The Story of Chakradhar - Panchatantra Stories

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In a town, there lived four young fellows, all of them were the sons of Brahmins. They were very friendly with each other. But they were utterly destitute, so they met to decide what to do something.

The four friends, decided to leave the town and go somewhere else. Then they gave up their home, their town, their friends and their relatives and started off on their travels. After some time, they came to Avanti. They bathed in the river Sipra and worshipped at Shiva’s temple.

As they were coming out, they met a Yogi, by the name. They bowed respectfully to him and accompanied him to his ashrama.

“When they arrived there, he asked them, “Who are you? Where do you come from? Where are you going? What is the purpose of your journey?”

“We are going where we can either make money or meet our death,” they said. “Now we have heard that you are gifted with wonderful powers. So please tell us some way of making money, whether it be by going into a cave, living in a funeral place by offering human sacrifices, or with the help of magic wicks. Please help us.”

“The sage ‘Bhairavanand took pity on them and gave them four wicks, made of cotton, one to each of them, and said, “Go in the direction of the Himalayas. When any one of you accidentally drops his wick, you will be sure to find a treasure hidden in that spot. Dig it out, collect the treasure and return home with it.”

The four Brahmins nodded their consent and started off towards the Himalayas.

‘After a few days’ journeys, one of them dropped his cotton wick. He dug where it had fallen and uncovered a treasure of copper.

He began to collect the copper and cried to the others, “Come on, you too take as much as you can carry and let’s go home. Why go any further!”

“Stupid!” replied the others. “However much copper you collect, you will still be poor. Let us go on.”

“Well,” he replied, “you can go on but I shall return home with this copper.”

He took as much copper as he could carry and returned home. The other three continued their journey.

After a few days, the second Brahmin dropped his cotton wick. He started digging and uncovered a treasure of silver.

He cried out in delight and said to the other two, “Come on, you too take as much as you can carry and let’s go home. Why go any further!”

“Stupid!” replied the others. “However much silver you collect, you’ll still be relatively poor. Besides, first, we had copper and now we have silver. Next time we are sure to find gold. So let us go on.”

“You can go on,” he replied, “but I shall return home with this silver.”

He collected as much silver as he could carry and returned home.

The other two continued their journey.
'After a few days, the third Brahmin dropped his cotton wick. He started digging in the ground and he uncovered a heap of gold.

“Come on,” he cried to his companion, “you too take as much gold as you can carry and let’s go home. Why go any further!”

“Stupid!” replied the other. “You don’t understand anything. First, it was copper, then silver and now gold. Next time, we’re sure to find diamonds and pearls, so that if we take only one, we shall never be poor again.

In any case, what is the point of carrying all this heavy load? Let us go on.”

“You can go on,” replied his friend, “but I shall stay here and watch over this gold. I’ll wait until you return.”

The fourth Brahmin continued his journey alone. When he had gone some way, the fourth Brahmin began to suffer from the tremendous heat and he felt very thirsty. Soon, he lost the way that the sage had directed him to follow, and began to go round and round in circles.

While he was wandering, he suddenly came across a nian, whose body was smeared all over with blood.

The man had a wheel whirling around his head. Quickly the Brahmin went over to him and said, “Who are you and what is this wheel around your head? Whoever you are, for goodness sake, tell me quickly where can I get water?”

‘Now, the minute he uttered these words, the wheel shifted from the other man to him and began to whirl around his own head. “Friend!” he cried. “What is this?”

“This wheel attached itself to my head in similar circumstances replied the man.

“But when shall I get rid of it?” wailed the Brahmin. “It pains me beyond endurance!”

“Only when someone carrying a magic wick comes here and speaks to you,” replied the man, “will this wheel leave you and attach itself to him.”

“How long have you been here?” asked the Brahmin. “By way of reply, the man asked him, “Who is ruling the earth now?”

“Veenavaunsha,” replied the Brahmin. “I cannot guess accurately when I came here,” said the man. “But I remember that it was in the reign of King Ram that I was desperate with poverty. I managed to procure a magic wick and in due course, ended up here. I saw a man with a wheel whirling around his head. I asked him the same questions you asked me and, in the same way, the wheel left him and attached itself to me.”

“But friend,” said the Brahmin, “how did you manage to get food and water, with a wheel whirling around your head all the time?”

“My dear fellow,” replied the man, “anyone who comes here is free from hunger, thirst, old age and death, but he suffers pain all the time, as you do now. The God Of Money afraid that his treasure would be stolen, prepared this device and ever since no one dared approach this place, except with the help of a magic wick. Now, wish you good luck I am going home.”

With these words, the man took his leave and left the Brahmin alone:

When the Brahmin s friend, whose name was suvaranasiddhi, found that he was taking so long to return, he followed his footprints and finally arrived at the same place.

He found his friend drenched in blood, his eyes flooding with tears and a wheel whirling around his head.

“Friend,” he said, “what has happened?”

“It’s all the result of fate being against me!” replied Chakradhar.

He told him the whole story of the whirling wheel. When he had finished, his friend said, “Brother, you are a good scholar, but you lack common sense. You would not listen to my good advice when I said, ‘Let’s pick up the gold and go home.’ You wanted pearls and diamonds. Well, it’s true what they say - Commonsense is superior to scholarship. The scholars who were devoid of commonsense put life into the lion and died as a result.”

“How was that?” asked Chakradhar. Suvaranasiddhi told this story. THE BRAHMINS AND THE LION

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