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Once upon a time there was a great and glorious army. One day, this army conquered a neighboring country nestled high in the mountains and enslaved all its people. The Commander of the victorious army threatened to execute anyone who resisted him. The vanquished people suffered greatly. Among them were many farmers and monks.
Quite soon, some worrying rumors reached the Commander’s ear. His soldiers told him, “They say there is one man in this land who is even stronger than you are. He is a wise old monk, respected by all, and they believe he has the power to defeat us.”
Immediately the Commander set out for the large monastery with his men. When he arrived, he ordered them to surround the building and bring the wise monk to him.
“They tell me you are very powerful, old man,” said the Commander to the monk with the long white beard. “Give me one good reason not to have you executed and rid myself of the threat.”
“Very well,” the old monk replied, “I can give you such a reason, but you must remain here with me for three days and three nights.”
“Three days!” the Commander thundered in anger. “Don’t you know that the Commander of an army has no time to spare?” But to himself he thought, “I am somewhat curious... after all, other than this monk there is no danger to me here.” “All right old man, I agree,” he declared.
And so the Commander stayed in the monastery with the wise monk, and for three days and three nights they studied together about the compassionate heart.