviser. “Please take him, sir,” they said.

Then he sat down on the bank. He took the fish, who was still groaning, into his hands. He spoke to him in the language only fish can understand, saying, “You foolish fish! If I had not seen you today, you would have gotten yourself killed. Your blind desire was leading you to continued suffering. From now on, do not let yourself be trapped by your own desires!”

Then the fish realized how fortunate he was to have found such a friend. He thanked him for his wise advice. The minister released the lucky fish back into the river and went on his way.

The moral is: Fools are trapped by their own desires.

34, 216: The Fortunate Fish [Desire]

Link: https://peacelilysite.com/2022/11/27/the-fortunate-fish-desire/

INTERPRETER’S INTRODUCTION – BUDDHIST TALES FOR YOUNG AND OLD, VOLUME 1, STORIES 1-50

#Buddhisttalesforyoungandold #Buddhiststories #storiesforkids #moralstories #Buddha #Jatakastories #PansiyaPanasJatakaBuddhisttales#FortunateFish#Desire

Legends of One thousand-armed and one thousand-eyed Avalokiteshvara Bodhisattva

Legends of One thousand-armed and one thousand-eyed Avalokiteshvara Bodhisattva 

 

GuanShiYin (Avalokiteshvara) Bodhisattva is a well-known Buddhism figure in China and southeastern Asian. There are many different kinds of status and portraits of Guan Shi Yin Bodhisattva in the world. The most legendary one is one thousand-armed and one thousand-eyed form.

The Bodhisattva is personified as the symbol of compassion, and is frequently mentioned as the god of mercy who will help anybody who finds himself in trouble mentally or physically. He can infallibly eradicate all mundale sufferings. In order to achieve his ends, he can assume various forms, According to the text Karandavyuha Sutra he manifests all possible forms of life for the sake of ignorant and to bring liberation to living. It says: “As different people belonged to different faiths, this compassionate Bodhisattva was obliged to assume the shape of all gods of all faiths.”

Avalokiteshvara, the Bodhisattva of compassion, in front of Buddha Amitabha made to commitment to intentionally manifest into the three realms of Samsara in order to harrow the depths; that is to say, in order to stir from depths and completely liberate all sentient beings from samsara, and to be their supreme guide. Thus in the presence of Buddha Amitabha, Avalokiteshvara made this promise. Also he vowed that if by chance his compassion and his courageous mind of mercy for sentient beings were to decrease, then may his head and his body just completely crack and fall into one thousand pieces.

When Buddha was residing at the Veluvana garden he was surrounded by Arahats. There were five different divine rays coming out of his circle of hair between the eyebrows in the middle of the forehead and gradually it formed itself into a rainbow. Thereafter it went to the north in the direction of the Himalaya country of Tibet. At that time Buddha looked and smiled, then immediately Bodhisattva Sarvanivarana Viskambhi asked Buddha, What is the reason of your smiling, Lord? Buddha answered, “Noble boy! In the future there will be a pure Dharma through which one can be delivered to the path of liberation in the barbarian country of Tibet where there has never been a single Buddha for three junctions of time and there are uncountable demons and ghosts yet to time. “Therefore, Avalokiteshvara will tame those wild men, because once upon a time when he was a Bodhisattva he prayed to One thousand Buddhas Saying,” May all the transcendent bless me to be able to time those beings who are into barbarian country. May you bless that barbarian country through my taming, May you bless me to become the parent of those ghosts and demons;. May you bless me to free all those beings.

Once Amitabha Buddha placed his hand on the head of Avalokiteshvara and commanded that noble son, “Now you be the one who can tame the animated beings of the barbarian snow land whereas not a singly Buddha of the Three times has been there. This is the fruit of your sincere prayer for the purpose you have wished. Those suffering beings will be emancipated from the three lower realms as soon as they see your young holy body and hear the sound of the six mystic syllables, Om mani padme Hum. May your Bodhimind be manifested to the minds of ghosts, demons, evil spirits and hobgoblins and may they be striving with their minds for the benefit of others like Bodhisattvas, instead, of harming others. May all carnivorous animals-such as tigers, leopards, bears and snow bears abandon the mind of eating others and turn into the love of parents for each other, seeing your holy body and hearing the sound of the six syllables.

After making such commitments and blessings from Buddha Amitabha, Avalokiteshvara went by way of international manifestations into the three realms of samsara to be the supreme guide for all sentient beings.

