Friday, 18 May 2012

THE MONKEY AND THE BELL FROM HITOPADESHA TALESOF INDIA

This is another nice story from the collection of Hitopadesha Tales/ Stories. Once upon a time, there lived a robber in a village. One day, he stole a temple bell and ran towards the forest. A Tiger heard the jingle of the bell and became curious to locate the sound. As soon as, he saw the robber, he jumped upon him and killed him at once. The bell fell on the ground. After a few days, a group of monkeys passed through that way. They spotted the bell and carried it to their home.

They found the jingle of the bell very interesting. Subsequently every one of them became very fond of the bell and started playing with it. After every tiring day, in the night monkeys would sit on the top of the hill in the forest and enjoy the melodious sound of the bell. The people of the village were afraid of the noise. Soon afterwards, the people from the village found the body of the robber and proclaimed, “Certainly there is an evil spirit around here that kills human beings and then rings the bell to celebrate”.

When the people heard this, they thought that some demon was haunting their village. Without giving any second thought, People started leaving the city in terror. There was an intelligent and bold woman in that village. She thought to herself, “I don’t believe that some demon is haunting this village. I will find out that who is ringing the bell”. At late night, she went into the forest bravely and found that a group of monkeys were playing about and ringing the bell.

Now as the woman knew the secret about the bell, she went to the King and said, “Your Majesty! I'm sure this evil spirit can be conquered by worshipping the Gods. But this will cost money. If you can grant me some money, I will kill the demon and bring happiness to the village”. The King, who was too afraid to get rid of the demon, granted the request of the woman.

On receiving the money, the woman bought some peas, groundnuts and fruits. She arranged a worship of the Gods. She made a circle on the ground, placed all the eatables and started worshipping the Gods. After the ritual, she picked up all the eatables and went into the forest. She placed the fruits and other things under a tree near the hill. She kept a watch of the monkeys from a distance.

As and when the monkeys saw the eatables, they dropped the bell just as the old woman had expected out of them. They ran to pick the eatables. The woman picked up the bell quickly and rushed towards the village. She gave the bell in the court of the King. The King was happy with the brave woman and everyone in the village admired her bravery. The pleased King rewarded the woman for her bravery. Since that day, there was no noise and people lived happily ever after.

Moral: One must not be afraid of trifles. Intelligence and courage succeed against all odds.

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