Tree that Acted Like a Hunter
a time, there was an antelope who lived in the deep forest. He
ate the fruits that fell from the trees. There was one tree that
had become his favorite.
In the same
area there was a hunter who captured and killed antelopes and
deer. He put down fruit as bait under a tree. Then he waited,
hiding in the branches above. He held a rope noose hanging down
to the ground around the fruits. When an animal ate the fruit,
the hunter tightened the noose and caught him.
morning the antelope came to his favorite tree in search of fruits
to eat. He did not see that the hunter was hiding in it, with
his noose-trap ready. Even though he was hungry, the antelope
was very careful. He was on the lookout for any possible danger.
He saw the delicious looking ripe fruits at the foot of his favorite
tree. He wondered why no animal had yet eaten any, and so he was
afraid something was wrong.
hunter saw the antelope approaching from a distance. Seeing him
stop and take great care, he was afraid he would not be able to
trap him. He was so anxious that he began throwing fruits in the
direction of the antelope, trying to lure him into coming closer.
But this was
a pretty smart antelope. He knew that fruits only fall straight
down when they fall from trees. Since these fruits were flying
towards him, he knew there was danger. So he examined the tree
itself very carefully, and saw the hunter in the branches. However,
he pretended not to see him.
He spoke in
the direction of the tree. "Oh my dear fruit tree, you used
to give me your fruits by letting them fall straight down to the
ground. Now, throwing them towards me, you do not act at all like
a tree! Since you have changed your habits, I too will change
mine. I will get my fruits from a different tree from now on,
one that still acts like a tree!"
realized his mistake and saw that the antelope had outsmarted
him. This angered him and he yelled out, "You may escape
me this time, you clever antelope, but I'll get you next time
realized that, by getting so angry, the hunter had given himself
away a second time. So he spoke in the direction of the tree again.
"Not only don't you act like a tree, but you act like a hunter!
You foolish humans, who live by killing animals. You do not understand
that killing the innocent brings harm also to you, both in this
life and by rebirth in a hell world. It is clear that we antelopes
are far wiser than you. We eat fruits, we remain innocent of killing
others, and we avoid the harmful results."
the careful antelope leaped into the thick forest and was gone.
moral is: The wise remain innocent.