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Giving the Moon

Ryokan lived the life of a hermit in a little hut at the foot of a mountain. One evening, while Ryokan was away, a thief broke into the hut, only to discover that there was nothing to steal. Just then, Ryokan returned, and saw the thief standing in the middle of the empty hovel.

"You have come a long way to visit me," he spoke to the thief, "yet you have found nothing here. Don't worry, you will not leave empty handed. Please take my clothes as a gift."

With a bewildered look on his face, the thief took the clothes and vanished into the dark.

Ryokan, naked, watched him disappear, the turned his eyes towards the moon above.

"Poor fellow," the thought. "I wish I could give him this beautiful moon."

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