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The Jataka, Volume I, tr. by Robert Chalmers, [1895], at

p. 248

No. 106.


"A happy life was mine."--This story was told by the Master while at Jetavana, about a temptation by a fat girl. The incident will be related in the Culla-Nārada-Kassapa Jātaka 1 in the Thirteenth Book.

On asking the Brother, the Master was told that it was true he was in love, and in love with the fat girl. "Brother," said the Master, "she is leading you astray. So too in times gone by she led you into evil, and you were only restored to happiness by the wise and good of those days." So saying, he told this story of the past.


Once on a time when Brahmadatta was reigning in Benares, those things came to pass which will be told in the Culla-Nārada-Kassapa Jātaka. But on this occasion the Bodhisatta at evening came with fruits to the hermitage, and, opening the door, said to his son, "Every other day you brought wood and victuals, and lit a fire. Why have you not done any of these things to-day, but sit sadly here pining away?"

"Father," said the young man, "while you were away gathering fruits, there came a woman who tried to lure me away with blandishments. But I would not go with her till I had your leave, and so left her sitting waiting for me. And now my wish is to depart."

Finding that the young man was too much in love to be able to give her up, the Bodhisatta bade him go, saying "But when she wants meat [417] or fish or ghee or salt or ride or any such thing to eat, and sends you hurrying to and fro on her errands, then remember this hermitage and flee away back to me."

So the other went off with the woman to the haunts of men; and when he was come to her house, she made him run about to fetch every single thing she wanted.

"I might just as well be her slave as this," thought he, and promptly ran away back to his father, and saluting him, stood and repeated this stanza:--

A happy life was mine till that fell she,
--That worrying, tiresome pitcher styled my wife--
Set me to run the errands of her whims.

And the Bodhisatta commended the young man, and exhorted him to kindliness and mercy, setting forth the four forms of right feeling towards

p. 249

men and the modes of ensuring Insight. Nor was it long before the young man won the Knowledges and Attainments, and attained to right feeling towards his fellow-creatures, and with his father was re-born into the Brahma Realm.


His lesson ended, and the Four Truths preached (at the close whereof that Brother entered the First Path) the Master identified the Birth by saying, "The fat girl of to-day was also the fat girl of those days; this yoking Brother was the son; and I the father of those days."


248:1 No. 477.

Next: No. 107. Sālittaka-Jātaka