Monday, 4 July 2011

Maulingaputta and Gautam Buddha

one great philosopher, Maulingaputta, came to Buddha, and he started asking questions... questions after questions. Buddha listened silently for half an hour. Maulingaputta started feeling a little embarrassed because he was not answering, he was simply sitting there smiling, as if nothing had happened, and he had asked such important questions, such significant questions.

Finally Buddha said, "Do you really want to know the answer?" Maulingaputta said, "Otherwise why should I have come to you? I have traveled at least one thousand miles to see you." Buddha said, "I am asking again: Do you really want the answer? Say yes or no, because much will depend on it." Maulingaputta said, "Yes!"

Then Buddha said, "For two years sit silently by my side -- no asking, no questions, no talking. Just sit silently by my side for two years. And after two years you can ask whatsoever you want to ask, and I promise you I will answer it."

At that moment, a great disciple of Buddha, Manjushree, who was sitting underneath another tree, started laughing so loudly, started almost rolling on the ground. When Maulingaputta asked Manjushree the reason for his laughter, Manjushree said, "Sir, if you really want to ask the question, ask right now -- this is his way of deceiving people. He deceived me. I used to be a foolish philosopher just like you. His answer was the same when I came; you have traveled one thousand miles, I had traveled two thousand."

Manjushree certainly was a great philosopher, more well-known in the country. He had thousands of disciples. When he had come he had come with one thousand disciples.

"And Buddha said, 'Sit silently for two years.' And I sat silently for two years, but then I could not ask a single question. Those days of silence...slowly, all questions withered away. After exactly two years -- I had completely forgotten, as silence deepened I lost track of all time. "When two years passed, I was not even aware of it. I was enjoying the silence and his presence. I was drinking out of him. It was so incredible! In fact, deep down in my heart I never wanted those two years to be finished. So," Manjushree said, "I was simply hoping that he would forget all about those two years, but he remembered -- exactly after two years he asked, 'Manjushree, now you can ask your questions.' I looked within; there was no question and no questioner either -- a total silence. I laughed, he laughed, he patted my back and said, 'Now, move away.'

"So, Maulingaputta, that's why I started laughing, because now he is playing the same trick again. And this poor Maulingaputta will sit for two years silently and will be lost forever, will never be able to ask a single question. So I insist, Maulingaputta, if you really want to ask, ASK NOW!"

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