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Zhangton Darma Gyaltsen


Once in times gone by, the Kadampa lama Zhangton Darma Gyaltsen and Changchub Zangpo met some tea merchants on the road to Dam. They begged for alms. One of the merchants, a Khampa, offered them some dried meat, the flanks and hind legs of an animal. "Alas!" cried Chang chub Zangpo, "this is the lower part of my mother's corpse. How long it has been kept for me! How can I, her child, eat her flesh? If we who wear the robes of Buddha's disciples eat our mothers’ flesh, we have indeed turned into jackals!" He began to recite the mantra Om Kamkani Kamkani [the mantra of Akshobya] and sat there with a brooding countenance. The rough Khampa was afraid; he made one hasty prostration to him and ran off, taking his meat with him.

Zhangton smiled at Changclub Zangpo and said, "You had parents who had faith in the Dharma, and long ago you turned away from village life and took vows from a good lama. Later on, you studied well, and your feelings of sadness on seeing the flesh of an animal, once your parent, is indeed a great wonder. Only now that I am full of years and have lived long in this world do I see such a thing!"

When another old Khampa asked him which tradition he belonged to, Zhangton lama replied that he was a Kadampa monk. "I take refuge in the Kadampas!" exclaimed the old Khampa. "I hope that a large Kadampa monastery will be founded also in Kham!"

(Source: FB, p. 76-77)

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