Buddha being tempted ?

I heard that before reaching enlightenment, the Buddha was tempted by something called Mara ... Could someone tell me what was he tempted with ... what happened ?

3 Answers

  • stbb
    Lv 6
    6 years ago
    Favorite Answer

    Actually the woman(?), See You at the Show, explained it wrong in several places, may be because her friend explained to her wrong, but that is expected, so many people claimed to be Buddhist only understand half way and then when they tried to explain Buddhism to someone else, and if they forgot certain parts then they will fudge it, that is why sometimes there are many versions of the same story.

    This is the version that is closer to original as explained by the Sutra

    After trained and practiced of various meditation techniques for six years, he found it was useless and realized that he needed different method of achieving the full Enlightenment; hence he abandoned the techniques learned from the Brahmins, and stop the practices of depravations that was common with sadhus.

    He left the practice area and took a bath in a river, but he was so weaken by depravation practices of refrain from eating; and manage to survive on a grain a day, that he almost died of starvation.

    A shepherd girl went by and found him in such a weaken state, that she offered him a cook wheat with goat milk to save his life. After the hot meal he was able to recovered and decided he will find his own way of obtaining the enlightenment.

    So he was in Bodh Gaya, on the full moon day of the fourth month of the lunar calendar, that he seated himself beneath the Bodhi tree in the meditation posture and vowed not to rise from meditation until he had attained the complete enlightenment. With this determination he entered in the concentration on the meditative pose of single-pointedly on the ultimate nature of all phenomena.

    As dusk fell, Devaputra Mara, the chief of all the demons, or Mara of this world, tried to disturb Siddhartha’s concentration by conjuring up many fearful apparitions. He manifested hosts of terrifying demons, some throwing spears, some firing arrows, some trying to burn him with fire, and some hurling boulders and even mountains at him.

    With the force of his concentration, the weapons, rocks, and mountains appeared to him as a rain of fragrant flowers, and the raging fires became like offerings of rainbow lights.

    Seeing that Siddhartha could not be frightened, Devaputra Mara tried to distract him by bring in his three beautiful daughters along with other female maras appeared as beautiful women, but Siddhartha disregard these interruptions, and continued with his focused concentration.

    Prince Siddhartha then continued his meditation until dawn, when he attained unshakable concentration, he removed the final veils of ignorance from his mind and in the next moment became a Buddha, a fully enlightened being.

    In one of the Mahayana Sutra, it had described there was an Earth Deity similar to Mother Earth in spiritualism, who appeared to come to the aid of Prince Siddhartha, in which he shook the earth, and frighten the minor minions of the Mara, so they left. The three daughters of the Mara admitted defeat, when Buddha paid them no mind.

    As to the Devaputra Mara- sometimes known as Sky Mara (Deva- Heavenly King), one of the four Maras that every practitioners must defeat to get to Enlightenment; was/is actually the lord of the Sixth Level Heaven, as the highest deity of the Realm of Desires, he thinks of himself as being the highest Lord of Heavens and cannot stand anyone that may surpass him to get to an even higher level than he was/is; that he had decided and will continued to terrorize anyone including the Gautama Buddha in the past and all the practitioners who will achieve Enlightenment in the future.

    It is said that the Earth Touch Mudra of the Buddha, was the cause of the Earth shaking, which also brought out the deity to his aids.

    Mara in Buddhism is not exactly Demons nor Devil; but rather is the bringer of ill wills and creators of obstacles or causes of difficulties; and yet they control the demonic forces, as well as ill willed heavenly beings.


    Klesa-mara, or Mara as the embodiment of all unskillful emotions.

    Mrtyu-mara, or Mara as death, in the sense of the ceaseless round of birth and death.

    Skandha-mara, or Mara as metaphor for the entirety of conditioned existence.

    Devaputra-mara, or Mara the son of a deva (god), that is, Mara as an objectively existent being rather than as a metaphor.

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  • 6 years ago

    I'm not Buddhist, but I'll explain it to you the way it was explained to me

    First, know at this time, Siddhartha Gautama was not the Buddha yet. He had not yet achieve Enlightenment.

    While he sat in meditation, Mara (a demon, sometimes called the Lord of Death) brought his daughters to seduce Siddhartha. Siddhartha, however, remained in meditation. Then Mara sent vast armies of monsters to attack him. Yet Siddhartha sat still and untouched.

    Mara claimed that the seat of Enlightenment rightfully belonged to him and not to the mortal Siddhartha.

    Then Siddhartha reached out his right hand to touch the earth, and the earth said something (I don't remember what now.) Whatever it was, Mara disappeared. Having defeated Mara, (the demon who tried to tempt him away from his task), Siddhartha Gautama realized Enlightenment and became a Buddha.

    Here's an excellent documentary about the Buddha. The video discusses his encounter with Mara around the 48 minute mark


    Youtube thumbnail

    Source(s): Told to me by Vietnamese Buddhists
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  • 6 years ago
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