A man once owned two dogs. One of the dogs was faithful while the other was disobedient. The faithful dog would wait for his master to return home each day after a long day at work, and waits expectantly for food or a pat on the head. He barks once when he hears his master’s key in the lock, but otherwise remains silent until it is time for him to get food. The faithful dog knows and accepts that his master will return at a certain time and he will be waiting to greet him.
The disobedient dog is barking loudly and running around the house, making much more noise than necessary because he doesn’t have faith that his master will return. In fact, he doesn’t want his master to return so that he can keep doing whatever he wants. No matter how much his master scolds him he will keep running wild every time.
The faithful dog is not interested in what is going on around him. He simply wants to be with his master, and his job is to do everything that his master asks. The disobedient dog does not value a relationship, especially if that relationship gets in the way of what he wants to achieve. Even though he may seem affectionate towards his owner, he is only doing so because he sees this as something that benefits his self-interests. However, he is not honest enough with himself to admit that he is doing it for his own personal gain. The faithful dog knows that there are no shortcuts to building and maintaining a strong relationship. The disobedient dog thinks that he can get by without putting in any effort.
The faithful dog does not try to control his master. He does not try to make decisions for him, even if he disagrees with his choices. Instead, he supports his master’s decisions and allows his judgment to prevail. The disobedient dog does not value his master, nor does he care what happens to him or his family. The faithful dog is aware that it is his duty to protect his master, and he does so without worrying about what the rest of the world thinks of him.
The faithful dog is respectful of his master. He knows that his master has authority and power, and he respects his position. He understands that his life will change for the worse if he challenges or betrays his master. He recognizes that he cannot always have his way, and that he must sometimes sacrifice what he wants to ensure that his master’s wishes are fulfilled. The disobedient dog is disrespectful of his master. He thinks of his master as a servant, which makes it easy for him to disrespect his decisions. He thinks that if he were in charge, his life would be better, and he has no problem disrespecting his master’s wishes.
The faithful dog knows the power of love. He understands that love is not a feeling that comes from within, but rather it comes through an action, a deliberate choice made every day. The disobedient dog does not know what love is because he believes that he will never truly love anyone, and he certainly doesn’t believe that he deserves love. Love is a foreign concept to the disobedient dog, and he will never understand it because he lacks the desire to understand.
The faithful dog is loyal to his master. He will lay down his life to protect him. Because of his loyalty, he is willing to endure great discomfort and hardship if it means protecting his master. He has such deep faith in his master and the relationship that they share that he would give up everything just to ensure that his master is safe. His heart and soul are dedicated to his master, and he does whatever he can to help his master. The disobedient dog does not understand why he should be loyal to his master. If anything goes wrong, his master is the reason for the problem, and therefore he does not deserve his loyalty.
The faithful dog is humble. He does not brag about his accomplishments. Instead, he is content knowing that he has done well. He recognizes that his accomplishments are insignificant compared to the greatness of his master and his relationship with him. He realizes that his actions are insignificant in the grand scheme of things. He is content to remain quiet when he is praised, and he is not interested in seeking attention or glory for himself. The disobedient dog is proud of himself. He loves the praise and recognition that he receives, and he is quick to take credit for any of the actions he took. He believes that he is entitled to all of the praise, but he is not willing to give it to anyone else. If he fails at something, he assumes that his failure is because of the faults of others, not his own.
The faithful dog knows the importance of being honest. He does not hide the things that he does under the guise of secrecy. He does not pretend to be someone he isn’t, nor does he try to deceive others into thinking that he is better than he is. He is truthful in everything that he says. He knows that he will always be judged by the truth, and he does not want to live with a cloud of deception hanging over his head. The disobedient dog knows that everyone lies. He believes that there is no need to always tell the truth because no one will notice anyway. It is better to say what he wants others to hear than to say what he really thinks. He is never straightforward, and he only speaks if he thinks it will benefit him.
The faithful dog is patient. He understands that nothing in life is easy, but he never gives up. He is able to overcome obstacles because he is persistent and determined. He is not willing to give up on the things that he holds close to his heart, and he fights to achieve anything he sets his mind to. The disobedient dog is impatient. He does not like to wait for anything. His impatience causes him to act on his impulses without considering the consequences. He often does things just because he wants to do them, and he is never satisfied unless he gets his way.
