There was once a king who was so cruel and unjust that subjects yearned for this death or dethronement. However, one day he surprised them all by announcing that he had decided to turn over a new leaf.

“No more cruelty, no more injustice,” he promised, and he was as good on his word.

People started calling him the Gentle Monarch.

Months after his transformation, one of his ministers plucked up enough courage to ask him what had brought about his change of heart.

“I was galloping through the forest, I caught sight of a fox being chased by a hound. The fox escaped into his hole but not before the hound had bitten into its leg and maimed it for life. Later I rode into a village and saw the same hound there. It was barking at a man. Even as I watched, the man picked up a huge stone and flung it at the dog, breaking its leg. The man had not gone far when he was kicked by a horse. The horse began to run but it fell into a hole and broke its leg. Reflection on all that happened, I thought: evil begets evil. If I continue in my evil ways, I will surely be overtaken by evil. So I decided to change.”

The minister went away convinced that the time was ripe to overthrow the king and seize the throne. Immersed in thought, he did not see the steps in front of him and fell, breaking his neck.

Moral: The cycle of deeds always returns back to us. If we do good to others, our good will happen, and if we do bad to others, our turn will also come.


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