The Two Young Men, the Two Evil Spirits, and the Tree of Healing

Here is a story:

In a certain village there were once two young men. One day, they told their parents: We would like some flour, some relish, and other things to eat on our way because we are going to look for work in the Kalale region. The parents gave them the food.

One of the two young men was the son of the king and the other was the son of a regular villager. The son of the king took a great amount of food with him while the son of the commoner had a small amount of food with him. After a day of travelling, they arrived at the place where they would spend their first night. The son of the commoner said to the son of the king: My friend, could you bring some of the food you brought so we could eat some of it so your load will be lighter, and you won’t be overburdened while walking? The king’s son said: Very good, my friend. Let us do that. They ate and went to sleep. In the morning, they woke up and continued their journey. They covered five kilometres. At noon, the son of the commoner said: My friend, let’s eat. The king’s son replied: Very well, my friend, let’s eat. The king’s son unpacked his bundle of food and they ate. They resumed their journey and by dusk they reached a village, and there they slept.

On the third day, they were half way to their destination, and they ate in the same way as before. The next day, they arrived at an uninhabited place and the king’s son’s food was all finished. The king’s son said to his friend: My friend, I am hungry. Let’s eat something! The son of the commoner said: But where is the food? The other said: What about the food you carried? He said: That is my food. There is only enough for me. The king’s son said: We ate all of my food together! The commoner’s son said: Due to your stupidity, you have finished all of your food. After that the king’s son lost all of his energy.

The commoner’s son beat the king’s son severely and then poked his eyes out. After which he left him and went off. The other stayed behind and could not see anything. He was very thirsty, and when he heard the croaking of frogs, he said: There is a river over there. Then he made his way towards the river by feeling his way there. When he arrived there, he noticed that the frogs stopped croaking so he said to himself: I have arrived. He searched with his hands and found water and then he drank until he was full. At the same place where the youngster was drinking the water, the Evil Spirit often drank there too. The youngster left the river and made his way up the river bank on all fours. When he reached a tree, he sat down under it. Then the youngster heard the Evil Spirit say: Something was here and drank water at this place. The Evil Spirit was accompanied by a smaller Evil Spirit. They got close to the tree where the youngster was sitting, but they did not see him. The older Evil Spirit said to the younger one: Do you know this tree? He replied: No, I do not. The Evil Spirit said:This tree has a sap which cures any kind of sickness, and if you apply the sap on the sick area you will be cured instantly. Even if you were born blind or someone blinded you, you will be cured immediately. The Evil Spirits then went on their way.

The young man that stayed behind thought to himself: Was the Evil Spirit telling the truth? I will try it out. He climbed the tree until he got to the leaves and bit the tree. He kept doing this until he reached the wet part. He took the sap and put it on one of his eyes and his sight in this eye was restored. Then he put it on the other eye and it was restored as well. He saw that the world was clear, and he looked at the tree and recognised it. He hit the road and returned to his village.

When he arrived there, he told all of the people what had happened to him because of the other young man. Everyone was shocked. Then he became a famous herbalist and cured all sorts of diseases.

And that is the end of our story.

The moral of the story: God is the greatest Healer and can cure any human sickness and fulfils the deepest human longings. God’s ways are unknown, so just put your trust in Him. When preparing a remedy, one must rely on God for the cure. A remedy is useless without God’s help.

The Mambwe proverbs say: When you dig for a small remedy (root), you must mix it with God (God’s power)(Kwimba kalembo(nantikati), kusanzya na Leza); God is the Cutter, he made the wasp slim without cutting (it in half)(Lez’Umucetozi, wacetoli londa pakasi nga lyaputwike); God is totally independent, only his spirit knows itself (Leza a ntumba nambo, mwenzo kaimanyile); God is a blacksmith, he does not forge for just one person (Leza umusuzi, asisulila wenga); God does not forget any living being (that stands) (Leza, asyailila icimilile); The day when God is going to give you a meal is unknown (Wanda uno Leza akukwimula, usimanyikwa). English equivalent: “God helps those that help themselves”; “Heaven helps those who help themselves”.

Subjects: Divine Providence – trusting God – Healer – medicine – God’s blessings


Written by an unknown author.