Friday, May 20, 2016

"The Life of the Buddha" (video)

QuanTheAmThienVien (video); G.P. Malalasekera (text); Teri Mei, CC Liu, Wisdom Quarterly
Buddha Hall in luminous rainbow colors (Tapas Ghosh/tapasphotography/

The Buddha (theoracle-ejhamilton)
What is a buddha? And who was the historical Buddha?

The Buddha was the son of a ruler, descendant of a long line of famous ancestors, chief of Kapilavatthu [Afghanistan, Central Asia, northwest of India].

His mother was Mahā Māyā Devi, Suddhodana's chief consort, and he belonged to the Gotama family. Before being conceived he was reborn in Tusita heaven, waiting for the time for his rebirth in his last life. Then, having made the "five investigations" (pañcavilolcanāni), he took leave of his celestial companions and descended to earth. (According to the Lalitavistara he appointed the Bodhisatta Maitreya [the future Buddha] as king of Tusita in his place).

(National Buddhist Authority Srilanka) BBC documentary "The Life of the Buddha"

Many wondrous and marvelous events attended his conception and birth. (Given in the Acchariyabbhutadhamma Sutra, M.iii.118f; also D.ii.12f. A more detailed account is found in J.i.47ff; both the Lai. and the Mtu.ii.14ff differ as to the details given here of the conception and the birth).

Earliest human representation of the Buddha.
The conception takes place on the full-moon day of āsālha, with the moon in Uttarāsālha, and his mother Queen Maya has no relations with her husband the king. She has a marvelous dream in which the Bodhisatta (Buddha-to-be) in the form of a white double tusker royal elephant enters her womb from the side.

When the dream is mentioned to the Brahmin priests, they foretell the birth of a son who will be either a world ruler (universal monarch) or a fully enlightened teacher (Buddha). An earthquake takes place and 32 signs appear, presaging the birth of a great being. The first of these signs is a boundless light flooding every corner of the 10,000 worlds. Everyone beholds its glory, even the fires in all the lowest (avici) hells being extinguished.

Ten lunar months after conception, in the month of Vesak (Visākha), Queen Māyā wishes to visit her parents in Devadaha. On the way there from Kapilavatthu she passes the beautiful Lumbini Grove, where she desires to wander. She goes to a great sal tree and seizes a branch in her hand; labor pains start immediately, and, when her courtiers retire, having drawn a curtain around her. While standing, she delivers the child. It is the day of the full moon of Vesak; four Great Brahmas (Gods) receive the babe in a golden net, and streams of water spontaneously rain down from the sky to wash him. More

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