Mahävir-swämi and the Cow herder
One day as Mahävir-swämi was going from one place to another, he stopped near a big tree to meditate. While he was meditating, a cow herder came with his cows. He needed someone to look after his cows so he could go for some errands. He asked Mahävir-swämi if he would look after his cows for a few hours. Mahävir-swämi was in deep meditation and did not respond to the cow herder. However, the cow herder went away thinking that Mahävir-swämi had heard him and would look after his cows.
When the cow herder came back, to his amazement all his cows were standing near Mahävir-swämi. Mahävir-swämi was still meditating. The cow herder became very angry with Mahävir-swämi because he thought that Mahävir-swämi had been hiding his cows. Therefore, he took out his rope and was about to whip Mahävir-swämi with it. Just then, Indra came down from heaven and held the rope.
from assaulting Bhagawän Mahävir
“Can you not see that Mahävir-swämi is in deep meditation?” Indra asked.
“But he tricked me!” said the cow herder. The angel replied, “He is in meditation and did not hear you. He was prince Vardhamän before becoming a monk. He did not do anything to your cows. You would have acquired bad Karmas for hurting him.”
The cow herder realized that he had made a mistake. He apologized to Mahävir-swämi and went away silently.
Then, Indra bowed down to Mahävir-swämi and requested, “Oh Lord, I would like to be at your service as you will have to undergo many hardships during your spiritual journey.”
Mahävir-swämi answered, “One cannot progress spiritually and attain Keval-jnän using others help and support. To attain Keval-jnän and become an Arihanta one has to undertake all the efforts personally on the journey towards omniscience and liberation.”
Indra went back to heaven feeling happy that he could stop Mahävir-swämi’s suffering. Mahävir did not have any bad feelings towards the cow herder because he held no anger towards anyone.