Thereby he went to Hell and emancipated them from both the hot and cold hells by teaching the On mani padme hum. Then he went to ghost realms and emancipated from hunger and thirst after giving a discourse on the same. After that he went to the animal realms and emancipated them from hardship in labour. Then he came to the human realms and emancipated them from the intense suffering of birth, old age, sickness and death by a discourse on the same, Thus he also went to Asura realm and Deva realm to free them from their respective sufferings. 

 

So Avalokiteshvara went into of these realms of Samsara, and he absolutely emptied the ocean of sufferings. Following which he went back to Buddha Amitabha and he declared that the liberation had been affected.

Buddha Amitabha said to him,” You should look back again into world!” And as he did, there he saw that once again sentient beings were in samsara and in sorrow, he became so discouraged as he saw that his “awakening mind (Bodhicitta) decreased in the moment he lost his courage. When he became discouraged, in that moment, the promise that he had made earlier declined.

The three realms of Samsara are Kamadhatu, the desire realm, the Rupa dhatu, the Form realm and the Arupya dhaty, the formless realm,. These three reams are so vast and so are the different types of suffering that sentient beings must experience in these realms. When Avalokiteshvara beheld that still sentient beings were in this type of suffering condition in these three realms respectively, he become overcome with sorrow, he become discouraged in the very presence of Buddha Amitabha. He felt how could the time come to ever liberate all sentient beings from this type of promise that he had made before, his head and body just cracked and fell apart into one thousand prices, and he fainted.

Avalokiteshvara, thus fainted, and Buddha Amitabha said to his “My son, where has your courage, your mental strength gone? He picked up all the pieces of his head and the body. At the same time he said,” this happened because of your prayer. You deserve the praise of all Buddhas since your prayer was efficacious. However, Noble son Don’t worry! Thereby he blessed his broken head into eleven faces and he sat upon those heads, and his broken body into one thousand hands like one thousand petals. Thereafter he said,” I bow to you because your one thousand hands are the hands of the thousand universal emperors and those eyes in each of the hand palms are eyes of one thousand Buddhas who will appear in this fortunate aeon.  

Legends of One thousand-armed and one thousand-eyed Avalokiteshvara Bodhisattva

Link:  https://peacelilysite.com/2022/11/03/legends-of-one-thousand-armed-and-one-thousand-eyed-avalokiteshvara-bodhisattva/

#GuanShiYinBodhisattva#Buddhism#Buddha#BuddhaAmitabha#Onethousand-armedandone thousand-eyed#legend#Samsara#Mercy#Compassion

(Saddharmapundarika Sutra)

Source: https://buddhism.lib.ntu.edu.tw/FULLTEXT/JR-BH/bh117498.htm Min Bahadur ShakyaBuddhist Himalaya: A Journal of Nagarjuna Institute of Exact MethodsVol. No. I & II  (1989) Copyright 1989 by Nagarjuna Institute of Exact Methods

THE SILENT BUDDHA [GENEROSITY]

Photo by Ratri Test on Pexels.com

THE SILENT BUDDHA [GENEROSITY]

Once upon a time, there was a very rich man living in Benares, in northern India. When his father died, he inherited even more wealth. He thought, “Why should I use this treasure for myself alone? Let my fellow beings also benefit from these riches.”

So he built dining halls at the four gates of the city — North, East, South and West. In these halls he gave food freely to all who wished it. He became famous for his generosity. It also became known that he and his followers were practicers of the Five Training Steps.

In those days, there was a Silent Buddha meditating in the forest near Benares. He was called Buddha because he was enlightened. This means that he no longer experienced himself, the one called ‘I’ or ‘me’, as being in any way different from all life living itself. So he was able to experience life as it really is, in every present moment.

Being one with all life, he was filled with compassion and sympathy for the unhappiness of all beings. So he wished to teach and help them to be enlightened just as he was. But the time of our story was a most unfortunate time, a very sad time. It was a time when no one else was able to understand the Truth, and experience life as it really is. And since this Buddha knew this, that was why he was Silent.

While meditating in the forest, the Silent Buddha entered into a very high mental state. His concentration was so great that he remained in one position for seven days and nights, without eating or drinking.

When he returned to the ordinary state, he was in danger of dying from starvation. At the usual time of day, he went to collect alms food at the mansion of the rich man of Benares.

When the rich man had just sat down to have lunch, he saw the Silent Buddha coming with his alms bowl. He rose from his seat respectfully. He told his servant to go and give alms to him.

Meanwhile, Mara, the god of death, had been watching. Mara is the one who is filled with greed for power over all beings. He can only have this power because of the fear of death.

Since a Buddha lives life fully in each moment, he has no desire for future life, and no fear of future death. Therefore, since Mara could have no power over the Silent Buddha, he wished to destroy him. When he saw that he was near death from starvation, he knew that he had a good chance of succeeding.

