Author Topic: “Story of ‘A Man and His Four Wives.’ According to Karma”  (Read 7202 times)


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There was a man who had four wives, and in the Buddha’s words, each represent something related to ourselves. The first one, whom the man loved the most, refused to accompany him to death represents our body. In our next life, our human body cannot follow us, but in a different form. The second one who also reused to accompany him represents our fortune such as material goods like money and fame. When we die, we must leave those material goods. The third one who sympathized with the man and agreed to follow him only until the graveyard represents our relationships with our families and friends (society). Yet the forth one, who was very willing to accompany him to death represents our mind.

When we carry our anger, dissatisfaction, and selfishness along our ways, they will remain wherever we go, and for whatever we do. Hence, controlling ourselves is very important. One time I was very angry when my friend was being very selfish and commanding me to do stuff because she grew up being treated like a princess by her mother. I was so angry how she was treating me like her pet, and wanted so much to fight back to her. However, I tried to calm myself down, and maintained my composure. I instead acted very kindly and politely to her, suppressing my anger. And guess what happened? My friend was so shocked that she didn’t know what to do. I felt so much better than before too. My mindset was so positive that I felt better, and my friend learned something from me.


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Re: “Story of ‘A Man and His Four Wives.’ According to Karma”
« Reply #1 on: April 24, 2014, 10:06:30 PM »
Sophie thanks for pointing this out. The mind is a very dangerous thing if left unchecked. It is the source of our happiness and pain, and the source of other peoples happiness and pain. From our minds arises the ideas that lead us to commit actions of body and speech which result in pain / happiness for us and the same for the recipient.

So though the most formless phenomena to exist, so intangible that its there and produces such tangible results yet science cannot locate or draw, it is incredibly powerful. It explains why the tantric and bodhisattva vows are so extensive, and targets the most subtle source of our samsara.


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Re: “Story of ‘A Man and His Four Wives.’ According to Karma”
« Reply #2 on: July 05, 2014, 10:35:46 AM »
The story of "a Man and his four wives" is so well said. It really reflect clearly of the mind of people at the degenerating time. We are so attached to the wordly things that we spend our lifetime chasing for something that is impermanent that we can never bring with us when we faced the death. All this wordly things also will not guarantee us a good rebirth in the next lifetime.

Dharma should be the one we attached to. By practicing dharma, it will lead us out of samsara or help us to gain a good rebith to continue with our practice.  Dharma should be the most precious asset all of us should be chasing after. We should start now and not wait till we are retire or till we are not so busy. As none of us know whether there will be a tomorrow for us.


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Re: “Story of ‘A Man and His Four Wives.’ According to Karma”
« Reply #3 on: July 06, 2014, 08:14:57 AM »
This story contain deeper meanings for our contemplation.

First Wife

Our human body also has the elements such as blood, channels and drops for the practice of Highest Yoga Tantra - the quick path to enlightenment.  Hence, we should maintain well our body so that we can utilise it to practise Dharma. Other than using our body for Dharma practice, the First Wife teaches us not to be attached to our body because we have to abandon it upon death.  This body will also age and fall sick.  These are suffering as stated by the First Noble Truth.

Second Wife

All that we have worked hard to accumulate in this life such as our wealth is of no use to us upon death.  Like the first wife, we have to leave them behind.  Hence we should not be attached to them.  We can use them wisely to support our Dharma practice. 

The second wife is also about the First Noble Truth which states that there is suffering, the suffering of having to part with what we like.
Third Wife

The Third Wife teaches about attachment. Since our presence in this life is short-lived, whatever relationships that we have developed become meaningless.  There is a total separation from our loved ones when we die.  We will also forget these relationships in our next rebirth. Hence we must be ready to let go of these relationships upon death.  The only relationship worth developing is our relationship with our spiritual guide or guru who will continue to lead us on the path to liberation and enlightenment in the future lives.

Fourth Wife

Only our mind travel with us into the future lives. All our actions of this life and past lives are stored as imprints in our mind.  When the conditions are right, these imprints  will ripen into effects.  Hence, we should be careful with our actions in this life which are dictated by our delusions of ignorance, anger and attachment. While we still can, we should purify as much as possible all our accumulated negative karmas in this very life so that these karmas do not manifest in the future to hinder our journey to liberation and enlightenment.  We should also transform our mind by eliminating all our delusions as much as possible because delusions and their imprints are the obstructions to liberation and obstruction to omniscience respectively.
Yes, Sophie, we must be mindful at all times that we are not controlled by our anger.  Anger is very destructive! It can extinguish eons of merits which we have accumulated but not dedicated for enlightenment.  Apply patience which is the antidote to anger.  Also practise accepting defeat and offering victory to others.