We Are All Eating Toads Now-A Parable Unfortunately Too Telling.

We Are All Eating Toads Now

With a profound sense of sadness for the lives lost, the grievous injuries, for the suffering of those left behind, and with respect for those who serve and served with a sense of honor; in these latest bloody hours of tragedy, I can’t help but think of this parable that is unfortunately, a story that seems apropos for the moment and all time.

A poor husband and wife are down to their last crumbs of bread.  There is nothing to do but to sell their one scrawny cow. Sadly, the man sets out towards the market, hoping to get enough to survive long enough until better times arrive. He hadn’t gone far when he was approached by a ragged beggar, who pleaded for a coin.

Hard as it was to deny someone who seemed even worse off than himself he explained his own circumstances.

“ I have nothing to my name but this cow, which I now am forced to sell. I can give you nothing for I don’t have a single coin in my pocket or at home.”

“Then give me the cow!” demanded the beggar.

“Are you mad? I can’t do that. How would I be able to return and face my wife without the cow or a coin?”

“ Aha! So you have a wife and a home. I have nothing. Give me the cow!”

The beggar dogged the poor man as he proceeded towards the market. He was so insistent that he at last drove the poor man to the end of his wits. That’s when saw a puffed up toad, resting by the side of the road.

“ Fine. Do you see that toad?  Eat it and the cow is yours.”
So said, so done. The words were just out of the poor mans mouth, as the toad went down the beggars gullet in a single bite. Just as quickly he began to violently retch. Still he managed to sputter out his demand for payment. 

“ A promise made is a debt unpaid. I ate the toad. The cow is mine!”

 In despair, the poor man relinquished his cow“

“I am a man of my word,” he said. “I have done what you have asked.” 

Together, the two men turned back towards their village. The beggar was still nauseous from his meal, his complexion looking a suitably toad like pale green . 

The poor man was distraught and cursed himself for the hasty and disastrous  bargain he had proposed. He pleaded with the beggar for the return of the cow. 

And then… another toad appeared.

“The worm turns, or should I say the toad turns. Now it’s your turn for a tasty meal,” said the beggar. “Eat that toad and I will gladly give you your cow back.”

So said, so done. Now it was the poor man who wasted no time.  Down his gullet went the toad.

After a time, the two men reached the city gates.

As they parted, the beggar turned to the poor man and and spoke.

“ Look at us.  Each of us have eaten toads, become ill, and gained absolutely nothing.  Our situations are just as they were before we met.”

And such it is also in war.

With a profound sense of sadness for the lives lost, the grievous injuries, for the suffering of those left behind, and with respect for those who serve and served with a sense of honor; in these latest bloody hours of tragedy, I can’t help but think of this parable that is unfortunately, a story that seems apropos for the moment and all time. I’ve adapted it only slightly from a source that is unknown to me. If you know the origin of this tale, please let me know.

A poor husband and wife are down to their last crumbs of bread.  There is nothing to do but to sell their one scrawny cow. Sadly, the man sets out towards the market, hoping to get enough to survive long enough until better times arrive. He hadn’t gone far when he was approached by a ragged beggar, who pleaded for a coin.

Hard as it was to deny someone who seemed even worse off than himself he explained his own circumstances.

“ I have nothing to my name but this cow, which I now am forced to sell. I can give you nothing for I don’t have a single coin in my pocket or at home.”

“Then give me the cow!” demanded the beggar.

“Are you mad? I can’t do that. How would I be able to return and face my wife without the cow or a coin?”

“ Aha! So you have a wife and a home. I have nothing. Give me the cow!”

The beggar dogged the poor man as he proceeded towards the market. He was so insistent that he at last drove the poor man to the end of his wits. That’s when saw a puffed up toad, resting by the side of the road.

“ Fine. Do you see that toad?  Eat it and the cow is yours.”
So said, so done. The words were just out of the poor mans mouth, as the toad went down the beggars gullet in a single bite. Just as quickly he began to violently retch. Still he managed to sputter out his demand for payment. 

“ A promise made is a debt unpaid. I ate the toad. The cow is mine!”

 In despair, the poor man relinquished his cow“

“I am a man of my word,” he said. “I have done what you have asked.” 

Together, the two men turned back towards their village. The beggar was still nauseous from his meal, his complexion looking a suitably toad like pale green . 

The poor man was distraught and cursed himself for the hasty and disastrous  bargain he had proposed. He pleaded with the beggar for the return of the cow. 

And then… another toad appeared.

“The worm turns, or should I say the toad turns. Now it’s your turn for a tasty meal,” said the beggar. “Eat that toad and I will gladly give you your cow back.”

So said, so done. Now it was the poor man who wasted no time.  Down his gullet went the toad.

After a time, the two men reached the city gates.

As they parted, the beggar turned to the poor man and and spoke.

“ Look at us.  Each of us have eaten toads, become ill, and gained absolutely nothing.  Our situations are just as they were before we met.”

And such it is also in war.

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