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Refutation of Maya – Part 1

Refutation of Maya   Part 1
Svayambuddha said: “If an object is not real, how can it be useful? If illusion is such, then why does not a dream elephant perform work? If the existence of cause and effect of objects is not considered real, then why are you afraid of a falling thunderbolt? That being as you say, you are not, I am not; there is no speech, and no speaker. How would the knowledge of the thing desired produce results?
Your Majesty, you are deceived by these learned in perverse arguments, themselves greedy for sense objects, constantly averse to future welfare. Relying on discernment, keep far away from sense objects. Rely only on Dharma, O Master, for happiness in this world and next.”

Then the King said, his face charming with graciousness: “O very wise Svayambuddha, you have spoken very well. It is right that Dharma should be adopted. We are not hostile to Dharma. It should, however, be taken up at the right time like a missile accompanied by a charm. Who, pray, would be indifferent to youth, without showing suitable honor to it, like a friend who has come after a long time? So you did not give this instruction in regard to Dharma at the right time. The recitation of the Veda to the accompaniment of a lute is not pleasing. For the next world as the fruit of Dharma is still doubtful. Why at an inopportune time do you ward off the enjoyment of pleasures of this world? “Then Svayambuddha, with folded hands, affirmed: “Do not doubt in the least that the fruit of Dharma is inevitable. Do you recall that we as boys went to the park Nandana, and saw a very beautiful god? Then the god spoke to you graciously, O King: ‘I am Atibala, your grandfather. Disgusted with worldly pleasures as with a cruel friend, I abandoned the kingdom like straw, and adopted the three jewels. I made renunciation of the world, the pinnacle of the palace of vows, at the last minute. By its power I became lord of Lantaka. You must not act negligently.’ When he had spoken thus, he disappeared like lightning that has lighted up the sky. Remembering your grandfather’s words, believe in the next world. Why make another proof when visual evidence is present?” The King said, “I am reminded of my grandfather’s words to good purpose. I believe the next world to be dependent on Dharma and non-Dharma.”

The chief-minister, a cloud for the heap of dust of doctrine of wrong-belief, seized the opportunity, and joyfully began to relate: “In your family there were formerly a king, Kurucandra, his wife, Kurumati, and his son, Hariscandra. The king was a Kaula with great enterprises that caused injury and great possessions, foremost in ignoble acts, pitiless like Krtanta. Even though wicked and cruel, he enjoyed the kingdom for a long time. Verily, the fruit of previously acquired merit is unequaled. At the time of his death, a change of humors took place that resembled just a sample of the torments of hell that were near at hand. His couch of cotton became as painful as a couch of thorns; his choice food became as bitter as a nimba.

Sandal, aloes, camphor, and musk became offensive to him. Sons, friends, etc., caused distress to his eyes, as if they were enemies. Singing tormented his ears, like the noises of a donkey, camel, and jackal. And yet everything becomes changed when merit is consumed. Kurumati and Hariscandra watched beside him secretly with painful attentions that gave pleasure to his senses for a moment. Afflicted by fever in all his body as if touched by charcoal, engaged in evil meditation, the King died. His son, Hariscandra, performed his funeral rites, and governed the kingdom properly, a traveler on the road of good conduct. As he had seen here his father’s death with the visible fruit of sin, he constantly praised Dharma alone among the objects of existence, like the sun among the planets.
One day, he instructed Subuddhi, a layman, a friend from childhood, “After listening every day to Dharma from those possessing it, you must teach it to me.” With great devotion, Subuddhi did so constantly. For an agreeable command is the cause of eagerness in the good. Daily Hariscandra, afraid of sin, warmly welcomed Dharma taught by him, just as a man afraid of disease welcomes medicine.

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