Three Friends In The Land Of Freedom

There were three friends living in America. One friend, an old man, felt that his religion was faulty, so he changed to another religion. The other two friends were very, very upset, because their friend of many years had left their religion.

One day on their way, the two friends saw the old man. They caught him and scolded him ruthlessly: "How can you leave such a great religion as ours? Now we have lost you. You were our friend and you betrayed us. It hurts us very much!"

The friend who had changed religions said to the other two, "God will one day take care of you."

The two friends screamed, "Traitor, traitor!" and they beat him up.

A few days later, the two friends learned that someone else had converted to their religion from another religion. Their old friend who left their religion was a traitor, and so they beat him up. But for the other man who had just joined their religion, they gave a banquet, and extolled him to the skies.

A spiritual man happened to be there. He said to the two friends, "Now tell me. When somebody leaves you, what happens? He is a traitor. When somebody joins you, he is your instant friend."

The spiritual man added, "Where are you living? You are living in America, the land of freedom. We all need freedom. Freedom gives us joy. You have the freedom to reject something that is wrong for you and to accept something you like. If you have the right to accept and reject at your sweet will, then how is it you cannot give others that very same freedom?"

The men kept quiet. Then they said, "You are right. America is the land of freedom. We want to exercise our freedom and to get joy, so how can we not allow others to exercise their freedom? Freedom means we each get joy in our own way."