By the Will of God – Tales and Parables of Sri Ramakrishna

In a certain village in India there lived a weaver, making his living by designing and selling fine fabrics. He was very religious. Everyone knew it, trusted him and loved him. At the market, when a customer asked the price of a cloth, he would say, “By the will of God, the price of the yarn is so-much, the labor was such-and-such; by the will of God the profit for me is so-much.” There was no haggling. People had so much faith in him that they just paid up the price and took the cloth.
The weaver really was very devoted to God. Finished with his supper in the evening, he would spend long hours in his chapel, meditating on God, chanting his name and singing to him. But it so happened that late one night the weaver couldn’t get to sleep, and went out on his porch to sit where it might be cooler. At that moment a band of robbers happened to pass along the road in front of his small house. They had stolen quite a lot of different things from various places and were having a difficult time carrying all of them, so they wanted another man to help them. Seeing the weaver, they came up and grabbed him by the hand; “Come with us,” they said, and pulled him to the road.

Now they robbed another house, and put the booty on the weaver’s head (in India this is the usual way of carrying things) and forced him to march. Just at that moment the police caught up with them, but the robbers saw them coming and ran away fast. Now the weaver, with his heavy load, was arrested. It was so late, they just had to lock him up in jail, and do the questioning the next day. He spent the night in jail, repeating the name of the Lord.

Next day, he was brought before the judge for trial. Word had spread through the village that the pious weaver had been arrested, and the people came in groups to the court and said to the judge, “Your honor, this man could never commit a robbery”. And they told him about the weaver’s remarkable way of life.

The judge asked our friend the weaver to state exactly what had happened. The weaver said, “Your honor, by the will of God I finished my meal late at night. By the will of God I was sitting on my porch chanting his name, when, by the will of God, this band of robbers passed the house. By the will of God they dragged me with them and by the will of God they put a load on my head. Just then, by the will of God, the police arrived, and by the will of God the others ran away and I was arrested. Then by the will of God the police put me in jail overnight, and this morning by the will of God they brought me before Your Honor.”

The judge understood very well what kind of person the weaver was and ordered him to be let go. On his way home the weaver said to his friends, “By the will of God I have been released and all is well.”

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