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The Lion that Sprang to Life

(Story found in:  Franklin Edgerton's reconstruction Durgasimha's Kannada translation Purnabhadra's recension Hitopadesha by Narayana )

There lived four friends in a certain town. Although, all four of them were young Brahmins, one of them was a complete ignorant in matters of learning but had good common-sense. The other three were very learned in matters of the Holy Scriptures, but lacked common-sense.
 
One day, as the four friends were assembled together, they decided, "The scholarship that we have over the Holy Scriptures is no good, if we cannot use it to impress the king, or otherwise to earn money!"
 
They decided to travel, in order to earn money using their learnings. But the fourth friend was not learned, so they thought of leaving him behind. They agreed, "What good is common-sense? His talents would not help in earning money, let only three of us travel."
 
After much pleading by the fourth Brahmin, they decide, "It will not be correct to behave like this to a dear friend, Let us take him along with us! We should also share a part of our earnings with him!"
 
As decided, the four of them started travelling. As they were travelling through a jungle, they noticed the bones of a dead lion, lying on their way.
 
One of them said, "Let us start using our scholarship! We have a dead lion in front of us. Let us test our scholarship, and try to bring life into it!"
 
While the three Brahmins agreed, the fourth Brahmin did not like the idea. But his preference was ignored by the other three Brahmins, and they started holy rituals.
 
One of the Brahmins collected the bones of the lion and using his scholarship, created a skeleton of the lion.
 
Another Brahmin used his scholarship to cover the skeleton with flesh and skin.
 
As the lifeless lion stood in front of them, the third Brahmin initiated the rituals to put life into the lion.
 
The fourth Brahmin was alarmed, "O friends, if the lion comes to life, he will kill all of us! Please stop what you are doing!"
 
The Brahmins ridiculed him, "After reaching so far, are we going to waste our knowledge? You say so, because you are jealous of our scholarship!"
 
The fourth Brahmin knew there was no point in arguing with them. He pleaded, "Please give me a moment. I wish to climb a tree before you make use of you scholarship."
 
He started climbing up a big tree, and could see from above the third Brahmin use his scholarship, to put life into the lion.
 
As soon as the lion became lively, he noticed the three Brahmins, who were celebrating their successful implementation of their scholarship.
 
The lion immediately pounced on them, and killed them.
 
The fourth Brahmin could do nothing but wait till the lion had gone. Then, he climbed down the tree and returned home alone.
 
The wise indeed say:
Common sense is preferable to knowledge.
 
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