The Cure for Death
What Buddha said… : Better it is to live one day comprehending the Deathless than a hundred years without ever comprehending the Deathless.
SOON AFTER GISA KOTAMI got married, she gave birth to a son whom she loved dearly. Then, one day, when he was just beginning to learn how to walk, he suddenly fell ill and died. This left Gisa Kotami deeply grieved. Unable to accept her only son’s death, she roamed the streets with him held tightly in her arms, asking whomever she came across for some medicine that could cure her son and bring him back to life. Luckily she came upon a kindly man who realized her plight and advised her to go and see the Buddha. “The Buddha alone,” he told her, “has the antidote to death.”
When the Buddha saw Gisa Kotami, he realized that she was too grief-stricken to listen to reason and so resorted to some skillful means to help her. He told her that he could indeed restore her son back to life if she could get him a mustard seed. “However,” the Buddha warned, “the mustard seed must not come from any household where death has ever occurred. If you can bring one back to me, your child will live again.”
Gisa Kotami felt great relief and was overjoyed at the prospect of having her son once more playing at her side. Full of hope, she hurriedly went from house to house, but nowhere could she find a household in which no one had ever died. At last it dawned on her that she was not alone in her grief, for everyone else had suffered the loss of a loved one at one time or another. When she realized that, she lost all attachment to the dead body of her son and understood what the Buddha was trying to teach her: nothing born can ever escape death.
Gisa Kotami then buried her son and went to tell the Buddha that she could find no family where tears had never been shed over a lost loved one. The Buddha said to her, “You have now seen that it is not only you who have ever lost a son, Gisa Kotami. Death comes to all beings, for fleeting and impermanent is the nature of all component things.”
Gisa Kotami then became a nun and strove hard to eventually perceive the state of no death and no sorrow, which is the deathless state of Nibbana.
Eye for An Eye
Once there lived a prince. He lost one of his eyes. But now he was not a prince, he wandered here and there as a noble man.
One day he came to an Inn to stay for the night. He hired a room in the inn and stayed there in the night. As he liked the place very much he stayed there for days. The daughter of the Inn’s owner met him occasionally. She took pity on him and asked, how he had lost his eye. The noble man told her that once his father was a king of a country. When he was away to his cousin’s kingdom, one wicked minister cunningly killed his father and came to the throne. While he was returning back to his country, his men captured him on the way. The Minister ordered to take the left eye. “This was how I lost my one eye” he said in a low voice.
The daughter of the inn asked him, “why did the minister take your eye?” he said.
“The minister wanted to take revenge on me. It was also a separate story.” Said that prince.
He then continued, “In my young age, I was wandering with bow and arrows. When I was shooting, it had hit the minister’s left eye unexpectedly. So he lost his left eye and he was awaiting a suitable opportunity to revenge me. So he captured me when I returned to my kingdom. I begged for mercy and told that he did not blind his eye purposefully. But he didn’t listen to my words and blinded my left eye and sent me from the kingdom to the forest. I was wandering in the forest for many days. One day the animal hunters took pity on me and brought me here. Since then I have been staying here.” He finished.
The Inn owner’s daughter said, “Your life story touched my heart and this should not happen to any one. Then the noble man left the place and went on his way.
The Dead Father and His Wish
Long ago in the land of Persia there ruled a Sultan called Mustafa in the kingdom of Nasra. He ruled the kingdom wisely and just. The people in the kingdom were in peace and prosperity. The Sultan had a very beautiful wife but had no child.
The Sultan and his wife prayed to god. “Oh God! I have enough wealth. My people are in peace. But I have no heir to my kingdom”. He prayed to God again and again. After long years, his wife had a child of beauty. The king was in joy. They called the child as Zakir. The child grew in to an intelligent young man. He loved his father and mother most. He learned war fare also. Mustafa considered that he was suitable to be a King.
So he conducted a ceremony and declared him as his prince. Some days later Mustafa tell ill and died suddenly. Zakir burled his father in a grave and he came to the throne as a Sultan. He also ruled the kingdom peacefully. One day in his dream his father asked him to dig his grave. Zakir told his mother about it. His mother thought that it would disagree his father. But her son insisted on digging up the grave of his father.
He thought that his father’s orders must be obeyed. So he decided to dig the grave. The next morning he went to the grave and dug it with the spade. He was praying to god and his father. Suddenly he heard a different sound from the space. There he found some steps in the grave. He was surprised a while and stepped down slowly. There he saw a big room below the grave. He moved inside the room with watchful eyes in the darkness. To his surprise he saw some statues in the corner of the room. They were eight in number. All of them were made of gold, their dress glittering with diamonds and other precious stones. They were arranged in a straight line. He counted them. They were eight.
Zakir never had heard of the statues he had seen there. When he went near the eighth statue, it said. “There is a ninth one out side the cave in the kingdom. You go and get it!” He thought that the ninth one would be more precious and beautiful than those. So he came out of the grave. When he came out, he met an old man on the way. The old man told Zakir. ‘Are you the king? If it is right I am waiting for you majesty”.
When Zakir said “yes”, the old man asked him to hurry and find the ninth statue saying that it was his father’s wish. He also gave him a magical mirror. He said “It will reflect only one girl in the kingdom and that is your ninth statue.”
Zakir took the mirror from the old man. Soon the old man disappeared from there. Zakir took the mirror and entered each and every house to find his ninth statue. He showed the mirror to all the maidens one by one. But no one was figured in the mirror. Days passed he continued his searching. Finally one day he passed by a house. He heard a melodious song that made him to stay there for a while. He wanted to see the girl for a while. So he entered the house. There he saw her father and asked him permission to meet his daughter. He said, “Your majesty” It is my luck that you are in my house. You can see her now”.
The old noble man asked his daughter to come out. When she came out Zakir showed the mirror in front of her. There he saw a wonderful figure of beauty in the mirror.
“Yes! Yes! I have found the ninth statue here! No! No, my princess” he shouted in joy. He was amazed at her beauty and fell in love with her.
Then Zakir asked her father to give her away in marriage. The old noble man readily agreed. Zakir went to the palace and met his mother and told all that happened in the old man’s house. She also asked him to marry the old man’s daughter. So Zakir married her with the blessings of all in the kingdom and fulfilled the wish of his father in the dream. He and his princess ruled their kingdom with justice for long.