Sunday, January 04, 2009

291206 Wat Xieng Mouane - life story 2

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[18] Sujata preparing milk & rice pudding as an offering of thanks to a tree spirit that had granted her wish.
[19] Sujata offering milk & rice pudding in a golden bowl to Sakyamuni, who breaks his fast.
[20] Sakyamuni throws the bowl into the river, & it floats upstream instead of downstream, indicating that he will become enlightened; the bowl is saved by a naga king.


[21] The grass cutter Sottiya offers Sakyamuni eight handfuls of grass as a sitting mat.
[22] Sakyamuni resolves to meditate beneath a bodhi tree until he attains enlightenment.


[23] Pha Phom, Pha In & other gods pay homage to Sakyamuni.
[24] Sakyamuni meditates into the night on the eve of a full moon.

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[25] The evil Mara sends his three daughters to tempt & distract Buddha, who remains unperturbed.
[26] Mara on the back of his elephant mount Girimekkhala (Mekkhala Luang) leads an army to attack Buddha, but the earth goddess Mae Thoranii wrings water symbolising the accumulated merit of Buddha from her hair, drowning the army.
[27] The seven-headed naga king Muchalinda coils its body to raise Buddha above the rising floodwaters, & shelters him with its hood from the rain.

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[28] Didn't manage to photograph it!
[29] Two merchants, Tapussa & Bhallika, offer rice cakes & honey to Buddha, who accepts them as his first two lay followers; it is believed that hairs given to them by Buddha during this encounter are enshrined in Burma's Shwedagon pagoda.
[30] Pha In & Pha Phom invite Buddha to preach the Dharma to people on earth.
[31] Buddha goes in search of the hermits Asita & his former teachers Uddaka & Alara Kalama, but learns that they are all dead.


[32] In Deer Park at Sarnath, Buddha gives his first sermon & preaches the four noble truths & eightfold path to his first five disciples - Kondanna (โกณฑัญญะ Konthanya), Bhadiya (ภัททิยะ Phathiya), Vappa (วัปปะ Wappa), Mahanama (มหานาม) & Assaji (อัสสช Atsachi); at this point the first sangha was formed, & the Triple Gem (Buddha, Dharma & Sangha) was complete - this event is now celebrated on Asanha Puja, which is also the day before Khao Phansa (start of Buddhist Lent or rains retreat).
[33] Buddha preaching to either Yasa (firstborn son of Sujata) or Yasa's father, which would lead to the number of his disciples increasing to 60?

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[34] Buddha taming the serpent king in the hut of Uruvela Kassapa, one of three fire-worshipping brothers; they & their followers would swell the ranks of Buddha's disciples to beyond a thousand.
[35] No idea!

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[36 & 37] No idea! But somewhere at this point Buddha returned to his home & his stepbrother Prince Nanda, son Rahula & cousins Ananda & Anuruddha were all ordained.
[38] Buddha performs miracles in front of his disbelievers, including a rainstorm that wet all of them but left his believers dry.
[39] On hearing that Buddha was to perform a miracle at a mango tree, disbelievers bought over all mango orchards & cut down every single tree; When planted by the king's gardener Ganda, the seed of a mango that Buddha had eaten instantly sprouted into a fully grown tree, at which he performed the 'twin miracles' (ยมกปาฏิหาริย์ yamaka patihariya), creating double apparitions of himself (depicted as one pair each of reclining & sitting Buddhas in the tree).


[40] Buddha spends one rains retreat preaching to his mother in Tavatimsa heaven.

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