Wednesday, March 23, 2011

The Rabbit in the Moon

Many way to look at it :)

The Moon rabbit, also called the Jade Rabbit, is a rabbit that lives on the moon in folklore, based on pareidolia that identifies the markings of the moon as a rabbit. The story exists in many cultures, particularly in East Asian folklore, where it is seen pounding in a mortar and pestle. In Chinese folklore, it is often portrayed as a companion of the moon goddess Chang'e, constantly pounding the elixir of life for her; but in Japanese and Korean versions it is just pounding the ingredients for rice cakeREAD MORE
Rabbit with fire pot or mortar and pestle (depending on the story)

In the Buddhist Śaśajâtaka (Jataka Tale 316), a monkey, an otter, a jackal, and a rabbit resolved to practice charity on the day of the full moon (Uposatha), believing a demonstration of great virtue would earn a great reward. A version of this story can be found in the Japanese anthology Konjaku Monogatarishū, where the rabbit's companions are a fox and a monkey.

"Once upon a time long ago, a monkey, a rabbit, and a fox were good friends.  During the day they played together and at night they slept in the forest.  The Lord of Heaven heard about the three friends and wanted to see if such a thing could really be true. He went to them disguised as a poor old man.  "I have travelled through mountains and valleys and I am hungry and tired. Could you give me something to eat?" he, asked laying down his staff in order to rest. 

The monkey went off at once to gather nuts from the trees and bushes; the fox brought a plump fish from his trap in the river. The rabbit ran through the fields in every direction but could find nothing  suitable  to bring the hungry man.  So he asked the monkey to gather some dried leaves and twigs and the fox to set fire to them. They did so. Then the little rabbit said to the elderly man, "Please eat me as I have nothing else to give you" and threw himself into the flames. 

The pilgrim was moved by the rabbit's sacrifice, and wept, saying, "Each one deserves praise; there are neither winners nor losers. But the little rabbit has given an exceptional proof of love." So saying, he restored the rabbit to his original form and took the little body to heaven to be buried in the palace of the moon, where the rabbit may be seen to this day."

Fairytale - The Rabbit in The Moon :

Another representation of the Rabbit in the Moon

No comments:

Post a Comment