When the Waters Were Changed

Once upon a time Khidr, the Teacher of Moses, called upon mankind with a warning. At a certain date, he said, all the water in the world which had not been specially hoarded would disappear. It would then be renewed, with different water, which would drive men mad.

Only one man listened to the meaning of this advice. He collected water and went to a secure place where he stored it, and waited for the water to change its character

On the appointed date the streams stopped running, the wells went dry and the man who had listened, seeing this happening, went to his retreat and drank his preserved water.

When he saw, from his security, the waterfalls again beginning to flow, this man descended among the other sons of men. He found that they were thinking and talking in an entirely different way from before; yet they had no memory of what had happened, nor of having been warned. When he tried to talk to them, he realized that they thought that he was mad, and they showed hostility or compassion, not understanding.

At first he drank none of the new water, but went back to his concealment, to draw on his supplies, every day. Finally, however, he took the decision to drink the new water because he could not bear the loneliness of living, behaving and thinking in a different way from everyone else. He drank the new water, and his fellows began to look upon him as a madman who had miraculously been restored to sanity.

From ‘Tales of the Dervishes’ by Idris Shah

(This version of the story is attributed to Sayed Sabir Ali-Shah, a saint of the Chisti Order, who died in 1818)


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9 responses to “When the Waters Were Changed

  1. Deliciously apropos! A very happy Easter Ashen!

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Thanks Philippa.
    Happy Easter to you, John and Jem.
    Stay well. ☼

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Yes, cycles do repeat themselves. It will be interesting to see what happens to mankind when all of this is over. Happy Easter, Ashen!

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Seems a reckoning with hubris – a time for deep reflections re: our social systems. Thanks for visiting, Gwynn. Wishing you a Happy Easter as well. Not exactly festive, but lovely sunshine here.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. always loved this tale! thanks for reminding me.

    Liked by 2 people

  6. Pingback: … so I had my jab … | Course of Mirrors

  7. Love jenny

    So amazing , this ageless tale still valid nowadays

    Liked by 1 person

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