A father’s will was read. Divide my 17 camels among my 3 sons accordingly: ½ to the oldest, 1/3 to the middle son, and 1/9 to the youngest. But how were these divisions possible? The 3 sons quarreled. Finally, they decided to go to a wise woman. The wise woman listened patiently about the will. She thought hard. She went away. And when she returned, she added her 1 camel to make 18. Then, she gave the oldest son 9, the middle son 6, and the youngest son 2 camels—according to the will. This left 1 camel. The sons quickly agreed to give the extra camel back to the wise woman. They returned home happy.
ORIGINAL LESSON: Negotiation and problem solving is the struggle to find the 18th camel, i.e. the common ground, in order to resolve any issue. Read Ury's The Third Side.
BUDDHIST LESSON: If we applied wisdom and compassion, how could this problem have been resolved more simply or even avoided all together?