The Legend Of The Sparrow
"You don't need to be worried about my illness. I believe I will recovergradually."
Laying in bed, Mrs. Fan, who had been very sick for months, was saying in a weak voice to her husband. Mr. Fan patted her with his hand and comforted her,
"You're my wife, I must think of a way to help you recover from the illness. And I still hope that you will give birth to a son for me."
"Ge! Ge! Ge!"
Mrs. Fan kept coughing for a few times.
"See! Your illness is getting worse, how can I not be worried about you? Right, yesterday I requested a prescription from Daoist Fang (people who practise Daoism). Let us try it."
Mr. Fan stood up and went to get the prescription as soon as he had said that.
"Em! The prescription says that we need to keep 100 sparrows. Everydaywe have to feed them infused-herb rice. After 21 days of feeding them we kill them and eat their brains."
"What? Eat the brains of 100 sparrows? No! No way! This is too savage, I cannot eat them."
Mrs. Fan shook her head to imply her disapproval.
"What is savage or not savage? You have to eat anything to recover. Furthermore Daoist Fang told me this prescription is very effective."
Mr. Fan did not agree with Mrs. Fan's opinion. He went downtown alon eand brought back 100 fat sparrows. He kept them in a cage. Then Mr. Fan he quickly went to the Chinese herb chemist to buy the infused-herd rice. Laying in bed, Mrs. Fan heard the twittering of the sparrows. She knew of her husband's determination. She could not help sighing, "Alas!" Mrs. Fan continued to think,
"No! Normally I couldn't be hard-hearted enough to carelessly step on an ant. Now we're going to kill 100 livesparrows just to save my life, how could I have the heart to do it? 100lives!!"
As Mrs. Fan was thinking, she made an effort to walk and crawled to the courtyard. She opened the sparrows' cage, and set the 100 sparrows free. When Mr. Fan took the herbs back home and saw the empty cage, he kne wthat his wife did not want to eat. So he could not help but let it go.
Strangely enough, however, since Mrs. Fan set free all of the 100 sparrows,her mind was unusually calm and comfortable. So she started to recover slowly. Even more extraordinary, one year later Mrs. Fan gave birth to afair and fat baby boy. Mr. Fan could not help but keep laughing and holding the baby and showing it to his wife,
"See, our son is so lovely!"
To their astonishment, at the same time both of them discovered - that there were many black spots on their baby's both arms. And the shapes of the spots resembled to the shapes of the sparrows exactly. My dear reader, what do you think of this phenomenon?
Extract of The Buddhist Children's Stories, page 27-30, published by TheWhite Cloud Cultural Centre, Taipei Taiwan