Contributed by Arab Educational Institute on 17.03.2006:
Once there were two brothers who stayed in the same house. The one who lived upstairs behaved like a saint while the one downstairs was a sinner. Now it happened that the Angel of Death, Iblis, wanted to trick them. Disguised as a pious sheikh of dervishes, he went up to the good brother, and whispered in his ear: “I admire what you do, saintly brother, but now it is time that you should think about yourself. You have lived forty years and you will receive another twenty. God wants to tell you that you are allowed to do anything you like from now on — as long as you don’t forget to repent one year before you die.” The brother smiled and said to himself: “I would be stupid not to accept this. For years I thought about others, now it is time to have fun. Let me go to my brother, he will advise me.”
Meanwhile, his brother had a vision too. This brother was however angry with himself: “I am stupid! Now I have fun but when I’ll die I’ll be in hell. I should better myself.” And he decided to learn from his brother how to live a good life. On his way up, he saw his brother standing at the top of the stairs.
Then the brother standing upstairs slipped and fell upon the brother who was down. Both died, the good brother in rebellion against God and the bad brother in repentance.
Take care of Iblis, he always confuses the good and the bad!
Arab Educational Institute, Moral Stories from Palestine. Culture and Palestine Series, Bethlehem 1999. For more information: email@example.com