TALES FROM THE PANCHATANTRA
THE STORY OF THE WEAVER AND THE CARPENTER
A PRESENTATION
BY
 R.THIAGARAJAN
    .  pÂtÙ kwa .
 .  kaEilkrwkaraE.
 suàyu­Sy dM-Sy äüaPyNt< n gCDit ,
 kaEilkae iv:[uêpe[ rajkNya< in;evte   .

kiSm<icdixòane kaEilkrwkaraE imÇe àitvsiNt Sm, tÇ taE baLyaTp-&it sh cair[aE prSpr< AtIv kal< nyt>,Aw kdaict! AÇ kiSm<ict! devaytne yaÇa mhaeTsv> s<v&Ä>, tÇ c nqntRkcar[s<kle nanadezgt jnav&te taE shcraE æmNtaE ka<icÔajkNyka< kre[ukaêFa< svRl][snawa< kÂuikv;Rxrpirvairta<< devtadzRnawR< smayata< òvNtaE, Aw AsaE kaEilk> ta< òva iv;aidRt #v Êò¢hg&hIt #v kamzrE> hNyman> shsa -Utle inppat, Aw t< tdvSw< AvlaeKy rwkar> tÎ>oÊ>iot AaÝpué;E> t< smuiT]Py Svg&hmanayyt!,<<<< tÇ c ivivxE> zItaepcarE> icikTskaepidòE> mÙvaidi-> %pcyRma[> icrat! kw<ict! scetnae b-Uv, tt> rwkare[ p&ò>  -- -ae imÇ ik< @v< Tv< AkSmat! ivcetn> s<jat>, tt! kWyta< AaTmSvêpm!, s Aah vySy yid @v< tt! ïu[u me rhSy< yen svR< AaTmvedna< te vdaim, yid Tv< ma< suùd< mNyse tt> kaòàdanen  àsad> i³ytam!, ]Myta< yÖa ik<ict! à[yaitrekadyu­< tv mya nuiòtm!,sae=ip dak{yRba:pipihtnyn> sgÌt< %vac, vySy yiTk<ict! Ê>okar[< tÖd, yen àtIkar> i³yte yid zKyte ktuRm!, %­< c  --
                      AaE;xawRsumÙa[a< buÏeíEv mhaTmnam!            ,
                      AsaXy< naiSt laeke=Ç yd äüa{fSy mXygm! .

tde;a< ctu[aR< yid saXy< -iv:yit tdh< saxiy:yaim, kaEilk Aah --   vySy  @te;a<  ANye;a<  Aip shöa[a< %payana< AsaXy< tNme Ê>om!,tSmat! mm mr[e ma kal]ep< ké, rwkar Aah -- -ae  imÇ y*ip AsaXy< twaip invedy yen Ahmip tdsaXy< mTva Tvya sh vûaE àivzaim, n  ][mip  Tvt!ivyaeg< sih:ye, @; me iníy>, kaEilk Aah -- vySy ya AsaE rajkNyka kre[ukaêFa tÇ %Tsve<<   òa tSya dzRnanNtr< mkrXvjen
mm  #y< AvSwa ivihta, tÚ z²aeim tÖedna< saeFum!, rwkarae=ip @v< skam< tÖcnmak{yR siSmt< #d< Aah -- vySy y*ev< trih idòya isÏ< n> àyaejnm!, td*Ev tya sh smagm> i³ytaimit, kaEilk Aah -- vySy yÇ kNyaNt>pure vayu< mu®va naNySy àvezae=iSt tÇ r]apué;aixiòte kw< mm tya sh smagm>, tt! ik< ma< AsTyvcnen ivfMbyis, rwkar Aah -- imÇ pZy me buiÏ à-avm!, @vmi-xay tt! ][at! kIls<cair[< vEntey< ba÷yugl< icrjamuRjv&]daé[a z»c³gdapÒaiNvt< sikrIqkaEStu-< A"qyt!, tt> tiSmn! kaEilk< smaraePy iv:[uicûiciût< k«Tva kIls<cr[iv}an< c dzRiyTva àaevac,  -- vySy Anen iv:[uépe[ gTva kNyaNt>pur inzIwe ta< rajkNyka @kaiknI< sÝ-UimkàasadàaNtgta< muGxSv-ava< Tva< vasudev< mNymana< SvkIyimWyav³aei­i-> rÃiyTva vaTSyaynae­ivixna -j, kaEilkae=ip tdak{yR vasudevêpI rh> tÇ gTva ta< Aah -- rajpuiÇ suÝa ik<
va jagi;R, Ah< tv k«te smuÔat! sanuragae lúmI< ivhayEvagt>,tt! i³yta< mya sh smagm #it,
 
                                                    ................................ AnuvtRte.

