A great Scholar and his Disciple were taking a morning walk around the fields when they saw a pair of old shoes lying down, which they supposed to belong to a poor man who was employed in a field close by,and who had nearly finished his day’s work.
“My young friend,” answered the Scholar, “we should never amuse ourselves at the expense of the poor. But you are rich, and may give yourself a much greater pleasure by means of this poor man. Put a coin in each shoe, and then we will hide ourselves and watch how this affects him.”
While putting on his coat he slipped his foot into one of his shoes, but feeling something hard, he stooped down to feel what it was, and found the coin. Astonishment and wonder were seen upon his countenance. He gazed upon the coin, turned it around, and looked at it again and again.
He then looked around him on all sides, but no person was to be seen. He now put the money into his pocket, and proceeded to put on the other shoe; but his surprise was doubled on finding the other coin.
His feelings overcame him; he fell upon his knees, looked up to heaven and uttered aloud a fervent thanksgiving in which he spoke of his wife who was sick and helpless, and his children without bread, whom this timely bounty, from some unknown hand,would save from perishing.
The Disciple stood there deeply affected, and his eyes filled with tears. “Now,” said the Scholar, are you not much better pleased than if you had played your intended trick?”
The youth replied, “You have taught me a lesson which I will never forget.
I feel now the truth of these words, which I never understood before: “It’s more blessed to give than to receive.”