Sunday, October 02, 2011

The Bustan of Sa'di: The Forbearance of Good Men

I have heard that a debased drunkard caught a pious man by the collar. The latter received his blows in silence, and in forbearance lifted not his head.
A passer-by remarked: "Art thou not a man? It is a pity to be patient with this ignorant fellow."

The pious man replied: "Speak not thus to me. A foolish drunkard collars one by the neck in the thought that he is fighting with a lion; there is no fear that a learned man will contend with an inebriated fool."

The virtuous follow this rule in life—when they suffer oppression they display kindness.
The Bustan of Sa'di (1257), Concerning Humility (Chapter IV), translated by A. Hart Edwards (1911).

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