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Khadgapa

From Chinese Buddhist Encyclopedia
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ཁཌྒ་པ; Khaḍgapa; Khadgapa; The Fearless Thief;

Mahasiddha KhadgapaKhadgapa / Pargapa / Sadgapa (ral gri pa): “The Swordsman”/”The Master Thief

A son was born into a low-caste family of farmers in Magadha was a joyous event, however, it turned sorrowful when the boy grew up to be a thief. One day, wanting to escape from harmful pursuers due to his misdeeds, he hid himself in a cremation ground for several days. While he was there he chanced to meet the yogin Carpati practicing his sadhanas. When the boy asked Carpati what he was hiding from, the yogin replied, “I’m trying to dodge the repetitive cycle of birth and death on the Wheel of Existence. So I’m meditating.” Out of curiosity, he boy asked what was the purpose of such practice, the yogin said there’s a big payoff, one which the boy can achieve too if he practice the Buddha’s teaching. However, the boy had no interest in meditating but instead asked if the yogin know a siddhi of invincibility that can protect him when he steals. Carpati said he does, and so gave the thief initiation, empowerment, and instructed him to circle around the statue of Avalokitesvara in the temple Gauri-sankar located in Magadha for 21 days, non-stop day and night. He also said at the end of the 21 days, a large snake will glide out between the feet of the statue and the thief must seize it by the head without fear to gain the siddhi he desires.

The thief then took off for the temple, and followed the guru’s instruction to the letter and at the end of the 21st day, a large black snake glide slowly across the floor. Fearlessly, the thief seized it by the head, and then there came a ferocious thunderclap and a blinding flash of light. And there, held in Khadgapa’s fist, the most beautiful sword that glowed radiantly. Suddenly, all the defiling delusions of Khadgapa’s mind were made as palpable, and as he beheld these shadows of the mind, the cutting edge of the light severed them from his being. He was then free of defilement and gained the siddhi of the sword, one of the eight great magical powers. For the next 21 days, the former thief taught the Buddha’s message to all the people of Magadha. He then expressed his realization and was assumed into the Paradise of the Dakinis.

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