There was once a forest of trees, which lived a magnificent and beautiful life. Due to the natural development of their surroundings, the trees “climaxed,” and then gradually died, giving way to smaller species that lived below them. Various groups of bees made their nests in the hollow trunks of these dead trees and became very happy making honey. Gradually, the trees, one by one, began to decay and fall.
The various groups of bees debated amongst themselves why this should be and concluded that it must have something to do with the various merits of their hives. Some felt that when a tree fell, the bees in it were being punished for improper belief. Others felt more charitable and wanted to bring the homeless bees to their hive, saying “It could have been us, after all.” Still others felt that the hives of the homeless bees must have been flawed in some way from the beginning and so were predestined to fail.
The trees gradually continued to fall, one by one, and each time one fell, the bees in those trees still standing developed more speculations. Finally, all the bees were homeless and had to move on. Each group had been caught by surprise, believing their hive to be the true one destined to survive and bring in a new age. Each hive had failed to recognize that all trees fall eventually, and so it should finish its work and find another forest before it lost its tree. Each had failed to look further than its own hive and consider the effects of the tree, the soil and the rest of their ecology and its own survival.
From: The Sufi Book of Life
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