Don’t showoff…

Read the previous part here…

“So tell me, o King, who among the four was guilty of bringing the lion to life? Who made the worst mistake of all?

Remember, if you know the answer, and don’t tell me the truth, your head will burst into a hundred pieces!

Illustration by the renowned Karatholuvu Chandrasekaran Shivashankaran

इति वेतालाच् छ्रुत्वा राजा सो ऽचिन्तयद् विमौनस्य ।
इच्छति गन्तुम् अयं मे यात्व् आनेष्याम्य् अमुं भूयः ॥ १२,२९.४७ ॥

इति हृदि निश्चित्य स तं महीपतिः प्रत्युवाच वेतालम् ।
यस् तस्य जीवदायी सिंहस्य स पापभाक् तेषु ॥ १२,२९.४८ ॥

प्राणिविशेषम् अबुद्ध्वा मांसत्वग्लोमगात्रनिर्माणम् ।
युक्तिबलात् तु कृतं यैस् तेषां दोषो ऽस्ति नाज्ञानात् ॥ १२,२९.४९ ॥

येन तु सिंहाकारं दृष्ट्वा विद्याप्रकाशनोत्केन ।
प्राणास् तस्य वितीर्णास् तेन कृता ब्रह्महत्यास् ताः ॥ १२,२९.५० ॥

एतत् स राज्ञो वचनं निशम्य
स्वधाम वेतालवरो जगाम ।
तस्यांसतस् तत् पुन एव मायी
राजापि तं सो ऽनुससार भूयः ॥ १२,२९.५१ ॥

When King Vikram heard this, he thought to himself…

“This Vetāla wants me to break my silence once again, so that he can escape. Well, there is not much I can do about this, except that I go and fetch him again!”

Having thought this way, he replied…

“He who gave life to the lion is the sinner, and committed the worst mistake of all.”

“The brothers who caused the flesh, the skin, the hair and the limbs to be produced on that bone were ignorant of the type of animal that they were creating, and so one cannot blame them on the basis of such ignorance.”

“The fourth however, saw that the result was a body of a lion. He knew the dangers of making that lion come to life…”

“Yet, just because he wanted to show off his skills, he made it to come alive, and to disastrous consequences. Not only did he kill the others, but he too died in the process.”

Hence, the mistake that he committed, was the gravest.”

As the king uttered these words, the Vetāla flew off his shoulder, laughing. And King Vikram once more started to walk towards the banyan tree, determined to fetch him. 

to be continued…