The Donkey and the Dog
In a certain jungle,there lived a kind-hearted donkey.He had to hide inside a cave.His mother had lost him in the jungle when he was very young.Every moment he lived in constant fear of death.The jungle abounded with ferocious wild creatures which were lusting for a taste of his flesh. He cried most of the time and prayed to Lord Ganesh:”My Lord…Was I born to live the life of a coward?” An ascetic who had allowed him room in the cave had told him to pray to the Lord to remove his fears..After day-long prayers and constant shedding of tears,he was fortunate to have the Lord’s blessings.In a dream of his,the Lord said to him,”My child…Don’t you know the secret? Whenever a lion or tiger charges at you,stand like a mighty rock and look the offender
in the face.Then very confidently advance towards him with steady steps without revealing the least sign of fear…” After the dream,the donkey cried profusely the tears of immense delight and joy…and said,”I want to see your beautiful form again..!” The Lord again appeared to him and said,”My little darling, I will appear to you whenever you think of me..” The donkey began to live a most beautiful life.
Whenever he saw a wild tiger trying to attack another innocent animal,he charged at that tiger most ferociously and at the speed of lightning.
The tiger would run for his life in search of cover.All the wild animals lived in constant fear of the donkey.None of them ever ventured into his locality.
One day when the donkey was wandering in the jungle,he saw a dog whose paws were bleeding from a run covering miles.He said to the dog,
“Friend,who made you suffer like this? ” The dog answered,”My ungrateful master. I chased him to the airport.He flew to his own country leaving me behind.Now I have nowhere to live.I am going to die.”
“You can never die…My sweet friend,” the donkey assured his friend.The treatment started. It was purely herbal.The dog walked into the donkey’s cave.But he didn’t enter it and began to tremble with fear. He saw a lion and a tiger in the cave. He shouted,”They will eat me up..! You are a cheat throwing me into the mouth of death…!” The donkey was perplexed.The tiger said,”Friend, we don’t eat flesh of other animals..We have been surviving on milk from our animal mothers in the forest. Just wait…You can see for yourself.”
The disbelieving dog stood outside the cave. After a short time,he saw some wild female buffaloes coming to the area in front of the cave.The tiger and the lion came out. The dog ran limping and hid behind a huge tree.He watched what was happening stealthily. The tiger and the lion were sucking milk from the udders of the mother buffaloes…! It was a most delightful sight for the dog. Then he came out of his hiding and a big mother buffalo told him to suck milk from her. The dog had his stomach full of milk soon.Then he had a good sleep in the company of the tiger and the lion.
After the dog got up,he asked the lion a question,
“Why don’t you eat meat? ”
“We two here don’t eat flesh because we want to be totally fearless.If you chase an animal for food,
that animal gets exceedingly scared and desperate.If we eat its flesh we also inherit its fear and cowardice….”
The dog refused to believe. The donkey said,”My friend,will you get an appeal tree if you sow the seed of a neem tree?”
“You are right,of course..I was once hungry and eat a neem berry..How bitter it was!” The dog thus agreed.
But the dog still protested,”But milk is also an animal product? It’s also non-veg? ”
The donkey their spiritual master said,”No my dear…Here mother buffaloes and other herbivore mothers eat plenty of grass and produce so
much milk that their babies can’t suck it all.These noble mammals offer their milk to us with the love of a mother..Do they get scared while giving their milk to our brothers like the lion and the lion here….?Meat-eating makes us physically strong and spiritually weak and bankrupt..Only cowards indulge in destructive activities and become vandals..”
The dog then asked another question:”What is the use of being physically strong?”
The donkey smiled and said,”God has not given you strength and courage to fight and bark at others?
You must use your strength and power to help and protect the weak?”
The dog had a hearty laugh and saluted the master.He lived there as a permanent member of their family..He was happy to survive on the milk of his animal mothers.He however badgered the noble donkey with questions about everything like sex,God,honesty,the universe and so on and on. The donkey never lost his calm and gave absolutely perfect answers to the dog.
Chita Ranjan Dash