Three men set out on a journey. Each carried two sacks around his neck — one in front and one in back. Which of them finished first?
The first man was asked what was in his sacks. “In this one on the back” he said, “I carry all the kind deeds of my friends. In that way they are out of sight and out of mind and I don’t have to do anything about them. They are soon forgotten. This sack in front carries all the unkind things people do to me. I pause in my journey every day and take these out to study. It slows me down, but nobody gets away with anything.
The second man said he kept his own good deeds in his front sack. ” I constantly keep them before me” he said. “It gives me pleasure to take them out and air them”.
“The sack on the back seems heavy,” someone remarked.” What’s in it?
“Merely my mistakes,” said the second man. “I always keep them on my back.”
The third man was asked what he kept in his sacks.
“I carry my friends’ kind deeds in this front sack,” he said.
” It looks full. It must be heavy,” said the observer.
“No,” said the third man, “it is big, but not heavy. Far from being a burden, it is like the sails of a ship. It helps me move ahead”.
“I notice that the sack behind you has a hole in the bottom,” said the observer. “It seems empty and of little use.”
“That’s where I put the evil I hear from others,” said the third man. “It just falls out and is lost, so I have no weight to impede me.”
Tags: values, achievements, deeds, friends, mistakes, evil, approach to life
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