Buddha's Story

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good morning and happy birthday
it's a beautiful spring morning and today we're so really good his birthday ah
go there is no certainty about the actual gate of his birth or children or
sort of the agreed upon
buddhists years ah
it is used
twenty five hundred and sixty fourth birthday
and if you think of over candles that would be on his cake ah he would probably contribute to global warming
so we only have a few candles here
if the chinese buddhist tradition
the birthday is reduced to is celebrated in the spring and in the caravan a tradition ah in south and southeast asia or it's celebrate a little later and that celebration is called visa and it marks the
have both the or three the birth enlightenment that the data pool but in the east asian tradition ha we celebrate his birthday now it's settled on the solar calendar on april eighth ah and that again
in japan it's called anime matsuri ah which is the flower festival when ah
he legend flowers rained down from heaven and are him the ceremony or before the ceremony which i'm going to do i'm going to recite the some some of the details of the story of the birth of the buddha
he never to a ceremony
so the buddha was ah born in the area of the bt which is now onward ho nepalese side of the indian and how nepal border
and he was born to
come into a to the original royal family but the triumph of the of the shockers and his father was a prince or a key ciudadano and his mother was ah mahama
and she was a prince from neighbouring choose a princess from neighboring try
there are several accounts of the buddha's the wonderful circumstances of the buddha's birth ah here the sutra isn't in the commentaries and in some of the some of the narratives around the around the life of the
buddha i'm gonna it no we recount one version today ah
so at the time of the of the spring festival ah
everybody was enjoying a feast and queen maya ah was abstaining from strong drinks and she was gonna get with flowers and perfumes and she took part in the festivities

at the last day of the full moon
she rose early
and she bathe
and ah she put on fancy clothes and she ate the choice is foods after which she took eight vows the eight precepts
and she went back to her room
ten she was lying down on the royal couch and she fell asleep had the following dream
for guardian angels came to lifted her up
they took her away to the himalayas up in the mountains which would which i've rather close and there they laid here under a a solitary ten they stood to one side
and then another group of angels ah took her from her reclining couch to i know top of lake in they bathed her to remove every human state
they anointed er with perfumes and flowers and they spread another couch with his head towards the east and she lay down and so
in her dream she had a dream
the dream within a tree
can it in that dream the future buddha
had become a beautiful white elephant
and he was approaching from the north
he plucked a white lotus with his silvery trunk and he trumpeted loudly going into the golden mansion
three times he circumambulate it his future mother's couch
and then with his trunk he struck her on her right side
and with this symbolic act ah
she was impregnated
added a conception had taken place
on the next day the queen of awoke and she told the dream to the king
the summoned a group of province of wise men
and he spread seeds for them he fed them
and offer gifts
gifts including new garments and tawny cows because a coward a good gift
and he satisfied them completely then he told them have this dream and asked what would come with it
they said be not anxious greek key
a child has planted itself in the world of your queen then you will have a son
and if the sun continues in the household life he will become a universal mark
but if he leaves the household life and retires in the world he will become a buddha and enlightening one
can roll back the clouds of sin and folly in this world
so the future buddha was conceived
and all when this happened all the ten thousand world suddenly quaked quivered and shook
an immeasurable light spread through ten thousand worlds the blind recovered their site the deaf received their hearing the term taught the hunchback became street of body blame recovered the power to walk all those imprisoned
were freed from their bonds and genes the fires went out in all the hills the hunger and thirst of always still
wild animals lost your community
diseases ceased among people
all mortals became mild spoken
elephants trumpeted in a manner that was sweet to the ear
all musical instruments gave what their notes without being played upon
in all the quarters of the heavens the weather became fair a mild cool breeze began to blow
water burst forth from the earth and flowed in streams the birds ceased flying through the air the rivers check their flowing in the by the ocean the water became sweet all flowers bloomed on land and those that crew in
the water
shower of flour still about celestial music was heard to play in the sky and the whole ten thousand worlds became one mass of garlands of the utmost possible magnificence
saturated with the incense like fragrance
of the blooming
the future mug pro tribute to his mother have been reached the pinnacle of good fortune and glory felt comfortable and well
and within her womb she could distinguish the future buddha
like a white thread that was passed through a transparent jew
she carried the future buddha for ten months