Before the servant could place the food in the Silent Buddha’s alms bowl, Mara caused a deep pit of red hot burning coals to appear between them. It seemed like the entrance to a hell world.

When he saw this, the servant was frightened to death. He ran back to his master. The rich man asked him why he returned without giving the alms food. He replied, “My lord, there is a deep pit full of red hot burning coals just in front of the Silent Buddha.”

The rich man thought, “This man must be seeing things!” So he sent another servant with alms food. He also was frightened by the same pit of fiery coals. Several servants were sent, but all returned frightened to death.

Then the master thought, “There is no doubt that Mara, the god of death, must be trying to prevent my wholesome deed of giving alms food to the Silent Buddha. Because wholesome deeds are the beginning of the path to enlightenment, this Mara wishes to stop me at all costs. But he does not understand my confidence in the Silent Buddha and my determination to give.”

So he himself took the alms food to the Silent Buddha. He too saw the flames rising from the fiery pit. Then he looked up and saw the terrible god of death, floating above in the sky. He asked, “Who are you.?” Mara replied, I am the god of death!”

“Did you create this pit of fire?” asked the man. “I did,” said the god. “Why did you do so?” “To keep you from giving alms food, and in this way to cause the Silent Buddha to die! Also to prevent your wholesome deed from helping you on the path to enlightenment, so you will remain in my power!”

The rich man of Benares said, “Oh Mara, god of death, the evil one, you cannot kill the Silent Buddha, and you cannot prevent my wholesome giving! Let us see whose determination is stronger!”

Then he looked across the raging pit of fire, and said to the calm and gentle Enlightened One, “Oh Silent Buddha, let the light of Truth continue to shine as an example to us. Accept this gift of life!”

So saying, he forgot himself entirely, and in that moment there was no fear of death. As he stepped into the burning pit, he felt himself being lifted up by a beautiful cool lotus blossom. The pollen from this miraculous flower spread into the air, and covered him with the glowing colour of gold. While standing in the heart of the lotus, the Great Being poured the alms food into the bowl of the Silent Buddha. Mara, god of death, was defeated!

In appreciation for this wonderful gift, the Silent Buddha raised his hand in blessing. The rich man bowed in homage, joining his hands above his head. Then the Silent Buddha departed from Benares, and went to the Himalayan forests.



Still standing on the wonderful lotus, glowing with the color of gold, the generous master taught his followers. He told them that practising the Five Training Steps is necessary to purify the mind. He told them that with such a pure mind, there is great merit in giving alms — indeed it is truly the gift of life!

When he had finished teaching, the fiery pit and the lovely cool lotus completely disappeared.

The moral is: Have no fear when doing wholesome deeds.

The Silent Buddha [Generosity]

Link: https://peacelilysite.com/2022/10/22/the-silent-buddha-generosity/

INTERPRETER’S INTRODUCTION – BUDDHIST TALES FOR YOUNG AND OLD, VOLUME 1, STORIES 1-50

#Buddhisttalesforyoungandold #Buddhiststories #storiesforkids #moralstories #Buddha #Jatakastories #PansiyaPanasJataka

THE MOUSE MERCHANT [DILIGENCE AND GRATITUDE]

4. THE MOUSE MERCHANT [DILIGENCE AND GRATITUDE]

Buddhist Tales for Young and Old, volume 1, Prince Goodspeaker, Stories 1-50

Once upon a time, an important adviser to a certain king was on his way to a meeting with the king and other advisers. Out of the corner of his eye, he saw a dead mouse by the roadside. He said to those who were with him. “Even from such small beginnings as this dead mouse, an energetic young fellow could build a fortune. If he worked hard and used his intelligence, he could start a business and support a wife and family.”

A passerby heard the remark. He knew this was a famous adviser to the king, so he decided to follow his words. He picked up the dead mouse by the tail and went off with it. As luck would have it, before he had gone even a block, a shopkeeper stopped him. He said, “My cat has been pestering me all morning. I’ll give you two copper coins for that mouse.” So it was done.

With the two copper coins, he bought sweet cakes, and waited by the side of the road with them and some water. As he expected, some people who picked flowers for making garlands were returning from work. Since they were all hungry and thirsty, they agreed to buy sweet cakes and water for the price of a bunch of flowers from each of them. In the evening, the man sold the flowers in the city. With some of the money he bought more sweet cakes and returned the next day to sell to the flower pickers.

This went on for a while, until one day there was a terrible storm, with heavy rains and high winds. While walking by the king’s pleasure garden, he saw that many branches had been blown off the trees and were lying all around. So he offered to the king’s gardener that he would clear it all away for him, if he could keep the branches. The lazy gardener quickly agreed.

