1. Uraga Jātaka (No. 154). King
Brahmadatta of Benares once held a festival to which came the inhabitants of
many worlds. A Nāga in the crowd, not noticing that the person beside him was a
Garuda, laid a hand on his shoulder; discovering his mistake, he was frightened
to death and ran away, pursued by the Garuda. The Nāga, coming to a river, where
an ascetic, who was the Bodhisatta, was bathing, took refuge in the ascetic's
bark-garment. The Garuda, though able to see the Nāga, would not attack him out
of respect for the ascetic. The latter took both of them to his hermitage and
made them friendly towards each other by preaching the blessings of
The story was related in reference to
two soldiers who were in the habit of quarrelling whenever they met. Not even
the king could reconcile them. The Buddha visited them at their homes and,
having made them both sotāpannas, took them to see each other. Thenceforth they
were great friends, and people marvelled at the Buddha's power (J.ii.12-14). The
Nakula Jātaka was also preached in this connection.
2. Uraga Jātaka (No. 354). The
Bodhisatta was once a brahmin in Benares. His household consisted of himself,
his wife, a son, a daughter, a daughter-in-law and a female slave. They lived
happily together, and on the Bodhisatta's advice kept their thoughts constantly
fixed on the inevitableness of death. One day, while burning some rubbish in the
field, the son was bitten by a snake and died. The father laid his body under a
tree, and having sent word to his house that all the others should come with
perfumes and flowers, when bringing his meal, be went on with his work. After
the meal they made a funeral pyre and burnt the body, but not one of them wept a
single tear. By virtue of their piety, Sakka's throne was heated and he appeared
to them in disguise. He questioned them separately as to whether their lack of
any show of grief for the dead meant that they did not love him. Being convinced
that their composure was due to their practice of the thought of death, he
revealed his identity, and filled their house with the seven kinds of treasures.
The story was related to a landowner of Sāvatthi who, when his son died, gave
himself up to despair. The Buddha visited him and consoled him (J.iii.162ff).
This story is referred to in the
Dhammapada Commentary DhA.iii.277.