The Sermon at Benares

  • Question 17

    What did the Buddha do after getting Enlightenment? Why?


    The Buddha attained Enlightenment after meditating for seven days under a fig tree. As he got wisdom under that tree, he called it the Bodhi tree. He had understood the truth of human life. He decided to share his understandings and preachings with people so that he can make them free from their sorrows. 

    Question 18

    Why did the Buddha choose Benares to preach his first Sermon?


    Benares is considered to be the most holy place on the banks of the sacred River Ganges. Many people come here to get rid of their sorrows and sufferings and to repent for their sins. As the Buddha wanted to lessen their sorrows and sufferings, he chose to preach his first Sermon at Benares.

    Question 19

    When her son dies, Kisa Gotami goes from house to house. What does she ask for? Does she get it? Why not?


    When Kisa Gotami’s son dies, she goes from house to house being despondent and asking people for medicine that can bring her son back to life. The people remark that she has lost her senses because the boy is dead. No one could help her because nothing can revive the dead.

    Question 20

    What did the Buddha ask Kisa Gotami to do? Why?


    Why did the Buddha ask Kisa Gotami to bring a handful of mustard seeds?


    The Buddha was aware of Kisa Gotami’s grief. He wanted her to the see truth of life and death and accept the destiny of human being. He asked her to bring a handful of mustard seeds from a house where no one had ever died to show her that death is common to all. Accordingly, she could not find any house where nobody has died. She realized that being selfish in her grief, she reminded all of them about their deepest grief. Apparently, she accepted the truth that death is common to all.

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