Mulla Nasrudin

Life and death

   Nasrudin climbed a tree to saw through a branch. A passer-by who saw
what he was doing cried: ‘Look out! You are on the wrong side of the 
branch. You will fall with it.’
   ‘Am I a fool that I should believe you; or are you a seer that you can
tell me the future?’ demanded the Mulla.
   Soon afterwards, however, the branch gave way, and he fell to the
ground. Nasrudin ran to catch up with the other man. ‘Your prediction
has been fulfilled! Tell me now, how shall I die?’
   However much he tried, the other man could not now convince Nasrudin
that he was not a seer. Ultimately he lost his temper and said: ‘You 
might as well die now.’
   As soon as he heard these words the Mulla fell down and lay still.
His neighbors came and found him and put him in a coffin. As they
were walking towards the cemetery, there was a dispute as to the
shortest route. Nasrudin lost his patience. Raising his head from the
coffin he said: ‘When I was alive, I used to turn left here — that is
the quickest way.’