Ancient Music in the Pines ~ 03

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event type discourse
date & time 23 Feb 1976 am
location Chuang Tzu Auditorium, Poona
language English
audio Available, duration 1h 22min. Quality: good.
online audio
video Not available
online video
see also
online text find the PDF of this discourse
shorttitle ANCIEN03
Reader of the sutras: Sw Ananda Teertha.
The sutra
One winter day, a masterless samurai came to Eisai's temple and made an appeal: 'I'm poor and sick,' he said, 'and my family is dying of hunger. Please help us, master.'
Dependent as he was on widows' mites, Eisai's life was very austere, and he had nothing to give.
He was about to send the samurai off when he remembered the image of Yakushi-buddha in the hall. Going up to it he tore off its halo and gave it to the samurai. 'Sell this,' said Eisai, 'it should tide you over.' The bewildered but desperate samurai took the halo and left.
'Master!' cried one of Eisai's disciples, 'that's sacrilege! How could you do such a thing?'
'Sacrilege? Bah! I have merely put the buddha's mind, which is full of love and mercy, to use, so to speak. Indeed, if he himself had heard that poor samurai he'd have cut off a limb for him.'


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