The Donkey
Posted On : 16 Apr 2007 Total Views : 4204 Previous | Next

There was a donkey named Uddhata living in a village, carrying clothes and other burdens for his master. At night when there was no work, he used to trespass into farms outside the village and would come home at dawn for fear of assault by farm owners. One day Uddhata happened to meet a jackal in a farm outside the village and both soon became friends.

Every night they would go together to the cucumber farms and sumptuously feed on cucumber. At dawn, they would go home after they had their fill. One day, in a happy mood, the donkey told the jackal, "My son, look, how pleasantly serene the night is. It inspires me to sing. Tell me what raaga would you like me to begin with?"

The jackal said, "Uncle, why do you unnecessarily invite a peril? We have come here to stealthily rampage cucumber crop. Pimps and thieves must always observe silence. Havenít the learned said:

"Your music has no melody. One can hear it like a trumpet from a mile. The watchmen here are asleep. If your music wakes them, they will either impound us or kill us. So, give up that bright idea and let us eat these sweet cucumbers."

"You stupid child, you live in the wilderness. Thatís why you donít know to enjoy music. It is only the very lucky people who are destined to listen to music sung in moonlight," said Uddhata.

The jackal replied, "True. But you do not know what is music. You know only to bray loudly. So, please give up your foolish idea." The donkey was angry and retorted, "You are an idiot to say that I donít know music. Sage Bharata was the author of music, which is regarded as the fifth Veda with hundred and eighty-five notational patterns. To Gods, nothing is dearer than music. It is through music that Ravana won favours from Lord Shiva."

The jackal said, "All right uncle, let me first get out of this farm and keep a watch outside to alert you if anyone comes this way. You can then leisurely sing to your heartís content." The jackal then left the scene quietly.

The moment the donkey began singing, one of the watchmen woke up and struck it with a stick till he dropped to the ground. The watchman then brought an old millstone and hung it to the donkeyís neck. The donkey soon recovered from the blows the watchman showered on him and managed to run with the millstone around his neck.

The jackal saw his plight and said, "You havenít paid heed to my advice. See how you have got a millstone around your neck."

Donít ignore the advice of a wise friend.

You must have control over your tongue.

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