Message

Teaching of mercy and equality, establish the way of salvation of the public

7parables

The seven parables of the Lotus Sutra is to make the Buddha’s words easier to understand by parable. There are a lot of concrete examples in the Lotus sutra that are very easy to understand. When we want to let others know something difficult to express in words, we explain several examples. Likewise throught any ages, fable has a great effect on teaching human life or wisdom of life. It is an expression of wisdom that shows the infinite mercy and freedom of the Buddha who wants to tell people about Myoho that an excellent analogy is being written in the Lotus Sutra.

The seven parables of the Lotus Sutra refers to the following seven stories.

The Parable of the Three Carts and the Burning House

The Lotus Sutra Leading to the Way of the Supreme Wisdom

Cave 98, south wall, Dunhuang Mogao Caves, Five Dynasties period (10th century CE)
1
There lived a rich man who had many children and abundant property. One day a fire broke out, spreading throughout the house where the children were totally engrossed in playing games, unaware of the fire and feeling no fear. The rich man warned that they needed to get out of the house, but they didn’t listen to him.
2
The man told them that he would give them wonderful toys, carts pulled by a goat, deer and ox, and they willingly came out of the burning house.
3
The rich man gave them a great white ox carriage adorned with numerous jewels, far more splendid than what he had promised, at which the children greatly rejoiced.
In this allegory, the Buddha is the rich man, the children playing in the burning house are the masses suffering from the fire of agonies of this world, the goat, deer and ox carts are the provisional teachings expounded by the Buddha for voice-hearers, cause-awakened ones and bodhisattvas, and the great white ox carriage is the supreme vehicle of Buddhahood, that is, the teaching of the Lotus Sutra. While Buddhism comprises a vast number of teachings, they are all devices (expedient means) for saving the masses from the “burning house”; what the Buddha truly intended to give is the one vehicle teaching of the Lotus Sutra.
1
A house, enclosed by walls, is burning in a raging fire, and flames are rising up; animals are running around.
2
However, three children inside the building in the center are engrossed in playing games, not realizing the imminent danger.
3
The three carts are shown, pulled by an ox, a deer and a goat, respectively.
4
An illustration depicts Chapter 8, “Prophecy of Enlightenment for Five Hundred Disciples.”