 

THE WEAVER AND THE CARPENTER
"When the deception is complete
 Brahma Himself sees not the cheat;
 By donning Vishnu's shape and dress
 The weaver sports with the princes."

    There lived in a certain city, two friends, a weaver and a carpenter. They grew up both together from their childhood, became  thick friends, always moved about together and thus spent their time happily. There arose once an occasion, a grand temple festival when the dieties were taken out in procession. To witness the festival the two friends went together to witness it. The place was crowded with  actors, dancers, and bards, and many people who had assembled from different parts of the country. Suddenly in the milling crowds, they saw a maiden of great beauty,  seated on an elephant, and attended on by a chamberlain and varshadhara, approaching  the deity in order to offer worship. The moment he saw her, the weaver fell victim to the arrows of Cupid,  and fell to the ground as if affected by poison, or as if under the grip of wicked goblins. Seeing him in that condition, the carpenter lifted him up with the help of sympathetic friends, and brought him to his own house. There the weaver regained consciousness by the cooling ministrations of the physicians and by the incantations  of the Mantra Vadins. Then the carpenter asked of the weaver,  "Oh! friend, what happened that all of a sudden you should thus faint ?  Tell me the true reason". The weaver replied,  "Hear me then, and  I will tell you of my agony. If you consider me your good friend, have mercy on me by collecting wood for my funeral pyre, where I may end my sorrows. Forgive me, for thus imposing on you, but it is because of my affection for you". Hearing this, the carpenter was saddened and with  tear-filled-eyes and in a choking voice said again, "Friend, tell me the true reason for your sorrow, and if at all it is possible, I shall try to find a remedy. For, truly it is said :

" In this macro-cosmic world
there is no remedy beyond the reach
of medicine,  wealth,
efficacious incantations
and the intellect of great men."

"In any of the above four ways",  continued the carpenter, "if any thing is possible I shall arrange for  it". The weaver was inconsolable and replied, "Friend, not any of  these four ways, nor any of  thousands of others can help  to contain my grief. Therefore, don't delay my death". The carpenter said, "Oh friend, in any case, tell me of the cause of your affliction, for if I find that it is beyond remedy, then  I shall also enter the funeral pyre along with you. I cannot stand even a moment's separation from you. This is my final decision". The weaver finally confessed "Friend, the moment I set eyes on that royal maiden who came seated on the elephant to the grand festival,  I was reduced by Cupid to this  plight, which is perhaps pre-ordained. I am simply unable to bear this pain".

    The carpenter, hearing these words of intense longing of the weaver,  smiled and spoke to him thus : "Friend, if this is indeed the case, take heart, for I have the remedy and you may consider your desires  fulfilled.  You shall be united with that maiden this very day.The weaver said in disbelief, "Friend, when the harem is sorrounded by vigilant palace guards, and nothing except the air can enter it,  how could I ever hope to have her company ?  Are you making a fool of me or are you bluffing ?  The carpenter said, "Friend, now closely observe the power of my intellect". Thus saying, he skilfully fashioned out wood of the Arjuna tree,  a vehicle that could fly, in the form  of Garuda, the divine eagle,  and  also replicas of the conch, discus,  lotus,  crown, Kaustubha gem and all those divine symbols that adorn the Lord Vishnu. Thereafter, he made  the weaver sit in the vehicle, disguised him and decorated him with the replicas of the divine symbols, so that he looked like the Lord  Vishnu Himself. After teaching him the mechanism of making the Garuda fly, the carpenter said "Now, friend, go forth in  this form of Vishnu and fly through the air into the harem on the seventh tier of the palace, where she sleeps alone. She is soft by nature, and will surely take  you to be the Lord Vishnu. It is then up to you to invoke your skills of speech and the methods of making love taught in the text book of Vatsyayana".

    The weaver fell in with this plan with a whole heart, and soon enough his flight took him unnoticed into the presence of the princess in the royal household. Living up to his appearance as the Lord Vishnu, he spoke to her thus : "Oh, Royal maiden, are you asleep or awake ? I have come from my resting place on the distant ocean, even abandoning my divine consort, Lakshmi, all for your sake. Come then, and let us become one".

    And so the story continues ............. and tells of how the weaver was discovered and was about to be punished by the King   ....   and how fortune came to his timely rescue in the form of an invasion of the kingdom by a powerful enemy  .... and how he told the King that he could defeat  the invading enemy by  attacking them from the sky, riding his Garuda in the form of Vishnu ....   and how the Lord Vishnu himself, realised that, His own reputation for Omnipotence was at stake, if in the public view, and in the garb of Vishnu, the weaver should fail in this plan ........ and how therefore, the Lord enabled the weaver to succeed ........  and how .............   (But readers must now go to the original text of the Panchatantra !!) 
 

 RETURN TO INTRODUCTION TO PANCHACHANTRA TALES
 RETURN TO INDEX OF LITERARY WORKS