One day, Mulla Nasruddin was talking to his neighbour. The neighbour was looking so miserable that Nasruddin asked him what was bothering him. The man started to complain about the lack of space in his house and said, “It is such a small house, Mulla. And me, my wife, my three children and my mother-in-law–all have to live together in the same little cottage. It is very cramped and there is hardly any space to move around.” He asked Nasruddin for some advice on how to deal with this problem.
Nasruddin said, “Do you keep chickens in the yard?” “Yes, ten of them,” replied the man.
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“Good. Bring them inside the house and keep them there,” said Nasruddin. “But, Mulla!” the man exclaimed. “My house is already overcrowded.” “Just do as I say,” Nasruddin replied.
The man was really very troubled and wanted to find a solution to his problem. He decided to give the Mulla’s advice a try. So the man went home and brought all the chickens into the house. Next day, he went to meet Nasruddin again. He said, “Mulla, I followed your advice and took the chickens into the house. But it did not solve anything. In fact, it has made matters worse. My house is even more cramped now.
“I see,” said Nasruddin. ” Now take your donkey and keep it inside your house. The man did not think much of this idea but Nasruddin managed to convince him to do it.
The next day, the man came to Nasruddin, looking very distressed, and said,”Now, it’s six humans , ten chickens and a donkey inside my house. It is so crowded that one can hardly move.” Nasruddin replied, “You own a goat too, don’t you?” “Yes, I do,” said the man.
“Great,” Nasruddin said. “Take it inside the house too.” The man objected, “How is that going to solve anything?” but Nasruddin once again convinced him to do as he had said.
The next day, the man walked up to Nasruddin in a state of anger and distress and said, “Your plan has made our lives miserable. The house is now so crowded that we are finding it difficult to even breathe. My family is upset and everyone is complaining about the lack of space.”
“Don’t get so upset, friend,” said Nasruddin. “Go back home and take all the animals back outside.” The man did as he was told.
Next day, when the man came across Nasruddin, he was beaming. He said, “I must thank you, Mulla! Your plan has worked wonders. Now that all the animals are outside, there is enough space in the house for all the family members. Everyone is happy and content with the house now.”