The 18th Camel

Discussion in 'Productivity and Motivation' started by A8ch, Dec 30, 2013.

  1. A8ch

    A8ch Gold Member

    An enlightening story that illustrates a simple and elegant approach to conflict resolution and problem solving.

    There was a father who left 17 camels as an asset for his 3 dependents. When the father passed away,
    his family opened the will.

    The father's will stated that the eldest son should get 1/2 (half) of the total camels, while his daughter
    should be given 1/3rd (one-third) and his widow should be given 1/9th (one-ninth) of the total camels.

    As it was not possible to divide 17 into half or 17 by 3, or 17 by 9, the three started to fight with each other.
    Eventually they decided to consult the village elder, a wise old man and close family friend.

    The wise man read the will patiently. After giving due thought, the wise man brought one camel of his own
    and added the same to the 17 camels. That increased the total to 18 camels.

    Now, he started reading the deceased father’s will.

    1/2 of 18 = 9, so he gave the eldest son 9 camels.
    1/3rd of 18 = 6, so he gave the daughter 6 camels.
    1/9th of 18 = 2, so he gave the widowed mother 2 camels.
    Now add this up: 9 plus 6 plus 2 equals 17 and this leaves 1 camel, which the wise man took back.
    We are constantly surrounded by opportunity disguised as a problem. To get past the problem we must first believe there is a solution to be had and then focus on finding it.

    Finding it often requires us to step back from the situation, observe it from a fresh perspective, and then allow wisdom, experience, compassion, intuition and empathy to guide us to the 18th camel, and ultimately to a satisfactory resolution or reconciliation.

    The 18th camel is always lurking in the midst. Keep looking until you find it!

    Last edited: Dec 30, 2013
  2. Vishal P. Rao

    Vishal P. Rao Administrator Staff Member

    Amazing story and wonderful reflection Hermas :)
  3. happywife

    happywife Gold Member

    What a beautiful illustration! I have to acknowledge that I don't think I would have been able to come up with that particular solution. I was just reading Proverbs again (a chapter a day to start off the new year) and asking the Lord to increase my wisdom. Wisdom, knowledge, and understanding are so valuable and I never feel like I can get enough to not only make the right choices for my own life, but also have the wisdom to share with others like that wise old man.

    Thanks for sharing that lovely story. It's one I want to remember.
    ExtraCashOnline likes this.
  4. payment proof

    payment proof Well-Known Member

    I love the symbolism of the the 18th camel!

    As always Hermas, you make the most wonderful posts. :)
    ExtraCashOnline likes this.

Share This Page