• kideceudan
    I am looking for a parable that tells about a tyrant and an honest poor man.
    Brief paraphrase: In a certain city there lived a tyrant and a poor man, the tyrant did not know about his tyranny and believed that he was doing the right thing, the poor man saw the tyrant's injustice, but he himself did not become like him and therefore remained a poor man. The question was whether to choose to live richly and not knowing that you are hurting others or to live poorly but honestly looking at your actions.

    I don’t remember where I read it, for some reason I think that it was from Socrates. I hope this is not my fantasy and would like to find the original one.
  • Outlander
    I'm sure there are many. Are you able to provide more information? Both general and specific. Details are useful, if you can be sure you recall them as they were.

    It wouldn't be this biblical passage, would it? What about this?
  • kideceudan
    , thank you very much for your reply. Your sources are very similar to my story, but my memory tells me that it was slightly different.

    I remember that the action took place in a certain city or region. The tyrant ruled this region. The tyrant and the beggar did not meet tet-a-tet, but both were citizens of this region; there was no war. The tyrant held feasts or killed his political enemies, generally did evil, but did not feel guilty and thought that he was doing justice and felt happiness. The beggar was a righteous man and did not act like that, but he felt unhappy from the injustice around. And at the end of this story, a question was asked: how to live a person's life, or what a quality life: a tyrant who does not know the evil he is doing, or an honest person, but a beggar.

    I remember that since the story ended with a question, it must have been Socrates' favorite method (maieutics) or Plato or.... I remember that this story was in some ancient Greek philosophical work that I read on some website.
  • unenlightened
    It could be a Sufi tale. One of the many about Mullah Nasruddin?
  • kideceudan
    , thanks, but as far as I remember, the heroes of the story were nameless. But I will add to my list to read the stories of Nasruddin in addition to the writings of Plato.
  • Leghorn
    @kideceudan it is reminiscent of the tale, at Luke 16:19, of the rich man and Lazarus, though many of your particulars not align with that story.
  • Leghorn
    @kideceudan You might want also to check out Xenophon: it might be in his “Memorabilia”; for, besides Plato, Xenophon was the earliest and foremost authority on Socrates.
  • Valentinus
    The scene reminds me of passages from Zhuangzi where the experiences of skilled people are compared. But the message is too moralistic for that. Someone is arguing for a kind of exchange.
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