The Marvelous Companion is a translation of a collection of thirty-four stories of the previous lives of the Buddha (Jatakas), spoken by the Enlightened One himself and assembled and retold by the first-century master Aryashura.
The Buddha often cited examples from his past lives to clarify the attitudes and actions that develop perfect compassion. These accounts became known as Jatakas, or Birth Stories, and the the Jatakas are particularly renowned as powerful enactments of the operation of karma as it unfolds over successive lifetimes.
The Jatakas can serve as occasions to reflect upon the moral choices in our lives, and to open our eyes to the reality of karma, helping us to develop the insight and discipline we need to acknowledge and change destructive patterns of behaviour.
This work is based on Joseph Speyer's literal rendition of the Jatakamala from the Sanskrit, in consulation with the Tibetan text.