The Jataka

Or Stories of the Buddhas Former Births (6 Vols. in 3 Pts.)
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The Jataka or Stories of the Buddha's Former Births By E.B. Cowell (6 Vols. in 3 Pts.)

Jataka stories or birth-legends were widely known in the third century B.C. Each story, narrated by the Buddha, opens with a preface relating the particular circumstances in the Buddha's life, revealing some events in the long series of his previous existence as a Bodhisattva. These stories magnify the glory of the Buddha and illustrate Buddhist doctrines and precepts by appropriate examples