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Classic Indian Tales & Stories for Children

Discussion in 'Stories (Fiction)' started by vmur, Sep 5, 2007.

  1. vmur

    vmur Silver IL'ite

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    Rich in Real Sense...

    -Translated from a discourse given by Sant Shri Asaramji Bapu


    Once Ravindranath Tagore went to Japan. He gave discourses on his book Geetanjali for ten days from 6 PM to 7 PM everyday. An old man used to come to attend his discourses everyday. He used to garland him with roses very humbly. He used to reach there much before the discourse time and used to get up after Rabindranath Tagore used to get up - his behaviour was very down to earth. He used to listen to each and every word of the discourse and tried to apply that in his life. Dressed in very simple clothes, that old man was highly impressed with Ravindranath Tagore.

    After Ravindranath used to complete his discourse many people used to touch his feet to show their gratitude everyday.

    None of the people who came to attend the discourse ever thought how much treasure each one of them was taking with them after listening to the discourse on the reality of soul. All those who leave the discourse assembly after listening to just a few words from the discourses don't really know how disrespectful they are towards their own life. Lord Krishna attended to his master- Sandipani Rishi with gratitude. In order to attain the knowledge of self, Lord Rama devoted his precious time to attend to his master- Vashishtha Muni.

    That old man used to bow in front of Tagore everyday. After the last discourse was over people offered gold coins, money, fruits, flowers etc. at the feet of Tagore. That old man requested Tagore and said:

    "Please pay a visit to my home tomorrow. I'll be grateful."

    Rabindranath Tagore was already very pleased with the devotion and dedication of the old man and therefore accepted his invitation. The eyes of the old man were filled with tears of joy when Tagore accepted his invitation.

    Tagore told his assistant that the old man is very emotional and he should see that he does not spend beyond his capacity to make preparations and also he should give 200 Yen to his kids.

    The old man got a Rolls Royce car sharp at 3:45 PM at the door of Tagore's guest room. Tagore had told him that he would go to his house at four in the evening. They smoothly drove in that car to a huge mansion on top of a hill. The watchman saluted and opened the main gate. As they entered the gates Tagore saw many gentlemen and women welcoming his arrival. They took him inside. They made him sit on a chair made of gold with silken cushions. They served several rich eatables in 200 dishes made of gold and silver. The members of the family worshipped Tagore and sat at his feet.

    Ravindranath was astonished with all this. He said: "Where have you brought me? Take me to your home. Why have you brought me to this mansion?"

    The old man dressed in simple clothes said: "Oh Saint! This is my house. That Rolls Royce car is all mine and I have five more of these cars. There are two chairs made of gold. All these people who are bowing in front of you are my sons, grandsons and great grandsons. She is the mother of my sons. And they are my daughter-in-laws. Swamiji! I have two factories. "

    Oh! You are so rich and still you used to be dressed in such simple clothes when you used to come to attend the discourses."

    "Oh Saint! I believe that material richness and physical appearance do not reflect the real personality. It is foolish to feel proud of the money that cannot buy the richness of the soul. One never knows when that money will be lost. Also he who keeps guarding this material richness and does not bother about the precious richness of soul is really careless. The material richness has no use beyond this world.

    Oh Saint! What is the value of this material richness as compared to the richness of true knowledge and devotion? The former is just making me labour hard but the richness that you have given me is giving me the real happiness. It is the true knowledge of soul which is protecting me. I'm grateful to you for the rest of my life. I spent whole of my life in collecting that money which could not give me peace and happiness but each hour of yours showed me the light. I wore simple clothes because I was a beggar at your gate waiting to get the richness of soul from you. Oh Lord! I'm obliged!"

    Ravindranath's heart was filled with happiness. Where there is respect for true knowledge, there is respect for life. Even the material richness stays at places where there is respect for the words of saints.

    Ravindranath said: "Oh rich man! You are not attached to material richness and have respect for the richness of soul, that is why you are rich in real sense. I'm also grateful today. After meeting a devotee like you even I feel that my discourses served the purpose.

    People keep asking for material comforts and waste the precious time wherever I go. But you are wise. You do not ask for material wealth and still God is giving that to you. He sent me to quench your thirst for true knowledge."

    The one who is not attached to his wealth, but surrenders his ego at the feet of the great saints after listening to the divine words about the Great God who is the basis of the whole universe, is rich in real sense.
     
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  2. vmur

    vmur Silver IL'ite

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    The Serpent and 'Sanyasa'
    ------------------------------------------------------------

    A SERPENT turned suddenly religious and wanted to forsake its old evil ways. It went and consulted a saint as to what it should do. The saint advised it to plunge in deep meditation and resolve to do not the least harm to any living being however great the provocation. The serpent adopted the advice. It resolved never to cause any the least harm to any living being. It went near a temple and lay down in deep meditation on the grass by the side of the road.

