A friend who is an active member of the Soka Gakkai International, that teaches Nichiren Buddhism, a philosophy grounded in the realities of daily life, told me two short stories on Buddha. While the third story is from the documentary Liquid Crystal Vision.
So we have three short stories on Buddha and enlightenment as well as a lovely flash book for you to go through to see how you can make a beneficial change in your life and the people around you.
Buddha and the Sage:
Buddha was travelling with his disciples when they arrived at the bed of a river. They sat down, patiently awaiting the boat to come so that they could go to the other side. As they were waiting, an old sage walked by them and walked over the water on to the other side. The disciples were awe struck and when they were all in the boat they were muttering amongst themselves. Buddha knew what was coming next, when they asked him, “If you are the enlightened one, how is it that you did not walk on the water.”
Buddha smiled at them and responded, “If I had to walk across the water, what would you’ll have done. I could have walked over the water but how would that be beneficial to you?”
Buddha and his Teachers:
When Buddha was enlightened, his teachers were jealous of him. Although Buddha had decided to go and pay homage to them for teaching him and sharing their knowledge, they had conspired to ignore his presence when he arrived.
Although they decided not to welcome him when he arrived, when Buddha arrived they all stood up and fell to his feet. His persona was such that it just brought it out in them.
Buddha and Enlightenment:
As Buddha made his way up to the mountain he came across three people a man who was sitting under a tree meditating, a person sitting in the open grounds meditating and a man who was dancing away. All three of them were on their path to enlightenment.
When the Buddha passed the first man, he asked, “When will I get enlightened?” the Buddha answered it would take at least a thousand years to get enlightened and the man continued meditating under the tree. Buddha then passed by the man who was sitting in the open, except now the sun had burnt parts of his skin on his body.
He had the same question, “How long would it take for me to get enlightened?” Buddha told him that it would take at least another thousand years for him to be enlightened.
Hearing this, the man said, “I have to suffer so much to be enlightened”, and he continued meditating in the sun.” As Buddha passed by the third person who was dancing, he heard the same question. Yet once again, Buddha said, “It will take you another thousand years to get enlightened.”
The man had a laugh and continued dancing and at that point of time, he was enlightened.
All three stories have various morals that can be learnt from them, each one is significant in its own way. Although I have heard these stories but have not been able to find them on the internet leaves me uncertain about the accuracy, but the point is to absorb the conclusions of, compassion, humility and enlightenment and incorporate them in our daily life.
A Buddha is a person who has absolute deep compassion for every living being.