A Parable of Two Men

[An “I-think-it’s-original” parable by slow]

In the old times, there were two men, condemned to death by an evil emperor. In that kingdom, every condemned is executed on public places, used as an example to the others. The two men had ten days before their death. As the examples really worked on the kingdom, there were no prisons at all, so the two men where chained to the ground. The first man just sit in the ground and start playing with some peebles; the second man, not wanting to die, decided to rip the chains from the ground and just run away.

The second man used all his forces but couldn’t move the chains. But he also didn’t want to die, so no matter how hard it appeared, he still tried to pull the chains. And that took the whole day, without any signs of progress. And, on the next day, the man, still didn’t giving it up, kept trying. After some days trying and trying, the man noted that his muscles became stronger and, while his whole body was pushing the forces, in his mind he start thinking about the structure of the chains, the deep they where buried, how they acted under pressure — he created a whole chainology inside his head. Sometimes he looked at the first man, sitting in the ground, just playing with the pebbles.

The life of the second man turned to the chains: he though about chains all day, he tried to push the chains all day, his body became stronger by trying to push the chains. He only stopped to rest and eat. Nothing more existed to him except chains.

In the ninth night, the second man was taking some rest when the first man just got up and took his chains from the ground, easily.

– How… how did you did that? – asked the second man.

– While you where pushing the chains, I decided to dig around the base using the small pebbles around.

And, without any resistance, the first man run to this freedom.

Moral of this story: no matter how hard you try, how strong you became doing something and how good you became on it, if you can’t see where the real problem lies, you have done shit.