20 SEC READING: the best temptation


Illustration by Ken Crane

A group of devils were trying to enter the soul of a holy man who lived near Cairo; they had already tempted him with Nubian women, Egyptian food, Libyan treasure, but nothing had worked.

One day, Satan passed and saw his servants’ efforts.

– You’re hopeless – said Satan. – You haven’t used the only technique no one can resist; I’ll teach you.

He went over to the holy man and whispered in his ear:

– Remember the priest who studied under you? He’s just been made Bishop of Alexandria.

Immediately, the holy man was filled with rage, and blasphemed against God’s injustice.

– The next time, use this temptation – said Satan to his subjects.

“Men can resist almost everything, but they are always jealous of the victory of a fellow man.”
 
 
 

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Comments

  1. Chiad A. Berwary says:

    Kurdish Translation
    بيست چركێن خاندنێ: باشترين سه‌ردابرن
    كومه‌كا خزمه‌تكارێن شه‌يتانان هه‌ول ددان بچن دناڤ جانێ مروڤه‌كێ پيروزدا ئه‌وێ لنێزيكێ قاهيره‌ دژی؛ ئه‌وان ژبه‌ری نوكه‌ ئه‌و هانددا ب ژنێن نوبيانا، خارنا مسری، خه‌زينێت ليبيا، به‌س چييا ژڤان كرا لێ نه‌كر.
    روژه‌كێ شه‌يتان ده‌ربازبو و هه‌ولێن خزمه‌تكارێن خوه‌ ديتن.
    شه‌يتانی گوتێ – هوين دبێ ئومێدن. – وه‌ ئه‌و ته‌كنيكه‌ بكار نه‌ئينايه‌ يا چ كه‌س نه‌شێت به‌رگيريێ بكه‌ت؛ ئه‌ز دێ وه‌ فێركه‌م.
    ئه‌و چو نك زه‌لامێ پيروز و دگوهی دا پسته‌ پستكر:
    – بيرا ته‌ دهێت ل وی قه‌شه‌يێ يێ به‌ر ده‌ستێ ته‌ دخان؟ ئه‌و ئها نوكه‌ يێ بويه‌ مه‌ترانێ ئه‌لكساندريا.
    زه‌لامێ پيروز دگاڤێدا تژی كه‌ربوكين بو، و كوفری كرن دژی نه‌دادوه‌رييا خودايی.
    – شه‌يتانی گوته‌ به‌رده‌ستكێن خوه‌ – جارا بهێت ڤێ سه‌ردابرنێ بكاربينن.
    (مروڤ دبيت به‌رهنگارييا هه‌رتشتی بكه‌ت، به‌س ئه‌و هه‌رده‌م ده‌خه‌سيێ ب سه‌ركه‌فتنا هه‌ڤالێ خوه‌يێ مروڤ دبه‌ن. )

  2. MARGARITA CONTRERAS says:

    LA ENVIDIA NO ES OTRA COSA QUE EL OPONENTE O EL COLUDO SE INTRODUCE EN TU MENTE PARA QUE NO APRECIES TUS LOGROS MAS BIEN VEAS EL DE LOS DEMAS Y CON ESTO TE CONSUMES POR LO TANTO NUNCA ESTARAS CONFORME O AGRADECIDA DE LO QUE POSEES Y UNA VEZ QUE LO PIERDES EL DOLOR Y LA TRISTEZA TE ENVUELVEN Y JAJAJA EL COLUDO GANO LA ENVIDIA ES UNO DE LOS SIETE PECADOS CAPITALES.

  3. mounia says:

    because he was jealous of adam too

  4. mounia says:

    انت كاتب رائع والنسخة العربية من كتبك جميلة ولا تنقص من روعة اسلوبك و فكرك

  5. haydydy says:

    as we know from our messenger divel

    Was one of the best slaves to God he had worshiped God more than 6000 years, but one exam and a failure to prostrate to Adam, Satan and the expulsion from paradise because of all this ego .. Be careful and Aeachzkm vanity to think you Mniein from the snares of the devil .. But to act always on the dissociated charge d’affaires to God, not words, because he most beautiful road to eternal happiness

  6. clotilde judite micalli says:

    paulo coelho o dia da minha viagem transeberiana esta chegando dia 20 de agosto com retorno 5 de setembro ,vou procurar e trazer fotos para colocar no mural

  7. majid sheikhi says:

    Persian Translation ;

    گروهی از شیاطین در تلاش بودند وارد روح مرد مقدسی شوند که
    نزدیک قاهره زندگی می کرد ,آنها قبلا با زنانی ازحبشه ,غذاهای مصری ,وجواهرات لیبیایی او راوسوسه کرده بودند ولی هیچ نتیجه ای نگرفته بودند
    یک روز , شیطان بزرگ از آنجا گذر می کرد که تلاش خدمتکارانش را دید
    شیطان بزرگ گفت ای بیچاره ها ! تکنیکی که کسی توان مقاومت دربرابرش ندارد را هنوز بکار نبسته اید
    شیطان به سوی مردمقدس رفت ودرگوش وی نجواکرد
    آیا کشیشی که زیر دست تو آموزش می دید را به یاد داری ؟به تازگی اسقف اسکندریه شده
    ناگهان مردمقدس لبریز از خشم وطغیان شد ,و شروع به کفرگویی درباره بی عدالتی خداکرد
    شیطان بزرگ روبه مریدانش کرده وگفت :دفعه بعد این تکنیک وسوسه آمیز را بکار بگیرید
    “انسان تقریبادر برابرهرچیزی می تواند مقاومت کند ,اما همیشه دربرابر موفقیت انسان های هم سطحش حسادت می ورزد”

  8. slen says:

    This is indeed true.

