Cute Rahula | The Story of Lord Gautama Buddha
My children, you all know that Princess Yasodhara had a son. He was Prince Rahula. This Prince Rahula had never seen his father, the Prince Siddhartha. After seven long years, the person whom Rahula finally met was not his father but the Buddha; who was like a father to everyone. That day Princess Yasodara called Prince Rahula to her side, showed the Buddha who was at a distance and said;
“My darling little son, come here, please. The Buddha is the most beautiful person in the whole world. And He is the person who endured endless sufferings for years, searching liberation for all. My darling son He is your father. He has come back for you and me with love and compassion. So please go to Him. His heart is full of love and care for little ones like you.”
Prince Rahula was only seven years old. He ran towards the Buddha, clung onto the Buddha’s hand, and started talking fondly. When the Buddha returned to the temple, Prince Rahula followed holding the Buddha’s small finger. On his way, little Prince Rahula continued fondly “Dear Buddha, your shadow is very comfortable.”
Once returned to the temple the Prince asked “Dear Buddha, my mother said that you possess the most precious treasures in this world and that I am the heir to those treasures. So she wanted me to ask for those”.
“Dear Rahula, the most precious treasure in this world is the Supreme Dhamma. There is no greater treasure in this world or in any other world.”
“My dear Buddha, please give me those treasures”
“Dear Rahula, would you like to become a recluse like me?”
Then the little Prince Rahula requested ordination with utmost eagerness. He wanted a yellow robe, a clay bowl, and wanted to go out for alms. And also he liked to meditate under shady trees. The Buddha handed over Prince Rahula to the chief disciple Arahant Sariputta. It was Arahant Sariputta who admitted little Rahul as a bhikkhu to the Buddhist order. From that day onwards little prince Rahula became well known as Rahula Bhadra, meaning; Cute Rahula.
One day, the Buddha called little bhikkhu Rahula. “Dear Rahula, bring that little pot please. Do you see that the pot has only a small amount of water?”
“Yes, my Lord Buddha.”
“Dear Rahula, similarly if someone is not ashamed of lying intentionally, never will that person’s life be filled with virtues.”
Then the Buddha threw the water in the pot. He then kept the empty pot in front of the little bhikkhu Rahula. “Dear Rahula, just as the water in the pot was easily thrown out, similarly the remaining good qualities of a person who is not ashamed of lying intentionally will get easily disposed off.”
Then the Buddha turned that pot upside down. “Dear Rahula, the pot is now turned upside down. Similarly, the good qualities of a person who is not ashamed of lying intentionally will be turned upside down. He will not prosper in life.
Dear Rahula, do you remember the story of the gigantic tusker who went to war. During the war, this tusker worked with his front legs, with his rear legs, with his body, with his tail, and with his long tusks. However, dear Rahula, this tusker protected his trunk. Then the mahout thought; “This tusker has not offered its life for the king. That is why it hides its trunk.”
And Rahula, there is another tusker. During the war, this tusker worked with his front legs, with his rear legs, with his body, with his tail, with his long tusks, and with his trunk. Then the mahout thought. “This elephant has offered its whole life for the king. So this tusker has nothing more to offer the king.”
Dear Rahula, the person who is not ashamed of lying intentionally is like that. There are no sins or bad deeds that he cannot perform. Hence Rahula, you must firmly decide to be so disciplined that you will never lie.”
“Dear Rahula, now tell me what is the use of a mirror?”
“My Lord Buddha, you can use it to observe your face.”
“Dear Rahula, similarly, you must contemplate wisely, and thoroughly while you act. You must contemplate wisely, and thoroughly while you speak. You must contemplate wisely, and thoroughly while you think. Thus, never must you do anything that will harm or hurt you or anybody else.”
So my dear children, our little bhikkhu Rahula became an extremely good person by following this advice. He got up early each morning, swept the whole temple and then took a fistful of sand, threw that up and caught as much sand as possible thinking; ‘let me receive as much valuable advice as sand in my hand today. ’ That true humbleness earned him the high position of the most obedient disciple in the Buddhist order”.
So, my children, you must take bhikkhu Rahula as an example. You must be obedient to your parents. You must never deceive anybody with lies. You must become a trustworthy person. You must always think that we are all disciples of the Buddha.