THE FOOLISH LION
Once upon a time, there was a lion who lived in a large forest. The forest was filled with all kinds of animals and there were large numbers of them.
The lion was the king of the forest. He had the nature of a lion but in his particular case, he was unusually ferocious, more than usual lions. His instinct to devour animals was extremely strong and his hunger was insatiable.
Every day he killed and ate many animals, more than the usual number. All the animals lived in constant fear of him and all of them were extremely unhappy.
One day, all the animals gathered in one place to discuss this problem. Was there something they could do? This was the question in everybody’s mind.
In that large meeting, the wise owl spoke out. His voice was deeply sad and pained. “Dear friends,” he said, “the rate at which our king is killing us pains me deeply and I cannot think of any solution except one.” Saying this, he fell silent.
The monkey asked, ‘Why are you silent? Please tell us what is on your mind. We will do whatever is necessary to stop the lion. “
The owl replied and now his voice had a tone of infinite sadness and resignation. “Dear friends, it makes me very sad o give you this solution, but the laws of the jungle are such that there cannot be any other solution. What I propose is that each offer itself during lunch and dinner time to the lion each day. This way the lion would be stopped to an extent and at least our children would be safe for a long time and one day the lion would die. “
A silence fell on the gathering, a silence filled with pain, resignation and the decision was agreed upon by all shaking their heads silently. It was a great moment of brotherhood and being together.
The next day, a group of animals went to the lion and gave him their proposal. The owl spoke again on everyone’s behalf. The owl begged the lion and reasoned that the lion would not have the trouble of hunting. He could relax and enjoy his lunch and dinner at his doorstep.
Now, the lion was secretly pleased at the proposal. Not only was he happy at the prospect of getting his daily meal with no effort, he also felt like a lord. He was a very vain lion. He agreed to the proposal.
From that day on the lion’s life became easy. At lunch true and dinner time, an animal arrived at his doorstep and the lion had his meal.
One day it was the turn of the rabbit. As he walked the long distance, he felt that his life was coming to an end. There would be no playing with his friends, no enjoyment of anything in the jungle, no family, nothing. He was extremely sad.
As he walked he thought, could there be a way he could there be a way he could prevent his death? He stayed on with that thought and bending his head walked on. As he walked, he noticed a well. And suddenly an idea flashed across his mind.
He slowed down his steps and began to walk slowly. “Would my idea work?”, he thought. He hoped for the best and summed up his courage.
He reached the lion’s den late, on purpose. The lion was pacing back and forth. He was furious. When he spotted the rabbit, he roared, “How dare you come late, you miserable little creature! I will kill every single animal today!”
The rabbit bowed low and sad in a low, respectful voice, “Dear king, I would have come on time, but as I was coming, another lion met me and he said he was the king of the jungle. When I told him that we already have a king, he laughed and told me to bring you to him.”
This piece of news deeply infuriated the lion. As mentioned earlier, the lion was very deeply vain and another lion claiming to be king and mocking him hurt him deeply.
This turned into an extreme anger and the foolish lion lost all sense. He roared, “Where is that lion? Take me to him and he will know who I am and who the real king is!”
The rabbit bowed and said, “Please follow me and I will take you to the other lion”.
The rabbit took the lion to the well and said, “The lion is in there.”
The foolish lion rushed and leaped up to the well and looked inside roaring angrily. The water in the well was still and a dear reflection could be seen. The foolish lion saw his own angry face and what is more, he heard the echo of his own roaring. He lost his mind a deep fury filled him and he jumped into the well. There was not much water in the deep well. The lion tell and crashed onto the rocks below the water. He let out a last scream of pain and died.
The rabbit heard that and a huge relief and an indescribable happiness filled his heart. “At last we all are free! I am alive! “, he shouted aloud.
He rushed to his brothers to share the good news. That night there was a great celebration in the jungle. All the animals gathered in one place and rejoiced. All of them were filled with praise and gratitude for the clever rabbit.