  9. Ken Crane says:

    Here is the translation in Japanese:

              悪魔の誘惑

    悪魔の部下達が、カイロの近くに住んでいた聖人の魂を誘惑しようとしていた。
    彼らはすでにヌビアの女性、エジプト料理、リビアの宝物で彼を誘惑しようとしていたが、イマイチ効き目がなかった。

    ある日の事、悪魔がとうとう部下達にしびれを切らした。

    – お前達はは絶望的だ! – サタンは言った。 – 君達は誰も抵抗できない唯一の技術を使用していない、それを教えてやろう。

    彼は、聖人の側まで行き、彼の耳にささやいた。

    – 君に師事していた司祭の事を覚えているか?彼は最近アレクサンドリアの司教に任命されたらしいぞ。

    すぐに、聖人の心は怒りに満ち、そして神の正義に対する冒涜を冒した。

    – 次回からはこの方法を使うように – とサタンは部下達に言った。

    「人は、ほとんどすべてを耐えることはできるが、仲間の人間の勝利には嫉妬する物なのだ」

  10. Criststar11 says:

    Minha alma estava esperando por você para publicar em Português, é a próxima língua eu tenho que aprender maestro. Eu li com atenção. Um abraço de luz, :) Cristina

  11. naeli says:

    ese sentimiento nunca en el hombre se va perder

  12. liliana says:

    PAULO… NO ES MI CASO… AL CONTRARIO… SIEMPRE ME RESBALÓ..pero… aunque he tenido y no he tenido nada.. me ha pasado… lo contrario… cuando tenía no me daba cuenta.. de la envidia.. y cuando no lo tuve.. guau.. los comentarios.. que disfrutaban mi desgracia..pero aún así provocaba ese sentimiento… luego volví a tener.. y ahora me gusta…jajaja hacerlo sentir… jajaj bueno… (pero no tengo tanto!! jajaj ))))ni dinero… ni juventud… jaja todo se esfuma.. los tontos son aquellos que quieren lo que los demás tienen… porque nunca serán felices con lo poco o mucho que les toque en la vida.. besos

  13. Sheela Nandini says:

    My best temptation:Music:)

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wAviaeg_wJQ&feature=related

    Annie,my Precious Angel,can never thank YOU enough for letting me know about this album of Yanni<3

    Love
    sheela

  14. eleonora says:

    andrebbe letto ogni giorno quanto scritto…niente di piu’ vero.

  15. iris says:

    jealousy is important for development in life I do not think it’s a bad thing but we must control it.it shoud’nt lead us to hate the others

  16. huvaida says:

    May Allah bless our souls with strength to fight devils

  17. Me says:

    I just hope that those how belive this it through and probabley act like the holy man will not not cross to often my way
    I belive that this holy man did not understand his mission..

  18. sarah says:

    An egoic state or moment is fertile gound for devils of all kinds cultivate.

  19. ping says:

    lately i’ve been asking this question to myself?… am i the kind of which envy other or the one of which enjoys people who envy me?…

  20. Edyta Martin says:

    I think envy is such a wasted energy because people think of the fruits of success but not the hard work and responsibility that comes with success. Once they think of what hard work goes into acquiring success hopefully they will be more compassionate and rejoice at their fellowmen’s success.

  21. Archana Lakshmanan says:

    that s very true…every human is jealous of their fellow beings victory atleast at the first instance…later some realise ,accept and be happy for their victory…some don’t.

  22. Brajesh Sinha says:

    It’s not always jealousy. It might be the pain of realizing the lacking in oneself,may be pain of lack of opportunities and might be the agony of realizing the fact that he believed in Him more than he believed in himself.

  23. Eve says:

    J’ai croque le fruit defendu chez y quai a.

  24. RITESH KUMAR YADAV says:

    quite true. You can always see this feeling. Even among frnds…

  25. Shafi Karuppadanna says:

    Jealousy is knit to the fabric of mind like vanity is knit to the walls of heart. Both are twins inseparable and deep routed to social and individual mind. They are the premises of all conflicts, personal or national? They co-exist with humanity in their aboriginal crude form. No wise men denied their existence. They exist like irrationality exist. One has only to conquer them. Satan is not that idiotic.

