Once, a Man lived in a country.
One day, he went to the King’s palace. He said, “I can train animals to speak wisely like men.” The King was very surprised and asked, “Can you train my Horse to speak like human beings?”
The Man thought for a minute and said, “Yes, I can! But, I will need ten years to do so.”
The King gave him a large tuition fee and sent the Horse with him.
A Courtier met the Man when he was leaving the palace with the Horse. He said, “It is impossible to teach a horse to speak like human beings. If you are unable to train him, the King will get you killed, immediately.”
The wise Man smiled and said, “The King has given me enough money to live in luxury for the rest of
my life. And Death cannot be controlled by anybody. One cannot guarantee if I, the King or the Horse will live for the next ten years. So, I want to be comfortable till I am alive!”
The Courtier was shocked and told the King about this Man’s plan. The King punished the man.
Too much cleverness may result in foolhardiness.
Once, two Friends lived in a city. They loved each other and shared their joys and sorrows. Their friendship was praised by everyone who knew them, “Look at them! What faithful friends!”
One night, one of the Friends was fast asleep in his house. Suddenly, he heard a knock on his door. He woke up with a start and looked outside his window. He saw his Friend banging on the outside door.
The first Friend ran down to the door and opened it.
“What’s wrong? Why are you here so late at night?” he asked.
“I needed to see you, urgently,” the second Friend said.
The first Friend asked,
“Has someone been troubling you? Tell me his name and I will kill him with my sword.”
His Friend replied, “No, no one has troubled me.” “Then, do you need money? I have silver and gold. How much do you need?”
The second Friend said, “No, my dear. I do not need your silver or gold. I saw a dream in which a bear had attacked you. I had to come and check, and see that you were all right.”
True friends always care for you.
Once upon a time, there was a mountain Bear who lived in a cave in the forest. The forest had no other bears, so this Bear was all alone.
The Bear got used his lonely life. But he would sometimes miss having company.
`I will go and look for some friends,’ the Bear thought.
After a while, the Bear saw, from afar, an old Gardener who also lived alone. He would spend time with his flowers whenever he got lonely. The Bear was excited to find a friend. However, he was afraid that the Gardener would get scared of him. So, he put on a mask.
The Gardener mistook him for another man. “Welcome to my home. I am a lonely man. It would be nice if you could stay with me,” the Gardener said. The Bear and the Gardener were happy to live with each other.
However, one day, the Bear saw a beehive on a tree in the garden. He climbed up the tree and broke the hive. The angry bees attacked him and the Gardener. The Bear ran away to the forest but the poor Gardener was badly hurt!
It is better to be alone than to have foolish friends.
There was once a Mouse that lived on a farm. He always had enough to eat and lots of room to run around. Life was easy.
However, the Mouse was bored.
Every day, he would sit by the fence to take a peek at the outside world. He would gaze at mole hills and imagine them to be mountains.
`I wonder what it would be like to travel the world,’ the Mouse thought. ‘I could ride the seas in big ships like an explorer!’
“It’s too risky,” warned his friend, the Pig.
“You know nothing about the world,” said the Sheep.
But the Mouse decided to explore the world. He said good-bye to his friends and home.
After many days of travelling, the Mouse reached a beach.
`What a wonderful place!’ thought the Mouse. ‘I can smell the sea!’
Then, he saw an Oyster that the tide had washed on to the beach. The Mouse had never seen an Oyster
`This must be the ship that explorers travel on!’ thought the Mouse.
The Mouse put his head inside the Oyster’s shell. The Oyster, at once, closed its shell and killed the foolish Mouse.
Little knowledge can be harmful.
Once, a Man found a Snake coiled on the ground. He became scared and was about to kill it. Just then, the Snake cried out, “If you wish to kill me, you may, but before that please listen to how ungrateful man has been!”
The Man agreed.
Soon, a Cow came by. The Snake asked the Cow what she thought of man. The Cow said, “I have denied milk to my little
calves and given man milk for years. In return, I do not get even a ‘Thank you’.”
