The King’s Dilemma: A Tale of Intrinsic Value

The King’s Dilemma: A Tale of Intrinsic Value, Your value is akin to that of a single coin

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The King’s Dilemma

Once upon a time in a grand kingdom, there lived a wise and just king who sought the most exceptional brides for his beloved prince. The king’s decree echoed far and wide, summoning three outstanding young women from every corner of the realm.

Upon their arrival, the king decided to test their insight and wisdom. Gathering the three potential queens, he posed a profound question, “Tell me, as a king, what is my value?”

The first candidate, with a respectful bow, spoke, “Your Majesty, your worth transcends measure. My humble knowledge cannot fathom the depths of your intrinsic value.” A murmur of agreement rippled through the royal court, “Indeed! This maiden’s understanding is profound.”

The second candidate stepped forward, her eyes reflecting thoughtful contemplation. “Great King,” she began, “Even if the entirety of the world’s priceless treasures were gathered here, their combined value would pale in comparison to your true worth.” Heads nodded in agreement among the ministers and courtiers, “Undoubtedly! This candidate possesses wisdom.”

Finally, the third candidate, wearing a serene smile, approached the throne. “Your Majesty,” she said, “Your value is akin to that of a single coin.” Shocked gasps escaped the guards, and the courtiers erupted in protest, “What audacity! Such insolence toward the king’s wisdom!”

The king, intrigued by this unexpected response, leaned forward and inquired, “Explain your reasoning, my dear.”

The young woman met the king’s gaze with gentle resolve. “Majesty, even if every inhabitant of your vast kingdom were to contribute 99 cents, the absence of your presence would forever prevent it from forming a complete dollar. Without your unique essence, unity remains incomplete. While one cent may appear minuscule, its absence leaves the dollar incomplete.”

Silence enveloped the hall as the profound truth of her words settled in. The king, moved by her insight, now faced a decision that would shape the destiny of his kingdom.

And so, the question reverberates: In the heart of the wise ruler, which perspective held the key to unlocking the true essence of value and worth?


(Note: This story is based on a translated version of a traditional Chinese fable.)

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