The faithful dog is trustworthy. He puts his trust in the people around him, and he expects that the people around him will do the same. He is able to form genuine relationships with those who share the same values as he does. The disobedient dog has no problem betraying the people in his life because he doesn’t trust them. The people around him might hurt him, steal from him, or treat him poorly, and he is not willing to put up with these things anymore. He finds ways to escape any kind of commitment, and he will use others for his own personal gain at any cost.
The faithful dog is forgiving. He is willing to accept the bad things that others do to him, and he doesn’t hold grudges against people or situations. He understands that no one is perfect, and that he will make mistakes in the future. He does not have any room in his life for resentment, and he lets go of the negative feelings from the past so that he can move forward with his life. The disobedient dog is unforgiving. He thinks that he is entitled to revenge and retribution, even if he caused the situation in the first place. He will never forgive his enemies. This makes him angry, resentful, and vengeful.
The faithful dog is compassionate. His compassion is genuine and it stems from empathy. The kindness he shows to others is not motivated by fear or selfish gain. He treats everyone with a high level of respect, regardless of their station in life. The disobedient dog is unkind. He is not willing to accept anyone as his equal, and he does not care about the suffering of others. He is only concerned with his own self-preservation and he refuses to do anything beyond that.
The faithful dog is courageous. He is not afraid to stand up to injustice, and he is willing to fight for what he believes is right. He is not intimidated by other people, and he does not let his emotions control his actions. He can remain calm and composed in times of crisis. The disobedient dog is timid. He will not speak out or take action against the injustices that he sees because he is afraid that he will lose something if he takes a stand. He believes that everything will work itself out, and so he doesn’t see the need to worry about it.
One day the master has had enough of the disobedient dog and says to him “Have I not shown you love, been patient with you, and tried to teach you how to properly behave? Yet you still show me no respect and disobey me. You leave me no choice but to cast you out of the house!”
The disobedient dog is tossed out of the house into the darkness of night. “I will never forget what happened,” he thinks. “You threw me out for no reason.” He stops at a local inn and asks them for shelter. They take pity on him and allow him to stay for a little while but after a few days he is asked to leave because they’re full.
He wanders the streets, looking for a place where he can survive, but he can’t find anywhere that is willing to give him shelter. The local people shun him and he is left alone on the side of the street to fend for himself. It becomes dark and freezing cold outside, and the dog starts shivering. He has no idea what to do and feels so helpless because he doesn’t want to end up as a stray. He knows he has nowhere else to go, and so he makes his way back home.
“I’m so happy to be back. Maybe my master will forgive me,” he thinks. He hopes that maybe his master will open the door and welcome him back inside, but when he reaches the front door of the house it is closed and padlocked. He tries desperately to break the lock, but he is unsuccessful. The dog then begins scratching at the door. “If I could just open the door,” he thinks, “then my master would probably let me in and we could continue living together the way things used to be.”
After hours of frustration, he finally give up. The door won’t open no matter how hard he tries. The dog then begins to think to himself “Maybe I was right and my master didn’t actually love me. Maybe he wanted me gone all along, but he couldn’t just come out and say it. I’ll never see him again.”
The dog is now completely hopeless. He doesn’t have any place to go, and so he decides to sleep in a nearby park until morning. As he lies down on the grass in the middle of the park, a man walks past and gives the dog some food. “Thank you,” the dog says. “I don’t have anywhere else to go.” He continues to eat the food while the man watches. Suddenly the man gets up and moves closer to the dog. The dog looks up at the man and sees that his eyes are covered by sunglasses. “Who are you?” the dog wonders.
“Who am I?” responds the man. He then pulls off his sunglasses to reveal that he has no eyes. “I’ve lost my eyes, but I have found my purpose.”
“What do you mean by that?” the dog asks.
“My name is Blind Man, and it’s my mission to feed the stray dogs that sleep in this park.”
“What about me?”
“I’ll feed you, too,” says Blind Man. “Come with me and I’ll make sure you’re fed.”
Blind Man takes the dog to the local diner and orders lunch for both of them. The dog eats quickly, but Blind Man sits down for a long time. Eventually, he stands up and looks at the dog curiously. “Why did you eat so fast?” he asks.
