The Leopard and the Shepherds

Leopard was searching for food in a village. There was a big pit in the village, which was covered with dry leaves and sticks. The Leopard did not see the pit and fell into it.

A Shepherd looked inside the pit and said to the other Shepherds, “Look! A Leopard has fallen inside the pit.”

B19Just to have fun, some Shepherds threw stones at the Leopard. However, some kind Shepherds threw some food inside the pit so that the Leopard could stay alive. By nightfall, all the Shepherds returned home. They thought that the Leopard would die at night. At night, the Leopard gathered all his strength and crawled out of the pit and went to his den. After a few days, when the Leopard was strong again he went to the village to take his revenge. The Leopard killed all the Shepherds who had thrown stones at him and ate their cattle.

The other Shepherds were scared and begged the Leopard, “Please take our cattle but spare our lives.” The wise Leopard replied, “I have come to harm only those Shepherds who hit me with stones.”

If we trouble someone who is in distress, we will suffer likewise.

Aesop at Play

Once, Aesop was playing with some children in his neighbourhood. He was running around and laughing out with those children.

While Aesop played, a Man from Athens, who knew him, walked by the playfield. He saw Aesop playing and was shocked to see his childish play.

The Man laughed aloud at Aesop and said, “Aesop, such kind of play does not suit your age and wisdom. What are you trying to teach these children? Don’t you have better things to do?”B18

hearing the Man’s words, Aesop did not lose his cool. He smiled and ran back to the field to bring a bow. The Man was curious to see what Aesop would do next.

Aesop   then tied a string around  the bow and kept it at the Man’s feet. Then he said, “Dear friend, if this bow is always kept strained, it would lose its elasticity. And some day, it will snap. We have to sometimes use it or let it go free so that it will be fitter for use when it is wanted!” The Man understood what Aesop said.

Physical activity is important for an active and fresh mind.

Aesop and the Poultry

nce, Aesop was standing outside a poultry farm near the road-side. He was looking at the Poultry, very keenly. When people saw him standing there for a long time, they became curious. They started asking each other, “Why is Aesop watching the Poultry so keenly?”

One of them said, “Let us go and ask him what the matter is.” They were like those people who are only interested in what others do.

They approached Aesop, but Aesop did not look at them. He still looked at the Poultry in the farm. One of the men got interested and asked, “Aesop, what is it in this farm that has grabbed your attention?” Aesop then looked at him and replied, “I am amazed to see this Goose.” One of the men in the crowd asked, “How can such an animal amaze you?”

Aesop smiled and said, “I am amazed at how humans readily copy this foolish Goose.”

“In what ways do we humans copy this animal, Aesop?” asked another man from the crowd.

“Well, just like these animals, we humans also brag so much about ourselves and may often harm ourselves badly!”

Never make false claims about your abilities.

Aesop and his Fellow Servants

Once, Aesop’s master was going on a journey. All the Servants, including Aesop had to carry sacks on their backs. Aesop selected a sack that contained bread. It was also the largest and the heaviest sacks. The other Servants laughed at him for choosing the largest sack.

The remaining Servants chose sacks, which were not as large or heavy as Aesop’s sack.

B16Then the journey started and all the Servants carried their sacks on their backs. When they looked at Aesop carrying a heavy sack, they made fun of him. After some hours, everybody stopped for lunch. Aesop was asked to distribute bread from his sack. He distributed the bread to all and this lightened his burden by half.

They all started walking again. Soon, it was time for supper. Aesop was asked to distribute the remaining bread to everybody. He did so and this emptied his sack. For the remainder of the journey, he had nothing but the empty sack to carry. The other Servants’ loads seemed to get heavier and heavier at each step. Now they approved of Aesop’s clever decision!

Think about future gains while taking any
decision; even if they require hard work.

The Man who lost his Axe

Once, there was a Man who was busy digging a ditch in his vineyard. He was tired and wanted to rest. So he put down the Axe for some time. When he had rested enough, he wanted to continue digging. But, his Axe had disappeared!

B15Soon, he called together all his hired men and asked them, “Have any of you seen my Axe , the one I was using?”

“No,” they replied.

The Man was very angry and said, “I know one of you has taken it. I will find out who the thief is, whatever it would cost me!” He insisted, “Come along to the temple of the famous prophet in a neighbouring city.”

While they were washing their feet at the fountain in the market-place the town-crier came and said in a loud voice, “The sacred shrine has been robbed last night! A

large reward would be given to whoever finds the thief.” At once, the Man told his men, “Let us return home

right away. If the God of the shrine cannot tell who robbed his temple, how would he know who took my Axe?”

