There once lived a proud stag. While wandering in the forest, he came upon a pond. He stopped there to drink water in order to quench his thirst. As he bent down, he saw his own reflection in the water. “How beautiful are my antlers!” he thought, admiring its long curves.
As the stag was admiring his antlers, he suddenly noticed his legs. “Oh! Look at my skinny legs. I cannot believe God has given me both beautiful antlers and such ugly legs,” he thought. The proud stag now felt ashamed of his legs. His pride vanished. “These ugly legs are no match for my beautiful antlers,” he thought. Just then the stag heard the roar of a lion. When he turned around he saw a lion charging at him. “Oh no!,” screamed the stag and ran as fast as he could.
The stag felt the lion’s breath close to him, “I must get into the densest part of the forest where there are many branches. The lion will not be able to catch me in that part of the forest,” thought the stag. So, with this thought in mind, the stag ran into an area where there were many bushes and branches. Soon the stag had left the lion far behind.
“Ah, I outsmarted the lion,” thought the stag proudly. But all of a sudden his antlers got entangled between the trunks of two trees standing close to each other.
“Aaarghh!” cried the stag, as he had to stop at once. The more he tried to free himself, the more difficult it became. As the stag was struggling to get free, the lion came nearer and nearer.
“How I praised my horns and cursed my legs. Now I know the real value of my legs which almost took me to safety,” wailed the stag. The lion pounced on the stag and killed him. That was the end of the proud stag.
You must be wondering why I am bothering to tell you this Aesop’s fable you must have heard in Kindergarten…!?! The reason to reiterate this story is its relevance in the recent difficult, disturbing and volatile (or intolerant?) times…! The morale of the stories hold true now than ever that 'to survive and make progress one should focus on its inner strengths than outward appearance…!'
Let's learn this lesson on the day celebrated as the dawn of humanity... Chaitra Shuddha Pratipada!