Venerable Vakkali was staying at the Potters’ Shed and was suffering from a disease, sick and afflicted. Then he called his attendant and said: “Friend, go to the Lord and in my name worship his feet, tell him I am suffering from a disease and suggest that it would be good if he were to come and visit me out of compassion for me.” So the attendant did as he was asked. In silence the Lord consented and dressing himself and taking his robe and bowl, set out. Now Vakkali saw the Lord coming in the distance and struggled to rise from his bed. But the Lord saw him and said:
“Enough, Vakkali. Remain in your bed. There are seats made ready. I will sit there.”
Having seated himself, the Lord addressed Vakkali saying: “I hope you are bearing up. I hope you are enduring. Are the pains decreasing or abating? Do they seem to be decreasing or abating?”“No, Lord. I am not bearing up or enduring, the pains do not decrease, neither do they grow.” “Then have you any regret or sorrow?”
“Lord, I do have some regret and sorrow.”
“Have you anything concerning virtue to reproach yourself about?”
“No, Lord, I have nothing to reproach myself about.”
“Then why are you troubled by regret and sorrow?”
“Because Lord, for a long time I have been wanting to see you but I have not had the strength to do so.”
“Quiet, Vakkali. Why do you want to see this dirty body of mine? One who sees the Dhamma sees me and one who sees me sees the Dhamma. Truly, seeing the Dhamma, one sees me and seeing me, one sees the Dhamma.” (S.III.119) The source of this exceptional award winning photo is http://www.photos-of-the-year.com/
Sad to say, many are relying on the pictures/statues/amulets/symbols/any form of representation of the Buddha to seek for relief.
A quote from Ajahn Chah if I may.
""We must learn to let go of conditions and not try to oppose or resist them. And yet we plead with them to comply with our wishes. We look for all sorts of means to organize them or make a deal with them. If the body gets sick and is in pain, we don’t want it to be so, so we look for various suttas to chant. We don’t want to control it. These suttas become some form of mystical ceremony, getting us even more entangled in clinging. This is because we chant them in order to ward off illness, to prolong life and so on. Actually The Buddha gave us these teachings in order to help us know the truth of the body, so that we can let go and give up our longings, but we end up chanting them to increase our delusion. "
Thank you very much for the wonderful photo and the internet address of the source of it.
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