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Archive for the ‘fables’ Category

In the star Sirius there is only one inhabitable planet that is called False. The men and women lived quietly in the shade since the dog-star burst and spewed great many ideas in wake of solar flares. Some suddenly would strip themselves and dance around a tree or two and speak utter nonsense. But in a planet like False the wizened old men would nod their heads and say,’they are shooting wind. We have heard so many and none has spoken against the grain of our existence.’ The inhabitants were as we might here on earth say,’wise men.’
One day a man came. Whether he surfed the solar roller coster of a giant flare or in a space shuttle I cannot tell.
He urged them to think of eternity. ‘I give you a religion where all you need to do is obey a set of rules. Five times you bow your rear to the Andromeda galaxy and leave your nostril clean; and mouth shut unless you want to speak something fair and in praise of your fellow men.’ He lived and he raised a family. Before he left he said,’Above all things don’t you make the error of having any creature between you and your Maker.No Priest talk but do what is good and speak what is set down in the book of rules.’ All agreed that it was indeed spoken like a great prophet.
Years went on and the family of the prophet chose from among them the Grand Turk of Bazaar that was the capital city. Eons later the prophet came to see how it fared in the planet False. There were great many exhortation Halls for the inhabitants to converge and there were thousands of teachers all claiming authority on the Prophet’s wise sayings.
The Old prophet went everywhere and no one recognized him. He asked the teachers if there were some rules left by the founder of their religion.
No one knew what the old man was harping about.
In the end he was taken to the Grand Turk of Bazaar who politely heard the old man and said,’ In this planet called False what set of rules you require? What I say is Law; every thing else is false.’

Poor prophet as he went back to his home he kept on muttering,I went as wise man and now I return sad and broken.’
This fable reminds me of Andre Rafflovich a wealthy Russian who settled in a fashionable area of London. Oscar Wilde knew him and on one occasion he said,’ Poor Andre! he came to London to found a salon. Instead he ended with a saloon’. This is how all religions have ended up.’

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The head of the family was an angel. So pure and highminded the Ancient of the Days called him one day and said,” Down to the earth you go!” He ordered,” this instant.”
Me- Righteous, the angel took the form of a Native Indian and before he could count the toes of his feet he had got a family and three children. What’s more he had Hurons for neighbors. Me-Righteous counselled Hurons how to plant corn and skin furs from otters; he taught them many useful things with which the tribe prospered. Naturally Me-Righteous become the patriarch. Everyday he taught his three sons: they were highminded, righteous and men of peace. One son taught the Hurons to trade and the second how to negotiate with those who were contrary. The third taught them to build settlements and manage lands. Under their guidance the tribe prospered. It was least expected but the French came to the scene and they had powerful muskets and technology that impressed the Hurons. They had to make peace with them in order to suvive. The Iroquois being envious of the Hurons instantly allied with the Dutch who also had firearms and lethal weapons.
Old Me-Righteous was old and by the time he woke up he found the whole area up in arms and blood was being shed wholesale. He called his three sons and faulted them for letting matter slide into blood feud.
“ How come you have failed me?” the old man asked in bitter tears.
“Oh father we shall answer you after you put the same question to the Great Spirit in the Blue Yonder,”replied the eldest son.
There is something mighty peculiar: We rear our children with the best of intentions and give them every advantage our moral sense is capable of. Yet we fail to stop the evil from coming in. A Bermuda triangle into which, our ‘goodness’ disappears and none can be individually held responsible for.
benny

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Brahma the Creative genius in the Trinity one day saw a caterpillar struggling to tackle a fat green leaf without much success. In a fit of mad thought he said,’I could make you a mighty prince, paragon of all virtues that any woman would give her life for.’
‘Virtue what is that? is it juicy or dry? Please let it be not acidic.’ Brahma roared with laughter.
He said, ‘I am going to set you in the bed room of the most handsome princess of Hastinapuram. You shall know what it is like. Direct experience, that shall be your best teacher.’
Instantly the caterpillar turned into a handsome young man whose muscles rippled with power. He felt it run through his body. He looked around in that dim light. A figure sat up. It was the princess. She writhed with pleasure. ” A vision! I could die for the pleasure’.
The young man hastened to her saying,’I am the answer to your prayers, O princess!’
She shrieked and said,’You have stepped in between my dream and me. How cruel!
The man just stood there astounded.
She was pointing to a moth that had come fluttering in. She rudely waved away the man and said lovingly to the new comer,’Oh my dream lover! I prayed all these years and observed vows to please the Incomparable Shiva. I am ready if you are, o lover.
Immediately she turned into a burst of flame and the moth threw himself into the funeral pyre.
It snapped something in that young man. He just crumbled to ashes.
Aeons later Lord Shiva was chatting with Brahma and he narrated the curious prayer of the princess of Hastinapuram. Brahma became curious and said he had transformed a caterpillar and sent the young man to her bed chamber. Shiva filled in gaps and Brahma fell silent. He shrugged his shoulder to dismiss the incident saying,’ Not even gods can understand what young girls look for in a man, these days!’
Moral: Vision of prophets speaks only a part. Little do they realize there is more to it.

