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(Masnavi Book 4: 46) Story of the lake and the fishermen and the three fishes



Story of the lake and the fishermen and the three fishes, one intelligent and one half intelligent and the third deluded, foolish, heedless and good-for-naught; and the end of all three.

This, O obstinate man, is the story of the lake in which there were three great fishes.
You will have read it in Kalíla, but that is (only) the husk of the story, while this is the spiritual kernel.
Some fishermen passed beside the lake and saw that concealed (prey).

2205. Then they hastened to bring the net: the fishes noticed and became aware (of their intention).
The intelligent one resolved to journey, resolved to make the difficult unwelcome journey.
He said,I will not consult these (others), for assuredly they will make me weak (deficient) in power (to fulfil my purpose).
Love of their native place and abode holds sway over their souls: their indolence and ignorance will strike on (affect) me.”
For consultation, some goodly and (spiritually) living person is required, that he may make thee
living; and where is that living one (to be found)?

2210. O traveller, take counsel with a traveller, for a woman's counsel will keep your foot lame. Pass on from the (literal) expression, love of country”; do not stop (at its outward sense), for
thy (real) country is Yonder, O soul: it is not on this side.
If you desire your country, cross to the other bank of the stream: do not misread this true Hadíth.

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