Once upon a time, there was a forest. That forest contained many animals. There lived a hunter. He loved hunting rabbits, because he loved the rabbit meat.
Many a time he was advised by his friends to give up hunting in general and hunting the rabbits in particular. “You should stop being cruel to animals,” said his friends. “I know what I am doing. Please do not advise me,” shouted the hunter, annoyed.
One sunny afternoon, the hunter was busy preparing to go on another hunting expedition. Just then a saint happened to pass by. Seeing the hunter holding a rope, a spear, a knife and a net, the saint said to the hunter, “It seems to me you are going to catch an animal.”
“Yes, I am going to catch a rabbit in the forest,” replied the hunter.
“But what will you do with the rabbit?” asked the saint.
“I will cut its throat, roast it and eat it up. Will you stop me?” asked the hunter.
The raw behaviour of the hunter irritated the saint. “No, my son! I only wanted to tell you that killing innocent animals is a sin. All sinners get punished some day in their lives,” said the humble saint.
The hunter yelled back at the saint, “let me see who comes to punish me.” And he left in anger. The saint smiled and sat there in meditation.
After some time, the hunter was back. He was holding a rabbit by its ears. “Ha! Ha! See I have caught my prey. Now I will cut its throat and roast it right in front of you. No one will come to punish me,” he said to the still meditating saint. Just as the hunter was about to raise his knife, it slipped out of his hand and landed on his foot. “Yieee!” he screamed, letting go of the rabbit. The rabbit ran away.
The hunter’s foot was badly cut. He was in pain. It was bleeding profusely. But the hunter knew that what happened was nothing but the divine justice. “I have now realized how cruel and stubborn I have been. I will give up hunting completely,” said the hunter to the saint.
The hunter thanked the saint for the wise words and went on his way. The saint was happy that the hunter gave up hunting. The hunter became a civilized man and lived a righteous life.
Moral of the story: It’s important to listen to wise advice, be cautious about your deeds and avoid arrogance.
Compiled by Alvin Mugisha, a 13-year-old, primary six pupil