119. The Wisest of the Brahmins
There were once four brahmins who went traveling. Along the road, they found the bones of a lion.
The first brahmin said a mantra to assemble the bones into a skeleton.
The second brahmin said a mantra to add flesh and skin to the skeleton.
"I will now give it life!" said the third brahmin.
"Wait a minute!" said the fourth brahmin, and he hurriedly climbed a tree.
The third brahmin then pronounced his mantra.
The lion woke up hungry and ate the three brahmins before running off into the jungle.
The fourth brahmin alone lived to tell the tale.
Inspired by: The Panchatantra, translated by Arthur Ryder.
Notes: It is in Book 5, Story 4. The original story goes into detail about how the three brahmins scoffed at the fourth brahmin for not having scholarly knowledge and instead just basic common sense. Compare the Buddhist jataka: The Resurrection Mantra.