DiscoverDhammagiri Buddhist Podcasts"Pain in the Disguise of Pleasure" - Ven Sivali's Birth Story
"Pain in the Disguise of Pleasure" - Ven Sivali's Birth Story

"Pain in the Disguise of Pleasure" - Ven Sivali's Birth Story

Update: 2020-12-18
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Ven Sīvali was one of the 80 'Great Disciples' of the Buddha. Due to his extraordinary good karma, he would always receive almsfood and requisites in abundance, even more than the Buddha himself. Consequently, he has become a symbol of good luck and wealth in in the Theravāda tradition.


His birth was truly extraordinary as well: His mother Suppavāsa was pregnant for 7 years, and then almost died in childbirth when her labour lasted 7 days. Barely recovered, she invited Buddha and Sangha for a series of 7 days almsoffering.


Already the day after his birth the little baby could speak, and had a Dhamma discussion with Ven Sāriputta, the Buddha's chief disciple. Suppavāsa was exceedingly happy that her baby was a child prodigee that could speak about Dhamma right after birth. When asked by the Buddha, she even stated that she would love to have 7 kids just like him!

(Completely forgetting that the day before she had reached the peak of pain and suffering because of that child!!)


The Buddha then spontaneously exclaims the following verses:


Pain in the disguise of pleasure,

The repulsive masquerading as lovely,

Suffering in the semblance of happiness

Overwhelm those who are heedless.


[Udāna/'Inspired Exclamations' 2.8 'Suppavāsa Sutta']


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"Pain in the Disguise of Pleasure" - Ven Sivali's Birth Story

"Pain in the Disguise of Pleasure" - Ven Sivali's Birth Story