The Life of Buddha: Titles and Captions
The Bodhisattva (Buddha-to-be) was invited by Brahma and Four Celestial Guardian Kings to be born in the world from Tushita Heaven.
On the day Sirimahamaya, the Buddha's mother, conceived a child, she had dreamt that a white elephant descended from the silver and golden mountains and brought her a lotus.
On the Full Moon Day of the Vesak month, 625 BC, the Buddha was born in Lumbini Park. Immediately after being born, he walked for seven steps, and there was a lotus holding him up for every step. He said he was the most exalted one in the world.
When a hermit named Kaladevila visited the child, the prince mystically appeared on the hermit's head. King Suddhodanama, his father, and all the Sakyans bowed before the prince.
During the Ploughing Ceremony, Prince Siddhattha sat down in the shade of a tree and was soon lost in meditation. Though the shadows of all the trees had lengthened, the shadow of the tree under which the Prince was seated had not moved. His father was overjoyed and bowed before him again.
Prince Siddhatta showed his skill in archery by lifting a bow which no one within the memory of man had ever been able to draw or lift. It was known from his marvellous strength that he would become Universal Monarch.
The gods gave the holy water from the conch when Prince Siddhatta married Princess Yasodhara. The Prince was very happy in his three palaces all days and nights.
One day Prince Siddhatta went into the garden and saw the four signs of an old man, a man afflicted with a loathsome, a corpse and an ascetic. He appreciated the last one.
On the day Rahula, his son, was born, Prince Siddhattha decided to renounce the world. He took a last lokk at Yasodhara. And he happened to see his ladies in waiting who were sleeping, showing him their various kinds of ugly manners like cemetry.
Prince Siddhattha renounced the world. Accompanied by his confidant, Channa, he rode to the banks of the Anoma river
Prince Siddhattha took a sword and cut off his hair with one blow.
Prince Siddhattha, the Buddha-to-be, practised self-mortification for six years until he became very thin. His bones showed prominently. But his austerities did not lead him to deliverance. When he listened to a song played by Indra, he thought of a stringed instrument and discovered the Middle Way.
Sujata offered the Buddha-to-be a gold bowl full of milk mixed with rice flour and honey. Sujata thought he was a god. After taking that meal, the Buddha-to-be threw the bowl into the water.
(thus indicating that he would not eat again until he had achieved enlightenment)
The Buddha-to-be defeated Vasavatti Mara, King of Evil, and his companies who attacked him at the Bodhi tree. A goddess of great beauty emerged from the earth and helped the hero defeat Mara. Then the King of Mara paid him his homage.
At dawn on the Full Moon Day of Vesak month, 588 B.C., the Buddha achieved enlightenment and by realising the Four Noble Truths, i.e. Suffering, the Cause of Suffering, the Cessation of Suffering, and the Way leading to the Cessation of Suffering.
16. Mara's daughters
The three daughters of King of Evil (Mara) tried to solace and fascinate the Buddha. But their endeavour was in vain.
Two merchants named Tapussa and Bhallika gave the Buddha his barley meal. The Kings of four directions offered the Buddha four bowls. He made them to be one bowl.
The Buddha was invited by Brahma to go and preach for the welfare of the peoples of the world.
19. First Sermon
The Buddha preached the First Sermon to the five ascetics in the Deer Park, Sarnath.
20. Sermon to Yasa
The Buddha gave a sermon to Yasa. Later he gave Yasa and his fifty-four friends ordination. Yasa's parents and wife were the first peope who accepted the Triple Gem as their refuge.
The Buddha gave a sermon to Uruvela Kassapa, Nadi Kassapa, Gaya Kassapa, as well as their 1000 disciples and made them all attain Arahatship
22. Magha Day
The Buddha gave Ovadapatimokkha to 1250 monks. Not to kill, to do good, purify one's mind, these are the teachings of the Buddhas.
On the day Prince Nanda, his younger brother, was entering his wedding ceremony the Buddha gave his bowl to Nanda. Nanda unwillingly carried it following the Buddha to his residence. The Buddha gave him ordination and took him to see the fairies. Later be became an Arahat.
King Suddhodana and Princess Yasodhara suggested Rahula ask the Buddha for his heritage. The Buddha gave him ordination as a novice. Suddhodana was very sorry. He then asked the Buddha not to give ordination to anyone who did not have the permission of his parents. The Buddha accepted his proposal.
25. Devadatta's fate
Devadatta fought against the Buddha by all means for many thousands of births. He made a schism in the Order and hurt the Buddha till the Buddha's foot was bruised. But the earth would not uphold Devadatta. The ground opened. The fierce flames burst forth. Devadatta sank amidst the flames and disappeared.
Prajapati, the Buddha's step-mother, offered him a pair of her own hand-made ropes. But the Buddha told her to offer them to the Order since she would get more merits.
The Buddha gave flame to the remains of King Suddhodana at the Cremation Ceremony to show the four Buddhist companies his filial piety.
28. Buddha's mother
The Buddha ascended to Tavatimsa heaven and preached Abbidhamma to his mother.
In the day the Buddha was descending from Tavatimsa heaven, both men and gods were crowded. The Buddha mystically showed all worlds to the crowd.
Angulimala, the bandit, was trying to kill his mother. When he saw the Buddha he changed his mind, decided to kill him instead and ordered the Buddha to stop. The Buddha said he had already stopped, he meant he had stopped from killing. Angulimala was conscience-struck and became a monk. He later became an Arahat.
The Buddha entered into Nirvana at the Sal grove in Kusinara city, 543 B.C., after preaching for the welfare of the people for forty-five years.
A brahmin named Tona told the kings of seven cities to stop fighting for the Buddha's relics and practise following the Dharma. He divided the relics to those kings proportionally.
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