THE SAGELY CITY OF TEN THOUSAND BUDDHAS

The Record of Water Mirror Turning Back Heaven:
By Tripitaka Master Hsuan Hua

From the 1998 issue of Vajra Bodhi Sea
Translated by the International Translation Institute

The Way of Fraternal Respect

 

Text:

During the Han Dynasty, the family of a four-year-old boy named Kong Yong received a gift of a box of pears. All his brothers took large ones while Kong Yong deliberately sought out the smallest. People were surprised and asked the boy about his behavior.

Commentary:

The way of fraternal respect means showing respect to one’s brothers and elders. During the Han Dynasty, the family of a four-year-old boy named Kong Yong received a gift of a box of pears. There was a person named Kong Yong, who was different from others from the time of his birth. When he was four years old, a friend of his father’s sent them a box of pears. All his brothers took large ones while Kong Yong deliberately sought out the smallest. The children were fond of pears, so his elder brothers quickly went over and each selected the biggest pear he could find. They looked over the pears, picked out the best one, and took it away. Kong Yong, on the other hand, chose the smallest pear. People were surprised and asked the boy about his behavior. They were puzzled as to why this child had taken a small pear.

Text:

My brothers are older than I and they should get the big ones. Since I am the youngest, it is fitting that I receive the smallest, he replied.

Although Kong Yong was young, he had a profound understanding of the principles of yielding and fraternal respect. He is truly a worthy model for the world.

Commentary:

Probably someone thought it was strange that the boy should choose a small pear, so he asked Kong Yong, “Why did you take such a small pear?”

My brothers are older than I and they should get the big ones. Since I am the youngest, it is fitting that I receive the smallest,” he replied. “Since all my brothers are older, it’s only right that they eat the bigger pears. I am the smallest among us siblings, so I should eat the smallest pear.”

Although Kong Yong was young, he had a profound understanding of the principles of yielding and fraternal respect. He truly knew how to respect his elder brothers. He was able to yield good things to others, and take bad things upon himself. He understood such principles. He is truly a worthy model for the world. People in the world should take a lesson from Kong Yong. They should be like him and understand how to respect their elders and yield to others.

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