Buddha teaches not only through words, but also through His life. Although His life is endless, in order to awaken greedy people, He uses the expedience of death.
"While a certain physician was away from home, his children accidentally took some poison. When the physician returned, he noticed their sickness and prepared an antidote. Some of the children who were not seriously poisoned accepted the medicine and were cured, but others were so seriously affected that they refused to take the medicine.
"The physician, prompted by his paternal love for his children, decided on an extreme method to press the cure upon them. He said to the children: 'I must go off on a long journey. I am old and may pass away any day. If I am with you I can care for you, but if I should pass away, you will become worse and worse. If you hear of my death, I implore you to take the antidote and be cured of this subtle poisoning.' Then he went on the long journey. After a time, he sent a messenger to his children to inform them of his death.
"The children, receiving the message, were deeply affected by the thought of their father's death and by the realization that they would no longer have the benefit of his benevolent care. Recalling his parting request, in a feeling of sorrow and helplessness, they took the medicine and recovered."
People must not condemn the deception of this father-physician. Buddha is like that father. He, too, employs the fiction of life and death to save people who are entangled in the bondage of desires.