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The Significance of Bak Poya 1

Homage to the Blessed One, the Worthy One, the Highest Self—Enlightened One!

Premasara Epasinghe

Published: 2014-04-14 — Updated: 2018-04-10

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In the fifth year of Enlightenment, The Buddha, perceived with His Divine Eye, a dispute was brewing in the island of Sri Lanka, between the two Naga factions between the two Naga communities under the Kings Chulodara and Mahodara. The fascinating story according to Mahawamsa — the great chronicle was that Mahodara, was the ruler of the Naga Kingdom of the sea. His younger sister was given in marriage to a Naga King who was residing on Kannavaddhana mountain. Her son’s name was Chulodara.

His beloved mother’s father had given to his beloved mother a very valuable magnificent Gem studded throne. A dispute arose this ultimately ended with a battle between the uncle and nephew. Both were engaged in a tussle to own the Gem studded throne.

It was on Bak Pura Pasaloswaka Poya Day the Enlightened One visited Nagadipa in Northern Sri Lanka to settle the dispute, as peace—maker and preached His doctrine to the Naga community. This was his second visit to the blessed island. The Buddha visited Sri Lanka, accompanied by a deity or deva namely Samiddhisumana.

Peace—loving Buddha, hovering in mid—air above the battle field of the two Naga factions, first created complete darkness. It was a miracle of the Buddha.

When the Nagas saw the Blessed One in the air, they joyfully worshiped and paid their highest obeisance. They were so pleased, they worshiped Buddha with great respect. The two parties involved in the war listened to the doctrine of Buddha, which highlighted peace and harmony.

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Both parties were over joyed. The Blessed One descended to earth, expounded the Jataka stories of Kakoluka (269), Endana Lajukika (352) and Wattaka (35).

Noteworthy significance of Buddha’s sermons were a strong message. They were adopted the story telling method to convince his audience. Buddha was a great communicator. The Kakoluka Jataka tale is woven round the controversy between the birds and animals. The Bhikkhus once questioned about the date of controversy among the crows and the owls. The Buddha stated that it began an aeon (kalpa) ago. He stated, when he was sojourning in the Samsaric journey, as a golden swan, the controversy came to an end.

The Latukika Jataka centred round the evil one, Devadatta. The Bodhisatva, the present Gautama Buddha was born once as the King of elephant. Ketakirilla, an innocent bird appealed to the king not to damage the eggs. In the forest there was a lonely vicious elephant (Devadatta) who planned to kill the Bodhisatva elephant with the assistance of a frog, a fly (nilamessa) and a crow. On the Bak Poya Day, Buddha ended His tour to Nagadipa by delivering Wattaka Jatakaya, a story of a crow.

One of the important lessons that we can learn from the noble life of Compassionate One, is that this teachings convey to all of us that one who conquers through enmity and hatred, suffers, mentally. One who is defeated suffers in pain. Therefore, the lesson that we must learn and follow on this Bak Pura Pasaloswaka Poya Day is that victory brings hatred and the vanquished lives in misery.

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To prove this Buddha recited the stanza below to King Kosala, who was defeated by Ajasatta, his own nephew:

“Jayam Veram Pasavati
Dukkaham seti parajito
Upasanto sukham seti
Hitva jayaparajayam”

Victory gives rise to hatred;
Those defeated lie in pain;
Happily rest the peaceful;
Surrendering victory and defeat

On this serene Bak Full Moon Poya Day, I wish all Sri Lankans “The Blessing of Tisarana” — Buddha—Dhamma—Sangha and wish A Prosperous Sinhala and Tamil New Year for all Sri Lankans.

About the writer — Premasara Epasinghe B.A. (Cey), Dip in Ed, Dip in Mktg, Lecturer, Print and Electronic Media Personality, Internationally Reputed Cricket Commentator, Awardee of ICC.

May all be happy and well!


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