Mulla Nasrudin Stories

Selling a Turban

Nasrudin went to the mayor’s palace one day wearing a fancy turban.

“Wow!” said the mayor, “What a magnificent turban! I’ve never seen anything like it. How much will you sell it for?”

“One thousand dollars,” Nasrudin calmly replied.

A local merchant turned to the mayor and remarked, “If you go to the local bazaar, you can buy the best turban they have for three hundred dollars.”

The mayor looked at Nasrudin and said, “Your price sounds very expensive.”

“Well,” he replied, “the price is based on how much I bought it for–and I paid a lot for it because I knew that there is only one mayor in the entire universe with taste exquisite enough to buy such a turban.”

Upon hearing this compliment, the mayor immediately demanded that Nasrudin be paid full price for the turban.

Nasrudin then walked over to the merchant and said, “You might know the value of turbans, but I know the value of flattery.”

Man Searches for Joy

One day, Nasrudin began talking to a man from another town. The man lamented, “I am rich, but I am also sad and miserable. I have taken my money and gone traveling in search of joy–but alas, I have yet to find it.”

As the man continued speaking, Nasrudin grabbed the man’s bag and ran off with it. The man chased him, and Nasrudin soon ran out of the man’s sight. He hid behind a tree, and put the bag in the open road for the man to see.

When the man caught up, he located the bag, and his facial expression immediately turned from distress to joy. As the man danced in celebration of finding his bag, Nasrudin thought to himself, “That’s one way to bring joy to a sad man.”

The Feast-Day

Nasrudin went to the palace for a feast-day–but when the servants noticed his ragged clothes, they paid him no attention and offered him no food.

And so, Nasrudin went back to his house, put on his most extravagant clothing, and returned to the palace, where this time he was treated like royalty, and had numerous dishes placed in front of him.

Nasrudin then proceeded to take handfuls of food and pour and rub them into his clothing–causing another guest to ask, “What in the world are you doing?”

“Oh, I am just feeding my clothing first,” was the reply. “After all, they are what got me this food!”

Train Ticket

Nasrudin was about to board a train, and the conductor asked him for his ticket.

Nasrudin began looking through his pants pockets, but he couldn’t find it.

“One moment,” he said. “I know I brought it.”

He searched his bag, and still couldn’t find it. He then searched the floor around him, and the missing ticket still eluded him. He even began looking in his socks, but alas, the money was not found.

As the conductor watched this, he asked, “Why don’t you check that pocket on your shirt? That’s usually where most people put their ticket.”

“Oh, I can’t look there,” Nasrudin replied.

“Why not?” the conductor asked.

Nasrudin explained, “Because if I do and it’s not there, then I would have no hope at all of finding it!”

Did You Enjoy the Stew?

Nasrudin was invited to the royal palace for dinner one night. During the meal, the King asked Nasrudin if he enjoyed the stew.

“Yes,” replied Nasrudin. “It was fantastic.”

“Really? I thought it was pretty bad.”

“Yeah. You’re right. It was awful.”

“Wait a minute,” remarked the King. “You just said it was fantastic a few seconds ago.”

“That’s true, Your Highness,” Nasrudin began explaining. “But the thing is, as someone who lives in your kingdom, I don’t need to suck up to the stew. I need to suck up to you.”

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