Teaching a fool (Sir 22:9-22:10)

“Whoever teaches a fool is

Like one who glues potsherds together.

Whoever teaches a fool is

Like one who rouses a sleeper

From deep slumber.

Whoever tells a story to a fool

Tells it to a drowsy man.

At the end

He will say.

‘What is it?’”

Sirach says that whoever tries to teach a fool is like one trying to glue pieces of a broken pottery jar back together. Potsherds are broken pottery pieces. Thus this task would be like a giant jigsaw puzzle. Teaching a fool is like trying to wake someone up from a deep sleep. Even telling a story is useless, because the fool is like a half-asleep drowsy person who says at the end of the story, “What was that again?” Basically, trying to teach a fool is a waste of time. However, it is not totally impossible, but extremely difficult and challenging.

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