Thursday, 8 November 2007

Turn your other cheek

Critique is a gift. Be careful when you criticise. Friends deserve it but often take offence. Enemies get free lessons from your critique to strengthen their wrongdoing. A wise man must be a fool indeed to teach lessons to his own enemy. Don’t fix the wrong thing.

For quite a while now, at the teahouse, as he sat at his favourite table sipping the sweet brew of the afternoon, a cheeky brat would pass and knock down Nasrudin's turban.

This happened again and again but Nasrudin, as angry as he must have been, didn't say a thing. His face got red but he remained silent. The baker even asked him:

"Hoca, how can you allow this impertinence? Why don't you stand up and teach him a lesson?"

"Teach him?" said Nasrudin. "My scolding could make him more cautious so that later he may do more harm. As I dislike him, quite a lot, I will rather let his impertinence grow every day. I will take the advice of the prophet Issa and turn to him the other cheek. If I keep sipping my own tea Allah will teach him."

And so, the shameless jest went on.

One day, a cold-eyed janissary from the troops of the Padishah was sitting at the mullah's usual place. The wicked boy, by force of habit, ran by and knocked down his turban. The soldier swung up with his sword and before thinking cut the boy's head off.

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