Stories From The Panchatantra Tales


Once upon a time, a king called Amarasakti ruled the city-state of Mahilaropyam in the south of India. He had three witless sons who became a matter of endless worry for him. Realizing that his sons had no interest in learning, the king summoned his ministers and said, “You know I am not happy with my sons. According to men of learning, an unborn son and a stillborn son are better than a son who is a dimwit. What good is a barren cow? A stupid son will bring dishonour to his father. How can I make them fit to be my successors? I turn to you for advice.”

One of the ministers suggested the name of Vishnu Sharman, a great scholar enjoying the respect of hundreds of his disciples. “He is the most competent person to tutor your children. Entrust them to his care and very soon you will see the change,” he said.

The king summoned Vishnu Sharman and pleaded with him, “Oh, venerable scholar, take pity on me and please train my sons into great scholars and I will make you the lord of hundred villages.”

Vishnu Sharman said, “Oh, king, listen to my pledge. Hundred villages do not tempt me to vend learning. Count six months from today. If I do not make your children great scholars, you can ask me to change my name.”

The king immediately called his sons and handed them to the care of the learned man. Sharman took them to his monastery where he started teaching them the five strategies (Panchatantra). Keeping his word, he finished the task the king entrusted him in six months. Since then, Panchatantra became popular all over the world as children's guide in solving problems of life.

The Great Panchatantra Tales

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