The Man said, “We are fools to listen to this old, silly Cow, let’s ask the Ox.” The Ox said, “I have worked hard on the fields most of my life, but all I got from my master in return is only beating!”
Next, they asked a Tree. The Tree said, “I gave fruits, flowers and shelter to man. But, one day, my branches were chopped down by the same man for firewood.”
After Man had heard them, he thought, We have been so selfish! Snake, you are free to go. I am sorry for all the trouble we have caused the animals and the trees.”
Be grateful to all who help you.
There was an old Hermit who lived in the forest. One day, a Bear came to him and said, “Hermit, please pull the thorn out from my paw! I am in much pain!”
The kind Hermit readily agreed and pulled out the thorn from the Bear’s paw.
The Bear was so grateful that he offered to work as servant for the Hermit.
The Hermit accepted the Bear as his companion. They stayed together in the same cell, ate together and worked together. One very hot day, the Hermit lay down on his mat to sleep. The loyal Bear sat next to the Hermit, driving away all the files from his face. But, there was one mischievous one, which sat on the Hermit’s nose. The Bear said to himself, ‘I will definitely get hold of you now’ Saying this, the Bear slapped the Hermit’s nose with the intention of killing the fly. But, by mistake, he bruised the Hermit’s face, too.
The Hermit woke up, terrified. Then, he drove the Bear away in anger.
A foolish friend can cause more harm than an enemy.
A hungry Hawk had spent his entire day searching for food but had found nothing. In the evening, just before he was about to go home, he saw a Nightingale sitting on the branch of a tree.
He thought, ‘Finally, I will not have to go to sleep hungry.’
The Hawk flew down to the tree and caught the Nightingale tightly in his claws and flew to a rock. The Nightingale was terrified in the Hawk’s clutches. She said to the Hawk, “Great Hawk, I sing very sweetly. I will sing beautiful songs for you. Kindly spare my life.” The Hawk replied, “Oh no! No music can sound pleasing on an empty stomach!”
The Nightingale said again, “Oh Mighty Hawk, please do not kill me. I am such a tiny bird. I will not be able to satisfy your hunger.”
The Hawk smiled wickedly and said, “It is better to have something in my stomach then not have anything at all. Besides, a little bird I have is more important to me than a bigger one I have not caught.”
Saying this, the Hawk swallowed the Nightingale in one gulp!
It is useless to plead before the cruel enemy!
One cold morning, a Gnat flew all over in search of food. The Gnat had spent the entire spring singing and dancing in the fields. He had not collected any food for the cold winter season.
The Gnat was cold and starving. Flying, he came to a beehive. He met the Queen Bee and said to her, “Oh kind Bee, I haven’t had anything to eat, since morning I do not even have a warm place to rest. Please be kind enough to give me some honey and a place to rest.”
The Bee politely refused to help the Gnat.
The Gnat spoke again, “I will teach your children music in exchange of food and shelter. Please take pity on me and help me.” The Bee said to the Gnat, politely, “I am sorry for your sad state, Gnat, but I prefer to teach my children honey collection. You would teach them music but it will not fill their stomachs. I do not want my children to suffer, like you, in the cold winter weather.”
The Gnat was ashamed of his carelessness and flew away from the bee-hive.
It is important to be useful rather than just skilful!
On a rainy day, an unlucky Fox slipped into a well. The Fox was able to keep his head above the water, with much difficulty. He placed his claws on the wall of the well for support but kept slipping back again and again.
A Wolf was passing by the well. He heard some noise coming from inside and peeped in.
The Wolf was a good friend of the Fox and was shocked to see him fallen in the well.
Seeing the Fox in the unfortunate situation, the Wolf asked him, “Dear brother, how come you are down in the well? You must be feeling so cold? How did you fall in there and how long has it been? I am so unhappy to see you down there. Please do tell me all about this!”
The Fox interrupted the Wolf and said, “My kind brother, if you could throw in a rope, it will be of more help than your questions. Once I have my feet on the ground, I’ll tell all about the incident.”
In crisis, actions are more helpful than questions!