Persian mysticism tells of a wanderer who trudged along on a seemingly endless long road. He was logged down with all sorts of burdens. A heavy sack of sand hung on his back, logged water tank was strapped, around his body. In his right hand, he carried an odd shaped stone, in the left hand a boulder. Around his neck an old millstone dangled on a frayed rope. Rusty chains, with which he dragged heavy weights through the dusty sand, wound around his ankles. On his head, the man was balancing a half-rotten pumpkin. With every step he took, the chains rattled.
Moaning and groaning, he moved forward step by step, complaining of his hard fate and the weariness that tormented him.
On the way, a farmer met him in the glowing heat of midday. The farmer asked, “O, tired wanderer, why do you load yourself down with this boulder?”
“That’s Awfully dumb,” replied the wanderer, “But I hadn’t noticed it before.” With that, he threw the rock away and felt much lighter.
After going a long way down the road, another farmer met him and asked, “Tell me, O tired wanderer, why do you trouble yourself with the half-rotten pumpkin on your head, and why do you drag those heavy iron weights behind you on chains?”
The wanderer answered, “I’m very glad you pointed it out to me. I didn’t realize what I was doing to myself.” He took off the chains and smashed the pumpkin into the ditch alongside the road. Again he felt lighter. But the farther he went, the more he began to suffer again.
A farmer coming from the field watched him in amazement and said, “Oh, good man, you are carrying sand in the sack, but what you see far off in the distance is more sand than you could ever carry. And that big water tank-as if you planned to cross a desert. All the while there is a clear stream flowing alongside you, which will accompany you on your way for a long time.
Upon hearing this, the wanderer tore open the belt of the water tank and emptied its brackish water into the path. The he filled a hole with the sand from his knapsack. He stood there pensively and looked into the sinking sun. The last rays sent their light to him. He glanced down at himself, saw the heavy millstone around his neck and suddenly realized it was the stone that was still causing him to walk so bent over. He unloosened it and threw it as far as he could into the river. Freed from his burdens, he realized that lesser the luggage, more comfortable would the journey be. In life too if we let go, life becomes easier.