Thursday, July 17, 2008

All things are impermanent -- The story of Kisa Gotami

Kisa Gotami was an indigent woman who lived during the Buddha's lifetime. Though ridiculed and abused by her family for her helpless condition, Gotami finally gave birth to a son who brought her great joy, purpose, and respect from her husband's family. However, her joy suddenly came to an end when her child died. Deranged with grief, Gotami carried her dead son from house to house, begging all she met for a cure to restore his life.

A wise onlooker, moved by Gotami's suffering, interceded. "Gotami," he said, "only the Tathagata has the antidote to death. Go to him!" In desperation Gotami presented herself before the Buddha.

Buddha saw that she was on the verge of a spiritual awakening. "To restore your son's life," he counselled her, "find a house where no one has ever died. And from that house procure tiny grains of mustard seeds." Heartened by Buddha's words, Gotami ventured into the city, travelling from door to door in the hopes of finding one house bereft of death. But by the day's end, her search proved futile. There was not one household that had escaped the hands of death. This fact struck her deeply: "All things are impermanent." So saying, Gotami consigned her dead son to the cremation ground and humbly begged Lord Buddha to accept her as a disciple.

~ The story of Kisa Gotami as read from an article published in the April 2008 issue of The Vedanta Kesari


Cyrus Rumi said...

Hi Srini :)

By accepting and meditating on the nature of impermanence, and how it affects the lives of many, one will truly begin to see and experience things from a new perspective. Bringing one closer to the true nature of divinity that is to be found in 'life' and nature itself.

Thank you for sharing this story with us.

Namaste, peace and honour to you my spiritual friend.


July 18, 2008 7:30 AM

Srini said...

Cyrus, thanks for the comment. :)

Yes, all things are impermanent, nothing stays. But behind this all is something that never changes, that which is beyond all dualities, the divine.

Namaste. God Bless.