Who is Sibi?
What two animals does he become involved with?
A dove and a hawk
Why does the hawk want the dove?
Food for his family
As king, what is Sibi’s dharma (set of obligations particular to him)?
To protect all of his subjects.
Sibi compares the hawk to which other two birds?
An eagle and a kite.
What is the hawk’s reaction to these comparisons?
He claims that kites are just inferior copies of hawks, and he is appalled that eagles walk on the ground when they should only fly.
For what reason is Sibi even engaging in these conversations with the hawk?
He wants to distract the hawk from wanting to eat the dove.
What is the spiritual threat that the hawk presents to Sibi?
Sibi has attained great spiritual merit thanks to all of his good deeds, but refusing the hawk his meal in a time of hunger could ruin that merit and send him to hell.
What sacrifice is Sibi willing to make?
He will give an equal amount of his own flesh to protect the dove.
What happens during the scene with the scales?
Sibi cuts the flesh from both his thighs, but they do not match the weight of the dove. Even though his people beg for him to reconsider his life, Sibi places his entire self on the scale, now equal with the dove.
Does Sibi suffer in vain? Why or why not?
No, his heroic qualities are rewarded in the end by Indra and the God of Fire.
Why would Sibi have concern for his animal subject instead of just his human subjects?
He is aware that the dove may have once been a noble person, now reincarnated.
Indians have a strong notion of duty. According to the law of karma, what would happen if Sibi did not fulfill his duty?
He would face a terrible punishment when his soul is reborn.