Wednesday, March 02, 2005

Freedom of Action

One day, Mughal Emperor Akbar and his minister Raja Birbal were walking in the palace gardens. Suddenly, Akbar turned to his wise minister and asked, 'Birbal, who is more powerful -- God or Emperor?' Birbal thought for a moment and said with all seriousness, 'Emperor, you are more powerful than God.'

Akbar was astounded. He thought Birbal was indulging in flattery and proceeded to banish him from the empire. Birbal replied that the punishment itself was proof that what he had said was true.

Birbal then reasoned, 'Emperor, if you want to banish me, you can send me out of your empire and I shall have to go. But if God wanted to banish me, is he powerful enough to do that? Where would he send me, for all the universe is his empire.'

Akbar laughed heartily and praised his clever minister and gifted Birbal one more palace beauty!.

Moral of the story: the lesser guy has more choice and freedom of action than the one at the top.


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