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Wednesday, January 27, 2016


In a city called Vardhamana, lived a very efficient and prosperous merchant. 

The king was aware of his abilities, and therefore made him the administrator of the kingdom. 
With his efficient and intelligent ways, he kept common man very happy, and at the same time he impressed the king on the other side. Such a person, who can keep everybody happy, is rarely found. 
Later, there came a time that the merchant's daughter was getting married. He arranged for a lavish reception. 
The merchant not only invited the king and the queen, who obliged by attending, but he also invited the entire royal household and all respected people of the kingdom. 

During the reception, he ensured to provide his guests with the best of treatments. He gave out gifts to guests to show them respect for attending to his invitation. 
A servant of the royal household, who used to sweep the palace, was not invited but attended the reception. 
He took a seat which was reserved for royal nobles, not meant for common invitees. 
This made the merchant very angry. He caught him by the neck and ordered his servants to have him thrown out. 

The royal servant felt very insulted, and could not sleep all night. He thought, "If I can have the king to disfavour this merchant, I will have my revenge. But what can I, a common fellow, do to harm a powerful person as him". Thinking such, he suddenly had a plan. 

Several days later, the servant was sweeping the floor near the king's bed early in the morning. He observed that that the king was still in bed, half awake. The servant started mumbling, "Good heavens! The merchant has become so carefree now that he dared to embrace the queen!" 
When the king heard this lying in his bed, he jumped up and asked the servant, "Is it true? Have you seen the merchant embrace my queen yourself?" 
The servant at once fell at the king's feet, "O Master, I was gambling all night. I feel drowsy for I didn't sleep last night. I don't know what I have been mumbling, but I said anything improper, please forgive me." 

The king spoke no more, but the servant knew he had sowed the seed of distrust. The king thought, "It can be true! The servant moves about the palace freely, and so does the merchant. It is possible that the servant has seen something." 

The king was troubled with jealousy. From that day onwards, he withdrew his favours from the merchant and even forbade him to enter the palace. 
One day, when the merchant was entering the gateway to the palace, he was stopped by the guards. The merchant was surprised due to this sudden change in the king's attitude. 
The servant was nearby, and mocking shouted at the guards, "Ho Guards! That merchant is favoured by the king. He is a powerful person. He can have people arrested or released or even thrown out, just like he had me thrown out of his daughter's reception. Beware, for you may suffer the same fate." 

On hearing this, the merchant understood that the servant has caused all this trouble somehow. He felt dejected, and returned home upset over the incident. 

He gave everything a second thought, and then he invited the royal servant to his house. He treated the servant with utmost respect, and flattered him with gifts and garments. He said kindly, "O friend, that day I did not have you thrown out due to anger, but it was improper of you to occupy the seat reserved for the royal nobles. They felt insulted, and out of compulsion I had to throw you out. Please forgive me." 
The servant was already flattered with all the gifts, and he was full of joy, "Sir, I forgive you. You have not only expressed your regrets, but also honoured me with utmost respect". 

He ensured the merchant, "I will prove you how clever I am. I will have the king favourable towards you, like he was before". The servant went back home. 

Early next morning, when he started sweeping the floors of the palace, he waited till when the king was lying half-awake. 
When the opportunity came, he started sweeping around his bed and started mumbling, "Our king is crazy, he eats cucumber in the lavatory!" 
On hearing this, the king was taken aback. He got up angrily and shouted at the servant, "What nonsense do you talk about? Had you not been by royal servant, I would have punished you dearly. Have you ever seen me doing such thing yourself?" 

Once again the servant fell on his knees and prayed, "O Master, please forgive me if I said something improper. I was gambling all last night and didn't sleep. I feel drowsy and I don't know what I have been mumbling." 

The king thought to himself, "I have never eaten a cucumber in the lavatory. What he mumbled about me is ridiculously false. Surely then, what he mumbled about my trusted merchant the other morning must have been ridiculously false too. It was improper of me to mistreat the merchant." 
He wondered, "After all he has been so efficient in the whole administrative system, that without him it has become slack." 
Thus, having considered carefully, the king invited the merchant to the palace and flattered him with gifts, jewels and garments. He re-appointed the merchant to his previously held position, and favoured his services as before. 


Once upon a time, there was a sage called Deva Sharma who lived in a temple in the outskirts of a town. 

He was widely known and respected. People would visit him, and offer him with gifts, food, money and garments to seek his blessings. The gifts that he did not need for himself, he would sell off, and got rich on the proceeds. 
And by nature, he trusted nobody. 
He never trusted anybody. So, he kept all his money in a bag which he carried under his arm all the time. He would not part with the bag for a single moment. 
One day, a swindler came across the sage, and he became sure that the bag this holy man was so possessive of, must surely contain a lot of treasure. 

