Stories & Tales
The Bird, the Rabbit and the Devout Cat

The Crow tells this story:


I once lived at the foot of a mountain and had a Bird for a neighbor. His little home was close to the tree I had built my nest in, so we came across one another frequently as we went about our daily lives.


One day the Bird flew away and stayed away so long that I was sure he must have been killed somewhere. Soon after the Bird's disappearance, a Rabbit came to live in his home. A long time passed before the Bird returned, and when he saw the Rabbit, he said, "This is my house. Leave at once."


"I am living here now," replied the Rabbit, "and you can only claim to be the true owner of the place. Bring a complaint against me if you dare."


"Let us put our case before a judge," decided the Rabbit.


"Not very far from here, down by the beach, lives a very devout Cat," said the Bird. "He prays all day long and would not harm a soul. He does not eat meat; he fasts religiously, and survives on grass and the leaves from surrounding trees. We shall go to him for a judgment on the matter."


The Rabbit agreed, and I followed the two as they made their way to meet the ascetic Cat.


When they had told the Cat their story he said: "I am old and shortsighted and so hard of hearing that I am nearly deaf. Come close both of you and tell me about the problem once again."


When they had repeated their story the Cat said, "Now I understand the situation. I advise you both to continue to seek justice. For he who strives for justice will always reach his goal. There is nothing for us to do but fight for what is good."

The Cat continued to talk to the Bird and the Rabbit until they began to feel very much at ease with him. Then, as soon as he had them both off their guard, the Cat grabbed them, killed them, and ate them hungrily.