SHEIKH SAADI’S WIT / DRESS DOES NOT MAKE A MAN GREAT-STORY

Sheikh Saadi’s Wit/Dress does not Make a Man Great

Sheikh Saadi was a great poet in Iran. He was very simple and did not like pomp in his way of life. Once he was going to the court of the king of Iran. On the way, the night fell and he took shelter in a rich man’s house. As usual, he was then in simple dress. The people of that house took him to be an ordinary man. They did not entertain him well. They also did not show any respect and honor to him. Though their behavior offended the poet, he did not say anything but left that house.
Incidentally, a few days later, the poet had to pass through the same way and he again went to that house to pass a night. But this time he was with a rich dress on. Now the rich man and his servants received him with cordial respect. They entertained him with high care and comfort and gave him rich dishes to eat. At the time of eating, a wonderful thing happened. The poet, without eating, was putting the food into his pocket. At this the rich man became astonished. He asked the poet about his strange behavior. In reply, Sheikh Saadi said, “It is for the dress that I have got this food. So, the dress deserves this food.” Then the rich man could understand his fault and begged forgiveness of the poet.

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As with fascism, the rise of Islamic totalitarianism has partly to do with its populist appeal to the class resentments of an economically oppressed population and to anger at political subordination and humiliation.

― Ellen Willis

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