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The Disappearing Donkey


Muhammad Daari narrates the following:

There was, in our area of Daaraa, a man who was known for his foolishness. He once departed from Daaraa with ten donkeys, and on departing, he decided to ride one of the donkeys. After some time, he counted the donkeys and only found nine! Immediately concerned, he dismounted and carefully recounted the donkeys. To immense his relief, he now counted ten. As he remounted the donkey, it occurred to him that he should count the donkeys one more time, just to be safe. However, when he recounted the donkeys around him, he again counted only nine! Now frustrated and perplexed, he again dismounted and recounted, again finding ten donkeys! Eventually, the man thought to himself, “When I ride, I only have nine donkeys, but when I walk, I have ten. It is better for me to walk than to ride, as I will have one more donkey to sell.” Thus, not realizing that he had failed to count the donkey on which he was sitting, the foolish man walked all the way to his destination, almost perishing from the effort. (Akhbaarul Humaqaa wal Mughaffaleen pg. 123)