Jataka Tale Summaries #61-80

Asatamanta Jataka (#61)

The Bodhisatta was once a teacher. One of his student’s parents wanted their son to live as an ascetic, so they had the Bodhisatta teach their son the inherent wickedness of women. To do so, he ordered the student to care for his decrepit, elderly mother. She fell in love and tried to kill her son, the Bodhisatta, so they could be together. Her evil act convinced the student to become an ascetic.

Andabhuta Jataka (#62)

The Bodhisatta was once a king. He had an infallible good luck mantra and always won at gambling. The mantra ended with the line, “all women are wicked,” so to counter it his chaplain raised a girl at his palace never letting her see a man other than himself, and when she was of age, he married her. This extinguished the mantra, so the Bodhisatta hired a young man to defile her and restore its power.

Takka Jataka (#63)

The Bodhisatta was once an ascetic. A wicked woman was thrown in the river to die. He rescued her and they fell in love. Later she was kidnapped by a thief and fell in love with him. Fearing the Bodhisatta would come take her away, she schemed to kill him. When the thief learned this plan, he killed her.

Durajana Jataka (#64)

The Bodhisatta was once a teacher. One of his students was married to a wicked woman and he sometimes missed his lessons on account of stress. The Bodhisatta explained to him that women are inherently wicked and he should stop caring what she likes and dislikes.

Anabhirati Jataka (#65)

The Bodhisatta was once a teacher. One of his students discovered that his wife had been unfaithful and he was so upset that he missed class. The Bodhisatta explained to him that this was the nature of all women and wise men do not care about their wives’ adultery.

Mudulakkhana Jataka (#66)

The Bodhisatta was once an ascetic. While staying in the royal park one time he saw the queen naked and, suddenly overcome with lust, lost his insight. As a plan to help the Bodhisatta, the king gave him his queen and had her act very difficult as they restored a house to live in. The Bodhisatta realized his folly and regained his insight.

Ucchanga Jataka (#67)

The Bodhisatta was once a king. Three men were mistaken for thieves and taken to prison. They were the husband, son, and brother of a woman who pleaded for their release. The Bodhisatta said he would give her just one, and when she chose her brother – because she could replace the others, but could never have another brother – he was impressed and changed his mind, setting all three free.

Saketa Jataka (#68)

The Bodhisatta was once a son, nephew, and grandson of one man in one thousand five hundred successive lives and then a son, nephew, and grandson in another one thousand five hundred lives to one woman.

Visavanta Jataka (#69)

The Bodhisatta was once a snake-bite doctor. He once ordered a snake to suck its venom out from a bite victim. Even when told it would be thrown in a fire if it refused, the snake would not do it. So the Bodhisatta cured the patient with medicine and charms.

Kuddala Jataka (#70)

The Bodhisatta was once a farmer. Six times he tried to take up an ascetic’s life, but his love of his shovel drew him back. The seventh time he threw his shovel in the river and succeeded. The king and many other people heard his shout of triumph and were inspired to become ascetics too.

Varana Jataka (#71)

The Bodhisatta was once a teacher. One of his lazy students gathered green branches for firewood. This caused the cook to finish making their breakfast late the next morning, so they had to cancel a planned trip.

Silavanaga Jataka (#72)

The Bodhisatta was once an elephant. One day he rescued a forester who got lost in the mountains. The man was greedy and later returned to the Bodhisatta’s home feigning poverty asking to cut off his tusks to sell. The Bodhisatta agreed, but the earth split open and the flames of hell dragged the forester down.

Saccamkira Jataka (#73)

The Bodhisatta was once an ascetic. An evil king was hated by all. Even though the Bodhisatta had saved his life, the king wanted to kill him for not showing proper respect. This enraged people so much they killed their king and put the Bodhisatta on the throne.

Rukkhadhamma Jataka (#74)

The Bodhisatta was once a tree fairy. The Bodhisatta said families should stick together, but some fairies chose to go live in big trees near towns because they got the most offerings there. One day a storm blew down all the big, lone trees while those in the forest suffered no damage.

Maccha Jataka (#75)

The Bodhisatta was once a fish. During a drought all the fish and turtles buried themselves in mud to stay alive. When birds started eating them, the Bodhisatta begged the rain god for rain and the pond filled up with water.

Asamkiya Jataka (#76)

The Bodhisatta was once an ascetic. Once he traveled with a merchant’s caravan and did walking meditation all night. Since he was awake and could sound the alarm, thieves who planned to plunder the wagons called off their raid.

Mahasupina Jataka (#77)

The Bodhisatta was once an ascetic. One night the king had sixteen vivid dreams and his chaplains, looking to profit, said he must sacrifice many animals to avoid grave misfortune. One young chaplain opposed the scheme and he had the king to talk with the Bodhisatta who explained the real meanings behind the dreams and got the king to cancel the sacrifices.

Illisa Jataka (#78)

The Bodhisatta was once a barber. The royal treasurer in those days was exceptionally rich and extremely miserly. His dead father, who had been reborn as Indra, king of the gods, returned to Earth looking just like his son, and by giving away much his son’s money was able to convince him to be generous.

Kharassara Jataka (#79)

The Bodhisatta was once a merchant. The headman of his village schemed with some robbers to, in exchange for half the loot, march the village men into the jungle so the robbers could easily plunder the village. After it happened, the Bodhisatta told people the headman was guilty and the king punished him.

Bhimasena Jataka (#80)

The Bodhisatta was once a dwarf archer. To get a job with the king he found a large man to front for him while he did all the actual work. When the city was besieged, this man got so scared the Bodhisatta had to capture the rival king alone and was lavished with the honor he deserved.

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