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Nahrot Chadok (นารทชาดก)

Thai-Sanskrit. Name for one of the Totsachat, i.e. life stories of the ten last incarnations of the Buddha, in which the bodhisattva was born as Nahrot, a form of Brahma. It relates the story of King Angati, ruler of the Kingdom of Videha, who by listening to a fool became a fool himself. The king initially was kind and generous towards his subjects, though, after seeking the counsel of a wicked, naked, forest-dwelling ascetic, who −unknown to the king− was not a true sage who denied the law of karma, reasoning that destiny makes us what we are and that ones deeds are irrelevant to ones life, saying that doing either good or bad has no future consequences whatsoever, the king changed his personality. He abandoned his alms giving to the poor and indulged himself in worldly pleasures. Hereupon Ruja, his beautiful and morally conscious daughter, pleads the gods for help and shows reverence to the bodhisattva Nahrot, who consequently descends from Brahma Heaven in order to drive away the false doctrine. Having learned that the king values the wisdom of ascetics, Nahrot decided to disguise himself as an ascetic, dressed in a red-mottled garment, with a black antelope skin over one shoulder, while carrying a golden pole on his shoulders from which two golden begging bowls were suspended by strings of pearls, his hair matted according to the custom of ascetics. Upon revealing himself to the king, Angati was convinced of his error, repented his sin and turned from away the false doctrine, after which he reassumed the responsibilities for the subjects of his realm. The story relates the virtue of love and kindness, in having the power to convince people towards the right way of living. Also known spelled Narot Chadok and alternatively referred to as Mahanarada Kassapa Jataka, and Nahrata or Narada Jataka. See also POSTAGE STAMPS.