He planned on stealing the bag from the sage, but could not think of a way to do so. He thought, "I cannot make a hole in the temple wall, or jump over the high gates. But I can charm him with sweet words to accept me as his disciple." 

He wondered, "If I can stay with him as a disciple, I can win his confidence. When I get an opportunity, I will rob him, and leave this place." 
Having planned so, the swindler approached the holy man with reverence, "Om Namah Shivaya! (I bow before Lord Shiva, the God of Destruction)"
With these words, he fell on the sage's feet and said, "O Guruji, Please guide me to the right path of life. I am fed-up with life, and want to seek peace." 
The sage kindly replied, "My son, I will surely guide you. You are blessed because you have come to me to seek peace at this young age". 

This was the opportunity the swindler was seeking, and he at once touched the feet of the sage for blessings, "O Guruji, please accept me as your disciple. I will do whatever you ask me to do." 
The sage accepted the swindler as his disciple, but only on a condition. He said, "A holy man as me is recommended to spend the night alone without company. This helps me to meditate also. So, you will not be allowed to enter the temple at night. You will sleep in a hut at the gate of the temple." 
The swindler agreed, "I shall willingly serve your wishes in every way that you ask me to." 

In the evening, the sage initiated the rituals and formally took the swindler as his disciple. 
The swindler in return proved himself an obedient disciple. He messaged his hands and feet, wash his feet and helped him with all the rituals along with cleaning the temple. Although the sage was happy with his disciple, the swindler could not gain enough confidence for the sage to part with his bag when he was around. 
As days passed by, the swindler started getting frustrated, "He does not trust me enough to leave the bag with me. I can gain access to the bag if I kill him with a knife or feed him with poison." 
When he was thinking all this, the swindler saw a young boy visit the sage. He was the son of one of the sage's followers. He invited the sage, "O Guruji, I have come here personally to invite you to our house for the ceremony of sacred thread. Please accept the invitation to sanctify the ceremony with your kind presence." 

The sage accepted the invitation, and after some time started off for the town with the swindler. On the way, they came across a river, where the sage thought of relieving himself. He folded the bagful of money in his robe. He asked his disciple to look after it, "My child, Look after the robe until I return". 
This was the opportunity that the swindler was seeking all the while. As soon as the sage went behind the bushes, the swindler ran away with the bagful of money. 
When the sage returned, he did not find the disciple around but found his robe lying on the ground. Shocked and anxious, he peered inside only to find his bag of money was gone. 

At once he knew what had happened, and began to shout, "Oh. Where are you, you rascal. You have robbed me." 
The sage then started trailing the swindler's footsteps, but he reached town. He knew he will not be able to catch hold of him. He stayed the night in town to return empty-handed to his temple next morning. 


There lived a washerman's donkey, whose name was Uddhata. 
During the day, the donkey would carry the washerman's bags, but during the night, he was set free to eat the green grass in a nearby field. 
However, instead of grazing in the nearby fields, he crept into nearby farms and ate vegetables of his choice. Before day-break it would come back to the washerman's house. 
One night, the donkey met a jackal while wandering in a nearby farm. They became good friends, and started meeting every night. 
The donkey, being fat, was able to break the fences of the farms. While he ate on the vegetable, the jackal would enter through the broken fence and ate the poultry on the farm. Before day-break, they would return to their respective home to meet again next night. This continued for many days.
One night, the donkey said to the jackal, "Nephew, I feel like singing on nights like tonight, when the moon is full and beautiful. What Raaga (note combination) shall I sing?" 
The jackal cautioned, "Uncle, we are here to steal. Thieves should keep as quiet as possible. I may add, your voice is not as pleasant as you think, and sounds like conch being blown! Your voice can be heard over a long distance. It will awaken the farmers who are sleeping, and you will have us caught." 
The jackal assured, "Please uncle, eat as much as you like, and forget about singing!" 
This annoyed the donkey and he said, "Dear nephew, it is because you are a wild animal that you don't appreciate music. I shall sing a melodious Raaga. Wait till you hear it!" 
Observing that the donkey was determined to sing; the jackal did not risk staying there anymore. He said, "Uncle, if you must sing, please wait till I go outside the fence and keep a watch on the farmers." 
He ran outside the fence, and hid himself. Then, the donkey started to bray at the top of his voice. 
When the farmers heard the donkey braying, they could see easily in the fullmoon-lit farm that the donkey was in their farm. 
The angry farmers chased the donkey with sticks, and beat him so hard that he fell on the ground. Then, they tied a wooden mortar around his neck and let him go. 
When the donkey was returning through the broken fence, the jackal laughed, "Musical uncle! That was a great Raaga! I see the farmers have rewarded you with this necklace!" 




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