The Limit To Our Wants - A Short Story For Kids
Once upon a time in a rich city in Egypt lived a rich merchant, Nazir. The rich merchant Nazir along with his twenty camels went outside the city to sell his goods. But he was not satisfied with his money. Everyday he would pray to God, “ Please show mercy on me, shower me with more money!”
“He has lot of money and properties, but why does he need more?” God was confused. God wanted to take a closer look at Nazir’s affairs. He came down in the disguise of an old man.
Nazir was a bit thirsty and he saw the old man with a waterskin. He asked the old man for some water. The old man gladly gave him some. After Nazir quenched his thirst, he asked the old man, “ Who are you? I have never seen you before.”
“I come from the next town. I heard that there is treasure in this place. I cannot take the treasure alone, so I'll see if anyone comes to help” replied God in the old man’s disguise.
“I will help you” said Nazir immediately.
They took Nazirs ten of his camels and the old man lead the way to the treasure.
They reached the secret place and the old man sprinkled some white powder. The smoke has been settled and they saw a clear path. Nazir’s eyes shone so brightly when he saw the precious diamonds, gold, and other stones before.
They loaded all the precious stones in bags and then put the bags on camels. Nazir then said: “Dear old man, you don’t have any family so take only 5 camels with you. I will take the other five.”
The old man agreed.
As they walked back to the camp, Nazir’s greed rose more and he first told him to take five camels and then didn’t even allow him to take any camel. “Hey, old man, you take only the quantity you can carry on your hand” Nazir told.
Old man agreed happily again.
Nazir still wanted more wealth so he said to old man: “Can you give me that white magical powder?”
The old man gave him the powder and said: “Take this but remember if you don’t use it properly it will harm you.”
He further added: “ You need to rub this powder only in the left eye, if you rub it in the right it will be harmful for you.”
Nazir first rubbed the powder in the left eye and he found the path to a lot more gold. He took that for himself. Some days later, he rubbed the powder again on his left eye but it did not work. Nazir’s greed led him to think, “ May be the old man wanted to keep some treasure for himself, that’s why he didn’t want me to rub the powder on my right eye.”
So thinking, he rubbed the powder on the right eye and he could no longer see. In time, he realized his mistake and begged God for forgiveness. God returned his sight back to him and he used his wealth to help those in need.
Parenting Take Away:
This short story for kids provides a great opportunity to talk about wanting more and what is the impact of that on ecology.
It might also be a great opportunity to present a counter point of view to the kid. If you are willing to work hard, then may be wanting more is not such a bad quality.
You might also have a conversation about the subjectivity of needs, wants and greed.
There is also another moral in this short story. Sometimes, people make mistakes and that is never the end of the world, they can always accept their mistakes and correct their ways to make their lives better.
These stories are put together by team Ekali to help you have conversations with kids. Do take a look at our website for some interesting kids products