In a deep and dense jungle, there lived an elephant. He was the leader of all the elephants in that jungle. Frequently fire used to break out because of the hot weather. One day the leader of the elephants had an idea which could save himself and other animals from a big fire. He chose a sizeable area of land, removed all the trees and shrubs from there and cleared the land completely. He thought that when the fire broke out, it would not reach the central point of this flat and barren land , and so it was safe.
Now it so happened that a fire did break out in that forest. The leader of the elephants hurriedly came to this cleared land and stood there to save himself from the fire. Other animals also came and stood around him. Soon the whole place was full of all different types of animals. The intensity of the fire was severe and the whole forest started burning. There was a little rabbit in the forest. The rabbit tried to save his own life by running around the piece of land. He could see that all the animals were keeping away from the fire by standing in this place. The rabbit also tried to find a spot to stand on but there was none.
Meanwhile the leader of the elephants raised one
of his legs because it was itching. When he did so, the little rabbit
realised that this was a place where he could stand and so he stood
there. The leader of the elephants on seeing this could not put his
foot down, if he did so the little rabbit would have been crushed
to death. So he had to keep one leg up all the time, as the elephant
did not want the rabbit to die under his foot. He was a kind elephant.
He wanted the little rabbit to live so he kept his foot raised all
the time and protected the little rabbit. The fire raged for almost
three days and during this time all the animals stayed on this flat
land. The elephant continued to keep his foot high in the air, saving
the little rabbit.
When the fire was over, all the animals went away. The rabbit saw that the elephant was in great pain. The elephant's foot was completely stiff and when he tried to put his foot on the ground, he could not do so. He just fell to the ground in pain. However, he had no bad feelings towards the little rabbit. The elephant really knew what ahimsa (non-violence) was.
MORAL OF THE STORY:
We should all be careful not to step and crush any small insects when walking.