To all this the Jackal replied: “Cats have a taste for animal food, and above is the residence of the young birds: it is on this account I speak to thee.”
The Cat, having touched his two ears, and then the ground, exclaimed: “I, who have read books upon the duties of religion, and am freed from inordinate desires, have forsaken such an evil practice; and, indeed, even amongst those who dispute with one another about the authority of the Sastras, there are many by whom this sentence: ’Not to kill is a supreme duty,’ is altogether approved.”
The Cat by these means having satisfied the jackal, he remained in the hollow of the tree with him and passed the time in amusing conversation; and the Jackal told the young birds that they had no occasion to go out of the way.
After this, when many days had passed, it was discovered that the Cat had, by degrees, drawn all the little birds down into the hollow of the tree, and there devoured them; but when he found inquiry was about to be made by those whose young ones had been eaten, he slipped out of the hole and made his escape. In the meantime, the bones of the young ones having been discovered in the hollow of the tree by the parent birds, who had been searching here and there, they concluded that their little ones had been devoured by the Jackal, and so, being joined by other birds, they put him to death.
Wherefore I say, “To one whose family and profession are unknown, one should not give residence.”
Forsaking all worldly concerns to lead a godly life.
The Greedy Jackal
A hoard should always be made; but not too great a hoard. A Jackal, through the fault of hoarding too much, was killed by a bow.
A certain Huntsman, by name Bhirava, being fond of flesh, once upon a time went to hunt in the forests of the Vindhya mountains and having killed a Deer, as he was carrying him away, he chanced to see a wild Boar of a formidable appearance. So, laying the Deer upon the ground, he wounded the Boar with an arrow; but, upon his approaching him, the horrid animal set up a roar dreadful as the thunder of the clouds, and wounding the Huntsman in the groin, he fell like a tree cut off by the axe. At the same time, a Serpent, of that species which is called Ajagara, pressed by hunger and wandering about, rose up and bit the Boar, who instantly fell helpless upon him, and remained upon the spot. For:
The body having encountered some efficient cause, water, fire, poison, the sword, hunger, sickness, or a fall from an eminence, is forsaken by the vital spirits.