Saadi of Shiraz and prayer

By Paulo Coelho

Saadi of Shiraz used to tell the following story:

‘When I was a child, I used to pray with my father, my uncles and my cousins. Every night we would gather together to listen to a passage from the Koran.

On one such night, while my uncle was reading a passage out loud, I noticed that most of the people were asleep. I said to my father: “Not one of these dozy people is listening to the words of the Prophet. They’ll never reach God.”

And my father replied: “My dear son, look for your own path with faith and let others take care of themselves. Who knows, perhaps they are talking to God in their dreams. Believe me, I would much prefer you to be sleeping alongside them than to hear your harsh words of judgement and condemnation.”

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