In a story he narrated how a poor man would pray to the sun each morning facing east. There was an old tree in that direction and an owl lived there. The owl felt very happy assuming that the man was praying to it. Because of its inauspiciouness it was only used to people turning their faces away from it. He decided to reward the man and flew to the goddess Lakshmi and asked her to reside in the man’s house so as to bring him wealth. When she refused the owl begged her for a few hours of her time and asked her to come along and stay in the house till dawn. She agreed and followed it to the man’s house. After settling her there the owl flew to the man and told him how it has been greatly pleased by his daily prostrations and how it had now brought Lakshmi to his house. It then asked him to kill it and bury its head under his threshold. It explained that because an owl is inauspicious, Lakshmidevi would not cross over it, and as she would be trapped in the house the man would prosper. The man did as directed, and from that day his fortunes kept multiplying. As his wealth increased, he lost his humility and also forgot about his debt to the owl. As his cattle multiplied he started erecting new sheds for them. As the enterance to the house was renovated to accommodate these expansions, the old threshold was knocked down and the owl’s body thrown out with the rubble. Lakshmidevi then escaped and the man rapidly lost all his wealth and became poor once again.
Later, in a dream, the owl appeared to him and explained that he lost all his wealth because he had lost his humility and gratitude.