Ignore the Braying

A neighbor comes to Nasreddin Hoja.

“Would you lend me your donkey today, Hoja?” the neighbor asks, “I have goods to transport to the next town.”

The Hoja answers: “I’m sorry, but I’ve already lent her to somebody else.”

Suddenly the donkey is heard braying loudly behind a wall.

“You lied to me, Hoja!” the neighbor exclaims, “There is the donkey!”

“What do you mean?” the Hoja replies indignantly, “Whom would you rather believe, a donkey or your Hoja?”


  • Religious faith and direct experience may contradict, still the faith demands precedence.
  • Religious faith and direct experience may contradict, and only a fool would cling to faith.
  • The donkey represents the animal nature. Maybe the neighbor requires the exercise.
  • One may someday have a choice between between a true Teacher–who seems wrong–or the braying of an ass–who seems right.
  • Find the answer for yourself. Even if a Mullah tells you something, that does not mean it is true. Allahu Alam, God knows best.
  • Religion is the first refuge of the scoundrel.
  • Words can easily be used to trick a person into believing something.
  • The ego is never truly destroyed but it can be ignored; the choice will always be yours.
  • Follow the higher selves and ignore the braying of the ego.
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