Stories for Children on Empathy and Gratitude

A well-known sage resided in a deep forest. The forest creatures visited him every day to hear his sermons on spirituality. They would assemble around the sage as he was in deep meditation, and the sage would impart to them the virtues of life.

The same forest was home to a small mouse as well. He used to see the sage every day to hear his sermons.A large cat attacked the mouse one day while he was foraging around the forest to gather berries for the sage. The cat had watched the mouse from behind the bushes.The mouse trembled. He immediately hurried to the sage's ashram. He then knelt down before the wise man and told him the entire tale in a shaking voice. The cat arrived there at the same time  and asked the sage’s permission to attack the mouse.The sage was stuck. After giving it some thought, he used his supernatural abilities to change the mouse into a larger cat.The original cat fled when it saw a large cat in front of him.

The mouse who became the cat was enjoying his new found strength.  He started to prowl the woodland like a large cat. In order to terrify other animals, he meowed loudly. In an effort to exact revenge on them, he engaged in combat with other cats, killing a lot of them in the process.

One day, a fox attacked the mouse. The mouse, who was a cat, thought to himself that he had barely had time to enjoy a few pleasant days. This was a brand-new issue. He had no idea that there were larger animals out there that might easily attack him. He rushed for his life, but managed to escape the fox and head straight towards the sage in need of assistance. The fox also reached the saint’s hermitage. They both soon stood in front of the sage.The wise sage changed the mouse into a larger fox after noticing the mouse's distress. The other fox fled when he saw a large fox in front of him.

With his newfound position as a large fox, the mouse started to act more carefreely and freely travel the forest. But his joy didn't last long.One day, a tiger pounced on him as he was ambling leisurely through the jungle. The mouse, who had miraculously managed to escape death, fled as usual to seek refuge at the sage's ashram.Once more feeling compassion for the mouse, the sage changed him into a tiger.Now that the mouse had attained tiger rank, it could now freely wander the forest. He unnecessarily killed a lot of creatures in the forest.

The mouse had turned into a tiger and was now supreme among the creatures of the forest. He commanded his subjects and conducted himself like a king. However, there was one thing that constantly disturbed him and gave him anxiety: the sage's heavenly abilities. He would worry, "What if, one day, for some reason or another, the sage grows displeased with me and restores me to my original status." He had made a decision, and one day he arrived at the sage howling. The sage heard him say, "I'm famished. You have heavenly powers, and I want to consume you so I can use them. Please let me kill you."

The sage felt exceedingly enraged upon hearing these statements. He turned the tiger back into the mouse as soon as he sensed the animal's malevolent intentions.. The mouse realised his mistake now. He begged the saint to turn him back into a tiger after repenting of his terrible deeds. But the wise man thrashed the mouse with a stick until he ran off.

Moral of the story:

There are very important lessons for kids in this short story.

  1. We need to have gratitude. The mouse had taken the sage’s help in moving up the food chain but instead of showing gratitude he attacked the sage

  2. The mouse did not remember his humble beginnings, instead of being nice to the smaller animals, he was very mean

  3. A very deep lesson is that no matter how big or rich or smart we become, there is always someone better than us . 

Short stories are a great conversation starter for kids. They help parents spend screen free time with children.  Do take a look at our other tools to help kids stay away from the screen - Books, Maps, Posters and Flashcards


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