The Famous Arabian Tale "Juha"
BY: Sara Alsayed / Arab America Contributing Writer
Stories and tales, as in all cultures and societies, play a significant role in teaching kids valuable lessons, which help carve and build the child’s personality and characteristics. For example, we have all heard the tale of Pinnochio, Goldilocks and the three bears, etc. Well, similarily, the Arab culture has stories such as Ali Baba, Juha, etc to entertain and to plant good and honest values within the child. In this article, I will be telling the tale of Juha and its significance to kids.
One day, Juha was riding his donkey on the way to the market with his son walking beside the donkey, holding the reins, and talking to his father.
The father and son passed by a small group of people gathering beside the road criticizing Juha. They said: “How can you be so heartless? Why are you riding the donkey and not your poor son?” Juha decided to get off the donkey and allow his son to ride in his stead.
While they were walking, they passed by another group of people, each one criticizing the son, saying: “How does an old man walk while his son rides on the donkey? Certainly not true!”
After hearing this, Juha decided to ride on the donkey with his son, continuing their journey to the market.
It was getting late, yet the donkey was moving slowly because of the weight of the father and son. They came across a group of people gathered at the edge of the city; one of them called out to Juha, saying: “Juha, why did you ride on a little donkey? Can’t you see the donkey can’t bear you and your son’s weight?”
So, Juha told his son: “I think it would be better if we walk on our feet. That way no one can say anything.”
Thus, Juha and his son pulled the reins of the donkey, heading towards the marketplace. When they reached the marketplace, the people started laughing and criticizing the man, saying: “Look what a fool! What kind of man owns a donkey and walks with his son in this extreme heat?
Therefore, Juha decided to carry his donkey to stop the people from criticizing, yet that is exactly what happened. A man saw Juha and yelled: “Have you gone mad? He has lost his mind!”
Juha said to his son: “We have tried every method, but we have not escaped the people’s gossip.” Juha’s son said: “So, what do we do, Father?!!”
Here, Juha said his famous sentence: “Satisfying all people is an end that cannot be realized.”
Juha was not angry with people. He understood that he could never please and satisfy everyone. All he could do was live the way he wished to live and to decide for on his own what will he do and what will he decide.
Through this tale, many kids and even adults understood that satisfying everyone is something unattainable, and all one can do is not listen to the gossip and chatter of others and keep moving. So, “You Do You Boo!”
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