Aesop and Psychics
by: John Tyrrell
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I have not had cause to write about psychics for a while, but I do continue to hold them in about as much esteem as I have for televangelists. They are in the same business of extracting money from the gullible, albeit generally on a smaller scale.
I was reading Aesop's Fables recently and came across this little gem.
A Prophet sat in the market-place and told the fortunes of all who cared to engage his services. Suddenly there came running up one who told him that his house had been broken into by thieves, and that they had made off with everything they could lay hands on. He was up in a moment, and rushed off, tearing his hair and calling down curses on the miscreants.
The bystanders were much amused, and one of them said, "Our friend professes to know what is going to happen to others, but it seems he's not clever enough to perceive what's in store for himself."
Now Aesop supposedly lived about 2,600 years ago, but we cannot be sure he actually wrote the stories attributed to him. But references to him were being made by other Greek writers as early as 2,500 years ago.
In any event, this little tale is probably the first documented use of "why didn't he see that coming" in reference to a psychic.
A cartoon version of this fable, written for children, is available on YouTube. It's a nice little piece if you are trying to bring up your kids as healthy skeptics.
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