The Confused Animals
All kinds of animals lived in the Great Forest. Some of the animals meet to form a club called The Real Animals. They wrote a constitution, elected officers and even had a national anthem. Everyone memorized the words: “Four legs good, two legs bad!” They were all proud of themselves. It felt so wonderful to know that you belonged to the right group, which meant that at last you were a real animal, not like the rest.
One day when they were all singing their national anthem really loudly, Owl lifted one claw and said, “Ahem, what about me. I, and the rest of the birds, have two wings and two legs. Does mean that we are not animals?”
There was a flurry of meetings and scientific papers and philosophy discussions late into the night. Finally an official report came out. Two wings equals two legs, therefore owls had four legs.
After another two weeks Owl again spoke, “Ahem, my fish friends have no legs. Are they not animals, to?” Again there was a flurry of activity by very important people and finally another official report came out. No legs equals four legs, therefore fish had four legs and were animals.
After another two weeks, Owl spoke again. This time there was some mention that there needed to be a law against asking bothersome questions, but they decided to let Owl speak one more time. “Ahem,” began Owl, “My snake friends have no legs but crawl on land. Are they not to join us animals, too?”
This time there were conferences and workshops late into the night. The final official report was, four fangs equals four legs, therefore snakes had four legs and were animals. They all sang “Four legs good, two legs bad” with even more gusto. It was also now official that Owl was no longer allowed to speak in public. He could not write, nor was he allowed to make anyone think any bothersome thoughts.
The founders of the club, however, asserted boldly that they were the Real Real Animals. That’s when the fight broke out. Everyone began to shout and scream that they themselves alone were the Real Real Animal. Their new anthem was, Me good, you bad!” This they repeated over and over again until they were convinced it was indeed true.
At the sound of “Me good, you bad “ claws were bared, fangs did their work, fur flew in all directions, along with scales and skin.
Owl could not bring himself to watch anymore. He spread his great silent wings and flew over the battlefield with a sad turn to his beak. As he passed by he said in a voice all could hear, “Whoooo is the happiest animal of all? In this forest the happiest animal is the VULTURE!” Owl kept flying and never looked back.READ MORE OF SENSEI ULRICH'S DHARMA TALKS..