So the dervish told him, “I have to tell you something, regretfully, that your wife is not a human. She’s a snake.”
Because it’s always too serious, so I’m just reading you one of the ghost stories. Originally, I did not mark this story to read it to you, but today I was thinking to read something to you and then I came upon this page, so I thought, “Oh, never mind, I’m going to scare them for a change.”
There were a couple of ghost stories. Actually, one is about the ghost, one is about a snake that became a beautiful woman. Both are kind of out-of-our-world, it’s not like human stories. Human, but not… only half-human story. So, which one you like? The snake or the man with the two wives, one ghost and one human? (The snake.) Snake? OK. Snake it is. Just because he became a beautiful woman. You watch it. Now, it’s like this. This is a story about a snake. I have to mark it, so I know that I already read it. Mostly I just mark those religious kind of stories, about the Jewish tradition and all that. But we will have time for all that.
Today is almost like New Year. (Yes, Master.) And after midnight already, right? (Yes.) What time is it? 1:31am. Wow! Aren’t we good? We really work day and night. No? So we spare some time today to talk about the snake. (Thank You, Master.) This story happened a few thousand years ago. In Âu Lạc (Vietnam), we also have a story, also have a book. And in that book, it mentions also several snakes that became women and lured the men to make trouble for them. Some make trouble, some just to make them fall in love.
This story is about a trouble-maker snake. “A few thousand years ago, like long, long, long, long time ago, there was a handsome young man. He’s a horse rider. One time, he rode across the desert and then suddenly he saw one beautiful girl standing in the sand.” They say in the sand, not on the sand. So maybe she is half buried or something. Maybe she covered her feet. “He was so startled because of her beauty, this out of this world beauty. And then he got the love at first sight.” That means love at first sight. Is that in French? (Yes, Master.) They get love at first sight, no? (Yes, Master.) Means you have got the lightening of love, the lightening of love strikes you.
“And then, the girl came up to him, held onto the reigns of the horse, (Yes.) and then told him, ‘I love you!’” Just like that. “‘I love you! You should marry me and make me your wife.’ He never uttered any words, yes-no. He just lifted her up and put her on his horse, together. And then he brought her back to his house. Then he married her. Little did he know this lady, this girl was a snake. And normally, whenever she saw somebody handsome like him, she would manifest herself, change. She would transform herself into a beautiful woman. And then she would ask him to marry her, and then live with him. Whoever that may be. So he wasn’t the only one.
Time passed, and then suddenly this handsome young man slowly felt unwell, and then he fell ill, seriously. And day after day, he was getting worse and worse. He became haggard, skinny, lost weight, and his face lost color. He had nothing much of youth on his being anymore. He went to see many doctors, but none of them can guess, or can diagnose what’s wrong with him. And they also don’t know how to cure it because they cannot diagnose what’s wrong with him. And because of that, day in, day out, day after day, he became weaker and weaker, and losing more and more weight. And his life force seemed to be ebbing out of him. Just like a candle is having less and less wax now, and almost like gone, the light.” Scary, no? (Yes, Master.) Oh, aren’t you glad you’re single. (Yeah.) Me too. I’m not going to look for any beautiful woman in the desert, I’m telling you, after this.
“One day, it happened that his wife went out, and there was one dervish.” You remember dervish, right? (Yes, Master.) The Muslim follower (Yes.) of the branch of… What’s the name of that? I forgot. (Sufi.) Sufi. Sufi branch of Muslim. “So, one of the followers or the priests went to that area and then happened to pass his house, and he went inside, he went to the door, asking for some alms.” Like all the priests do or monks do when they travel because they don’t have money with them. That’s how they did it, in the old days. Like the Buddhist monks, that’s the tradition of the monks, the monks of many traditions, they do that. Before, they don’t have even a car or no money to go on the horse, so they just walk around and they ask for alms wherever they can.
“And he went in front of the door and asked for alms. Then he saw this young man, and he asked him, ‘Hey, why are you looking so sick like that?’ The young man said, ‘I also don’t know. And none of the doctors know what’s wrong with me. So they can also not cure me. And then, day after day, I am getting weaker and weaker. I don’t know when I will be better at all.’ So the dervish priest said to him, ‘Come here. Give me your hand. I’ll have a look.’ He was looking into his palm, and he said to him, ‘You have a wife, right?’ He said, ‘Yes, yes. I’m married.’ So the dervish asked him, ‘Do you sleep with your wife at night?’ The young man said, ‘Of course. Of course.’ ‘Yeah, but do you ever see your wife get up at midnight and go out of the room?’ He said, ‘No, I never pay attention.’
So the dervish told him, ‘I have to tell you something, regretfully, that your wife is not a human. She’s a snake.’ And then the man was very, very aghast. He could not dare to believe it; to believe what the dervish priest had said. And then the dervish priest said to him, ‘OK. If you don’t believe me, then you can try this and that. OK?’ So the man said, ‘Please tell me what to do.’ So the dervish said, ‘OK, today, when she cooks the soup, you put a lot of salt into her soup. And then, you empty all the water in the house. None of the drops of water should be left. Don’t leave any drop of water inside the house. But before that, you hide the key so she cannot go out. And before that, you cut one of your fingers. And then you put salt on the wound, so that the whole night you will be feeling very painful, so you won’t be able to sleep. Like that you can see if she comes out or does something or not.’ All right. So, the man did exactly everything like the dervish priest told him. And then he pretended to lie down and sleep immediately.
At midnight, his wife woke up, felt thus thirsty, terribly thirsty because she ate the salty soup that he put more salt in. So she got out of the bed and tried to find some water to drink. But every container that’s for water was all empty. Not even one drop of water in it. So she tried to open the door to go out, but it’s useless because no key and she didn’t know where the keys were. And the man pretended to sleep very tightly, didn’t see anything. So she tried very hard and then she could not go out, so she lay down on the floor, turned around three times, and transformed herself back into a snake so that she could slide out from under the door gap.
So she went out to the well outside, in the garden, and then hung herself down to drink some water from the well. And then she came back inside, transformed herself again into that beautiful lady and lay next to him. Slept as usual. The young man, pretended to sleep, but he saw everything. He also did not say anything at all. Next morning, the dervish priest returned to his house and then asked him, ‘Did you see anything?’ The patient said, ‘Yeah, I saw everything. I understand everything now.’ And then he told the priest everything that happened with his wife last night. So the priest said to him, ‘Now you have seen it all with your own eyes. Do you want to get rid of her or not?’ So the man said, ‘Yes, yes, I want to.’” Because if he doesn’t get rid of her then he will die. He will die, sooner or later. And very soon, after all his life force has been absorbed by the snake. You see what I’m saying? (Yes, Master.) And the more she absorbed the human’s energy, life energy, the more she becomes stronger and then she can continue to do her trick.
“So, the dervish said to him, ‘OK, in that case, you listen to me. You tell your wife to bake some cakes, and then you have to light the oven yourself. Light the oven by yourself. Make the oven hot, hot, hot, hot, as hot as possible. And then when your wife bends down to put the pastry inside to bake it, then you have to push her in the oven and then close the door. After that, you use maybe cement or something like that, to seal the door. Then I will come and tell you what to do next.’ The young man did exactly what the dervish priest told him, and then waited until the oven was hot as possible and then his wife bent down to put the pastry in to bake the cake, then he suddenly got hold of her and threw her inside quickly.”