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15 March 2009 @ 11:07 am
Tao of the Day, a D&D Adventure (WIS vs INT)  
There were once four learned and accomplished men. One day they said to themselves, "Of what use is all our learning if we do not seek the employment of a great king?" Accordingly, they set out for the capital.

Now among these four, three were particularly brilliant. The fourth was far inferior to the others in intellect, but he was the one with the most sense.

On the road, they came upon the skeleton of a lion. "Let us bring this lion back to life," proposed the first. "Yes, this will bring us great fame," agree the second and third. The fourth one said, "If you bring this lion back to life, he will attack and devour you."

"Don't interrupt!" called the first, who had already used his superior knowledge to put flesh on the bones. The second quickly introduced blood, and the third was about to breathe life into the lion.

"We should think of safety," said the fourth.

"Quiet!" said the third from the depths of his labor.

"Well, then, I shall go sit in this tree," said the fourth. "Just in case."

The lion came back to life and killed the wise men. The only one who survived was the man with common sense.

- Deng Ming-Dao, 365 Tao

I love this one, but I want a retelling that is more subtle, like a wink.

I feel like there's always more to learn from the careful attention to flowing water than from a to 2x4 to the head, y'know?

On the other hand, 2x4s have their use, especially with a low Wisdom roll.
Current Music: "Broken" - Laurie Anderson
nplusmnplusm on March 15th, 2009 07:08 pm (UTC)
oddly enough, this reminds me of "Real Genius"

Lazlo Hollyfeld has the wisdom, Mitch and Chris have the brains.

nplusmnplusm on March 15th, 2009 07:08 pm (UTC)
Yes, i realize Lazlo also had the brains.
Kburgunder on March 15th, 2009 07:13 pm (UTC)

Ooo, and actually, this ties into something I just read last night, and actually, many years ago, had even writted "Real Genius" in the margin.

"You know," said Rearden, "I coudl tell you - as my reason - that I do not wish to sell my Metal to those whose purpose is kept secret from me. I created that Metal. It is my moral responsibility to know for what purpose I permit it to be used."

(an interesting proposal that ... one of the fascinating things about Rearden is his amazing ability to crush/destroy himself with his own sense of moral responsibility, so there's some self-preservation practical argument against what he's saying, but on the other hand; Lazlo.)
ciroccocirocco on March 16th, 2009 12:33 am (UTC)
My first thought was, "That fourth guy sounds like Dr. Ian Malcolm in Jurassic Park!" (The wise men spent so much time thinking about whether they COULD rebuild a lion, they never stopped to think whether they SHOULD!)
raven mimura: instructionravenmimura on March 18th, 2009 08:31 am (UTC)
not only does this remind the contemplative individual of the importance of wisdom, it also reminds of the importance of party balance.

a great raging barbarian to grapple and subdue the lion...

a ranger or druid to calm and befriend it...

a paladin to stand in its way so that the rest of the party can flee while it eats him to death...

or at least a rogue, who would also have been up a tree, who could keep the fellow company after, and help loot the bodies.
Kburgunder on March 18th, 2009 05:35 pm (UTC)
This is the second thing I read this morning, and what a great way to start the day: laughing.

Thank you!

Paladins are indeed good for that purpose. }:>
raven mimuraravenmimura on March 19th, 2009 01:06 am (UTC)
Paladins are indeed good for that purpose.

you can always count on them not to employ their high wisdom... at least as long as there is something noble and stalwart to do.