There was a very clever and cunning landlord who owned lots of land in a whole village. He cunningly loaned small amount of money when needy came to him for a help. Taking a benefit of those who were not well-educated, he kept adding on interest to the principal amount. The amount for repayment of the loan would raise up so much that people couldn’t pay back and end up surrendering their land to the landlord.
Now, his eyes were on a land owned by an old lady near his house. She was all alone, no other family. She would plant her own crop and fulfill her needs. The landlord was not able to figure out how to lure her into giving up her land to him. He then bribed a government official in village and forged papers of ownership on his name. He along with a government official visited old lady and served her a notice to hand over the land to him.
Old lady was shocked to know this and pleaded that she has been living here her whole life and this land has been owned by her ancestors, her loved ones are berried here and she inherited it, how can someone claim this now? She approached local court, but the landlord had bribed everyone and had presented forged ownership papers. Thus, the court delivered the judgment in the landlord’s favor.
Dejected old lady then prepared to vacant the land while the landlord and his associates stood there waiting for her to leave. While leaving, filled with tears old lady approached the landlord and said, “Sir, you have taken everything from me today, my entire life was spent here, but now I am leaving. The land here is where I played, grew up with my family and this soil is very dear to me.” She added further, “we all are made of soil, and so anyone can have an affection towards it. Allow me to carry a basked filled with this soil to keep with me, with that by my side I will always have an aroma of this place till I die peacefully.”
The landlord smirked thinking since he had gained ownership of her entire land without paying her, might as well let her have it a basked of soil, so she can leave quietly. He said, “fine. You can fill up your basked.”
Old lady started filling up her basked with soil. She overfilled it and was struggling to lift the basket to carry over her head. She then told the landlord, “Sir, will you please lend a hand to put the basked over my head?” The landlord came forward to help and said, “Oh you poor old lady, didn’t you think before you overfilled this basket? You are struggling to lift this basked filled with soil then how can you carry this with you?”
With tears in her eyes, old lady said, “oh sir, this entire land was my own, spent my whole life here, yet I am struggling to carry a single basket of soil from here while I am still breathing. I won’t be able to carry it with me even when I die. You sir, have so much of other’s land. How will you carry it all with you?”
The landlord stood stunned hearing this. He realized his mistake and fell on the old lady’s feet asking for forgiveness. He requested her to live here happily and returned her land.
Moral: Do not cheat, don’t be greedy. Do not take more than you need. Be content with what you have, sometimes it’s sufficient for a happy life.