The Foolish Man


Once upon a time there was a poor man who lived at the edge of the town in a house of old bricks, with poor-fitting windows and a rusty steel roof. He was very poor although he used to work hard. One day he decided to find God and to ask him how he could get rid of his misfortune.

On his way he met a hungry wolf in the forest.

“Where are you going?” asked the wolf.

“I am going in search of God to ask him to help me,” the man answered.

“Well, since you're going to God, tell him there's a hungry wolf roaming in the forest who cannot find food and is hungry day and night. Ask God how long I’ll be hungry. Since he has created me, he has to feed me,” said the wolf.

“All right,” said the man and continued on his journey.


After a while the man met a pretty young woman.

“Where are you going?” she asked the man.

“I am going in search of God to ask him to help me”, the man answered.

“When you meet God, please tell him about my sorrow. I’m a pretty young woman, healthy and rich but I’m not happy. Ask him how I can be happy,” said the woman.

“I will,” promised the man and went on his way.


After some time, the man came to a tree by the waterside but it had dried up.

“Where are you going,” asked the dried tree.

“I am going in search of God to ask him to help me,” the man answered.

“If you are going to meet God, please ask him to help me also. Please, tell God there is a dried up tree on a bank whose roots cannot reach the stream below and it is dry all year round. Please, ask God how I can become green again,” said the dried tree.

“I will,” promised the man and went on his way.


Eventually, the man found God, sitting in the shade of a high rocky outcrop with a long white beard.

“What can I do for you?” God said.

“I came to tell you about my sorrow. Life is not fair. I work twice as hard as other people I know, yet they are rich and live well and I am poor, lonely, often hungry and unhappy,” said the man.

God thought for a moment and then said, “All right, go now, you'll be rich. I'll give you luck. Go, find it and enjoy it.”

“Thank you, Lord. I have something else to tell you”, said the man, and he told God about the hungry wolf, the pretty young woman and the dried tree.

God promised to help them all and told the man what they had to do. The man began his journey back to begin his new life as a rich man.


On his way back he came to the dried tree.

“What is God’s message to me?” asked the dried tree.

“God says that there is gold beneath your roots. When the pot of gold is taken out, your roots will become free and you will be green again,” the man answered.

“Wonderful,” said the tree, “you are just the person to help me. Dig out the gold for yourself and then I will be green again and you will be rich!”

“No,” said the man, “I have no time now, I am in a hurry, God has given me my luck. I must go and find it and enjoy it!”


After a while the man met the pretty young woman:

“What message have you brought for me? How will I ever be happy?” asked the woman.

“God told me that you will be happy, if you find a precious friend for yourself,” the man answered.

“Please! Will you be my precious friend?” asked the young woman.

“No,” said the man, “I have no time to be your friend,” and continued, “God has given me my luck and I must go and find it and enjoy it!”


The man had not gone far when the hungry wolf ran towards him:

“What did God tell you for me?” asked the wolf.

“I’m really tired! On my way I met a dried tree that asked me to dig out for myself the gold that was under its roots but I refused. Then I met a pretty young woman who asked me to become her precious friend, but I refused again. God has given me my luck. I must go, find it and enjoy it!” said the man.

“And what did God say for me?” asked the hungry wolf.

“For you he said you'd go hungry until you found a foolish man. And when you found one you should eat him immediately and you would be satisfied,” said the man.

“Where on earth can I find a man more foolish than you?” said the wolf and gobbled him up.