“Believe nothing merely because you have been told it,
or because it is traditional, or because you yourself have imagined it.
Do not believe what your teacher tells you merely out of respect for the teacher.
But whatever you, after due examination and analysis,
you find to be conducive to the good, the benefit,
the welfare of all beings, that doctrine believe in, and cling to and take as your guide.” Buddha
LXVII Buddha, The Peacemaker
It is reported that two kingdoms were on the verge of war, the possession of certain embankment being disputed by them.
And the Buddha seeing the kings with their armies ready to fight, requested them to tell him the cause of their quarrelers. Having heard the complaints on both sides, He said, “I understood that the embankment has value for some of your people. Has it any intrinsic value aside from its service to your men?”
“ It has no intrinsic value whatsoever, “ was the reply.
The Tathagata continued, “Now, when you go to battle, it is not sure that many of your men will be slain; and you yourselves, O’ kings, are liable to lose your lives.”
And they said, “Verily, it is sure that many will be slain and our own lives be jeopardized.”
“The blood of men, however,” said Buddha, “has it less intrinsic value than a mound of earth?”
“No.” the kings said, “the lives of men and the lives of kings are priceless.”
Then the Tathagata concluded, “Are you going to stake that which is priceless, against that which has no intrinsic value whatsoever?”
The wrath of the two monarchs abated, and they came to a peaceful agreement.
Parable from The Gosple of Buddha. As told by Paul Carus