The man found some children playing in a park across the street. They were glad to collect all the branches and brush at the entrance to the pleasure garden, for the price of just one sweet cake for each child.

Along came the king’s potter, who was always on the lookout for firewood for his glazing oven. When he saw the piles of wood the children had just collected, he paid the man a handsome price for it. He even threw into the bargain some of his pots.

Photo by ThuongDaiHua on Pexels.com

With his profits from selling the flowers and the firewood, the man opened up a refreshment shop. One day all the local grass mowers, who were on their way into town, stopped in his shop. He gave them free sweet cakes and drinks. They were surprised at his generosity and asked, “What can we do for you?” He said there was nothing for them to do now, but he would let them know in the future.

A week later, he heard that a horse dealer was coming to the city with 500 horses to sell. So he got in touch with the grass mowers and told each of them to give him a bundle of grass. He told them not to sell any grass to the horse dealer until he had sold his. In this way he got a very good price.

Time passed until one day, in his refreshment shop, some customers told him that a new ship from a foreign country had just anchored in the port. He saw this to be the opportunity he had been waiting for. He thought and thought until he came up with a good business plan.

First, he went to a jeweler friend of his and paid a low price for a very valuable gold ring, with a beautiful red ruby in it. He knew that the foreign ship was from a country that had no rubies of its own, where gold too was expensive. So he gave the wonderful ring to the captain of the ship as an advance on his commission. To earn this commission, the captain agreed to send all his passengers to him as a broker. He would then lead them to the best shops in the city. In turn, the man got the merchants to pay him a commission for sending customers to them.

Acting as a middle man in this way, after several ships came into port, the man became very rich. Being pleased with his success, he also remembered that it had all started with the words of the king’s wise adviser. So he decided to give him a gift of 100,000 gold coins. This was half his entire wealth. After making the proper arrangements, he met with the king’s adviser and gave him the gift, along with his humble thanks.

The adviser was amazed, and he asked, “How did you earn so much wealth to afford such a generous gift?” The man told him it had all started with the adviser’s own words not so long ago. They had led him to a dead mouse, a hungry cat, sweet cakes, bunches of flowers, storm damaged tree branches, children in the park, the king’s potter, a refreshment shop, grass for 500 horses, a golden ruby ring, good business contacts, and finally a large fortune.

Hearing all this, the royal adviser thought to himself, “It would not be good to lose the talents of such an energetic man. I too have much wealth, as well as my beloved only daughter. As this man is single, he deserves to marry her. Then he can inherit my wealth in addition to his own, and my daughter will be well cared for.”

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

This all came to pass, and after the wise adviser died, the one who had followed his advice became the richest man in the city. The king appointed him to the adviser’s position. Throughout his remaining life, he generously gave his money for the happiness and well being of many people.

The moral is: With energy and ability, great wealth comes even from small beginnings.

4. The Mouse Merchant [Diligence and Gratitude]

Link: https://peacelilysite.com/2022/10/22/the-mouse-merchant-diligence-and-gratitude/

Source: INTERPRETER’S INTRODUCTION – BUDDHIST TALES FOR YOUNG AND OLD, VOLUME 1, STORIES 1-50

#Buddhisttalesforyoungandold #Buddhiststories #storiesforkids #moralstories #Buddha #Jatakastories #PansiyaPanasJatak#diligence #gratitude

37. The Birth of a Banyan Tree [Respect for Elders]

37. The Birth of a Banyan Tree [Respect for Elders]

Buddhist Tales for Young and Old, volume 1, Prince Goodspeaker, Stories 1-50

Once upon a time, there was a big banyan tree in the forest beneath the mighty Himalayas. Living near this banyan tree were three very good friends. They were a quail, a monkey and an elephant. Each of them was quite smart.

Occasionally the three friends got into a disagreement. When this happened, they did not consider the opinion of any one of them to be more valuable. No matter how much experience each one had, his opinion was treated the same as the others. So it took them a long time to reach an agreement. Every time this happened, they had to start from the beginning to reach a solution.

After a while they realized that it would save time, and help their friendship, if they could shorten their disagreements. They decided that it would certainly help if they considered the most valuable opinion first. Then, if they could agree on that one, they would not have to waste time, and possibly even become less friendly, by arguing about the other two.

Fortunately, they all thought the most valuable opinion was the one based on the most experience. Therefore, they could live together even more peacefully if they gave higher respect to the oldest among them. Only if his opinion were clearly wrong, would they need to consider others.

