23. The Rabbits and the Elephants

The Rabbits and the Elephants

Once upon a time, there lived a herd of elephants in a deep jungle. Their king was a huge elephant by the name of Chaturdanta. In the middle of this jungle, there was a big lake where all the animals went to drink water. Once it so happened, that it didn’t rain for the whole year and the lakes went dry. The elephants, after a great deal of discussion, decided to move to the other forest, where there was a lake named Chandrasar. This lake was full of water and never went dry even if there were no rains.

And so, the elephants set out for the lake ‘Chandrasar’. They felt very happy upon reaching the new lake. They bathed in the fresh water of the lake and also enjoyed playing and spewing water on each other by their trunks. After having bathed satisfactorily and quenched their thirst with the sweet water of the lake they came out of it and entered the deep forest.

But, there lived many rabbits in their burrows around the lake area. When the herd of elephants walked around they stamped the burrows with their heavy feet. Thus, many rabbits were either killed or were left physically handicapped.

 So, in order to salvage the grave situation, the rabbits held a meeting and discussed this new calamity. At one point, they decided to shift from that dangerous place and live somewhere else. But a rabbit named Lambkarna advised them to exercise patience. He offered his services for the sake of all the other rabbits and said, “Don’t worry friends. Just see, how I drive these~ elephants away from this forest

The next day, Lambkarna sat on a high rock. The rock lay in the main path of the elephants, leading to the lake. When the elephant passed by the rock, the rabbit addressed the king of the elephants in a tough voice, “You’re a cruel fellow. You’ve trampled many of my relatives and friends under your feet. I too am king of rabbits. I stay in the heaven with God Moon. God Moon is very much annoyed with you.”

The king elephant was frightened to hear this. He said in a trembling voice, “Please take me to God Moon. I’ll ask for his forgiveness.”

“All right”, said the clever rabbit. “See me tonight at the lake.”

The king elephant, then, as told by the rabbit, reached the lake at night. The king rabbit and the king elephant both stood near the edge of the lake. It was a silent and moonlit night. Mild breeze was blowing. The rabbit asked the elephant to look carefully into the water of the lake.

As soon as the king elephant looked into the lake, he saw the reflection of half moon in the lake’s water. Just then a mild breeze blew and the reflection of the moon in the water became wavy

Pointing to the wavy reflection of the moon, the king rabbit said,

“Look for yourself, how annoyed God Moon is with you. Better you ask for his mercy, otherwise, he might curse you to death ‘ “

 The king elephant became more and more frightened. He promised God Moon not to ever visit the lake with his friends.

The rabbits lived happily, thereafter.

Moral:- Clever move.

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