A Story About an Archer and A Bird

I’ve recently discovered and ancient Indian epic “Mahabharata” (written somewhere in 8th century BC) — and such a delight of storytelling. Below is one of my favorite stories about the archer and the bird.

Drone proved an excellent teacher. One day he called his pupils to him to test their power of concentration. Gathering them around him, he pointed out a target. It was a bird on the branch of a tree. “Bring down the head of the bird for me!” commanded Drona. He told Yudhishthira to come forward alone because he was the eldest. Yudhishthira drew his bow. But at that moment Drona held up his hand: “Wait!” he said, “Tell me first, what do you see?” “I see the bird.” answered Yudhishthira, “and the branch on which it sits and the leaves of the tree.”

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