[17] The Parable Of The Debt Of Half A Coin From The Sūtra Of A Hundred Parables《百喻经》之债半钱喻

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[The] Sūtra [Of A] Hundred Parables

(17) Parable [Of The] Debt [Of] Half [A] Coin


[In the] past, [there] was [a] merchant [who] lent another [person] half [a] coin. [For] long, not getting [it] repaid, [he] immediately went [to collect the] debt.


[As] in front, [there] was [a] great river, [he had to] hire another [person with] two coins, after that getting [to] cross [it. Having] arrived [at] that [place, he] went [to collect the] debt, [but] completely [did] not get [to] see [the debtor]. Returning [to] cross [the] river, [he] again hired [the person with] two coins.


For half [a] coin’s debt, then losing four coins, both having [to take the] path [with] weariness [and] lack [of] sleep, that debt [was] extremely little [but] that lost [was] extremely much. As a result, [he was] by all people [as] that sneered [at].


[The] world’s people [are] likewise thus, [for] wanting little fame [and] benefits, leading [to] destruction [of their] great practices. If permitting oneself [to] not watch over propriety [and] righteousness, [one will] presently receive evil reputation, [and] later attain suffering’s retribution.

[Note: We should not be so shortsighted, as to, for craving a little of that which is worldly, lose much of that which is spiritual, by forgoing our moral principles, values and practices. This is so as the worldly only brings impermanent and unsubstantial joys, while the spiritual leads to complete and lasting bliss. Thus, even a little of that spiritual is more precious than a lot of that worldly.]

Namo Amituofo : Translation and notes by Shen Shi’an

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[16] The Parable Of Irrigating Sugar Cane

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[18] The Parable Of Accommodating Stairs To Sharpen A Knife

All Hundred Parables:

Please be mindful of your speech, Amituofo!

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