Socrates announced to the general public that he was going to tell an interesting story. People who heard this announcement came eagerly to listen to his story.
He began, “There was a merchant who had a lot of merchandise to sell. He decided to go into another city so that he could get some extra profit from the business. So he packed his goods and took it on his shoulders and left. He had to climb a big mountain to reach the other city. While he was walking, he found another man with a donkey, also heading to the same city to which he was going. They walked together and talked to each other and became friends. Then the merchant asked the other man to rent his donkey to hold his merchandise till they reach the city. The man agreed for a certain amount of money.”
At this point Socrates found that more people were gathering around him to listen to the story; some came even forgetting their duties. People, who used to come, listen and leave within a few minutes, also forgot their business and stayed back. Then he continued his story:
“The merchant placed his merchandise upon the donkey and they started out in the morning. As the day progressed, it became very hard for them to climb the mountain. They became very tired. As soon as the sun came on top of their head they decided to take rest.”
Socrates found that the people gathered around him eagerly listened to his story. He continued:
“Under the shade of that donkey there was space for only one person. The owner of the donkey told the other man that the shade of the donkey solely belonged to him as he was the owner of the donkey. But the merchant wanted to sit and take rest so he disagreed with the argument of the owner of the donkey saying that right now he has hired the donkey so the shade of the donkey solely belonged to him. But the owner said that he let out only the donkey, not the shade. But the merchant said that when he hired the donkey, the shade also became his. Both the men fell into a fierce argument for the shade of the donkey. Both argued that it belonged to them legally.”
By this time there were a large number of people around Socrates. He climbed down from the stone on which he was standing and walked away. People followed him requesting to complete the story. He paid no attention to them and continued walking. People were following him and requesting him to complete the story all the more. They pressed him hard for the end of the story, so he stopped walking and turned around and said. “I talked to you about great and serious things like life and after life. But you never paid any attention. But when I started telling about an imaginative story of a donkey and its shade you are very eager to listen and want to know the end of the story. You are paying more attention to silly things and ignoring the important things in life. It is better for you to look for important things of life; do not run after silly things like stories. Do some important things everyday and pursue it.”
Through the hundreds of stories, Indian Thoughts has published, what we intend is revisiting those profound concepts of happy and successful life. Unless one agrees to go into the core and drink the moral extract of these stories, the entire effort will turn just a silly entertainment.