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Songs Of Buddhist Nuns
Many women, under the effect of his teachings transitioned to being nuns and fore took the path of enlightenment. Sometimes dialogues took place between the Lord and the nuns as a spontaneous array of songs, which is very fascinating to read. Here I present the songs of two nuns one of which is a conversation with Buddha.
Ubbiri was a woman of Shravasti, who attained NIBBANA (enlightenment) as an Upasika, i.e., lay-woman. The turning point in her life was an encounter with the Buddha, which took place while she was lamenting the death of her daughter JIVA. The following song is in the form of a dialogue between the Buddha and Ubbiri.
Mother, you cry out ‘O Jiva’ in the woods. Come to yourself Ubbiri. Eighty Four Thousand daughters all with the name ‘Jiva’ have burned in the funeral fire. For which one do you grieve?
I had an arrow hidden in my heart and he took it out-
That grief for my daughter. The arrow is out, the heart healed of hunger.
I take refuge in the Buddha-sage, the Dharma, and the Sangha.
To be reborn among the gods
I fasted and fasted
Every two weeks,
Day eight, fourteen, fifteen
And a special day
Now with a shaved head
And Buddhist robes
I eat one meal a day
I do not long to be a god
There is no fear in my heart.
Both the song and the conservation depict how profound and instantaneous effects The Buddha had both on his devotees and the people he met.
His teachings possess the power to turn minds towards a more peaceful existence and vouch for sustainable presence of each living organism on earth without strife.
If only we could connect to his thoughts as the nuns connected then… the world would be such a better place!