“Well, I’m starving,” the dog replies.
“Why didn’t you just stay at home and wait for dinner like a normal person?”
“Well I don’t have a home anymore,” the dog answers.
“Why don’t you have a home?”
“Because my owner kicked me out!” the dog says.
“He said that I barked too much! He also said that he never wanted a dog like me.”
Blind Man is very surprised. “You mean to tell me that you actually had a wonderful owner? Someone who took good care of you and gave you everything you needed?”
“Then why would he kick you out?”
“I don’t know,” the dog answers. “I guess I must have done something wrong.”
“Do you have any idea what you might have done to him?” Blind Man asked.
“No, but I wish I knew.”
“If you truly believed that your owner loved you, then why would you ever do anything to make him think that you were a bad dog?”
“It’s simple,” the dog answered. “My master never thought I was good enough.”
“Your master was your master. He had every right to kick you out. Why do you think he didn’t have you put to sleep, like other people would do?”
“Because I was his dog, and he loved me.”
“He loved you! Then why did you do anything to upset him or disappoint him?”
“I don’t know…”
“You don’t know? You know how to sit, how to speak, and how to fetch. How difficult can it be to know whether or not you are a good dog?”
The dog thinks and thinks, but he can’t think of anything. Suddenly, he realizes that he’s going to have to try really hard to be a good dog so that his master will take him back. He has to try harder than he ever has before.
Blind Man notices the change in the dog. “That’s it! That’s exactly what you’ve got to do! You have to start thinking about others, for a change!”
“What do you mean?”
“Well, your problem is that you think about yourself all the time. You only think about what you want and what you don’t want. You think about what makes you happy and what makes you sad. Now, you need to start thinking about everyone else. You are going to have to try harder than you have ever tried in your whole life, because you have a lot of work ahead of you. You’re going to have to learn how to think about what other people want and need.”
The dog looks up at Blind Man and sees that he is smiling. “But how?”
“By trying to help them.”
“How can I try to help someone I don’t know? How do I know what they want and need?”
“Don’t worry. Just go out and be nice to everyone you meet for a week. Be kind to everyone, and help anyone that you can. Don’t judge others, just act.”
“Okay,” the dog says.
So then for the next week the dog is nice to people, and tries to help anyone that he can. The dog finds that it isn’t that hard to be nice, and actually feels quite good inside once he has done it. He also realizes that there is a lot more to do than just being nice. The dog now understands that he has to listen to what people are telling him, and find out what their needs are. For the first time in his life, the dog feels that he can contribute to society. He wants to feel like a part of something, and he is proud of the work he is doing.
After a week of helping others, the dog starts looking for other ways to improve himself. He goes into a bookstore and purchases a book entitled “How To Become A Better Person”. After reading the book, he learns how to be a better listener, how to show compassion for those who are suffering, and how to always try to do the right thing.
The dog’s efforts pay off. The people he helps always remember him. He makes a difference in their lives, and they tell him how grateful they are for what he is doing. They tell him that they feel happy, and that he helps them to believe in themselves and believe in others. Soon, word spreads through the town. Everyone knows his name and what he looks like. The dog realizes that he has done something special, that he has inspired other people to do the same.
The dog returns to his master’s house and waits patiently at the door. Eventually the master opens the door and says to him “I have heard about how you have been helping people around town. It seems you are finally putting effort into being a good dog. I’ll forgive you for all the bad things you have done and give you a second chance.”
But the dog only smiles. “I don’t need a second chance. What you see in me is already inside of me. I am a changed dog.”
“But why aren’t you excited about what I am telling you?” the master asked. “Why won’t you take the credit for all the good you are doing in this town?”
“I know I have changed,” says the dog, “but the real reason is that I don’t need credit. I did what I did because it was right, and because I wanted to make others happy. And I want you to know that I did it because of you.”
The dog’s master stared at him for a moment, and said “I knew you were a good dog deep down.”
The master welcomes him back inside and hugs him. He understands now that his life purpose is to serve as a positive model for others and a symbol of unconditional kindness. For the first time, he feels completely comfortable with who he is, and he knows that he was meant to be the kind of dog that helps others. He feels that he is living his purpose, and he is fulfilled.
(image by Dall-E at OpenAI)
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