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Jhilli and the Serpent King: An Odia Folktale of Compassion and Balance

The Folktale of Jhilli

Once upon a time, in the lush greenery of the Simlipal forests, lived a kind-hearted tribal girl named Jhilli. One sunny afternoon, as she was collecting firewood, she stumbled upon a tiny serpent lying helpless, nursing a wound. With a gentle heart, Jhilli decided to take the small serpent home, providing it with care and comfort until it recovered.

Now, this was no ordinary snake. It was the Serpent King in disguise, who, touched by Jhilli’s pure heart, granted her an extraordinary gift – the power to cure any illness. Jhilli, thrilled with her new gift, began using it to heal the sick, spreading health and happiness in her village.

As days turned into weeks, news of the miracle healer named Jhilli travelled far and wide. People began flocking to her, seeking the magic of her healing touch. However, not all who came were genuine. Some came with minor issues, while others feigned sickness, trying to take advantage of Jhilli’s gift.

Jhilli, though simple-hearted, was not naive. She realized that her gift was being misused, thus, she made a tough decision. She resolved to heal only those who were genuinely suffering, refusing to entertain those seeking to exploit her powers.

One day, a group of villagers came to her with a child they claimed was gravely ill. But Jhilli, with her intuition, sensed their deceit. She refused to help them, advising instead to take better care of the child. This incensed the villagers. In their rage, they went into the forest, killing all the snakes they could find.

Upon discovering the brutal act, Jhilli was heartbroken. Her gift, she realized, had disrupted the delicate balance of nature. Distraught and regretful, she sought the Serpent King, explaining the tragic events, and pleaded for his forgiveness.

Touched by her genuine remorse and sincerity, the Serpent King forgave her. From then onwards, Jhilli used her powers judiciously, healing only those truly in need, becoming a beacon of wisdom and respect for nature.

And so, the tale of Jhilli, the girl, and the Serpent King echoes through the forests of Simlipal, reminding us of the delicate balance of nature, the consequence of misuse, and the power of sincere repentance.

Disclaimer: The stories shared on this website are folklores and have been passed down through generations. While we make every effort to ensure the accuracy and authenticity of the information presented, we cannot guarantee the original source of these stories. Readers are advised to use their own discretion and judgment when reading and interpreting these stories. We are not accountable for the source of these stories or any claims that may arise from their use.

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Quote of the day

A Hibernian sage once wrote that there are three things a man never forgets: The girl of his early youth, a devoted teacher, and a great horse.

C.J.J. Mullen
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