The Slave and the Philosopher – Moslem



A pasha was crossing the sea in a fine ship when a terrible storm arose.  One of the Persian slaves, who had never been off land before, began to weep and moan and cried out in such terror that no one could reassure him.

At last the pasha called out angrily, “Is there no one aboard who can quiet this coward?”

A philosopher, who happened to be on the vessel, said, “With your permission, sir, I think can quiet this man.”

“Proceed,” said the pasha.

The philosopher observed the chattering slave and summoned several sailors.

“Throw him into the water.”

They threw the salve into the water.  He began to drown, thrashing around wildly, and his screams were terrible to hear.

“Now pull him back aboard,” said the philosopher.

The sailors hauled the slave back onto the ship.  He clung to the deck, panting and frightened, but silent.

The pasha impressed but mystified, asked the philosopher, “How do you explain this?”

To which the wise man replied, “Before he had a taste of drowning, he could not appreciate the blessed safety of a ship.”

To the angles in paradise, purgatory is hell;

But to the doomed of hell, purgatory is paradise.

/ Leo Rosten .  Stories From Five Faiths

Posted by RoseVoc2. July 14, 2015


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