There was a rich man who owned much fertile farmland. He had one son. The son loved the City. The son spent his time gambling, drinking, and enjoying the life of the young, idle rich.
One day the rich man died. The young man appointed several caretakers
the farm and continued his life as before.
Revenues from the property declined. The young man was forced
economize. He did not like that.
So the young man made a trip to a distant mountain known to harbor a
wise man. The wise man told the young man that the problem was
deficiency of the very best fertilizer. The wise man gave the
young man a
wooden box with a very small hole in the bottom. "This box is
full of the
very best fertilizer. It must be shaken over the entire property
in the light of
the rising sun. But be aware that although the fertilizer is
potent, it must be
applied frequently. This fertilizer is of greater value than
gold, so never let
it out of your possession. Finally, this box must never be opened
power of this fertilizer can kill instantly."
The young man was anxious to increase his income so he could return
City. He traveled back to the farm, dismissed the caretakers and started the fertilization
very next morning. History does not tell us what he saw as he
the fields and shook the box. Perhaps he noticed that the tenants
caretakers were not arriving at the fields until mid-morning.
noticed that the drainage ditches had fallen into disrepair and the
fields were not ready for the planting. Perhaps he saw plantings that were choked with weeds. Regardless, the young
observant and realized that no fertilizer, no matter how potent, would
if the fields were not planted.
Many years passed and the young man prospered greatly. The man never returned
City, there was always too much to do. Then, one day, he lay
deathbed. He called to his most able assistant and told him to
bring the box
and an ax. Then he dismissed the assistant.
They found the man the next morning. He was dead. The box
smashed open. Inside the box were a few grains of sand and a
read, "The best fertilizer is the sound of the master's footsteps"