Daily Draw February 21st, 2012
THE THREE FISHES
This is from one of my favourite miscellaneous decks, The Relax Deck. It references a parable or fable from the Panchatantra or Five Principles which is an early Sanskrit manuscript that influenced many later societies and literature. Some of the stories crop up in Aesop’s Fables as well as the Arabian Nights and the Fables of La Fontaine from France.
I noticed one story to be like the Celtic legend of the big Irish wolfhound Gelert who is mistakenly killed when his owner Llewellyn comes home and sees blood on the dog and thinks he has killed the baby, but after the dog is killed they discover the dog had only protected the baby from a predator. That is straight from the Panchatantra and the story of a mongoose and a Brahman’s baby.
I find a lot of Indian influence on European culture in history. Many languages and myths are called “Indo-European” after all. It’s still amazing to realize the actual source.
Basically The Three Fishes is about worlds that are hidden from you, and what is really “home.” Is home the pond you’ve lived in all your life, or is home the great ocean, or a cavern beneath the earth? Are you self-reliant enough to question and reason for yourself? Rumi refers to this story in much later writings because the concept is one humans need to reflect on. There is a political meaning to the story about feeling safe or needing to follow instead of having the wisdom to do it for yourself. You might suffer by striking out on your own to find a true home, but ultimately you will gain the world. Otherwise you might docilely end up in some fisherman’s frying pan and be eaten.
Funnily enough, I was thinking about moving again and thinking that maybe I’d just stay put because it’s easier to do so, but it would make me unhappy to stay here, and the effort might be painful but it will be the wise thing to do, lest I be eaten alive.
Imagine a different way.