[47] The Parable Of The Poor Person Making A Mandarin Duck’s Chirp From The Sūtra Of A Hundred Parables《百喻经》之贫人作鸳鸯鸣喻

photo of a mandarin duck landing on water
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[The] Sūtra [Of A] Hundred Parables

(47) Parable [Of The] Poor Person Making [A] Mandarin Duck’s Chirp


[In the] past, [as a] foreign country’s etiquette [and] law, [on its] day of celebration, all [its] women all held utpala flowers, with [them] as garlands adorning [themselves].


[There] was a poor person, [with] his wife saying, ‘If you [are] able [to] get utpala flowers, coming with [them, to] give [them to] me, [I will] for you [still] be [your] wife. If [you are] not able [to] get [them], I [will] leave you.’


That man [was] formerly constantly good [at being] able [to] make [the] chirp of [a] mandarin duck, then entering [the] King’s pond, making [a] mandarin duck’s chirp [while] stealing [its] utpala flowers.


Then, that pond guard made this inquiry, ‘Who [is] that within [the] pond?’


Then, this poor man lost [mindfulness of his] speech [and] replied, saying, ‘I am [a] mandarin duck.’


That guard caught [him and] intended [to] go [to the] King’s place. Then, on [the] middle [of the] way, [he] again changed [to] harmonise [his] voice, [to] make [a] mandarin duck’s chirp. That pond guard said, ‘[As] you formerly [did] not make [this], now making [this has] what benefit?’


[The] world’s foolish people [are] likewise thus, [with] lifelong killing [and] harming, doing all evil karmas, not regulating [their] minds’ activities, [to] direct [and] tame [them to be] good. When approaching life’s end, then saying, ‘Now, I desire [to, and] must cultivate good.’


[When] hell guards [are] intending, going [to] hand [them] over [to] King Yama, although desiring [to] cultivate good, [they are] also already without those in time. [They are] like that foolish person about [to] reach [the] King’s place, [then] making [a] mandarin duck’s chirp.

[Note: Avoiding of evil (which includes killing, stealing, lying and more), and doing of good (which includes saving, giving, truthfulness and more), in thought, word and deed must be timely – beginning from now, with repentance (忏悔) for past evil karmas created, as life is ending as we speak, and it can end suddenly, at any time.]

Namo Amituofo : Translation and notes by Shen Shi’an

Previous Parable:

[46] The Parable Of Stealing The Yak

Next Parable:

[48] The Parable Of That Jackal By A Broken Tree Branch Hit

All Hundred Parables:

Please be mindful of your speech, Amituofo!

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