Phra Lak-Phra Lam
  A Previous Life of the Buddha


The poor farmer begged time to think the enigmas over.  On coming home, he told his wife and son what had happened, and that he would die, for he wasn't clever enough to explain Phra In's enigmas.

"Don't be afraid", Daddy, Thao Loun Lou said, "I think I'll be able to give him the right answers."


The next day, Thao Loun Lou was taken to the rice field.  Phra In came, on his horse, and asked the peasant "How many furrows do you plough each day?"  Thao Loun Lou replied for his father "Please, tell me how many steps does your horse make every day?"  Phra In drew near to Thao Loun Lou and said "Well, if you really are a clever one, please tell me what is One without Two?"

Thao Loun Lou replied at once "This is the Buddha, for in the world we can't find a second one who is as wise and virtuous as Him."

"And what are Two without three?"

"These are Houp Patham and Nam Patham."  (Houp Patham means 'body corporate'; Nam Patham means 'name'.   This is a double expression involving the totality of the corporal and psychic individuality in Buddhist doctrine.)

"What are Three without four?"   Phra In asked.

"These are (1) soukha vethana, (2) thoukkha vethana, and (3) asoukha vethana."  (First, the feeling of happiness; second, the feeling of pain; and third, the neutral feeling: the three principal kinds of psychic feeling in Buddhist philosophy.)

"What are Four without five?"

"These are thoukkha saccha (Existence is suffering), samoutha saccha (The origin of suffering is our endless of desire), nilotha saccha (The cessation of suffering by suppressing our desires), and makkha saccha (For this purpose, follow the Way shown by the Buddha, the Four Noble Truths in Buddhist doctrine.)"

"What are Five without six?"

"These are the Sin Ha: pana, athina, kame, nousa, and soura." (Not to kill, to steal, to commit adultery, to lie, or to get drunk, the five commandments of Buddha which laymen have to observe.)

"What are Six without seven?" Phra In asked.

Thao Loun Lou answered: "These are (1) chakkhinthinhang, (2) sithinthinhang, (3) khaninthinhang, (4) sieohinthinhang, (5) kanhinthinhang, and (6) maninthinhang." (The six ways to perceive things in Buddhist philosophy; through the eyes, ears, nose, tongue, body, mind.)

"What are Seven without eight?"

"These are the Phosangkha chet." (The seven constituent parts of the awakening to ascend to Nirvana or Buddhist paradise: (1) Sati or presence of mind, (2) dhamma vicaya or investigation of things, (3) viriya or energy, (4) piti or joy, (5) passadhi or tranquillity, (6) samadhi or meditation, and (7) upeka or unperturbability.)

"And now, what are Eight without nine?" Phra In asked.

"These are the Sin Pet", Thao Loun Lou replied.  (The eight commandments of the Buddha, the sin ha plus three others commandments, not to have food in the afternoon or evening, not to enjoy music, dancing, flowers, perfumes, and not to sit in a high place.  Monks must observe these eight commandments.)

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