Somilaka the weaver


Wealth must be used properly. Where necessary it must also be donated
Long, long ago, there lived a weaver in a town by the name of Somilaka. The cloth he wove was so fine and beautiful that even the king liked it. But somehow, he still remained a poor man, while other weavers were quite rich, even though they wove inferior cloth. This bitter fact made Somilaka sad. He left his native village and went to settle down in some other town to try his luck. In this town also, Somilaka couldn't earn much money. He became frustrated and decided to commit suicide. He made a rope of grass, prepared a noose and tied the rope's other end to the high branch of a tree. He put the noose round his neck. As he was about to jump on to the ground, he heard a voice from the heaven calling, "Hold it, don't commit suicide. It is I, God. I'm pleased with your hard work. Ask any boon of me and I'll grant it."

"Please give me a lot of wealth," said Somilaka. He was astonished to see God before him.

"But, what will you do with a lot of wealth?" asked God. "You don't need a lot of wealth, no more than what is required for your food and clothing."

"But I want a lot of wealth even then," replied Somilaka. "A man with money is respected everywhere, whether he spends it or not."

Seeing that Somilaka was adamant on his demand, God said, "First go to your native town and meet the two traders living there. One is known as 'Secret Wealth' and the other as 'Useful Wealth'."

Somilaka became very happy. He went back to his native town. There he decided to first observe the 'Secret wealth's living.

When 'Secret Wealth' saw Somilaka, he became very angry. He talked to Somilaka in an abusive language. 'Secret Wealth's wife offered him food in a broken plate. She also banged the glass of water on the floor. Somilaka didn't utter a word. He ate his food and thanked the family members of 'Secret Wealth' and left quietly. Then he went to meet 'Useful Wealth' trader.

'Useful Wealth' was much delighted to see Somilaka. Even the other members of his house welcomed him. They served him with delicious food. They talked to him in a friendly tone. At night, proper arrangements were made for him to take rest.

Early next morning, the king's servants arrived and brought money for 'Useful Wealth.'

When Somilaka observed this, he thought to himself: "This 'Useful Wealth’ is not a wealthy man, but even then he lives more comfortably than the 'Secret Wealth'."

His wish for a lot of money was granted by God. He began to enjoy his wealth to the full, just like 'Useful Wealth.'

Panchatantra Stories

1. A poor brahmin's dream
2. Beware of mean friends
3. Brahmadatta, the crab and the snake
4. Courtesy
5. Dantila the trader and gorambha the sweeper
6. Death and lord indra's parrot
7. Dharambuddhi and paapbuddhi
8. Hello! cave
9. King chandra and the monkey chief
10. King nanda and vararuchi
11. Somilaka the weaver
12. The bad lady and the wolf
13. The bats
14. The bear and golu and molu
15. The bird with two heads
16. The brahmin and the delicious dishes
17. The brahmin and the diamonds
18. The brahmin and the snake
19. The brahmin and the three thugs
20. The bullock and the lion
21. The camel with a bell round his neck
22. The cat, the rat and the hunter
23. The clever jackal
24. The cow and the tiger
25. The crow and the monkey
26. The crow and the water pitcher
27. The cunning judge
28. The cunning snake
29. The devta and the weaver
30. The dhobi's donkey
31. The dog in a foreign country
32. The donkey and the cunning fox
33. The donkey and the leopard's skin
34. The donkey who sang a song
35. The fake king
36. The falcon and the crow
37. The fool and the crooks
38. The foolish jackal
39. The four foolish brahmins
40. The four friends and the hunter
41. The fox and the elephant
42. The frog and the serpent
43. The giant and the helpless brahmin
44. The giant and the horse thief
45. The golden bird and the king
46. The golden birds and the golden swans
47. The golden goats
48. The hermit and the jumping rat
49. The horse and the lion
50. The hunter and the doves
51. The jackal and the arrow
52. The jackal and the drum
53. The king and the parrots
54. The king cobra and the ants
55. The lapwings and the sea
56. The lion and the hare
57. The lion and the woodcutter
58. The lion's bad breath
59. The lioness and the young jackal
60. The little mice and the big elephants
61. The louse and the bed-bug
62. The marriage of a snake
63. The merchant and the barber
64. The merchant's son
65. The mice that ate balance
66. The mongoose and the baby in the cradle
67. The monkey and the crocodile
68. The monkey and the log
69. The monkeys and the red berries
70. The mouse and the bull
71. The old greedy crane
72. The old wise crow
73. The peacock and the fox
74. The potter's truth
75. The prince and the bear
76. The prince and the seedling
77. The rabbits and the elephants
78. The revenge of the elephant
79. The rich mohan and the poor sohan
80. The rotating wheel
81. The sage and the mouse
82. The shepherd and the wolf
83. The stag and his antlers
84. The talkative tortoise
85. The thief and the sanyasi
86. The thief, the giant and the brahmin
87. The trick of the crow
88. The useful thief
89. The village mouse visits town mouse
90. The visit of the swan
91. The wind and the sun
92. The wise crab
93. The wolf and the crane
94. The wolf and the lamb
95. Three fish and the fishermen
96. Two fish and a frog
97. United we stand: divided we fall
98. When the lion came back to life
99. Who will bell the cat
100. Why the owls became enemies of the crows

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