2.  Tale of Rabbit Stuck on a Tree Trunk

One day, Rabbit was foraging for food when he unexpectedly ran into the base of a Trach tree that was recently chopped down and caked in sticky resin. Rabbit jumped onto the resin and got his tail and feet stuck. Unable to move, he remained motionless there on the stump of that tree.
      In time, along came a baby elephant seeking to drink water at the pond by that Trach tree, a place where he went to drink everyday. Rabbit, having intelligence, spoke to frighten the baby elephant saying, “Neh! You, Baby Elephant! Do not drink this water of mine. This water the Great Lord Indra has ordered me to guard.” The baby elephant was scared and did not drink. Instead he returned to his mother crying, “Oh Mother! I was going to drink water from the pond when I saw some kind of animal sitting on a tree stump. It ran me off, prohibiting me from drinking the water. It said that it was in the service of Indra. I am very thirsty Mother!”
      The mother elephant, listening to her child tell the story, grew angry and took him to the pond where they saw Rabbit sitting on the tree stump. Yelling in a threatening manner, Elephant said, “Yuh! You mean little rabbit, from where do you come from to end up sitting on this tree stump? What power do you have to prohibit and prevent my child from drinking this water? I’ll stomp on you and smash you to bits right now.” Rabbit responded by saying, “Yuh! You big windbag, you have the nerve to scold me? This pond water the Great Lord Indra has ordered me to guard, that is why I dare to prohibit others from drinking it.”
      Elephant grew even angrier at Rabbit for cursing at her in this manner. She lunged forward at the stuck rabbit and pushed him off the tree trunk, planning to toss and kill him. A very frightened Rabbit screamed, “If you toss and kill me, do not toss me to the ground. I will not die that way. Throw me up instead, then I will die.” Elephant, lacking intelligence and hearing Rabbit speak thusly, threw Rabbit up into the air. When Rabbit fell to the ground, he darted off and disappeared into the jungle.

©2010 Khmer Buddhist Relief