There was once a person who was so obsessed with finding the truth that he dedicated his life to finding it. After years of traveling to distant places and years of searching, he was told that there was a well in a mysterious cave from which he could find the truth. He was to ask the well where he could find the truth and he would get his answer.
With the end of his mission finally in sight, the man set forth to the cave. He found the well and asked the question that had been on this mind all his life, “What is the truth?” A deep voice bellowed from the depths, “Go to the village square where you will find a crossroad. You will find the truth there.”
Finally there was hope that his question would be answered. With great anticipation the man ran to the crossroad in the village square. There was nothing there but three ordinary-looking and uninteresting shops. One sold pieces of metal, the second sold pieces of wood and the last, thin wires. He stood there scratching his head, wondering if he had misunderstood the directions or if the well had given him the wrong answer. The mundane scene seemed no nearer to the truth than when he first started his mission. There was nothing that could give him even a clue to the answer he wanted.
Full of disappointment, the man went back to the well to demand an explanation. All that he could extract from the well was, “You will understand in due time.” When the man protested, he could not get any further response from the well. All he could hear were the echoes of his voice.
Feeling that he was being made a fool of, he reluctantly continued his search elsewhere. As more years passed, this incident slowly faded from his mind.
One evening as he was walking in a garden appreciating the stillness of the night, the clear and melodious sounds of a sitar being played caught his attention. The music was so melodious that his spirits were lifted immediately. Obviously the sitar player was an expert player.
Profoundly impressed, the man approached the sitar player, strangely drawn by the music.He looked at the fingers dancing in harmony over the sitar strings, mesmerized by the scene. Something distant stirred in his mind, becoming clearer by the moment.From the fingers on the sitar strings, he shifted his focus to the sitar.
Suddenly a burst of euphoria overcame the man. He had an epiphany! The sitar was made out of wires and pieces of metal and wood, things that he had seen being sold in the three uninteresting shops years earlier! And to think that he had not seen the significance of the items sold in the three shops then.
At last he understood the message given by the well. We have been given everything we need. All we need to do is to assemble them in the most appropriate way for our needs. Nothing is meaningful if we perceive in bits and pieces. If we assemble the pieces together, a new entity emerges – something that we would not have seen if we had looked only at the fragments.
Moral: Make an effort to see the big picture. Think out of the box so that your perception is sharper.
In Search of the Truth – Moral Philosophical Stories