39. THE BUDDHA PREACHING TO KHEMA, QUEEN OF KING BIMBISARA
The daughter of King Maddaraja of Sagala State, by the name of Khema, was one of the queens of King Bimbisara. She was very pretty and being proud of her own beauty, had no wish to go to the Buddha, who was in the habit of preaching that "beauty is but skin deep". But she heard that Veluvana Park had been greatly improved and was looking so picturesque and pleasant that even gods were attracted by it. She therefore had a strong wish to visit it and went to the park where the Buddha was then in residence. King Bimbisara had told the attendants to see that the Queen should not come back without paying her respects to the Buddha. She dared not disobey the King and approached the Buddha before she left the Park. The Blessed One, with his superhuman power created a scene in which a woman, more handsome than the queen, was fanning him. The woman then becoming older and older, fell down through infirmity and began to moan. The queen was very much startled by the sight. The Buddha then preached a sermon to her, and she became an Arahant and was admitted into the Holy Order of Nuns.