Mulla Nasrudin was a Sufi philosopher who is believed to have lived during the 13th century in what is now known as Turkey. He appears in thousands of stories; sometimes funny, sometimes serious-he is a ‘wise fool.’ Many Nasrudin stories have a lesson that is learned in a humorous way.
All over the world, we encounter characters in stories who are ‘tricksters’ or fools. Nasrudin is perhaps the oldest known character. His stories show up in other cultures around the world with different characters in the role of ‘Nasrudin.’ Some of the stories closely resemble jokes we still tell today!
There are forty Nasrudin stories included, organized by the number of parts (4-5) and ready to print and cut apart. Also included are two ways to use the stories in drama class.
Example of a Nasrudin story:
A Bird Saved My Life
(Three Players: Narrator; Nasrudin; Holy Man)
Nasrudin was walking through the desert, and spotted a foreign holy man. Nasrudin went and introduced himself, and the holy man said, “I am a mystic devoted to the appreciation of all life forms—especially birds.”
“Oh, wonderful,” Nasrudin replied. “I am a Mulla, and I would like to stay with you for a while so we can share teachings. And guess what? A bird saved my life once!”
Delighted to hear this, the mystic agreed to share company with Nasrudin. As they shared their teachings, the mystic constantly asked to hear about how a bird saved Nasrudin’s life—but each time Nasrudin refused to tell the story.
One day, after the mystic pleaded and pleaded to hear the story, Nasrudin finally agreed. “OK, here is how the bird saved my life,” Nasrudin began explaining while the mystic intently listened. “One day about six years ago, I had not eaten for a long time and was about to starve to death. Then I caught a bird and ate it.”