It is silly to believe that our problems will be solved on their own.

The Fly and the Mule

One day, a Mule was dragging a chariot (two-wheeled vehicle used for races). The Mule was so tired, it seemed he was drunk.

While he was walking, a Fly came and sat on the wheel of the vehicle. She said toB14 the Mule, “Oh you drunken Mule, why do you walk so slow? You look like a strong and big beast then why can’t you walk a little faster?”

The Mule was very angry. The Fly’s behaviour made !aim furious. He turned to the Fly and said, “My dear little friend, I am not scared of you. I do not pay attention to what you say regarding me.”

He continued, “I only care about the person who rides the cart. He is my guide. I follow his command and he gives me the direction to walk. If I walk slowly, he increases my speed by beating me with his stick. Therefore, you go away. I don’t want to talk to someone who is rude to me.”

“I know when I have to walk fast and at what time I should walk slowly!”

It is foolish to guide someone who knows his job well.

The Deer and the Vine

Two Huntsmen were riding around when they saw a Deer and started chasing it.

The Deer knew that the Huntsmen would kill him, so he ran as fast as he could to save his life. He saw a thick Vine, nearby and hid himself behind the large, leafy Vine leaves. The Huntsmen were riding on very fast horses and were very close behind. They were going so fast that they went paB13st the Vine and the Deer, without stopping.

After a little while, the Deer could not hear the Huntsmen any more. He peeked out slowly and could not see anyone close by.

The Deer thought he was safe. All the running had made him hungry. What could he eat? He saw the Vine and nibbled at a leaf.

The Vine shook as the leaves rustled. But right then, the Huntsmen were returning back and they spotted the Deer at once. One of the men got down on the ground and shot the Deer with an arrow.

The dying Deer said to himself, “It serves me right. If I had not eaten what saved me, I would have been safe right now!”

When we harm someone who helps us, we are harmed ourselves.

The Playful Mule

Once, there was a very playful and young Mule. He was also very frisky, as he ate a lot of corn. He had a lot of energy but did not work much.

One day, having nothing else to do, the Mule started galloping in the fields. He was galloping around at a good speed and kicking up a lot of dust. He thought that maybe he was a Horse, because he was so good at racing!

B12The more he thought about it, the more he got excited and said to himself, ‘If I can gallop so fast, then surely, I must be the son of an excellent racer. My father must be great and I have my father’s speed and his skill.’

The next day, the Mule was hitched to a cart full of baggage. His master took him on a long journey. The Mule was not used to hard work and became very tired.

Disappointed with himself, he said aloud, “I have made a mistake. I am a Mule and my father must have also been a Mule. Only a Mule could be so tired doing his work!”

We come to know our true nature only when we test it.

The Fox and the Pig

One day, a Fox wanted to cross to the other side of a river. He decided to swim across and reach there.

Now, the river was flowing very fast. The Fox tried to swim but was swept away by the force of the water. Tumbling along the bumpy river and rocks, he was finally thrown into a deep ditch.

He could not move, as he was hurt and tired and was feeling very sick. He lay still. Soon, many hungry, bloodsucking flies settled on him.

B11A Pig, who was passing by, saw the Fox was hurt and was in great pain. He  said, “Shall I drive away the flies? They are sucking your blood. You will feel much better when they are gone.” “No! Not at all!” said the Fox. “Do not disturb them.”

The Pig was surprised. “Why won’t you let me drive away the flies?” he asked the Fox.

“You see, kind Pig, these flies are full of blood.

They are hurting me very little. The new ones who will take their place, will drink all the blood I have and I will be worse.”

Think carefully as help offered may not be the help you need.

The Ass, the Dog and the Wolf

nce, there was a Man who lived in the village. He owned an Ass and a Dog. One day, the Man was returning from the town with his two animals. The Ass was carrying many sacks on his back. The Man was walking behind him. The Dog was walking behind the Man. All three were tired and hungry.

After some time, the Man, the Ass and the Dog stopped at a meadow to rest. The MB10an lay down under a tree and fell asleep. The Ass started feeding on the green grass of the meadow.

The Dog said to the Ass, “Friend Ass, please bend down a little. I want to take some food from the bag on your back, for I am very hungry”

The Ass said, “Let our master wake up. He will give you your food.” The poor Dog quietly lay down, too.

Suddenly, a Wolf came to the meadow. He saw the Ass and pounced on him. The

Ass shouted, “Friend Dog, please help me!”

The Dog said to him, “Let our master wake up. Then I will save you.” Soon, the Wolf had killed the Ass and eaten him.

What you do, comes back to you.