i io BURMA, PAST AND PRESENT
village for food. On seeing this, his companions at once deserted him as an apostate, and he was left to bear the burthen of his wavering faith alone.
Left alone, he wandered out into the forest and seated himself under a B-tree, where, after having fed upon some miraculous food, he remained wrapped up in profound meditation (dhyanci) for forty-nine days without any further nourishment During this period he was assaulted by numerous
found the alms-bowl preserved at Peshwur. H wen Thsang says in his time it was no longer there, but in Persia. "
" Fa Hian writes of the alms-bowl at Peshwur, that poor people could fill it with a few flowers, whilst a rich man could not do so with 100, nay, with iooo or 10,000 bushels of rice; a parable doubtless originally carrying a lesson like Our Lord's remark on the widow's mite.
" This alms-bowl is the Holy Grail of Buddhism. Mystical powers of nourishment are ascribed also to the Grail in the European legends. German scholars have traced in the romances of the Grail remarkable indications of Oriental origin. It is not impossible that the alms-bowl of Buddha was the prime source of them. Read the prophetic history of the alms-bowl as Fa Hian heard it in India ; its mysterious wanderings over Asia till it is taken up into the abode of the nats, where Aramaitriva, the future Buddha, dwells. When it has disappeared from earth the Law gradually perishes, and violence and wickedness more and more prevail."aColonel Yule's "Marco Polo," ch. xv. p. 264-5.
" A gentle sound, an awful light ! Three angels bear the Holy Grail : With folded feet, in stoles of white, On sweeping wings they sail.
.......aWhat is it?
The phantom of a cup that comes and goes ? The cup, the cup itself, from which our Lord Drank at the last sad supper with His own.
........ . If a man
Could touch or see it, he was healed at once By faith of all his ills. But then the times Grew to such evil, that the holy cup Was caught away to heaven and disappeared. "
Tennyson's 44 Holy Grail."Tennyson's 44 Holy Grail."