[69] The Parable Of Copying That Ancestor’s Hurried Eating From The Sūtra Of A Hundred Parables《百喻经》之效其祖先急速食喻

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[The] Sūtra [Of A] Hundred Parables

[69] Parable [Of] Copying That Ancestor’s Hurried Eating


[In the] past, [there] was a person, from Northern India arriving [at] Southern India. [Having] stayed already [for] long, [he] then married this woman, [to] together be husband [and] wife.


Then, [the] wife for [her] husband made [and] arranged drinks [and] food. [When her] husband got [to them, he] hurriedly swallowed without avoiding that hot.


[The] wife, then [thinking this was] strange of [him], spoke [to the] husband, saying, ‘[As] this [place] within [is] without those thieves [and] forceful robbing persons, [you] have what urgent matter [to be] hurried like this, [to] not peacefully [and] slowly eat?’


[The] husband replied [to the] wife, saying, ‘[I] have [a] ‘good’ secret [i.e. esoteric] practice [that] cannot [be] spoken [to] you.’


[The] wife, hearing these words, said [he] has [an] unusual method. Solicitously asking him for long, [he] thus replied, ‘[From] my paternal grandfather since, [there was this] method [of] constantly quick eating. I [am] now copying him, therefore [eating] swiftly.’


[The] world’s ordinary beings [are] likewise thus, not understanding thoroughly [the] right principles, not knowing good [and] evil, doing all evil practices, not with [them] as shameful, then saying [that from] our paternal grandfathers since, [we have] practised thus, [these] methods. Until death accepting [these] practices, [to the] end not giving [them] up, [they are] like that foolish person practising that quick eating, with [it] as [a] ‘good’ method.

[Note: There should not be, with blind faith, carrying on and passing down traditions in terms of beliefs and practices without reasonable questioning. If not, there might be an utter waste of limited time and many efforts, doing what is pointless or even harmful, when the time and efforts could be better spent on learning and practising the Right Dharma (正法) with welcomed active enquiry instead.

Just because a tradition has been in one’s family or culture for a long time already does not mean it is definitely sensible and beyond reproach. It might actually be a diehard but groundless superstition that arose from delusion, not founded upon any wisdom at all. Even so-called esoteric practices deemed secret should be questioned well.]

Namo Amituofo : Translation and notes by Shen Shi’an

Previous Parable:

[68] The Parable Of Together Resentfully Harming Each Other

Next Parable:

[70] The Parable Of Tasting Āmra Fruits

All Hundred Parables:

Please be mindful of your speech, Amituofo!

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