Wisdom Story – 225

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A group of lions in a zoo, suffering grievously from their imprisonment, formed themselves into various groups. There was the patriotic group: these would meet very often and sing sad songs about their jungle home; nostalgia was their specialty. Then there was the political group whose meetings were always so noisy that you had the impression they were good for something. And then there were a few groups whose interest was entertainment; their aim was to distract themselves from their predicament.

But there was one lion who refused to join any of these groups. He would sit in front of the gate and stare straight ahead all day.  the others thought him anti-social and depressed, and they stopped inviting him to join their groups. One day, out of pity, one  of them sat down beside him and asked gently, “What goes on in your poor sad mind as you sit all day staring?”

“I’m studying the lock.” he replied.

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Wisdom Story – 223

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The story is told that one day Frederick the Great, King of Prussia, visited a prison and talked with each of the inmates. There were endless tales of innocence, or misunderstood motives, and of exploitation. Finally the king stopped at the cell of a convict who remained silent.

“Well,” remarked Frederick, “I suppose you are an innocent victim too?”

“No, sir, I’m not,” replied the man. “I’m guilty and deserve my punishment.”

Turning to the warden, the king said, “Here, release this rascal before he corrupts all these fine innocent people in here!”

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Wisdom Story – 222

Peanut Butter and Grape Jelly Sandwiches

Once upon a time there was a priest who spent part of each night making sandwiches for the homeless. He travelled around the poorer parts of the city and distribute them. Even though his day was already full, this late night activity didn’t overwhelm him. It actually made him happy.  He didn’t do it out of guilt, duty or any external pressure.

He shared freely and openly in a way that made a difference for him,  Even when the street people rebuffed his offer of food, he didn’t feel rejected or angry, because he wasn’t doing it for the reward or acceptance or appreciation.

The media found out about him and printed a story about his work. Instantly his reputation grew and he became a minor celebrity. The public, even his fellow priests, started sending him money to support his ministry.  Much to their surprise he sent back the money to everyone with a one-line note that said: “Make your own damn sandwich!”

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Wisdom Story – 221

bag of money

Two friends met on the street. One of them was very down. He seemed a bit agitated and resentful.

The other friend asked him, “What has the world done to you to make you feel this way?”

The friend responded, “Well, you know, three weeks ago an uncle died and he left me $40,000.”

“Hmmm.” the other said. “Well, I don’t really view that as a problem. Is there something else?”

“Well, yeah, you see, two weeks ago, a cousin died and left me $85,000.”

“Wow, that’s great! So, what’s the problem?”

“You don’t understand. You see, last week, my great aunt died, and she left me almost a quarter million dollars!”

The friend shook his head and said, “Okay, I guess I’m just not understanding something here. I understand that members of your family died, and I can understand your pain and loss. But after all, as a result, you are being blessed beyond what most of us could hope for.”

“No, you really don’t understand,” the other replied. “You see, this week … nothing.”

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