Gateway to the Classics: Indian Fables by Ramaswami Raju
Indian Fables by  Ramaswami Raju

The Sage and the Children

A sage in the East once went to a certain country, where he saw this: The children said they were hungry; the mothers cooked their breakfast and placed it before them.

Just as the children were putting the food to their lips a number of rude men rushed in and carried off the dishes. The mothers quietly observed the scene without complaining, nor did the children make any stir.

The sage was surprised, and asked what all that meant. The mothers said, "Sir, we beseech you to observe a while more." Then the children started, and went about seeking for their breakfast, which the men had hidden somewhere, and after much ado got it and appeased their hunger.

The mothers turned to the sage, and said, "Sir, in our country it is thus we teach our children early the great virtue of patience. That which really leads men to success is the faculty of putting up with disappointment in the early part of their career. It is thus we cultivate the faculty in our children."

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