Thursday, April 2, 2009
Things you didn't know about Buddhism (which you were probably better off not knowing).
I've been working on a re-revision of the novel, for which I've been reading something called "The Mahavaga." It's supposedly a transcription of the original teachings of the Buddha and is what all the rules and teachings of Buddhism are based on. So here, for your illumination, are some of the pronouncements of the Buddha when he was here on Earth. Once you read them I think you'll understand better why he was so eager to get off the Earth!
1. No one under 15 years of age is allowed to be ordained UNLESS they know how to scare away crows. (What? Buddha had a crow-phobia?)
2. The ordained were only to use "decomposing urine" as a medicine. (That'll cure what ails you!)
3. The ordained should live only at the foot of a tree. "caves are extra allowances." (Cause only cream puffs live in caves.)
4. The ordained should cover "the three circles" on their bodies which are the naval and the knees! (Those aren't the "circles" I thought they'd choose.)
5. Things you must do for your teacher:
- Give him teeth cleanser to rinse his mouth.
- Empty the teacher's spitting box. (The fun never stops!)
- Smear his face with clay before he goes to the baths. (I've heard about a lot of weird things at the baths, but never that!)
6. You may NOT be ordained if:
- you are in debt (OK Americans, no Buddhism for you!)
- you suffer from leprosy, boils, or elephantiasis
- you are a robber who "openly wears emblems of his deeds" (The example given is a necklace made up of the cut-off fingers of the people you've robbed. They needed a special rule for that one! Hello? A necklace made of human fingers didn't raise any red flags for you guys right off the bat?)
- you are a eunuch or hermaphrodite (what did all these old guys have against eunuchs et al?)
- you are a serpent (Well, shoot! That shuts me right out.)
- you have had your hands or feet cut off (because that's just too gross even for Buddha?)
- you have hands like a snake's hood (that's not covered by my HMO either)
7. And finally, once you have been ordained you must "abstain from all sexual intercourse EVEN with an animal."
(You just know that at first the rule was just "you must abstain from sex" and then some monk got caught with his pants down with a water buffalo and said, "But Buddha, I thought that just meant with people!)
So now you know. And you're welcome.