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206 The Truth and the Lie 115. Well, you see, it was just such an affair, and I’ll tell you to your health. And not to the anger of your grace, but just to put it into words, to talk as we now are with you, as to how two of our brethren got overheated between themselves, two poor, ever so poor peasants. One of them lived somehow, striking out with every sort of injustice, capable, you see, of deceits, and thieving was his main occupation. And the other one, just listen, followed the path of truth, living out his days in labor.And because of this they argued. The one said it’s better to live by the lie, while the other one said you can’t live by the lie—it’s better to live, however it be, by the truth. So they argued and argued, and neither, you see, could convince the other. So they set out down the road, Brother. They set off down the road and decided to ask up to three persons they encountered to see what each would say. They walked and walked, Brother, and then they saw this peasant1 plowing. So then, you see, they went up to him. They went up and asked,“God grant you help, friend. Decide our quarrel for us: How is it better to live in this wide world, by the truth or by the lie?”“No, brothers , hear me out. You can’t live your life by the truth. It’s more advantageous to live by the lie. Here’s how it is with us: The masters incessantly take our days away from us, leaving us no time to work for ourselves. On account of our lack of freedom you pretend that something awful has happened, that an illness has come, you know. But then you yourself at the same time go into a wood for even kindling, and not during the day but at night, even if it’s forbidden.”“So, I’m in the right, as you’ve heard,” said the crooked one to the righteous one. So once again they set off along the road to see what the next person would say to them. They walked and they walked, and then they saw a merchant in a covered wagon was driving a pair with a cart. So they went up to him. They went up to him and asked,“Wait just a moment, if you don’t mind our asking about this one thing. Decide our argument: How is it better to live in the world, by the truth or by the lie?”“No, lads! It’s 1.  In this case, one owing an agreed number of days of labor to the landlord, the so-called barshchina. The Truth and the Lie h 207 weird to live by the truth. It’s better by the lie. They trick us, and we trick them, you see.”“So, I’m right again,” said the crooked one to the righteous one. So once again they set off along the road to see what the third person would say. They walked and they walked, and they saw a priest riding toward them. So they went up to him. They went up to him, you see, and they asked,“Wait a moment, Father, decide our argument: How is it better to live in the world, by the truth or by the lie?” “Well, you’ve found the right one to ask. It’s a well-known fact: by the lie. What does truth get you nowadays? For the truth you get Siberia, and they’ll say ‘scandalmonger’. Just for an example, would it be better to tell you not to lie? In my parish, the tenth part is for the spiritual side, and it’s well known, we write it all down. Therefore, it’s more advantageous for us. And sometimes it’s better to have a prayer service in place of the liturgy.” “So now then,”said the crooked one to the righteous one,“they all say that it’s better to live by the lie.”“No, hear me, one must live according to the divine, as God commands us.What will be will be. But I, hear me, do not wish to live by lies,” the righteous one said to the crooked one. So they went on down the road together. They walked and they walked. The crooked one knew how to get on...

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Additional Information

ISBN
9781626740549
Related ISBN
9781628460933
MARC Record
OCLC
878813021
Pages
560
Launched on MUSE
2015-01-01
Language
English
Open Access
No
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