[59] The Parable Of Looking At Making Bottles From The Sūtra Of A Hundred Parables《百喻经》之观作瓶喻

close up shot of a peron making a clay pot
Photo by Mikhail Nilov on

[The] Sūtra [Of A] Hundred Parables

[59] Parable [Of] Looking [At] Making Bottles


For example, two persons arrived [at a] pottery master’s place, [to] look [at] him step on [a rotating] disk and make earthenware bottes, seeing [this] insatiably.


One person gave up [and] left, going [to and] arriving [at a] great assembly, [to the] utmost getting good meals, also obtaining precious treasures. [The other] one person looked [at the] bottles and made this statement, ‘Wait [for] me [to] see [them] completed.’


Thus, gradually, and even [until] sunset, looking [at the] bottles endlessly, [with] loss of clothing [and] food.


Foolish persons [are] likewise thus, maintaining housework, not aware [of] impermanence.


Today managing this matter, tomorrow creating that business, [when] all Buddhas [like] great dragons appear [in the world, with] thunderous sounds everywhere [in the] world, [with] Dharma raining without obstacles, conditioned [by those] matters, thus not hearing [them].


Not knowing death [can] suddenly arrive, losing this [and] all [other] Buddhas’ assemblies, not attaining [the] Dharma’s precious treasures, constantly dwelling [in] evil paths poor.


Abandoning [and] setting aside [the] Right Dharma, that [person] looking, conditioned [by] matters [of the] bottles, [they are] after all constantly without [a] complete end, therefore losing [the] Dharma’s benefits, forever without [the] time [of] liberation.

[Note: No one should be completely caught up in mundane cyclical routines of maintaining everyday life and making a living. Even when there are worldly duties and responsibilities necessary for looking after, there should be taking of regular breaks away from them, so as to focus on diligent and sincere learning and practice of the Dharma, without which one will continue to be caught in the cycle of birth and death for its own ultimately pointless sake, without any hope of liberation. With the possibility of sudden death, the more ‘busy’ one is with worldly life, the more should time be spent on the Dharma, lest one gets sucked in and trapped, with even less opportunities to seek the Dharma.]

Namo Amituofo : Translation and notes by Shen Shi’an

Previous Parable:

[58] The Parable Of The Two Sons Dividing Wealth

Next Parable:

[60] The Parable Of Seeing The Water’s Bottom’s Gold’s Reflection

All Hundred Parables:

Please be mindful of your speech, Amituofo!

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