Burglars find him Empty

One night Mulla Nasruddin heard someone entering the house.  He become frightened and hid in the cupboard.  The thieves started searching but where not finding anything.  Then they opened the cupboard and found Mulla Nasruddin hiding there and shivering.

'Why are you hiding here?' asked one of the thief.

Mulla Nasruddin said 'I am hiding from shame because there is nothing here that I can serve you with.'


'Your house is on fire' - Buddha used to say that.  The more things you store in your house the more it will burn.  This house is your ego.  The things of the house are the past memories that we store.  The more we store, the more it will burn.  If you are totally empty then your past is just the past.  Your past just happened and went away.  No traces are left over.  Then you are fresh.  Then there cannot be any burning of house.

Your subconscious with the things stored and you, the ego combined together to form this house.  This house is the cause of your suffering.  If the house is empty, then the ego would be very fragile, the ego would be tempted to move out and merge into the vastness of space.

The house represents the finiteness.  The house obviously has the boundaries.  You feel comfortable there, you feel secure there.  You feel in that limited space nobody can disturb you, nobody can know your real face.  You store the past memories and again and again use them for your comfort. 

But now confined within the walls of this house; not just somebody cannot know you, but you yourself fail to recognize yourself.  Then you need mirrors to see yourself.  Then other people become those mirrors.  Through their opinions and judgments about you, you start to see yourself.  To know yourself you will have to come out in open skies and boundless space. 

But the house is not letting even the sunlight touch you.  Light is not reaching you.  The light is shielded, veiled by the walls.  The walls of your house have become the veil that keeps you away from the light.

Nasrudin: “How’s your new house?”

Friend: “It’s great, except it lacks sunlight.”

Nasrudin: “Well, how much sunlight is in your garden?”

Friend: “A lot.”

Nasrudin: “Then put your house in your garden.”

** Read full explanation of this story from the Most In-depth Book on Mulla Nasruddin Ever!