The Splendor of Asia

An early-twentieth-century account of the adventures of Prince Siddartha

L. Adams Beck

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In her 1926 account of the Buddha’s life, popular fantasy writer L. Adams Beck describes a brooding Prince Siddhartha in a pleasure garden called the Paradise after his first glimpse of death. He is approached by his childhood friend Udayi, sent by his father to soothe the prince.

So seeing the Prince alone, Udayi, smooth of speech, came softly along the pleasure-paths of the Paradise, brushing aside the flowers, observant and quiet as a serpent, and saluting the Prince he drew up beside him and spoke this:

“Prince in whom all beauty and nobility meet, you sit here sad and alone, and it is therefore that your great father, consumed by care for your welfare, appointed me to act as beseems a friend. Permit me then to speak, for a wise friend removes what is unprofitable, promotes real gain, and in adversity is true.”

And Siddhartha lifting his eyes said:

“Speak, if indeed in this great strait there be anything to say.”

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