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A long time ago a king complained to Nasrudin, “My people do not always tell me the truth. This bothers me.”

Nasrudin answered. “It does not matter whether something is absolutely true or not. What matters is that something is true in relation to other things.” The king was not pleased. “This is just one of your tricks. A thing is true or it is not true.”

The king thought of a plan to make his people tell him the truth. He had a gallows built just inside the city gates. He told the heralds to announce, “If persons want to enter the city, they must first answer a question asked by the Captain of the King’s Guards. If the answer is not truth, the person will be hanged.”

Nasrudin came forward. “I want to enter the city.”

“Why do you come?” asked the Captain.

“To be hanged,” answered Nasrudin.

“This is not true,” said the Captain. “If I am not telling the truth, you must hang me,” explained Nasrudin.

“But, this would make it the truth,” said the Captain. “I cannot hang you if you tell the truth.”

“You must decide, which truth is the real truth,” replied Nasrudin.

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