Articles

 
The Barber
Posted On : 16 Apr 2007 Total Views : 9701 Previous | Next

Manibhadra was a merchant living in the southern city of Pataliputra. He was a man of principles who had lost all his wealth. His poverty made him very sad and one night he saw a dream. In his dream, a Jain monk appeared and said, "O merchant, donít give in to self-pity. I am Padmanidhi, the treasure collected by your ancestors. Tomorrow morning when I will visit you in this guise, you will hit my head with a stick and I will turn into gold. You can live happily ever after."

When the merchant woke up next morning he wondered whether what he saw in the dream was real or unreal. "This may not be true. It could just be an illusion because I have been thinking about money all the time," he thought. Meanwhile, a barber came to the merchantís house because his wife had called him for pedicure. Very soon came the Jain monk who appeared in the merchantís dream. Manibhadra was happy to see him and at once reached for the stick and struck him on his head. The monk turned into a statue of gold. The merchant then gave clothes and money to the barber and told him not to pass this information to anyone.

The barber went home and thought, "if a monk turns into gold if I strike him, I will invite all the monks and kill them and I can have lots of money." He passed the night with great difficulty. Next morning he went to the Jain monastery, went round its precincts three times and prostrated before the idol of Jinendra and sang the praise of the Jains. After this prayer, the barber met the chief monk and knelt before him seeking his blessings. The monk blessed him and asked the barber the reason that brought him to the monastery. The barber pleaded humbly that the chief monk and others should accept his hospitality.

The chief monk said, "O my son, we are not Brahmins who are invited home to be honoured. We are mendicants who visit Jain homes and accept what is necessary to keep us alive. Please go away and donít embarrass me."

Disappointed, the barber said, "O great seer, I have made all preparations to receive you. Yet I cannot press you. You will do what you think is best."

The barber went home and kept a stick ready after checking the exits of the house. He went to the monastery again and stood there pleading with the monks to accept his offerings. Taking pity on the barber, the monks agreed to visit his home. When the poor monks trooped into his house, the barber closed all the exits and began assaulting them. Some of them died while some were crying with pain. The sheriff, passing by, heard this commotion and asked his men to immediately find out what was happening. The men saw what the barber had done and presented him before a magistrate. The barber admitted that he had killed some of the monks. The magistrate ordered that the barber be impaled.

Moral
No one should do like the barber without understanding the situation.

 
Previous article :  The Dog
Next article :  The Brahmani and the Mongoose
 
Google Advt