How Much is Enough? (Persia)
There was once a wise man who went to a house of learning to offer his wisdom. He expected many people to attend, but no matter how long he waited, only one person showed up. The wise man was thinking of leaving but, being polite, he asked the man, “You are the only person here, should I leave and return another time, when more people might attend?”
“Sir, I am not a wise man like you, but if I entered a stable and there was only one horse there, I would still feed it.”
The wise man nodded and began to speak at great length. When he paused to take a drink, he asked, “Shall I continue?”
“Sir, I am not a wise man like you, but if I entered the stable and discovered there was only one horse, I would not feed it all the grain in the stable.
Wit and wisdom from around the world and through the ages. Tales by Nancy King.