Unfortunately, the elephant and the monkey and the quail had no idea which one was the oldest. Since this was a time before old age was respected, they had no reason to remember their birthdays or their ages.

Then one day, while they were relaxing in the shade of the big banyan tree, the quail and the monkey asked the elephant, “As far back as you can remember, what was the size of this banyan tree?”

The elephant replied, “I remember this tree for a very long time. When I was just a little baby, I used to scratch my belly by rubbing it over the tender shoots on top of this banyan tree.”

Then the monkey said, “When I was a curious baby monkey, I used to sit and examine the little seedling banyan tree. Sometimes I used to bend over and nibble its top tender leaves.”

The monkey and the elephant asked the quail, “As far back as you can remember, what was the size of this banyan tree?”

The quail said, “When I was young, I was looking for food in a nearby forest. In that forest, there was a big old banyan tree, which was full of ripe berries. I ate some of those berries, and the next day I was standing right here. This was where I let my droppings fall, and the seeds they contained grew up to be this very tree!”

The monkey and the elephant said, “Aha! Sir quail, you must be the oldest. You deserve our respect and honor. From now on we will pay close attention to your words. Based on your wisdom and experience, advise us when we make mistakes. When there are disagreements, we will give the highest place to your opinion. We ask only that you be honest and just.”

The quail replied, “I thank you for your respect, and I promise to always do my best to deserve it.” It just so happened that this wise little quail was the Bodhisatta the Enlightenment Being.

The moral is: Respect for the wisdom of elders leads to harmony.

Link: https://hhdorjechangbuddhaiiiinfo.com/2022/09/27/the-birth-of-a-banyan-tree-respect-for-elders/

37. The Birth of a Banyan Tree [Respect for Elders]

INTERPRETER’S INTRODUCTION – BUDDHIST TALES FOR YOUNG AND OLD, VOLUME 1, STORIES 1-50

#Buddhisttalesforyoungandold #Buddhiststories #storiesforkids #moralstories #Buddha #Jatakastories #PansiyaPanasJataka

A Story of Transforming Negative Affinity

Photo by Frank Cone on Pexels.com

A Story Transforming Negative Affinity

One day around nightfall, a monk was on his way back to the temple. Suddenly, lightning was striking and it was raining cats and dogs, the rain didn’t seem to be coming to a stop. He thought eagerly,
“What should I do”. Just as he was becoming anxious, a manor was nearby. He ran towards it hoping to be warranted a night’s stay. The manor was enormous, and the servant saw the monk. After asked for the monk’s business there, the servant said, “My master has no affinity with monks. You will need to seek shelter elsewhere.“
The monk replied, “It is raining hard, and there is no other household nearby. If you just provide me a place to stay would be really appreciated.”
“I cannot make the decision, let me go ask for my mater’s permission.” The servant went into the manor, and after he came back, he still refused the monk. The monk asked for the manor’s master’s name after the rejection, and without other options, he hurried back to the temple in the rain.

Three years later, the master of the manor married a concubine, he was very fond of her. One day, the concubine wanted to go to the temple for making offering, the master went with her. In the temple, the master of the manor saw his name written on a plate for meritorious deeds praying. The master was puzzled, and asked a little monk nearby for the reason of the plate.
The little monk replied with a smile, “This is written by the head monk three years ago. There was a night that he hurried back to the temple in heavy rain, and said that there was an almsgiver that he did not build positive affinity with. So the head monk written the plate and chant the prayers for the almsgiver on daily basis to dedicate any merits back to him. Hopefully, their affinity can be transformed to positive. This is as much as I know, the head monk did not provide us with more detail.” When the manor of the master hear what the little monk said, he knew the story and he was regretful. At the end, he became a dedicated almsgiver of the temple.

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

This is a very inspiring story of an old monk, a story to transform “negative affinity”. This mundane world is big yet small, and people often run into each other. A person with great tolerance can understand the fact that “Great kindness and great enmity; others and me are no different.” In addition, the environment and how others treated ourselves should be a catalyst to encourage us. Kindness and enmity are all affinities to help us. On the other hand, those who are shallow and with narrow-minded will hinder themselves from positive affinity, and will aloof themselves from a future with prosperity.
Indeed, to be able to act as the head monk’s heart of embracement might not be easy; however, ” Saints and sages have virtuous actions that we look up to, and have mindsets and actions that are legit and above-board. Though we are not yet at the same extent, but I try to be the same.”


The act of positive thoughts and action can really transform negative affinity. The act of giving is the cause of prosperity, and the action of greed is the cause of poverty. Instead of giving wealth to children, we should leave them with virtue. Have you not noticed? Wealth creates conflict of interest. There are countless incidents where sibling or parents sue each other for money. If our children are well educated and are virtuous, then it is unnecessary to leave them with money.

