23. The Dervish and the Ship's Captain


A dervish was crossing the sea on a ship.
"Someone has stolen my bag of gold!" shrieked one of the ship's passengers, and the captain ordered a search of everyone on board.
Suspicion soon fell on the dervish. "Strip off your clothes!" said the captain.
But the dervish said, "O God, do thy will!"
And from the sea thousands of fishes arose, each bearing a priceless pearl in its mouth.
The dervish grabbed a handful of pearls, cast them on the ship's deck, and then rose up into the air. "Keep your ship!" he proclaimed. "I will go with God!"



Inspired by: The English prose version of Rumi in Tales from the Masnavi by A. J. Arberry.
Notes: This is story 62 in the book. Compare the story of the fish and the golden needles: Ibrahim ibn-Adham and the Needle.



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