Tuesday, 22 March 2016

A little bird in partnership with God

It is said that this story was narrated by Sri Buddha.

It happens in a wild forest. Many animals and birds live there peacefully. When I say peacefully, the wild world is always ruled by jungle laws. Still life there is comfortable.

There comes the summer. Birds and animals fear summer. Summer is hot and dry. Dry means, it has no rain and moist. It draws up water from their rivers and lakes. Usually they do not feel short of food, but water is scarce in summer. 

It is dangerous to go for water in some areas of the forest. They are afraid of wild animals stronger than them and men with weapons. They know that men are not stronger than them, but their weapons are deadly. That’s why animals and wild birds attack men from the back. It is the law of their existence. When it came to existence, anything is wild law.

Summer has another blow in its sheath. Even in the hot sun, trees stand high to the sky to give shelter to the forest and its inhabitances. Trees hold up their head and fight against the heat. Their weapon is water drops that they throw up and around from their green leaves. Water has to come from the earth via their roots. That is why they grow long and winding roots deep into the earth. But what it the earth fails to give them sufficient water. They fail like soldiers without ammunition. They stand naked to the scratching fire of the summer sun. Still they stand around to protect their forest.

This cannot go long. If rain fails, trees get hot and hot and finally catch fire. It is called wild fire. It spread quick and wide. Air is heated and further produces wild wind. Wind takes the fire to more trees. Finally the forest stands burning. Only rain can stop the fire and save the forest. God used to interfere for the sake of His creatures. Forest survives because of God and His mercy. God has much rain in His store. He can open up his treasury and pour down rain on the forest and save the trees, animals and birds. He has done it many times and will do it again, till He forgets all about the earth. All animals and birds and all other inhabitants, small and big know this wild law. They look up in times of danger and cry for help. God always answer.

Such a wild fire is the background of this story.

All birds, animals, worms, reptiles and trees lifted their eyes to God and cried for rain. The fire was spreading wider. They prayed and prayed. The heat of the fire increased more. They took their belongings and ran for life, away from the fire into the next forest. All were running, creeping and flying.

A small bird, black in color cried for rain to God. He closed his eyes, with shivering lips and in quivering voice he said his prayers. Then he opened his eyes, looked at the yellow flames of the fire. The wind is taking it to more trees. He flew over the fire. It is hot like hell. It is dangerous to fly near it.

He flew to a lake nearby. The lake had nothing much to offer. Water in the lake functioned as life blood of the forest. But now the lake was breathing its last. It cannot refill itself. It is like no man can refill his body with a new life. Still the lake was willing to offer whatever it has to save its dear forest.

The bird flew low to the lake. He talked one or two words with the lake. He picked up little water in its beak and flew high towards the wild fire. He went as far as he could. He understood that no water from its beak may fall on the fire. Still he threw all water he had in his beak towards the fire. Then he turned again to the lake for another take.

A big bird came that way. He was in a hurry to fly away to another safe place. He noticed what the small bird was doing. ‘How foolish is this little boy’, he thought. He shouted to the small bird: “Hey, there! What a crazy thing you are doing. No water from your beak can quench the fire. If you want to do something to save the forest, come with me. We are going to another forest and pray to God to send rain.”

The little bird, stopped, looked up at the big bird and replied: “I have prayed to God for rain. I am sure that He loves the forest and will save His creatures. I also feel that I should partner with God in saving the forest. I am doing a small thing, may not stop the fire. But I am working in partnership with God.”

Then he went down to the lake for another beak of water.

Professor Jacob Abraham

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