W6L2: Kannon and her Dragon

Overview & Purpose

  • A 16th Century Chinese story about Kannon and her Dragon
  • The Tale of Avalokiteśvara and the Southern Seas

The Story of Kannon and the Dragon

“A life should definitely belong to one who tries to save it, not one who tries to take it.”

Video Link: Duration:  (1:23)  Remain open to perceiving the subtle gift in this story

16th Century Chinese story:  

Complete Tale of Avalokiteśvara and the Southern Seas

“The son of the Dragon King (a ruler-god of the sea) was caught by a fisherman while taking the form of a fish. Being stuck on land, he was unable to transform back into his dragon form. His father, despite being a mighty Dragon King, was unable to do anything while his son was on land. Distressed, the son called out to all of Heaven and Earth.

Hearing this cry, Quan Yin quickly sent her disciple to recover the fish and gave him all the money she had. The fish at this point was about to be sold in the market. It was causing quite a stir as it was alive hours after being caught. This drew a much larger crowd than usual at the market. Many people decided that this prodigious situation meant that eating the fish would grant them immortality, and so all present wanted to buy the fish. Soon a bidding war started, and Quan Yin’s disciple was easily outbid.

He begged the fish seller to spare the life of the fish. The crowd, now angry at someone so daring, was about to chase him away from the fish when Quan Yin projected her voice from far away, saying “A life should definitely belong to one who tries to save it, not one who tries to take it.”

The crowd, realizing their shameful actions and desire, dispersed. The fish was brought back to Guan Yin, who promptly returned it to the sea. There the fish transformed back to a dragon and returned home. 

But the story does not end here. As a reward for Quan Yin’s help saving his son, the Dragon King sent his daughter, a girl called Lung Nue (“dragon girl”), to present to Quan Yin the ‘Pearl of Light’. The ‘Pearl of Light’ was a precious jewel owned by the Dragon King that constantly shone.”

The Pearl of light as a gift of gratitude to Quan Yin represents a light of illumination. A metaphor for increasing awareness and wisdom. For Quan Yin, she uses a magic lamp to illuminate Buddhist scriptures by night. 

Where does Kannon fit into Open Inward to Eternal Wisdom?

  • The Dragon of ancient times symbolizes beauty, wisdom, power, grace, and conversely, a wrathful and protective force, subdued and befriended by Kannon.
    • Various shapes include infinity and or the double helix (DNA).
    • Dragon shape is also symbolic of the brain and nervous system, the ultimate central communication system.
      • The Dragon is symbolic of Self-Activation of latent DNA information waiting to be awakened like the Dragon curled up at the feet of Kannon.
      • The Dragon also represents a communication/connection between your earthly connection and your cosmic connection, lower and higher self.

Kannon and her Dragon  and the Pearl of Light

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