This is a story about one rich merchant who had four wives. This man was in love with his fourth wife, so he adorned her with expensive gifts, clothes and jewelry. He gave her, nothing but the best he could.
But, this man also loved his third wife. He was proud of her and he wanted to show her to his relatives, his friends and even his business partners. The merchant was really afraid as he thought that his wife will run away with some other men.
The merchant loved his second wife, as well. His wife was very considerate person, she was incredibly patient and she has the merchant’s confidante. Whenever he had certain problem, he always asked his second wife for advice and she would always help him out and tide him through difficult times.
The merchant’s first wife was his loyal partner and she had great influence and contributed in gaining and maintaining his wealth and business. She also was taking care about the household. She loved her husband, but, the merchant did not love his first wife. In fact, he hardly took notice of her.
One day, all of a sudden, the merchant fell ill. He was aware that he was going to die very soon. He thought about his luxurious life and he asked himself: “Now I have 4 wives with me. But when I die, I’ll be alone. How lonely I’ll be?”
He decided to ask his fourth wife: “I loved you most, endowed you with the finest clothing and showered great care over you. Now that I’m dying, will you follow me and keep me company?”. She replied: “No way!”. She left the room without saying another word. This answer broke merchant’s heart.
The merchant was sad and asked his third wife: “I have loved you so much for all my life. Now that I’m dying, will you follow me and keep me company?” Her response was: “No! Life is so good over here! I’m going to remarry when you die!” His heart sank and turned cold.
He asked his second wife: “I always turned to you for help and you’ve always helped me out. Now I need your help again. When I die, will you follow me and keep me company?” Her answer was: “I’m sorry, but I can’t help you out this time! At the very most, I can only send you to your grave”. This answer was devastating for the merchant.
At that moment, voice called out to the merchant: “I’ll leave with you and follow you no matter where you go”. This was the voice of his first wife. She was skinny and undernourished. The merchant was greatly grieved and said: “I should have taken much better care of you when I had the chance!”
The truth is that we all have four wives in our lives. The fourth wife is our body. No matter how hare we try to make it look good, when we die, our body will leave us. Some of us will be burnt, while others will be buried and become food for the worms.
Our possessions, status and wealth are our third wife. When we die, all of that will be divided to others.
Second wife represents our family and friends. Regardless of the fact how much they have supported and loved us, the burial site is place where furthest they can stay by us.
And finally, our mindstream is our first wife. Power and pleasures of the ego very often are neglected in pursuit of power, wealth and pleasures. But, still, our mindstream is the only thing that follows us wherever we go.
The moral of this story: we all should take care for the body and keep it healthy. On that way you can live life to its fullest. We should enjoy our possessions, all of the pleasure and the comfort they provide us. We should never forget to cherish our family and friends and the love they give to use. All of us should keep mind that we need to nourish our mindstream. That is the source of all our life and it is the most faithful friend that will never betray us.