If this were the extent human selfishness, then one might suffer them. However, when it comes to humans and moral corruption, it pains me to say I've heard much, much worse.
Behind my house lies a small grove of tea plants. While modest in size, it's tidy and receives good sun, making it altogether pleasant. When the noise of the children precludes a comfortable nap, or when they're bored and ill-tempered, I escape to this place to nurture gentler thoughts. One warm autumn day, having eaten my lunch and napped, I ventured out in the early afternoon to stroll the grounds. Moving plant to plant, relishing the scents of the roots, I made my way to the red cedar hedge that borders the grove to the west. There, on a bed of withered chrysanthemums matted down for the purpose, dozed a large cat, oblivious to the world around him. Either unaware of my approach, or aware yet unconcerned, he snored loudly, stretched to full length. I couldn't but be impressed at the audacity - stealing onto another's grounds and dozing unconcerned. He was quintessential black. The clear rays of the early afternoon sun struck his coat full on, setting it aglow in vibrant waves of invisible flame. So large was his stature, he could well be titled king among cats. He was easily twice my size. Struck with awe and curious with wonder, I forgot myself, stopped in my tracks, and locked him in my gaze. As I stared, the gentle autumn breeze enticed the branches of a phoenix tree into motion. From these branches, which extended over the red cedar hedge, two or three leaves rustled loose and floated down to rest in the chrysanthemum thicket. The king among cats opened his large round eyes. I can picture it still. The eyes were like amber, which humans so dearly prize, yet sparkled ever more keenly. He didn't stir. From the depths of those eyes, his piercing gleam focused itself on my diminutive brow. "Who are ya?" For a king among cats, his words seemed a bit crude. The power in his voice, though, could knock back even a dog. Trepidation seized me. I thought I'd best reply. "I am a cat. I've yet to be given a name," I answered with feigned composure. All the while, though, my heart was pounding wildly. "What? A cat? As a cat myself I'm sorry to hear that. Where's your home?" Most insolent, this fellow. "My home is here, with the teacher." "I figured as much. Awfully scrawny, aren't ya?" His arrogance was regal, but judging from his words, his home was rock-bottom lower class. Then again, his fatted, corpulent figure suggested daily treats and rich living. "And who might you be?" I had to ask in return. "I'm Kuro, Kurumaya no Kuro," he declared with pride. Kurumaya no Kuro was known to all as a bad actor. Befitting of his master, he was long on brawn and short on brains. Other cats avoided him, doing their all to shun without offending. On learning his name, I feared him. At the same time, I also felt a welling of contempt. To see for myself if he was as dumb as they say, I engaged him in conversation.