Monday, March 30, 2015

Ancient Fables...

There is a story behind the Panchatantra. And the Hitopadesha. And the Jataka tales.

In the case of the Panchatantras, it is all about teaching a few princes, some things about life. (and the wiki entry confirms it). Vishnu Sharma was entrusted with the task of teaching 'niti' to three princes and he does so using these fables.

The five principles (Pancha-tantra) are all about: (from the wiki page)

The five books are called:
  • Mitra-bheda: The Separation of Friends (The Lion and the Bull)
  • Mitra-lābha or Mitra-samprāpti: The Gaining of Friends (The Dove, Crow, Mouse, Tortoise and Deer)
  • Kākolūkīyam: Of Crows and Owls (War and Peace)
  • Labdhapraṇāśam: Loss Of Gains (The Monkey and the Crocodile)
  • Aparīkṣitakārakaṃ: Ill-Considered Action / Rash deeds (The Brahman and the Mongoose)

I read them mostly through Amar Chitra Katha, as I suspect most Indians of my generation did. But I was reminded of them as I read through some modern fables (which I put out in the last post).

The others are along similar lines and each of them has a beautiful maxim to be put to use. Yes, we humans love stories, don't we. 

PS: Now that got me curious about the difference between a fable and a story. The wiki link gave the difference between fable and parable. (The wiki entry was very useful - it is animals and fables). 

That means Goal and Team Dysfunctions are parables are not fables. 

And clicking from there into a link that says, Traditional story took me here

Alright, I have much to learn :)

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