A Fox passed by a cat and a dog who were ever fighting. Next to them was a big piece of cheese. The fox desired to eat the cheese. Calmly he asked them the reason for which they were fighting.
The cat said, “You be the judge between us dear fox. I stole a piece of cheese from my mistress the owner of the house, and came out to the wayside to enjoy it myself. When this greedy dog saw me he wanted to snatch it from me saying that it wasn’t mine because I stole it and he has the right to take it from me!”
The dog interjected saying, “Do you not see, O just fox that this cat does not deserve this piece of cheese for he stole it and that I have the right to take it from him?”
The fox said, “Don’t fight. You’re brothers. I suggest to divide it between you evenly so that each one of you can have a piece.”
The cat and the dog agreed with the fox’s verdict and so he held the piece of cheese, cut it into two halves and gave a piece to the cat and the other to the dog. The dog looked at the piece of cheese in the paws of the cat and said to the fox, “Do you not see that the cat, although smaller than me in size, has received a bigger piece than me? This is not fair!”
The fox shook his head and said to the dog, “You’re right.”
The fox took the piece of cheese from the cat, ate part of it and returned it to the cat.
The Cat looked at the piece of cheese the dog was holding and said to the fox, “I am the one who brought it to begin with. My mistress could have hit me and yet his piece is bigger than mine!”
The fox again shook his head agreeing and ate a piece from the dog’s cheese.
The dog again complained … and so the fox started eating from this piece and that piece until he finished both of them completely and the cat and dog didn’t even taste it and left disappointed.
“For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil, for which some have strayed from the faith in their greediness, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows” (1 Tim. 6.8-10).
When covetousness creeps to the heart;
It destroys many virtues like humility, love, obedience and thanks giving.
Then, man becomes displeased with everything murmurs and groans over every work;
Man becomes harsh and selfish and loses his inner stability.
(St. John Cassian).
The Wise Monkey