has she was with child and she felt the birds was near
she wanted to go back to her relatives
in city where she had grown up
to give a data
and she said to the king
syrah would like to visit my kinfolk in their city
so from his capital a calf couple of us to to the city of david ah ha he had the road made even
any garnished it with planting trees with banners and streamers
and he seated the queen in a golden palm key
it was born by a thousand of his porteous
and he sent her away with great park
between these two cities
it was a grove of sal trees called lumbini gardens
an this particular time the grove was one mass of flowers
from the ground to the topmost branches
in flocks of birds are various kinds flew about whirling
when the queen saw this from her apology
she wanted to walk through these gardens
so she asked her bears to set her down
and she walked in the guidance
at the center of the garden it was brave sal tree
and she reached up and took hold of one of its branches
the branch bent itself down
so it could be within her reach
then she seized hold the bridge
and as she did so immediately birth pains came upon
so her servants hung a curtain around her for privacy and her delivery took place scared not holding fast to that branch
according to the stories the buddha issued forth from her side
and as the buddha was born
for maha brahma angels arrived bearing the and net
and they received the buddha on this net
they placed him before his mother and said rejoice o queen a mighty son has been born to you
future buddha issued from his mother's womb
like a preacher descending from a preaching seat or a man coming down a stair
stretching out both his hands and feet
i'm smirk and smeared by any blood or impurity from the purse and flashing pure and spotless like a jewel thrown over a vestment of banaras cloth
and for the sake of honoring the future buddha and his mother maya two streams of water flowed from the sky
and they drank from these streams and more refreshed
the brahma angels after receiving them on their golden net
delivered him to the men
we're escorting queen maya
they placed him on the piece of fine gold cloth
and they let him go they let him out of their hands and immediately
he stood
and he faced the east
there before him
in this great open court
gods and men making offerings to him of perfume car and garlands said great being there is known your equal
from his standing position
he surveyed the four cardinal points
and let the ordinal points the zenith in the nadir he says the ten directions
can nowhere did he discerned his equal
it's strong hits he took seven steps
followed by one of the
god like figures who stood over him with a white umbrella
infinity around him held symbols of royalty in their hands
at the seven step he halted
and he pointed one finger to the earth
and with this other hand he pointed one finger to the heavens
and with a normal voice he shouted the shower victory
below the heavens above the earth i alone am the world honored one
his mother saw him
and she saw that he had brought something with her
and you send my child what is it you bring with you in your hands
he said
a print medicine mother
so he was born with medicine in his hand
and he was called or aozora dorada medicine child
then the attendants took the medicine and they placed it in an earthenware jar
this was
the highest remedy to heal the blind deaf and other afflicted persons could partake of it

but sadly
when they do to to be was seven days old
his mother god
she was reborn in one of the heavens
and the buddha to be
then raised as a prince in his father's royal home
it by
his mother's sister
maha jockey good tommy
who we also know as the founder of the women's lineage in buddhism some years later
so this is a story rate
ah it's a it's a story of legend
it's a story that
it's like we did not take us literally true
but still we can ask what does the buddhist purse
mean to us but does it mean to me
this occasion
marks the beginning
the start of something that was revealed
and offered to us who are living those of us who are living in this particular good around
it's kind of like christmas for christians
or like the fourth of july for americans if this event had not happened
we would not be sitting here we not been listening his story you wouldn't be trump say i'm sitting in in the zendo ah you were sitting often in front of your walters
cautious remarkable event happened so many years ago
we have this extraordinary practice of liberation
according to which we make the effort to live our lives
the practice that shakyamuni buddha
the practice that he passed to his disciples
has been handed down to us one hand to warm hand for ninety two generations
as the ancient poem
puts it
now we have it
a we keep it will
so in a few minutes we all
celebrate usually what we would do usually the sender would would be filled with people ah we would we have invited usually invite children to come forth first and pay the baby buddha ah but why
we're still in a covert precaution so ah lori and i will pay the baby buddha buddha ah and you pick you selling your in your mind but before i do that just are if you have any comments or questions
the take a few for a few minutes