A Story Transforming Negative Affinity

Link:https://peacelilysite.com/2022/09/14/transforming-negative-affinity/

#BuddhismTeaching#Monk#Buddhism#Affinity#TransformNegativeAffinity#Kindness#GreatEnmity#MoralStorie

THE PRICE MAKER [FOOLISHNESS]


Photo by Diego Caumont on Pexels.com

5. THE PRICE MAKER [FOOLISHNESS]

Buddhist Tales for Young and Old, volume 1, Prince Goodspeaker, Stories 1-50

Long ago and far away, there was a king who ruled in Benares, in northern India. One of his ministers was called the Royal Price Maker, and he was a very honest man. His job was to set a fair price for anything the king wanted to buy or sell.

On some occasions, the king did not like his price making. He did not get as big a profit as he wanted. He did not want to pay so much when he bought, or sell for what he thought was not enough. So he decided to change the price maker.

One day he saw a nice looking young man and he thought, “This fellow will be good for my price making position.” So he dismissed his former honest price maker, and appointed this man to be the new one. The man thought, “I must make the king happy by buying at very low prices and selling at very high prices.” So he made the prices ridiculous, without caring at all what anything was worth. This gained the greedy king a lot of money, and made him very happy. Meanwhile, all the others who dealt with the new price maker, including the king’s other ministers and ordinary people, became very unhappy.

Then one day a horse merchant arrived in Benares with 500 horses to sell. There were stallions, mares and colts. The king invited the merchant to the palace, and called upon his Royal Price Maker to set a price for all 500 horses. Thinking only of pleasing the king, he said, “The entire herd of horses is worth one cup of rice.” So the king ordered that one cup of rice be paid to the horse dealer, and all the horses were taken to the royal stables.

5. The Price Maker [Foolishness]

Of course the merchant was very upset, but he could do nothing at the moment. Later he heard about the former price maker, who had a reputation for being very fair and honest. So he approached him and told him what had happened. He wanted to hear his opinion, in order to get a proper price from the king. The former price maker said, “If you do as I say, the king will be convinced of the true value of the horses. Go back to the price maker and satisfy him with a valuable gift. Ask him to tell the value of one cup of rice, in the presence of the king. If he agrees, come and tell me. I will go with you to the king.”

Following this advice, the merchant went to the price maker and gave him a valuable gift. The gift made him very happy, so that he saw the value of pleasing the horse dealer. Then the merchant said to him, “I was very happy with your previous evaluation. Can you please convince the king of the value of one cup of rice?” The foolish price maker said, ‘Why not? I will explain the worth of one cup of rice, even in the presence of the king.”

So the price maker thought the horse dealer was satisfied with his cup of rice. He arranged for another meeting with the king, as the merchant was departing for his own country. The merchant reported back to the old price maker, and they went together to see the king.

All the king’s ministers and his full court were in the royal meeting hall. The horse merchant said to the king, “My lord, I understand that in this your country, my whole herd of 500 horses is worth one cup of rice. Before I leave for home, I want to know the value of one cup of rice in your country.” The king turned to his loyal price maker and said, “What is the value of one cup of rice?”

The foolish price maker, in order to please the king, had previously priced the herd of horses at one cup of rice. Now, after receiving a bribe from the horse dealer, he wanted to please him too. So he replied to the king, in his most dignified manner, “Your worship, one cup of rice is worth the city of Benares, including even your own harem, as well as all the suburbs of the city. In other words, it is worth the whole kingdom of Benares!”

On hearing this, the royal ministers and wise men in the assembly hall started to roar with laughter, slapping their sides with their hands. When they calmed down a little, they said, “Earlier we heard that the kingdom was priceless. Now we hear that all Benares, with its palaces and mansions, is worth only a cup of rice! The decision of the Royal Price Maker is so strange! Where did your highness find such a man? He is good only for pleasing a king such as you, not for making fair prices for a merchant who sells his horses from country to country.”

Hearing the laughter of his whole court, and the words of his ministers and advisers, the king was ashamed. So he brought back his former price maker to his official position. He agreed to a new fair price for the herd of horses, as set by the honest price maker. Having learned a lesson, the king and his kingdom lived justly and prospered.

The moral is: A fool in high office can bring shame even to a king.

