Jataka Tales : The Jackal Saved Lion
Once upon a time there was a lion in a jungle. Once when he had gone to drink water in a stream, his feet got stuck into the wet slushy mud of the stream and he could not get out. He had to lie without food for days like that as he saw no help coming by.
One day, a kind jackal came by and the jackal dug a way out from the sand and with the extra force from the lion helped him get out of the slush and set him free.
The lion was grateful for this and thanked the jackal for the saving of his life. He then offered the jackal to live close to him and also promised to feed him whenever he caught food.
So the jackal started living with the lion and they shared the hunt.
Soon they expanded their families and had cubs and kid jackals.
After a long time, the lioness, lady of the lion’s house, grew tired of the friendship of the jackal and her master. She did not know that only the jackal saved lion. She conveyed the message to her cubs who conveyed the message to the jackal kids who complained to the lady jackal. The lady jackal told of this to her husband. The jackal went to the lion, and told him that if he did not want the jackal to stay with him, he should have told him long time back.
The lion was surprised at this and assured the jackal that no such ill-feelings existed between the lion and the jackal and assured him that he would talk to the lioness.
But the wise jackal then said, “Friend, I know you are sincere. But our families may not exactly reciprocate the same level of friendship. So let us stay apart, and meet often as friends and even may go for killing together. But it is better if our family stays apart from yours.”
The lion agreed to this and the two families parted as friends and the jackal and the lion were still close friends and used to go for kills together.
Moral of the Story: Don’t expect your family to reciprocate the same level of friendship you have with someone.
Source: English Jataka