Buddhism and Tarot: Wakkali, Knight of Cups
(c) Cheryl Lynne Bradley 2002

Once there was a young man from Savatthi named Wakkali. Wakkali was a great admirer of the Buddha's beauty and decided to go the temple and be ordained by the Buddha. By becoming a monk, he would be able to gaze upon Buddha's beauty daily. At the monastery Wakkali did nothing but follow the Buddha and did nothing to develop his own wisdom or insight. Wakkali didn't read, learn or meditate. Buddha made no comment but, when the situation didn't change, he felt that Wakkali would need a big shock or he would never come to understanding.

Buddha had been invited to Rajagaha for the three months rains retreat and left Wakkali behind. This was a disappointment for Wakkali and he decided that three months was too long to wait. He would be miserable without being able to gaze upon the Buddha's beauty and felt that his life was no longer worth living. He decided to throw himself off of Vulture's Peak.

The Buddha could see all of this and realized that if Wakkali received no comfort or compassion from the Buddha that he would truly kill himself. Buddha projected his radiant image to Wakkali on the edge of Vulture's Peak. Wakkali's sorrow vanished and his mind filled with joy. He finally understood that the person who has perfect faith in the Buddha will be full of joy and satisfactions and would reach the place of happiness and peace.

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This page was created on October 28, 2002 and updated July 26, 2006.