Friday Fable. Aesop’s “The Lioness and the Bear”*

Posted by jlubans on January 26, 2018

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Caption: Illustration by Percy J. Billinghurst. 1900.

“There was a lion who had two cubs. She went out hunting and a certain hunter came and killed the cubs and went off with their skins.
When she saw this, the lioness was sad and wept bitterly.
A bear, seeing her sadness, came to her and said, ‘Why are you sad?’
She answered, ‘Because a hunter killed (my) cubs.’
The bear said, ‘Don't be sad; stop weeping.
The fact is that you have suffered what you have done to others. Tell me, what have you been eating all these years?’
The lioness replied, ‘The flesh of animals.’
The bear said, ‘Who gave the food to you?’ And she said, ‘I caught my own food.’
And the bear said, ‘And the animals that you caught, did they have parents?’
And she said, ‘They did.’
The bear said, ‘They grieved for their children as you now do for yours, and you yourself have now suffered just as you did to others.’
Hearing these things, the lioness was silent, and she repented: she stopped eating meat, and began to munch on fruits instead.

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The moral is an unlikely one.
The lion’s destiny is that of a carnivore, not of a herbivore.
Still, the story makes a point. When we do harm to others, harm may come to us. Don’t be surprised if it does, it’s only karma, as they say.
So, keep the Golden Rule in mind in all affairs, small and large.

*Online source: Bestiaria Latina: Mille Fabulae et Una.

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My book, Fables for Leaders, is mentioned in American Libraries by Karen Muller in "How We Lead.". Click here.

Fables for Leaders Library of the Week: Salem Public Library, OR, USA
Summary: "Short fables emphasizing the philosophical and ethical aspects of leadership."

© Copyright John Lubans 2018

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