Once upon a time there were two students, Hemant and Prashant. Both of them studied under the same Guru and lived in the same hermitage.
One day the herd of cows didn’t return to the hermitage. Their Guru asked both of them to search for the cows and bring them back. He also handed a pouch of peas and grams to Prashant and asked them to share it among themselves whenever they feel hungry.
Thus both of them took the blessings of the Guru and went off in search of the cows. The searched for them everywhere including cottages, parks, homes, hermitages, and lakes but unfortunately couldn’t locate them.
Suddenly it started raining like cats and dogs. Both of them took shelter underneath a huge banyan tree. Prashant climbed to the top of the tree while Hemant stayed at the bottom. Prashant felt hungry and opened the pouch given to him by his Guru. He was so hungry that he ate everything without telling Hemant about it. After an hour when the rain subsided, he climbed down.
“I am feeling very hungry. Let’s open the pouch and eat the peas and grams,” said Hemant.
“I am so sorry but while I was climbing up the tree, the pouch dropped from my pocket and flowed away with the water,” said Prashant.
“Oh! I am feeling so hungry,” said Hemant.
“Sorry but we will have to wait until we return to our hermitage,” said Prashant.
Thus they continued their journey and found the herd of cows grazing the grass in the nearby village. Both of them returned to the hermitage along with the cows and ate plenty of food.
After several years when both of them grew up, Hemant being the prince of the kingdom became the king while Prashant being the son of a brahmin, became a priest in a temple.
One day Prashant’s village was flooded. He lost all his gold and life-savings and didn’t have enough money to even feed his family. Then he decided to pay a visit to his childhood friend, Hemant. Upon reaching his grand palace, he was shocked to see it’s grandeur. As soon as he met Hemant, he couldn’t control his tears and fell on his feet.
Hemant picked him up from the floor and hugged him. He asked Prashant to shift to his palace along with his family and spend the rest of his life over there. Prashant felt guilty and fainted. After regaining his senses, he saw Hemant sitting besides him and holding his hands.
Prashant couldn’t hold the truth any longer and confessed it in front of everyone.
“Do you remember the day when our Guru asked us to search for the herd of cows. He gave us a pouch of grams and peas so that we could eat it whenever we we feel hungry,” said Prashant with tears in his eyes.
“I do remember that incident my friend,” said Hemant.
“That day I lied to you that the pouch had flowed away with the water. Actually I felt so hungry that I ate it all,” said Prashant.
“I knew about it but didn’t say anything. Moreover you have got the results of your actions and have already suffered a lot,” said Hemant with a gentle smile across his face. “Being the king, it’s my duty to protect my subjects by all means and under all conditions. Thus, I will provide you a relief fund that will help you to come out of your financial crisis.”
Prashant hugged Hemant tightly and thanked him umpteenth times until he got well. Soon he returned to his home and lived happily ever after.
MORAL: ALWAYS TELL THE TRUTH