    At first people ran away as soon as they saw the serpent, but, since it did not hiss or run after them, they began to become more courageous. By and by, children crowded round it saying, 'This is no serpent, this is some worthless reptile resembling a serpent, or, perhaps, it is an altogether old and decrepit serpent. Come, let us stone it to our hearts' content and pull it about.'

    Then the children threw lots of sharp pebbles on the devoted serpent whose body was bruised severely. Still the serpent kept to its resolve of absolute non-violence and did nothing.

    But the children did not stop here. They lost all iear of the serpent and beat it mercilessly with a stick, tied a rope round its head and dragged it about the streets shouting out, 'look, look' to the people in the houses. Not a single soul interfered on behalf of the serpent.

    At last, late in the evening, the children dragged the serpent to its original place near the temple and said, 'It is getting late to-day. We shall come again to-morrow.'

    The poor serpent lay half dead for some time. Then, after it had gained sufficient strength to crawl about, it went to the saint and said, 'See how many miseries I have to suffer if I never do the least harm toanybody !'

    'Why couldn't you hiss?' asked the saint. 'That will not be doing harm to anybody, but will, at the same time, save you from your tormentors. God does not forbid a hiss in self-defence.'

    The serpent went back. Early next morning, the children came with a thorny stick to the place where it was, shouting out, 'Where is the good old snake? Let us drag it along to-day and drive it with thorns.'

    'Ssss,' said the serpent raising its head. 'The serpent is hissing, the serpent is hissing!' said the children* and ran in panic flight one or two of them even tumbling down on the way. Never again did the children go anywhere near the serpent which was left undisturbed in its meditation thereafter.
     
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  3. vmur

    vmur Silver IL'ite

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    The King and the Sculptor
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    A mighty King of Kalinga constructed the great temple of Jagannath at the cost of many lakhs of rupees. After he finished it, he advertised for a sacred sculptor who would make an idol worthy of the temple. The reward for so doing it was put at one hundred thousand rupees and the punishment for failing in the enterprise was death. None offered himself for a long time.

    At last, one day, an old sculptor came and offered to do it on one condition. 'What is that?' asked the king.

    'Nobody except me should come into the temple for full thirty days under whatsoever pretext. If this condition is kept, I shall make an idol which will look just like the real Jagannatha, the Lord of the Universe.'

    The king was delighted. 'What an easy condition!' he said. 'I agree to it readily.'

    Then the sculptor shut himself up in the temple with provisions, etc., for a month and closed the massive gates. Day after day, the king and the citizens heard a thundering noise within the temple.

    'Why should he make so much noise?' asked the king of his courtiers on the tenth day. 'After all, he is making but one idol. Such a noise was not heard even when the whole temple was being constructed, and there were five thousand men working then, not one.'

    'It is strange,' replied the courtiers. 'Shall we go in and see?'

    'No,' said the king. 'For thirty days I have promised that none should enter the temple.' But the noise became louder and louder every day. The king became more and more anxious as to what was happening. On the twentieth day, he again asked the courtiers: 'Whatever could this be? This noise is becoming quite inexplicable.'

    'Perhaps the old fellow is breaking all the stone pillars,' suggested one courtier.

    'What!' replied the king. 'Has the devil come to destroy my good temple? What shall we do? I have promised not to enter the temple for thirty days.'

    'Sire,' said one courtier, 'let us go to the temple doors and call him out. There is no harm in that. We can then ascertain from him what all this noise means.'

    'Excellent,' said the king. 'Let us go at once.'

    So they all went to the temple doors and called out for the sculptor. Absolutely no answer came. The dreadful noise continued. The king asked his drummers and trumpeters to ply their instruments. Still, no answer; the noise inside only grew the louder. 'Let us enter,' said the minister.

    'No,' said the king. 'For thirty days I have promised not to enter the temple. If I do, the glorious image promised may be lost.'

    So the party returned to the palace. That night, the noise became even more thundering, and continued right through the night. Early in the morning, the king called his ministers and courtiers and asked, 'Whatever is this? Till now, the noise was heard only during the day, now it is heard at nights also.'

    'Sire,' replied a minister, 'it looks as if the whole city will fall down. Why not we go at once and break in?'

    'If we do,' said the king, 'the glorious image promised may be lost.'

    'But, sire,' replied the minister, 'if we don't, our glorious temple may be blown to atoms by this wretch. Even if we don't get the promised image, let us at least retain our realized temple.'

    The king's fears were thoroughly roused. 'True,' he said, 'perhaps the wretch is breaking everything in our temple. Otherwise, I can't see why he should make so much noise for making one idol. Besides, the noise is heard at nights. How can he work at night; without a light?'

    'No light is required, sire, for breaking pillars,' said the minister.

    'Ah,' said the king, 'that is the secret of the whole thing. Come, let us break the doors and enter. Even if the doors are damaged, let us save what we can of the rest of the temple.'