paper did you want to give an instruction her
or against the patient
there you go then thank you ask your question
i thank you
i was thinking about buddha's birth yesterday knowing we would have a ceremony today and the question that came to me was some
knowing that birth and death are not to
or haven't been taught that i believe
what is it that has to die for buddha to be born

according to the legends
ah there was
do after buddha
hum and this is actually the those the previous births of the buddha are recorded in
what is known as the jada tales
ah and in fact one of the one of the narrative said that i found in the suitors recounts
the the perception of the previous buddha
do this one
so ah
that's the story
ha as top
i don't really know any more than

thank you hassan
hey we have a question from katie the head katie give me just one second to bring you up

the hassan
and it always strikes me that there's a great sadness at the heart of this story as well and that his mother dies and now it's always interesting how how essential the death of parents and especially mothers else to say
i'm story has been leaving aside that general thing for this specific story
i guess just what i was hearing today was that
death happens for everyone
now that sadness and suffering happens for everyone even the buddha with all of these wonderful portents and
his mother but all of this wonderful experience of her pregnancy
she still dies and i was just wondering what you thought of that kind of looking at it from that perspective but i feel that the story
a buddha both his mother's death and is leaving of his wife and son ah there is day a deep sadness that is embedded in the story i also feel
you know he reached
his mid to late twenties
much as he was pampered and as many of the opportunities as he had in his life
he clearly felt there was something missing
you know so we could we could are categorized that psychologically in different ways but but there's there's a loss at the heart of it
i will say i didn't
i thought about
a part of the story that i read in one of the versions which i left out put out mentioned it now which which i found troubling ah a part of the legend has it that ah his mother had to die because
cause are
having given birth to him
kind of her function was fulfilled
and i will say and don't buy that one
you know but ah
stories are embedded in the cultures that they emerged from
but i think if you know him whenever you look whatever you look at you look at the buddhist stories if you look at the the hebrew scriptures you see that in the human dimension there is always loss
much of the function of religion and spirituality i think is to show us ways that we can
include that loss as part of our lives and use it in a way that helps us to connect with others
if we have time for one more

thank you how we have a question from hannah let me get her set up but as the anna and i see to ne and also be the last
corina okay well i of course wonder where the story came from who wrote it and what were their needs or purposes and secondly and make it we don't know that but secondly
what does the story mean to us said arising and saying i alone in the world uttered one how does that mean our particular buddhist tradition
well we don't know the provenance of the composition of the cylinders ah and i've spoken with our the scholar be coup bodhi about this and you'd go
even in in the composition of the bible ah there are some authorial voice is that you can discern but evidently that's not at all clear in the or
she nepali suitcase which were actually ah
written down bout the same time as the hebrew scriptures oats not assembled into a coherent document glue instead of set of doctrines what it means to us ah
you know what the way surgeon roshi used to parse the word alone he broke it up into all one
ah which is very nice ah
i think
i do think it's a shout of victory and a way of establishing that there is this
that he was born to accomplish hum you know we're not so comfortable with a i alone and the world honored one ah
there's some discomfort in the hat or in our in the way that we try to make things horizontal ah but ah the same thing is i'm you find the same very similar things in the christian tradition where ah
certainly at not not at birth but at ah point in his life
christ are designates is his
position above others so this is also an artifact of of human construction ah but we're we're taught that because of this shop to because jackie money buddha ah in the by honored tradition each of us
has buddha nature and can awaken you
and it just needed somebody like him to discover how to do them
and we have to figure each of us as to figure out how is this useful
to me how does this for my practice on
and as always keep the useful parts and discard the wants that ah that are not useful
today in this list
what a moment to name

please go ahead and ask your question can us hassan thank you this is very brief with in that story what struck me was and i guess i discarded that i am the only one part
what struck me was her asking the person what do you have in your hands and him saying i bring medicine mother and can
crew to me that the practice is the medicine
yes yes exactly i i had not heard that are
that particular caught part of a story before i thought the spirit who was removing to me
your both that's that's exactly what he brought a nice you know he's sometimes referred to as the great physician
ah but ah
it's interesting that he had this at least in allegedly had the sense of destiny and his gift that he could bring hey
thank you very much we're gonna root causes and we will move to the ceremony which will be
in one piece very long because it's only in laurie here but ah will do our best to