The Good Terrorist

A lot of people have had a go at re-writing The Good Samaritan parable and this is my attempt. I got told off by someone for veering away from the original meaning and adding elements of the ridiculous into the story. I could probably have got away with making a political point through the parable and I think this would have worked, but I consciously resisted the temptation to do this because the story is so well known. The point is that the terrorist and the man in the pit (the pit is symbolic) are both positive characters. I dread to think what online search results pick up when they find this story.

The Good Terrorist

Once there was a man who was out walking when he fell down into a steep, muddy pit. Try as he might, he found that he couldn’t climb out of it. Eventually, exhausted, he gave up and sat cross-legged at the bottom of the pit.

Now, it happened that a preacher was walking by the pit and he saw the man sitting there.

“Oh…He-lp me!” groaned the man when he saw the preacher.

“Stop groaning,” said the preacher, peering down, “Praise God that you are in a pit. Praise him despite the pit. Start thanking God for your pit. Speak to the pit and command it to move in Jesus’ name.”

“Huh?” replied the man.

But, sadly, the preacher had walked on by.

A few hours later a motivational speaker passed by the edge of the man’s pit.

“He-lp me ple-ase!” begged the man in the pit.

“It’s not the pit keeping you down there, it’s you,” said the motivational speaker (who had written a series of highly popular self-help books). “You need to get your thinking right. Visualize yourself out of the pit. Better still, try not to think of the pit at all. Don’t moan and groan about having to be in a pit but speak positive affirmations 16 times a day about how you can overcome your pit.”

“Are you going to help me or not?” asked the man (who was getting a little fed up with all this advice).

The motivational speaker reached into his bag and threw a book down to the man.

“Read this and put it into practice indefinitely and you will be happy and successful.”

Then the motivational speaker walked on by, whistling to himself as he went.

“Prat,” murmured the man in the pit. But he picked up the book and began to read anyway (there being not much to do when you’re stuck at the bottom of a pit).

It was getting dark by now and the poor man was beginning to feel cold. Worse, it had begun to rain and at the bottom of the pit a huge puddle was forming. The man had to stand up because of the puddle. He shivered and tears filled his eyes.

A long time later the man heard some shuffling noises at the edge of the pit.

“He-lp me-ee!” croaked the man into the darkness above.

A face looked down at him. It was a terrorist.

The terrorist laughed at the man.

“Please help,” said the man (not too keen on being laughed at).

The terrorist said: “Look at the foreign policy of your government. It is your government keeping you in that pit.”

“Can’t you let your heart be filled with compassion towards me or something?” said the man.

The terrorist shrugged. Suddenly he jumped and skidded down to the bottom of the pit and stood next to the man.

“You idiot!” exclaimed the man.

“At least I didn’t walk off,” replied the terrorist.

“You stupid idiot. You should have given me a hand out. Now we’re both stuck.”

“I just wanted to experience pit-life in solidarity with you,” said the terrorist.

Three days later the preacher returned and helped both men out of the pit.

“Sorry about that,” mumbled the preacher who had gone through a crisis of conscience.

“You know nothing of pit-life,” scolded the terrorist and they all went their separate ways.


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