Sunday, February 9, 2014
by a thread
One fine day the Buddha (or possibly, Jesus) was strolling in the gardens of Paradise when he stopped by a crystal clear pond. As his gaze penetrated the limpid pool he saw all the way down to the depths of Hell, where his eyes came to rest on one particular sinner. His name was Kandata, a cold hearted criminal who had but one good deed to his name: while walking through the forest one day he had decided not to kill a spider he was about to crush underfoot. Moved by this singular act of compassion, the Buddha (or Jesus), took a silvery thread from a spider in Heaven and lowered it down into Hell.
Down in Hell, the myriad sinners are struggling in the Pool of Blood, in total darkness save for the light glinting off the Mountain of Spikes, and in total silence save for the sighs of the damned. Kandata, looking up by chance at the sky above the pool, sees the spider's thread descending towards him and grabs hold with all the might of a seasoned criminal. The climb from Hell to Paradise is not a short one, however, and Kandata quickly tires. Dangling from the middle of the rope, he glances downward, and sees how far he has come. Realizing that he may actually escape from Hell, he is overcome by joy and laughs giddily. His elation is short-lived, however, as he realizes that others have started climbing the thread behind him, stretching down into the murky depths below. Fearing that the thread will break from the weight of the others, he shouts that the spider's thread is his and his alone. It is at this moment that the thread breaks, and he and all the other sinners are cast back down into the Pool of Blood.
The Buddha (or Jesus) witnesses this, knowing all, but sad nonetheless. In the end, Kandata condemned himself.
This was an old story I found that was told by Buddhists and Christians.
I've noticed morality tales are universal.