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back to catalog Chapter115 Buddha Preached Doctrine to His Mother

Cave 397, Sui Dynasty, 581-618

After Sakyamuni became a monk, he preached Buddhist law everywhere

and exhorted all flesh to believe in Buddhism.

One day he thought to himself, “My mother experienced pain in giving

birth to me, but seven days after my birth she passed away, and I cannot

remember her face even now. Now I have become a Buddha and I should deliver

the Buddhist law to her and let her disengage from life and death

metempsychosis to repay her favor of giving life to me.” After much thought

Buddha exerted his supernatural power to find his mother’s departed habitation.

When he learned that his mother now lived in Kali Welkin, he decided to go to

Kali Welkin to preach Buddhist law to his mother.

When Buddha arrived at Kali Welkin, he settled down under the Fragrant

Omnipresence Tree in the Joy Garden and splendid golden light emitted from

his body. The light shone brightly upon the three-thousand boundless universes

which made all lives in the Heaven of the Thirty-three Gods joyous.

Although Buddha’s mother Madam Maya was reborn in the Heaven of

the Thirty-three Gods after she passed away, she still missed her own son. One

day she saw the golden light shining in the Welkin and Manjusri Bodhisattva

came to tell her that her son had already cultivated to become Buddha and that

he was at the Heaven of the Thirty-three Gods to meet her. There was true

joyfulness in her heart.

But on the way to the Fragrant Omnipresence Tree, Madam Maya doubted

herself, “I left the land of the living after I gave birth to my son seven days and

I did not even see him. The Buddha personally said he was my son. Is that true?

And how can I prove he is my son?” Suddenly she reminded herself that chil-

dren are all brought up on their mother’s breast. She thought to herself, “Although

my son only sucked my pap for seven days, he still had my blood. If

Prince Siddhartha had my blood, hopefully my milk will flow into his mouth

automatically.” While thinking, she had arrived under the Fragrant Omnipresence

Tree, and her frock unfastened and milk from her breast flowed out naturally

into the mouth of Sakyamuni.

Madam Maya was happy as she saw her son stood in front of her. It was

not a dream, and it was reality! At that time in Kali Welkin music was playing

and the apsaras were dancing joyfully. Flower leaves were spreading all over,

and the deities were all coming to celebrate the meeting of Sakyamuni and his


Madam Maya excitedly rushed to Sakyamuni to look into her son’s dignified

face. Sakyamuni was also excited on seeing her mother. After comforting

each other, Sakyamuni asked his mother to sit beside him, so he could explain

the way of cultivating Nirvana. Sakyamuni said that life’s happiness and pain

were all shadows of a shade, and asked his mother to cultivate according to

Buddhist law, to escape the abyss of misery and gain release from life and


After Madam Maya heard her son preaching Buddhist law, she felt happy,

just like a thirsty person finding water. She extinguished all the suffering fires

in her mind. So she admired the Buddha deeply, and knelt before the Buddha

and devoted her attention to reading the sutra.

When the Buddha saw that his mother’s Buddhist thoughts were pure

and there was no problem in her mind after hearing the law, he further explained

the Buddhist law to his mother. Before long, Madam Maya cultivated

into the last achievement and released herself from the life and death

metempsychosis. She said to Buddha joyfully, “Life and death are just like

jails closely tied to people’s lives. Thank you for your personal preaching of the

law to me which made me become a pure Buddhist who can achieve Buddhist

enlightenment.” When deities in Kali Welkin saw that Buddha’s mother had

already acquired enlightenment they felt happy and read loudly together, “We

wish all life will acquire disengagement!”

Time flew and it was three months since Buddha began preaching the law

to his mother and all deities in Kali Welkin. In the world of man all the Buddha’s

disciples had not seen Buddha for three months. They felt worried and invited

Maudgalyayana to come to Kali Welkin to paint Buddha’s picture and invite

Buddha to come back. When Buddha saw his task of preaching law to his mother

had been finished, he decided to return to the world of man. Madam Maya said

goodbye to her son when she heard that Buddha was leaving for the world of

man. Their tears fell when they left each other again.

After Buddha said good-bye to his mother, he stood on the three precious

sidesteps which Sakra-devanm-indra had ordered all the saints and evils to have

made and then returned to the world of human beings.

Translated by Yu Haomiao

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