Symbols of the world's religions

               

SECOND COMING OF THE BUDDHA AS MAITREYA

Irene Conybeare

 
The idea of a New Spiritual Dispensation or Second Advent has never been peculiar to Christian thought. All the great world religions contain the same expectancy that their Founders will return. In world history there are always landmarks where the great spiritual teacher have appeared from time to time, each with his own individual mission to perform, in accordance with the days in which he lived.

Today the Buddhists are gathering together in expectation of the return of the Buddha; for did not Gautama say: "There have been Buddhas before Me and there will be Buddhas after Me." He also predicted that the Greatest of All would bear the name of Maitreya. He also stated, "Two thousand and five hundred years after Me, my Law will have known its end. Another Buddha, the greatest of them all, will come into the world. He will regenerate it and establish the New Law."

It is important to note that the word "Maitreya" means "friend," because Baba's prevailing characteristic is his friendliness. People are made to feel that he is their friend, and that his divinity is no bar to camaraderie and ordinary social intercourse; he will joke and laugh with us as if we were his equals. In fact the word "friend" suits and describes the Master perfectly.

In speaking of the Buddha, we are reminded how Baba once, when speaking of his childhood, remarked, "Yet, one day, when a friend gave Me a small booklet on the Buddha, I opened the book at the place that told about the Second Coming of the Buddha as Maitreya. Then I realised all of a sudden, 'I am that! Actually!' And I felt it deep within Me ... Then I forgot about it, and years passed by."

 

CIVILIZATION OR CHAOS, p. 161
1959 © Chetana Ltd.

               

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