5. The Price Maker [Foolishness]

Link: https://peacelilysite.com/2022/09/10/the-price-maker-foolishness/

INTERPRETER’S INTRODUCTION – BUDDHIST TALES FOR YOUNG AND OLD, VOLUME 1, STORIES 1-50

#Buddhisttalesforyoungandold #Buddhiststories #storiesforkids #moralstories #Buddha #Jatakastories #PansiyaPanasJataka #foolishness #Banares #India

The Quail King and the Hunter [Unity]

The Quail King and the Hunter [Unity]

Buddhist Tales for Young and Old, volume 1, Prince Goodspeaker, Stories 1-50

Once upon a time, there was a Quail King who reigned over a flock of a thousand quails.

There was also a very clever quail hunter. He knew how to make a quail call. Because this sounded just like a real quail crying for help, it never failed to attract other quails. Then the hunter covered them with a net, stuffed them in baskets, and sold them to make a living.

Because he always put the safety of his flock first, Quail King was highly respected by all. While on the lookout for danger, one day he came across the hunter and saw what he did. He thought, “This quail hunter has a good plan for destroying our relatives. I must make a better plan to save us.”

Then he called together his whole nation of a thousand quails. He also invited other quails to attend the meeting. He said, “Greetings to our quail nation and welcome to our visitors. We are faced with great danger. Many of our relatives are being trapped and sold by a clever hunter. Then they are being killed and eaten. I have come up with a plan to save us all. When the hunter covers us with his net, every single one of us must raise his neck at the same time. Then, all together, we should fly away with the net and drop it on a thorn bush. That will keep him busy, and we will be able to escape with our lives.” All agreed to follow this smart strategy.

The next day the hunter lured the quails with his quail call as usual. But when he threw his net over them, they all raised up their necks at once, flew away with the net, and dropped it on a thorn bush. He could catch no quails at all! In addition, it took him the rest of the day to loosen his net from the thorns – so he had no time left to try again!

The same thing happened on the following day. So he spent a second day unhooking his net from sharp thorns. He arrived home only to be greeted by his wife’s sharp tongue! She complained, “You used to bring home quail to eat, and money from selling quails. Now you return empty-handed. What do you do all day? You must have another wife somewhere, who is feasting on quail meat at this very moment!”

The hunter replied, “Don’t think such a thing, my darling. These days the quails have become very unified. They act as one, and raise up their necks and carry my net to a thorn bush. But thanks to you, my one and only wife, I know just what to do! Just as you argue with me, one day they too will argue, as relatives usually do. While they are occupied in conflict and bickering, I will trap them and bring them back to you. Then you will be pleased with me again. Until then, I must be patient.”

The hunter had to put up with his wife’s complaints for several more days. Then one morning after being lured by the quail call, it just so happened that one quail accidentally stepped on the head of another. He immediately got angry and squawked at her. She removed her foot from his head and said, “Please don’t be angry with me. Please excuse my mistake.” But he would not listen. Soon both of them were squawking and squawking, and the conflict got worse and worse!

Hearing this bickering getting louder and louder, Quail King said, “There is no advantage in conflict. Continuing it will lead to danger!” But they just wouldn’t listen.

Then Quail King thought, “I’m afraid this silly conflict will keep them from cooperating to raise the net.” So he commanded that all should escape. His own flock flew away at once.

And it was just in time too! Suddenly the quail hunter threw his net over the remaining quails. The two arguing quails said to each other, “I won’t hold the net for you.” Hearing this, even some of the other quails said, “Why should I hold the net for anyone else?”

So the conflict spread like wildfire. The hunter grabbed all the quails, stuffed them in his baskets, and took them home to his wife. Of course she was overjoyed, and they invited all their friends over for a big quail feast.

The moral is: There is safety in unity, and danger in conflict.

The Quail King and the Hunter [Unity]

Link: https://hhdorjechangbuddhaiiiinfo.com/2022/08/30/the-quail-king-and-the-hunter-unity/

INTERPRETER’S INTRODUCTION – BUDDHIST TALES FOR YOUNG AND OLD, VOLUME 1, STORIES 1-50

#Buddhisttalesforyoungandold #Buddhiststories #storiesforkids #moralstories #Buddha #Jatakastories #PansiyaPanasJataka