    1. dominique Wiche says:

      This is an objective and fine analysis…and I don’t know what has protected me…I have never been jealous of the victory of others…only sad about my own failures and learned to accept them as part of my road and that they bring me some clarity in the abilities I still had/have to devellop or insights I have to gain… but of course I see around me a lot of fellows wasting their energy in jealousy and envy, and the distruous consequences it has…and it makes me also sad…for that is never the a constructive focus on the matter at hand.

  26. buddy says:

    I used to thing the same way (not feeling envy for others) however, I have recently dive deep into my soul and found out that, deep within me, I do have all of of those feelings, controlled maybe with the racionalism of understanding some other peoples efforts and skills… but still being there.

    I believe everyone has temptations within, is up to us how to react (after all, what would be a temptation if cannot really tempted the human soul?… not a temptation for sure)

    Weird question to all… when Jesus christ was tempted on the desert by satan… did he really felt like doing it or thought about it at least one second? otherwise wouldnt have been a temptation… does it?….

  27. shazia says:

    are we really exceptional towards envy,jealousy,took me years to realize it existed,But ohhh those devils don’t they just whisper and whisper.

  28. Jaime Rueda says:

    “In my experience those who do not like you fall into two categories: the stupid and the envious.”

  29. Scooby says:

    Depends, I would imagine on whether you hold yourself as your most feared and hated competition rendering jealousy at someone else’s success nonsensical…

  30. Maria Nicolosi says:

    What do it mean? When we are winners in our life ,are jealous our fellows ? Yes I think it is true,because none man can understand that when somebody is winner it is the win of everyone.It means that to win it is possible and everyone can fight for winning. We must be more happy for just one only possibility to win ,than none possibility to win for all people,because the “Aurea mediocritas” (a latin excression )it is humanity’s mediocrity.I wish me winner but if my fellow is better than me ,sad to say it is better for all people.

  31. Nikhat Riaz says:

    Every one gets jealous one or other time but as every one is different so is their threshold of envy is.

  32. DANIELA says:

    La verdad no senti envidia de mi prójimo al contrario me emociona cuando tienen éxito en la vida,pienso que tambien me llegara a mi,de todas formas es muy buena la reflexión.

  33. valeria says:

    Leggendo questo breve racconto mi sono ricordata dei metodi che usavano i “dirigenti” nell’ufficio in cui lavoravo.Oltre al Mobbing e ai soliti medodi per avvilire i sottoposti, fomentavano i colleghi, creando differenze
    tramite palesi ingiustizie come premiare e far avanzare nel lavoro gli ultimi arrivati che fino a pochi momenti prima erano dipesi per tutto dagli impiegati più anziani e pratici del lavoro. Evidentemente, come ho sempre pensato, avevano imparato bene la lezione satanica.
    Mi scuso per non essermi espressa in inglese, ma sarabbe stato troppo difficoltoso per me rappresentare bene questi concetti.

  34. kamel says:

    Me Im agaist doing like that. I always treat my students as my own children. I’ll be very happy when my children succeed and reach what I couldn’t.

  35. Werner says:

    Me gusta mucho el trabajo de Usted no he tenido mucho gusto de lee solo un Libro y frecuentemente me he metido mucho a su facebook, y siento mucho gusto por sus publicaciones aqui.

  36. Julie says:

    Todo eso es verdad.. Nosotros los humanos siempre con envidias…

  37. Andres T P says:

    …por suerte, yo no padezco ese sufrimiento, tampoco me duele el provocarselo a los demás, pues no es mi voluntad, sino su decisión…

  38. Jackie noriega says:

    el diablo nos puede tentar de varias maneras en el ejemplo que nos pones me doy cuenta tan sabio pero se dejo meter el bichito de la envidia o celos como tu dices en este caso yo me salvo de esto verdad verdad siempre atribuyo el exito ajeno a su esfuerzo y constancia por el contrario lo pongo de ejemplo a seguier y no me da nada mas que admiracion serà por eso que yo me siento muy feliz de lo que soy y eso imparto a mi familia cuando sabe escuchar y me esfuerzo por conversar de esto con mis hijos por que la envidia me parece que es dañina para el alma

  39. Angeles says:

    When envy fills the heart, there´s no room left for love

  40. Pilar says:

    Hola Paulo: Yo creo que algunas mentes humanas envidian que el prójimo prospere, y creo que algunos corazones aman,se alegran y lo acompañan.
    Es un privilegio tener este espacio.Gracias.

  41. Christine Richards says:

    If there is a something to make me jealous out there I havent come across yet, but I can honestly say I have never been jealous in my life, I love seeing other people do well, and encourage it. If anything If the people do well around me it lifts me and makes me happier. Success isnt all about you doing well, it can a lesson to watch and learn.

  42. dave says:

    True in most cases. I’m definately an exception to the rule.

  43. tatinha says:

    a cada rasteira que levo por não escutar os sinais do meu coração e me deixar levar pelo medo soprado nos meus ouvidos pelos meus demônios eu levanto seco as lágrimas olho para as coisas que me fazem bem como o mar meus 2 meninos minha cachorrinha : ) uma flor uma música e me sinto forte e o desafio denovo