When I was much younger, Aesop fables were
one of my favorite readings. These fables,
centered on animals, embody advice on how
to deal with the tempting realities of life.
Modern editions list some two hundred Aesop
Since he was chased by hunters, a deer
refuge in a cave belonging to a lion.
seeing his approach, the lion deceitfully
concealed himself, but when the deer
safe within the cave, he sprang upon
and tore him to pieces. "Woe to
exclaimed the deer, "who have
from man, only to throw myself into
of a wild beast!"
Never let your guard down. When you
temptation, be sure you don't leave
A deer blind in one eye was accustomed
graze as near to the edge of the cliff
he possibly could, in the hope of securing
his safety. He turned his sound eye
the land so that he might realize immediately
the approach of hunter or hound, and
injured eye towards the sea, from whence
he did not expect any real threat.
some boatmen sailing in the sea below
him, and taking a successful aim, mortally
wounded him. Yielding up his last breath,
he gasped forth this lament: "O
creature that I am! I took such precaution
against the land. This seashore, of
I felt so sure, was so much more perilous."
Keep looking on all sides in your fight
the evil one. And remember that you
to fight a battle more than once to
A hound, who in the days of his youth
strength had never yielded to any beast
the forest, encountered in his old
boar in the chase. He seized him boldly
the ear, but could not retain his hold
of the decay of his teeth. The boar
His master was very much disappointed,
fiercely abused the dog. The hound
up and said, "It was not my fault,
my spirit was as good as ever, but
not help my infirmities."
"The Spirit is willing, but the
is weak." We cannot do it alone.
need Him constantly.
One of the hardest animals to catch
ring-tailed monkey. The Zulus however
a simple trick that is practically
Their trap is just a melon growing
on a vine.
Knowing that the seeds of this melon
a favorite of the monkey, the Zulus
cut a hole in the fruit, just large
for the monkey to insert his hand to
the seeds inside. The monkey will stick
hand in, grab as many seeds as he can,
start to withdraw it. This he cannot
His fist is now larger than the hole.
monkey will pull and tug, screech and
the melon for hours. But he can't get
of the trap unless he gives up the
which he refuses to do. Meanwhile,
sneak up and nab him.
Greed is the root of many a downfall.
- lust for example - "gets its
by persuading me to believe that I
happier if I follow it."
(c) Fr. Pius Sammut, OCD. Permission
granted for any non-commercial use,
that the content is unaltered from
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