Thursday, September 13, 2018

The Devil of a Crow

Once a merchant was out on his business trip. One the way he had to spend a night in a cave in the middle of dense forest. Soon it began to grow dark. Another uninvited guest came to seek refuge in the same cave. The guest was a lady and she was concealing/hiding her face from him. He had his dinner while she refused to take her share. They were chatting for a while. Accidentally he saw her face that resembled a sealing wax, commonly used by people in the olden days.
The merchant doubted her as non-human creature and chanted mantra and prayed to his protector deities back at home. They began to hear the bells of a horse from afar and approaching nearer to them. The lady guest began to get restless and bewildered. No sooner did the sound of the bell was heard near the cave, than she left the cave. The sound of the galloping hooves followed her hurriedly.
Few minutes later, a man with red face in red gho wearing a metal helmet and a sword, riding a red horse appeared before him. He comforted saying him not to worry. He told him to visit a pond in the morning the walk of which would take few minutes from below the cave. Saying these the red man left the scene. He had a comfortable night and as instructed he went to the pond at the dawn. To his surprise he saw a dead crow.
It’s said that the devil of the crow had come to harm him. But his prayer and mantra was heard by his deities and came to rescue him. Therefore, one must remember our protector deities and never neglect them where ever we go. Our prayers will be always heard by them in times of need provided you have a deep faith in them particularly the Triple Gem.

Wednesday, September 12, 2018

The merchant who took an oath

Once three merchants were on their business trip to sell bangchungs (a round cane basket used as plates in olden days, especially in the Kheng region). While travelling around for business, they arrived in a place where there was a haunted mansion in the centre of a vast plain. It was in the middle of a thick forest and no neighbours nearby! "Who can spend a night in this mansion?" the first merchant said. "Whoever can spend a night alone in this mansion can get all the bangchungs from two," said the second. "If that is the deal, I can spend a night alone in this mansion," said the third merchant abruptly, as he was motivated by the promises assured by the other two. They agreed and two of the merchants left the place. They halted their night in a cave, about a mile away from the mansion.
It was dark and soon and soon grew dark. Two of them had their dinner and was chatting over a cup of Ara brought as Laamchang (refreshment). Meanwhile, the third merchant also had his dinner. He could not sleep due to loneliness. He was nearby the fire warming himself as he chanted Om Ah Hung Benza Guru Pema Siddhi Hung, seeking refuge for Guru Rinpoche. By the time, it was already 11:30 pm11:30 pm. He heard a noise' Auw….Auw...' from a distance of five kilometres. He was comforted by that and, 'Auw…Auw…," replied the merchant, thinking that someone is coming to befriend him for the night. After few minutes Auw…. Auw… was heard from about a three-kilometre and he replied in the same manner. Then approached from two to a kilometre distance and finally reached near the mansion.

There was a knock on the door followed by a voice. "Please open the door." "Who are you? Are you a man or a devil?" asked the merchant. "I am a man," came the reply. That went on three times and finally being convinced, and he opened the door for the stranger. The stranger was with a bunch of dried Khempa Shing (Artemisia) twigs and dropped them behind the door. He invited the stranger to have a seat and make himself warm. They spent some time chatting. The firewood which merchant had collected began to get exhausted. "What can we do if the ghost is with us right now?" the stranger asked. "Don't worry, I have a knife," the merchant replied, drawing his knife from the case. But he couldn't pull the knife. The merchant was terrified and began to get worried. It is said that the stranger snarled as and when the fire got deem. The merchant started to burn his bangchungs as the firewood got exhausted. He burned and burned, and it's already nearing 1:00 am1:00 am. The goitre began to grow in front of the stranger's neck and it was swelling. He went on burning his bangchungs which was almost finishing.

There was a river-washed smooth stone (Churel Dho/Gangkola in Kheng dialect) nearby the fireplace. He secretly picked it and with the mighty force, he hit the goitre. It burst and out came water which ceased the fire altogether. At the same time, the five sacks which were hanging from ceilings fell on the floor. The other devils were supposed to have dwelt in those sacks, made of leather. All of them together had eaten him within a few minutes.

The following day two merchants went to the mansion to meet their friend. Instead of their friend, they saw a handful of bones in the middle of the house on the floor. Two of them left the scene hurriedly and continued their trip.

There is a belief that one shouldn't take an oath, even if you are in dire need. The third merchant was greedy and promised that he could spend a night alone in that haunted mansion.