Once upon a time a great elephant called Chaturdanta ruled over a vast stretch of forest as the king of his subjects. But now they were not happy because for several years there had been no rains and all the lakes, tanks, ponds and water holes in the forest became arid. Then all of them decided to go some hidden lake that is always full of water.
The elephants then set off for the hidden lake and after plodding through the jungle for five nights reached the great lake. They colonised the land around the lake and once again started their revelry in water. But as the elephants daily marched their way to the lake, they trampled upon hundreds of hares that made the land around the lake their home. Hundreds of them died and thousands more were maimed.
One day the hares assembled to chalk out a plan to save themselves from the menace of the wayward elephants. And they made a plan,
The plan is to tell the elephant king that the Moon does not like the elephants visiting the lake for water because they are killing and maiming hundreds of hares. The Moon has declared the lake out of bounds for the elephants. After a lot of discussions, the hares decided to send Lambakarna who is an expert negotiator to the elephant king. Addressing the king, Lambakarna said, "O heartless king, I live in the lunar sphere. The Moon has sent me as envoy to you. This lake belongs to the Moon. He has forbidden all of you from drinking water from the lake. So, go back."
"But where is you lord, the Moon," asked the elephant king.
Lambakarna said, "He is very much in this lake. He has come to console the survivors of your rampage."
"Then, let me see him," the elephant king challenged the envoy.
"Come alone with me, I will show you."
"Let us go then," said the elephant.
Lambakarna took the elephant king one night to the lake and showed the reflection of the Moon in the lake and said,
"Here he is, our King, the Moon. He is lost in meditation. Move quietly and salute him. Otherwise, you will disturb his meditation and bring upon you his wrath."
Taking him for the real Moon, the elephant king saluted him and left quietly. The hares breathed a sigh of relief and lived happily ever after.
There is nothing that cannot be solved with trick.