Once upon a time there was a forest by a
city. The forest was the home of many
animals. Among them was a jackal. There
were many other jackals who belonged to
the same pack but the others moved
around together and seldom left the
Now this particular jackal was more
adventurous and often strayed into the
village in search of food. He had already tasted the wonderful
things the human beings were fond of cooking and went to look for
some whenever he could. It was not a particularly easy thing to do.
He k that the human beings would give him a sound beating if
he were caught. Besides, the city was full of dogs and the jackal
was afraid of them. They were sure to kill him or hurt him badly if
they ever managed to catch him. But the lure of food proved too
strong for him and the jackal went to the city again and again.
One day just as he was about to enter a big house he heard the
sound of loud barking. To his horror he saw a group of dogs running
towards the house. They looked fierce and the jackal was soon
trembling in fear. He ran willy-nilly and tumbled right inside a tub
of blue dye. The dogs missed him and ran the other way. By the
time the jackal climbed out of the tub he was dyed blue from head Purna Vidya 11
to foot. He looked really strange and totally unlike any other animal.
The jackal was very happy. "No one will be able to recognize me
now" he told himself, "I can easily fool everyone in the forest."
The jackal was quite right. When he entered the forest once again
everyone was surprised to see such a strange animal. There had
never seen any animal of that color before.
"Who are you?" the smaller animals asked him. "Where have you
come from?" asked the mighty lion with a frown. "Did anyone send
you?" asked the fierce tiger giving him a keen look.
"Lord Indra, king of heaven, has sent me to look after you" said
the blue jackal in a grand voice, "I'll be your king from now on."
"But I have always been the king of the forest" protested the
mighty lion.
"All that must change now as I am the king" said the blue jackal
enjoying himself, "all of you must serve me and do exactly as I tell
"What if we don't?" asked the tiger.
"Then Lord Indra will destroy the entire forest and all of you with
it" said the blue jackal.
The animals did not dare to say anything more.
"What would you like us to do?" they asked the blue jackal.
"Bring me lots of food, to start with" said the blue jackal promptly,
"I am hungry and can't take care of you unless I am properly
looked after." Purna Vidya 12
The animals rushed off in different directions. Before long they
were back with lots of food. They took care to bring whatever they
could find and offered the best of everything to the blue jackal.
The jackal was happy and had his fill. Needless to say, there was
far more food than he could eat. "Now all of you can eat up the
rest of the food" he said, "But mind you, you must bring me fresh
food every day."
The animals promised to serve him faithfully. He assigned special
duties to all the animals but banished the pack of jackals from the
forest because he was afraid they might recognize him some day.
The blue jackal had a wonderful time after that. He did not need
to step out of the forest or risk confronting the dogs. He now got
the best of everything without doing anything at all. He laughed by
himself whenever he remembered how cleverly he had tricked the
lot including the tiger, the mighty elephant and the lion who
considered themselves too grand for words. But one day something
unexpected happened. The banished pack of jackals was roaming
just outside the forest and howled together loudly. The blue jackal
forgot himself and joined in the howling just as he used to do
The other animals were present when it happened and stared at
him incredulously. Here was their mighty blue king howling just like
a jackal! So he was a jackal after all and not a strange creature
sent from heaven! He had merely colored himself somehow and had
been fooling them all these days! Fooling the lion king, the fierce
tiger and mighty elephant!
Well, they were not going to be fooled any longer. They fell upon
the blue jackal and killed him before he could explain or protest.
And that was the end of the blue jackal's reign as king!