benny

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Zeus and the Council of gods got all the creatures, almost all of them built to their satisfaction. There still remained some lump and they did not know what to do with it. Zeus slapped hard the putty-like stuff around. At one point the goddess of Agriculture said,’Aye, it looks almost like a sheep!’ Zeus stopped and said,’Sheep of the pasture, it cannot be then.” He waited for a suggestion. He scanned the horizon and saw there were vast stretches of pasture dried under global warming. ‘Ship of the desert!’ said Ganymede who was meanwhile filling their cups with wine.
The gods liked the idea. ‘I will send a couple of camels to fill that part of the world’. It was thus camels became staple feature of deserts.
When the ice age began there were marshes, and camels seeing hippos frolicking, thought they could be as strong as they. Later they saw wild assess gamboling and prayed Zeus to give something of their nature to them. Later it was giraffe that caught their imagination. ‘Oh Chief god, make us tall as they are. Ah what a curve!’ they bristled at their own hippo-like necks. Zeus often distracted by their incessant wishes,’ You shall have them all. Go and become a kind of entire animal kingdom in that impossible body of yours!’
Thus a camel carries the global warming and ice age; it has the sturdiness of hippos and bones and teeth like those of wild asses, rough hairiness of sheep’s wool. Camel had only one complaint,’We carry so much water within. Why must we carry for others?’ Zeus weary to his bone said,’Stop this nonsense.You shall need it. I am sending you to waste heaps, as a beast of burden.’
This is how camels who wanted to be sheep of the pasture ended as ship of the desert.
benny

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A fuller whose job is to make the clothes shine had large grounds. He thought someone else could set up his trade there. He knew the rent would add to his profits. So he sent advertisements all around for some trader or an artisan to move in. One day a collier dropped in. He was interested. All he needed was a furnace and space for storing firewood. ‘Just let me in. I look after my needs and pay rent on the day agreed and give you no trouble’,said he.
The fuller took the collier to show his line of business. ‘See I only need sunshine and space to hang all the clothes bleached to dry out.’
The collier showed him in his turn how he worked. ‘See that chimney stack. It takes all the smoke and will not trouble you or me.’
The fuller however was not convinced. He said, ‘you shall keep your end of the bargain.I know. Unfortunately we share the same sky. I need the sun to make my clothes shine spotless and keep their whiteness. But can I trust wind or your smoke? I know you mean no harm. But the wind may blow all that smoke onto my space and undo my hard work. It is better that you go elsewhere. It will give me peace.’
The State and Religion cannot mix. There are so many imponderables and not a single state has been saved by religion. Instead Religion has only defeated every effort of best of men who would give peace to men within the state. Look at Spain under the Moors. How the Moors and Christians fought for its control? Imagine what would have been the case had the Moors still controlled Spain? It would have been another Syria under Bashar Assad or Libya. Now Spain under the Catholic Church produced Franco. With the Church interfering every horror man could think of under the sun has come one after the other: Inquisition, civil war, stolen children, forced adoption,sex abuse. For all the iron heel of church or dictatorship what is the economic situation? Unemployment is very high and Recession is very much there. If one looks where Spain (or any other nation where religion plays a vital role), it will be clear where these nations stand in terms of happiness.(OECD.org) Religion has been man’s own device to make him fall headlong into the pit of misery. Religion and State have been devil’s prescription for man’s pride that makes him think he is in control of his own destiny.
Remember Guernica? Remember Bali Bombing?
benny

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A Dream By Half©

There was a scholar in Aleppo who was ridiculed by his neighbors. They
were mostly artisans or traders who traded in useful goods and they faulted him “Why study dreams or speak with spirits of the dead?” they asked him.
“I study dreams because I dream myself.” The scholar defended himself. “What about speaking with the spirits of the dead?” “Perhaps I might learn something from my ancestors.” His neighbors snorted at his pigheadedness and left him alone.
A few weeks later the scholar had a dream in which his ancestor visited him and asked, ‘What are you doing with my wealth?’ “ Your wealth? Will you speak plainly?”
‘I had left all my wealth, fearing that my enemies were after me, at the bottom of a dry well behind the house.’ His ancestor described the exact spot and what to look for. Next day the scholar went down into the well and discovered the treasure. But the news of his find got around. It reached the ears of the sultan. The sultan immediately confiscated the treasure trove according to the law of the land. The scholar was at least thankful to the sultan that his life was spared. What was more, a royal pension allowed him to pursue his scholarly interests.
A few months later he had another dream in which his ancestor appeared again to ask the whereabouts of his wealth. ‘You were right grandfather. Your enemies finally got around to it by legal means.’
A dream is left handed version of reality. Only trouble is that you need to let reason rearrange it.If it has not happened as foreseen your rational mind has still an escape clause that it went wrong only as far as sleep had a hand in it.
benny

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Prophet Totem Pole ©

Long ago when American Indians roamed the heart of American continent they had no miracle workers. Iroquois lived close to the soil, hunted the bison for meat and lived from the fruits of the earth. They dressed themselves too well,- they wore buffalo skins in winter and loin clothes of various fibers spun from plants at other times. Children of the Plains they were.
A prophet one day came out of nowhere and revealed to them of the Great Spirit of the Plains. They were impressed. The chief asked him to marry his daughter as a mark of respect. The prophet refused politely saying that his dress was special and it did not brook any person ever touching his person.
“See how white it is?” the prophet asked.” It is made out of some cactus the likes of which grows only in the Blue Yonder. He pointed dramatically to the horizon and said,” My sanctity and powers come from this poncho which I shall leave at my death which is soon.”
One morning he went on the top of a hillock to die. His dress lay in a tepee decorated with sacred objects he had brought along. “As long as this remains white as now, it is a sign that my body shall never decay.” So he died.
The whole tribe mourned for him. They revered the dress, which each member of the tribe, young and old alike kissed in veneration. It was not obvious at first but with time the poncho changed color. It became yellow. Was it as a result of the breath of devotees or time working out changes? One day pilgrims filed past the relic: the poncho was no better than rags.
Next they checked the body to see, and it had to their horror, become a totem pole! Since then the tribe began praying to the pole instead.
benny

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