there appeared in a newspaper a cartoon showing two fields divided by a
fence. Both fields were about the same size and each had plenty of the
same kind of grass, green and lush.
In each field
there was a mule, and each mule had his head through the fence eating
grass from the other mule’s pasture. All around each mule in his own
field was plenty of grass, yet the grass in the other field seemed
greener or fresher, although it was harder to get.
And in the
process the mules were caught in the wires and were unable to extricate
themselves. The cartoonist put just one word at the bottom of the
—Earl C. Willer
J. Paul Getty,
one of the richest men in the world, was asked what single thing he
would change if he had the power, he replied: “I’d change
philosophy. People should be more content. The way to cure discontent is
not necessarily to get more. … The old cliche about money not buying
happiness is certainly true.”
~“Why Didn’t I
Say Ten Pounds?”
downstairs one morning, Lord Congelton heard the cook exclaim, “Oh, if
I only had five pounds, wouldn’t I be content!” Thinking the matter
over, and anxious to see the woman satisfied, he shortly after handed
her a five-pound note, then worth about twenty-five dollars. She thanked
him profusely. He paused outside the door to hear if she would express
her satisfaction and thank God. As soon as his shadow was invisible, she
cried out, “Why didn’t I say ten?”
of an old Quaker who advertised that he would give 40 acres of rich farm
land to anyone who was perfectly satisfied with that which he had. One
seeker came to see the Quaker.
perfectly satisfied with what thee hast?”
answered the hopeful guest.
dost thee want this land?” was the old Quaker’s significant reply.
~ A Contented
There is a
story told of a king who was suffering from a painful ailment, whose
astrologer told him that the only cure for him was to find a contented
man, get his shirt, and wear it night and day. So messengers were sent
through the king’s realm in search of such a man, with orders to bring
back his shirt.
and after a thorough search of the country the messengers returned, but
without the shirt.
find a contented man in all my realm?” the king asked.
king, we found one, just one in all thy realm,” they replied.
did you not bring back his shirt?” the king demanded.
man had no shirt,” was the answer.
Of The Eyes
A bishop of
the early church, who was a remarkable example of the virtue of
contentment, was asked his secret. The venerable old man replied: “It
consists in nothing more than making a right use of my eyes. In whatever
state I am, I first of all look up to heaven and remember that my
principal business here is to get there.
Then I look
down upon the earth, and call to mind how small a place I shall occupy
in it when I die and am buried. I then look around in the world, and
observe what multitudes there are who are in many respects more unhappy
than myself. Thus I learn where true happiness is placed, where all our
cares must end, and what little reason I have to complain.”
dissuading Pyrrhus from undertaking a war against the Romans, said,
“Sir, when you have conquered them, what will you do next?”
near at hand and easy to master,” replied Pyrrhus.
when you have conquered Sicily?” “Then we will pass on to Africa and
are conquered, what will be your next attempt?” asked Cineas.
said Pyrrhus, “we will fall upon Greece and Macedon and recover what
we have lost there.”
all are subdued, what fruit do you expect from all your victories?”
said Pyrrhus, “we will sit down and enjoy ourselves.”
said Cineas, “may we not do it now?”
Cow’s Legal Right
You have all
seen that advertisement, implying that the milk from a cow that is
contented is superior to milk from other cows. There might be something
ago a judge in England ruled that a cow had a legal right to stand and
stare on the highway. A motorist had tried to sue a farmer whose cow
stood in the road and caused damage to his automobile. He had blown his
horn, but the animal would not move.
In defense the
farmer maintained that he had no control over the movements of the cow.
He also pointed out what most of us have observed: cows do not like to
hurry, and they like to stand and stare. Of course, the contentment of
the cow is merely a physical matter. With enough to eat and no one to
bother it physically, the cow is content.
~In a cemetery in England stands a grave marker with
this inscription: SHE DIED FOR WANT OF THINGS. Alongside that sign is
another which reads: HE DIED TRYING TO GIVE THEM TO HER.
—Our Daily Bread
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