Very few must be aware that 21st September is observed as the world gratitude day. I got to know it through one of my friends on Twitter who was randomly thanking everyone and expressing her gratitude. This time, I have decided to talk about this with the help of a fable we all must have been aware of.
In ancient India, there was a man named Gautama. He did all kind of atrocities and sins. He had a bad company. Everyone stayed away from him because of his wrong deeds. He was widely hated by everyone. He used to rob from every home – money, food and clothes and thus gained the hatred of people. He never used to listen to anyone.
One day a wise sage saw him. He saw something in him. He approached him and sat next to him.
“Son, do you know what you are doing ?” The sage asked Gautama.
“No,” Gautama replied.
“You are born to be a great man. Kindly do not fall prey to things that you shouldn’t do.” The sage said and continued, ” you were born to rule this world. Such kind of things from you don’t amuse.”
“What do I do? I got nothing and no one,” Gautama replied.
“Distract yourself from all that you are doing. Wrong things that you do today will haunt you in future.” The Sage said.
“Thank you , Baba!” Gautama said, “You’ve opened my eyes.”
He listened to the Baba’s word carefully. He started contemplated about how his life had veered out. He had been killing people and looting them for his own gains but never thought about them for even one second.
Shattered and hopeless, he walked to an unknown destination. He didn’t know where to go and what to do. He was totally devastated and lost. He sat under a Banyan tree. He was tired of walking and thirsty. He sat broken and tears rolled streamed from his eyes. A sagacious Cuckoo was watching everything from the branch of the tree. It was a special bird. Through years of efforts, it was blessed with the power to talk.
The Cuckoo went to him and offered some water to quench his thirst.
“What happened to you?” The Cuckoo asked Gautama.
“Why so serious and sad?” It continued.
Through weak eyes , he looked at the Cuckoo. He was clearly ashen and looked wan.
“I got no one in my life and I don’t know what to do. I don’t have money in my life to fend for myself.” Gautama retorted.
The Cuckoo carefully listened to his words and asked, ” So what is your need?”
“I want money so that I can buy some food right now and fend for myself. ” Gautama said.
The Cuckoo sat on his shoulder and said,
” There are 4 ways to earn money in life.
First is through Education.”
“I’ve never visited school even once,”Gautam replied.
“Second is through Family.” The Cuckoo replied.
“I got no one whom I could call my own. I don’t have a family.” He replied.
“Third is through Luck.” The bird replied.
“If I were lucky then I don’t think I would be suffering like this,” he said.
“Last is through friends.” The Cuckoo said.
“Unfortunately ,none of my friends could help me and they all are wrongdoers.” A visibly upset Gautama said.
” Don’t worry I’m your friend now,” the Cuckoo said and smiled at him.
“I know a King from the neighbouring Kingdom. He is a close friend of mine. ” The Cuckoo said and continued, ” I will write a note and all you have to do is just give it to the King.”
The Cuckoo smiled at Gautama and said, “My name is Rajdharma.”
Gautama had heard a lot about Rajdharma, the talking bird. He thanked the bird. He had to walk 120 km to reach the Village. During those days, there was no carts or vehicles so the only option left was to walk. So he walked and one day later he reached the Kings castle. The guard informed the King that Rajdharma had sent a man to meet him. The king was pleased to meet his friend Rajdharma’s messenger.
He read the note written by Rajdharma, the Cuckoo and gave Golds, Silvers and Diamonds to Gautama. Gautama was extremely happy.
He carried the heavy sack containing the precious jewels and walked back to the tree. He reached there after one day but he was very hungry. He had everything now but no food. And it was cold!
He came and slept under the tree. He could feel rats rumbling inside his stomach because of hunger. Rajdharma, the Cuckoo was watching everything.
The Cuckoo created a bonfire for him so that he could feel warm. After this, the Cuckoo went to sleep.
Gautama was feeling hungry. He saw that Rajdharma, the Cuckoo was sleeping peacefully. He picked it from the branch and pulled out its feathers and legs and roasted it on the bonfire.
He ate the Cuckoo to fill his hunger. He had no signs of repent.
Days passed and the king was worried about his friend Rajdharma, the Cuckoo. He sent out his guards to enquire about him and got the news that Gautama had eaten his friend.
The king called Gautama and asked him, ” how come you do this to someone who only helped you?”
Gautama had no answers.
“Our Kingdom never forgives anyone who forgets gratitude.” The king said and continued, “we are feeling ashamed to have helped you.”
He took back all the jewels he gifted Gautama.
Later he asked his guards to throw Gautama in the cage containing the packs of Wolves.
Gautama died a miserable death.
Through this story, I want to emphasise the fact that ways be thankful to anyone who has helped you. Never forget gratitude come what may.
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