Stone Soup

Stone Soup

Three monks are wandering along a path in the mountains on a journey when one asks the other what makes someone happy. They decide to visit a village to find out but when they arrive and begin knocking on the doors of the houses no one will answer and greet them. The monks see that these people are busy working for themselves but have little connection with their neighbors and certainly not with strangers. So, they set about to teach a lesson by making stone soup. Beginning with a small pot and three round stones, they begin remembering the last time they made the soup and the ingredients that had made it so very tasty. One by one the curious villagers join in bringing with them a bit of salt and pepper or some carrots and eventually adding rice, steamed buns and lychee nuts. The stone soup evolves into an entire feast with everyone sharing with his neighbor. Together they create a feast to be enjoyed by all and then realize they have learned an important lesson. Setting this version of the traditional story in China, the author added the three monks each of whom symbolizes one of the three deities of Chinese folklore, health, wealth and prosperity. Ages 5-8 32 pages

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