“We get back what we give to others.”
Today, this thought has been playing on my head. And, each time the thought returns to play, it leaves me a lot relieved – lighter, happier and peaceful.
What I give to others… I, certainly, know.
If I consciously try to be kind, just and loving to them, will it help me? What if, the other person doesn’t reciprocate? What if, he behaves towards me in an unkind, unfair and cruel way?
And, let me see it in its opposite way too: What if I consciously try to be unkind, unfair and cruel to the other person? What will I get in return?
Which is better: to be consciously kind, just and loving to my fellow-being, or, to be unkind, unfair and vindictive?
There is a popular Jataka Tale. Each time, I recall it, it makes me smile…
To be kind, just and loving to my fellow-being is my ‘duty’…, my dharma, my religion…
When he doesn’t reciprocate – tries to be unkind, unfair and cruel to me - to punish him, is not my duty… It is not my dharma, my religion.
The day is not very far when he will be meted out what he deserves for his misdeeds. Yes, in Life, there is this divine justice!
The legend has it that, long time ago, Lord Buddha was born in the form of a buffalo. So, by his very nature, this buffalo was very kind, tolerant and loving to every creature around him. No matter how unkind and unloving others behaved towards him, the buffalo did not act towards them with anger, hatred and revenge. Yes, others mistook this mild and kind nature of the buffalo for weakness, and, accordingly, some of them tried to bully him, harass and hurt him, quite often.
Particularly the monkey who lived on the tree right over the buffalo’s head!
This monkey gave a hell lot of trouble to our kind buffalo. Whenever the buffalo slept quietly in the shade of the tree, the monkey would jump on his back with a loud thud… He would hold buffalo’s horns and start pulling them harder and harder till it pained… He would pull and twist buffalo’s tail hurting him in the process. This would go on and on… and, still, the kind buffalo would not react or punish the insensitive monkey.
The Spirit in the tree, Yaksha, could no longer see this. “You are a huge animal, Buffalo,” Yaksha said to the buffalo, “why do you take all this lying down? Why can’t you punish the mad monkey, give him what he deserves?”
“No sir, I will not punish him,” replied the gentle buffalo. “But, let me tell you the day is not very far when some one will,” he added.
Soon, one day, when the kind buffalo wasn’t there, a wild buffalo, of a giant size, had come and stood under the same tree. The monkey, without realizing who he was – and, as he always did – jumped from the tree and settled on the wild buffalo’s back with a loud, nasty thud! No sooner had the monkey done that than the wild, fierce buffalo flung him hard on the ground, and, even before the monkey could come into his senses, the angry buffalo kept charging at him with his deadly horns, till the breath and the madness, both, went completely out of the monkey’s heart!
Yes, the day had come to give back to the monkey what he really deserved for all his deeds!
And yes, in Life, “We get back
what we give to others!”
But, to punish others,
is not my ‘dharma’!
Pics.: Vivek D'Cunha