Seeking the Dharma from Devadatta

“I offered him anything he wanted. I collected fruits, drew water, gathered firewood, and prepared meals for him. I even allowed my body to be his seat. I never felt tired in body and mind. I served him for a thousand years. In order to hear the Dharma from him, I served him so strenuously that I did not cause him to be short of anything.” (Lotus Sutra, Chapter XII)

This passage, from the Devadatta Chapter tells how the Buddha served Devadatta in a previous life so that he could be taught the Wonderful Dharma of the Lotus Flower Sutra. When I think about the truth of the Buddha being present in all beings as taught by Never-Despising Bodhisattva I can’t help but think that we can begin to really understand the teaching of the Lotus Sutra when we serve other beings, when we can help them as the Buddha did seeking the Dharma from Devadatta.

Lotus Path: Practicing the Lotus Sutra Volume 1