The Two Snakes
Posted On : 16 Apr 2007 Total Views : 4782 Previous | Next

Once upon a time there was a king named Devasakti. He had a son who was very weak and growing weaker by the day. It was found that he had a snake in his stomach. Experts, physicians and surgeons tried to nurse him back to health without success. Dejected, the son left his palace one night and took shelter in a lonely and dilapidated temple in another town ruled by a monarch called Bali. Every day, the son would go out to beg and return to the temple in the night.

King Bali had two daughters who came of age. Following a tradition, the two daughters would get up every dawn and touch the feet of their father in reverence.

One day, after paying respects to the king one of his daughters said, "Victory to the king. We are happy in every way."

The second daughter said, "O king, reap the harvest of your actions."

The king, very angry at the words of the second daughter, called his ministers and told them, "Take this foul-mouthed woman away and marry her off to some stranger. Let her reap the consequences of her actions."

In compliance with the orders of the king, the ministers took her away and married her without pomp or ceremony to Devasaktiís son living in the old temple. The daughter considered the kingís son as Godís gift and after persuading him, left for another country.

The princess and the son of Devasakti reached a city where they camped close to a lake. She asked her husband to take care of the camp and went into the city with her maids to buy daily needs like rice, salt, butter oil and vegetables. After shopping, she returned to the lake where she saw a surprising spectacle.

The prince was sleeping, resting his head on an anthill. The serpent in his stomach came out to breath fresh air. Then another serpent emerged from the anthill for the same reason. Both of them glared at each other.

The anthill inmate said, "You wicked creature, why do you torment such a handsome prince."

The other serpent retorted, "Why are you polluting the two golden urns in your hole."

Thus in their row, they revealed the secrets of each other.

The serpent in the anthill told the other serpent, "Donít be arrogant. Who does not know the secret of your death? If the prince drinks a concoction made of gruel and mustard you will die unsung."

"Oh, is that so? You will also perish if someone pours hot oil or hot water in your anthill. Donít be too proud," said the serpent in the princeís stomach.

The princess, who heard all that passed between the two serpents, poured hot oil into the anthill and took the two golden urns and gave the mustard concoction to her husband and killed the serpent inside his stomach. Both Divyasaktiís son and his daughter-in-law returned to his kingdom and lived happily ever after.

Never share your secrets with others.

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