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Listen to Lies


Listen to Lies
African Folktale


Civet and Tortoise lost their friendship because they listen to lies tall tale story. When you listen to lies sour feelings hurt the character and reputation of others. Listen to lies is a sure way to wreck a true friendship.


Listen to Lies Tall Tale Story



The Tortoise and the Civet, although they lived in separate towns, had a good friendship. All the neighbors knew their kindness to one another, for they never refused to help one another in sickness and trouble.


One day the Civet heard that her friend the Tortoise had given birth to a child, so at once she got ready to pay the usual visit. On arriving at the crossroad leading to her friend's town, she met a Monkey, who asked her where she was going.


The Civet said, “I am going to visit my friend the Tortoise, who has given birth to a child." Monkey said, “Don’t you go, her child is very ill, and the doctor says that he must have the tip of your tail with which to make a charm to cure the child, and it will not be better until he has it. Of course, if you go it is your own affair."


When the Civet heard this, she became very angry at the insult, and returned at once to her own house. The Tortoise was very indignant at the neglect of her friend the Civet, because from the start of her illness she never received a visit from her. For a very long time they never visited each other.


By and by the Tortoise heard that her friend the Civet had given birth to a child. The Tortoise said, "Although the Civet never visited me, I will not treat her in the same way, for I will go to see her."
She started on her journey, and on reaching the crossroads, she met Monkey there, who asked her where she was going. On hearing, she was on the way to visit the Civet, Monkey said, "You are truly very stupid. The Civet's baby is very ill, and she has sent for the doctor who says he cannot possibly cure the child unless he has the shell of the Tortoise for a charm."


On hearing this, the Tortoise was dumbfounded and filled with fear, so she returned home at once. After a very long time the Civet and the Tortoise met at the funeral of a mutual friend, and they frowned at each other and would not speak. Towards the end of the funeral, the Civet and the Tortoise told the chief and the elders all about their former love for one another, and how the friendship had been broken by each hearing what the other wanted as a charm to cure her child.


The elders listened, admonished them and told them both how foolish they were. This restored the love they had for each other, and the elders told the Civet and the Tortoise that in future they were not to listen to any tales, but if one did hear anything against the other she was to go and ask her friend about it, and not keeps it in their heart. From that time, they remained true friends.



Did you know?

What is a Civet

The African Civet inhabits the savannahs and the forests of southern and central Africa. The African Civet is a mammal and has short, dense fur that is a greyish color, with black spots arranged in rows along their bodies. The color is black with white or yellowish spots, stripes, and bands. The long and coarse hair is thick on the tail.

Quotes African Proverb

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