The caterpillar and the old cricket

Photo by Anthony on Pexels.com

The caterpillar and the old cricket


There was a caterpillar in the flowers, it laid lazily in the grass and did not like to move. An old cricket advised him: “Children should be up for activities. Isn’t there a saying that life is movement!”
The caterpillar glanced at the cricket and replied, “I don’t need to move, all I need is to stay safe and stable, soon I will become a beautiful butterfly.
A dragonfly flew over and said to the caterpillar, “Ah, I have never seen such an ugly butterfly like you. Do not get lazy, get up and exercise, it is good for you.” The caterpillar did not move, it even closed its eyes. It said, “No matter how much you look down on my body, the fact of my becoming a butterfly will never be changed. So why do I need to move, isn’t it fine that I just quietly wait to become a butterfly?” After having said so, the caterpillar laid motionlessly in the grass and comfortably basked in the sun.
Soon the caterpillar was wrapped in a cocoon, inside which its body did not want to move, and it slept all day long. One day, it awoke and found itself a butterfly. It happily wanted to break free of the
cocoon, but the cocoon shell did not even budge under its impact. It followed with several more impacts and felt pain over its whole body. So it did not feel like breaking the cocoon and closed its eyes to sleep.

At this time a thump sounded from outside, the old cricket calling from without, “Child, put effort into getting out of the cocoon, otherwise you will die inside.” The caterpillar shrugged and didn’t take it seriously; it thought that the old cricket was really nosy. Inside, the cocoon is safe and comfortable, why do I need to exert my effort to get out of it, will the outside world be safer and more comfortable than inside? Therefore, no matter how hard the old cricket knocked, it did not respond and continued to sleep comfortably.

However, not long after, it discovered that breathing was getting difficult. Its body size was becoming bigger yet the cocoon was shrinking. It became scared and put strength into struggling. But it had no strength left and air decreased inside the cocoon.
It had no strength for even a few movements, and its breathing became more difficult. At death’s door, the caterpillar finally realized that although one’s destiny is foreordained, it is through one’s self-effort that it can be fulfilled.

Photo by Nandhu Kumar on Pexels.com

The caterpillar and the old cricket

Link: https://peacelilysite.com/2022/08/28/the-caterpillar-and-the-old-cricket/

#Caterpillar#Cocoon#Butterfly#MoralStories#Cricket

32. The Dancing Peacock [Pride and Modesty]

32. The Dancing Peacock [Pride and Modesty]

Once upon a time, a very long time ago, the four-footed animals made the lion their king. There was a gigantic fish that roamed the oceans, and the fish made him their king. The birds were attracted to beauty, so they chose the Golden Swan as their king.

King Golden Swan had a beautiful golden daughter. While she was still young, he granted her one wish. She wished that, when she was old enough, she could pick her own husband.

When his daughter was old enough, King Golden Swan called all the birds living in the vast Himalayan Mountains of central Asia to a gathering. The purpose was to find a worthy husband for his golden daughter. Birds came from far away, even from high Tibet. There were geese, swans, eagles, sparrows, humming birds, cuckoos, owls and many other kinds of birds.

The gathering was held on a high rock slab, in the beautiful green land of Nepal. King Golden Swan told his lovely daughter to select whichever husband she wished.

She looked over the many birds. Her eye was attracted by a shining emerald-green long-necked peacock, with gorgeous flowing tail feathers. She told her father, “This bird, the peacock, will be my husband.”

Hearing that he was the lucky one, all the other birds crowded around the peacock to congratulate him. They said, “Even among so many beautiful birds, the golden swan princess has chosen you. We congratulate you on your good fortune.”

The peacock became so puffed up with pride, that he began to show off his colorful feathers in a fantastic strutting dance. He fanned out his spectacular tail feathers and danced in a circle to show off his beautiful tail. Being so conceited, he pointed his head at the sky and forgot all modesty, so that he also, showed his most private parts for all to see!

The other birds, especially the young ones, giggled. But King Golden Swan was not amused. He was embarrassed to see his daughter’s choice behave in this way. He thought, “This peacock has no inner shame to give him proper modesty. Nor does he have the outer fear to prevent indecent behavior. So why should my daughter be shamed by such a mindless mate?”

Standing in the midst of the great assembly of birds, the king said, “Sir peacock, your voice is sweet, your feathers are beautiful, your neck shines like an emerald, and your tail is like a splendid fan. But you have danced here like one who has no proper shame or fear. I will not permit my innocent daughter to marry such an ignorant fool!”

Then King Golden Swan married his golden daughter to a royal nephew. The silly strutting peacock flew away, having lost a beautiful wife.

The moral is: If you let pride go to your head, you’ll wind up acting like a fool.

Link: https://hhdorjechangbuddhaiiiinfo.com/2022/08/23/32-the-dancing-peacock-pride-and-modesty/

INTERPRETER’S INTRODUCTION – BUDDHIST TALES FOR YOUNG AND OLD, VOLUME 1, STORIES 1-50

#Buddhisttalesforyoungandold #Buddhiststories #storiesforkids #moralstories #Buddha #Jatakastories #PansiyaPanasJataka