    Saying this, all went to the temple doors which were bolted from the inside. The king had them forced open, and entered into the temple with his ministers and courtiers. He saw the old sculptor stooping near a misshapened idol defective in limbs and ugly to look at.

    'Wretch,' said the king. 'Is this the idol of Jagannath, Lord of the Universe, which you promised? You shall be beheaded for this.'

    'Sire,' said the sculptor with a smile, 'your condition is not fulfilled. This is only the twenty-first day. O presumptuous man, couldn't you have held your soul in patience even for thirty days for seeing the real form of the Lord of the Universe?'

    The king felt ashamed of his conduct Nothing in the temple had been interfered with by the sculptor. He looked at the miserable idol and said, 'What can we do with this now?'

    'Put it in the temple and worship it,' said the sculptor. 'The Lord resides in the ugly as much as He does in the beautiful and in the defective limbed as in the well-limbed. His worshippers will realize this from this idol.' Saying this, the sculptor who was none else than the Lord of the Universe, disappeared.
     
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  4. vmur

    vmur Silver IL'ite

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    Own Address
    ------------------------------------------------

    A rich man went to Shri Ramakrishna Paramhansa and said: "I've heard that Godess Maha Kali herself comes to meet you."

    Shri Ramakrishna: "Yes, that is true."

    "When does she come?"

    "That is not fixed. Is there a particular time when the God and the saints pay a visit? They come at their own goodwill."

    "I want that you should help me a little. Whenever the Goddess Maha Kali comes at your place next time do send her to my house also."

    This person appeared very clever to Shri Ramakrishna therefore He said:
    "That's OK! But you give me your address."

    The richman wrote his address on a piece of paper and gave it to Shri Ramakrishna. Then Shri Ramakrishna said:
    "Is this your address?"

    "Yes Sir! This is definitely my address."

    "No, this is the address of your body. I can send the Mother (Goddess) only if you give me your address."

    "My address! The rich person was bewildered."

    Shri Ramakrishna smiling said: "How can a person invite the Mother (Goddess) without knowing his own address?"

    The rich person stepped back silently and went away.
    This is a fact! How can a person who thinks of the address of his body as his own address invite the God? But he who comes to know of his address does not need to invite God but he himself becomes God-like.
     
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  5. vmur

    vmur Silver IL'ite

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    The Man-killer
    ***************************************************************
    TWO friends were walking together one morning in a lonely place when they saw a philosopher running away in panic haste from a bush. They asked him why he was so frightened. He said, 'In yonder bush I saw the man-killer.' 'Do you mean a tiger?' asked the two frightened.

    'No,' replied the philosopher. 'It is far more dangerous than a tiger. I unearthed it when I was uprooting some herbs.' 'What is it?' asked the two. 'A heap of gold coins,' replied the philosopher. 'Where is it? Where is it?' asked both in the same breath. 'There, in that bush,' said the philosopher and went his way. The two friends rushed to the spot indicated and found a heap of gold coins.

    'What fools these philosophers are,' said one to the other, 'to call life-giving gold a man-killer !'

    'Well,' said the other, 'let ;us consider what we should do. It is unsafe to carry it into our village now in public daylight because the people will come to know of it. Let one of us remain here to watch the treasure while another goes to fetch the meals.'

    So it was agreed. One remained behind to guard the treasure while the other went to bring the meals.

    When his comrade had gone for bringing the meals, the man left behind thought thus : 'It is a pity that I was not alone this day. Now I have got to give half the gold to my friend, and the quantity of gold is not very much either. I have a big family and need all the gold. As soon as the fellow comes, I shall take him by surprise and kill him with my knife. Nobody will know about this and I shall get the whole gold.' With this he sharpened his knife and got ready.

    The other man meanwhile thought, 'Why should I give half the gold to this man? I am heavily in debt and have made no provision at all for old age. The other has no debts and has got some wealthy relations. I shall not give him half, that is certain. I shall take my meals and mix some deadly poison in the meals I carry for him. He will eat it and die, and nobody will be any the wiser for it. Thus I shall get all the gold.' So saying, the man took his meals and mixed some deadly poison in the meals meant for the other. Then, taking the poisoned meal, he went to the place where the treasure was.

    As soon as he approached the spot, the other rushed upon him unexpectedly with his knife and despatched him in no time. After committing this atrocious crime, he said, 'Poor fellow, half the gold was the cause of his death. Now, let me take my meals. I feel beastly hungry.' He unsuspectingly took the poisoned meals brought by his friend and in half an hour died an agonizing death. How true the philosopher's remark was!' said he with his dying breath.
     
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  6. Shanvy

    Shanvy IL Hall of Fame

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    Hi vmur,

    Nice stories. took a print out for the kids.
     
  7. sindmani

    sindmani Platinum IL'ite

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