Once, at a certain time, in a village with no name there was a teacher. As he aged he knew he would need a successor to take his place when he died. He decided that his smartest student would be his successor. Of all his students, three young boys were the smartest.
One day, the teacher brought the three boys up a hill that over looked the village. On the hill were three grand, majestic trees that stood at the same height.
He assigned each boy a tree, then said, "Get rid of your trees and you must tell me who did it the right way."
The first boy ran home and brought back an axe. After a few swings the tree was cut down. "I am right because this is the way to get wood to make our homes."
The second one ran deep into the forest to a raven's nest. He took some seed from his pocket and offered it to the raven. The raven swooped down and exchanged the seed for an elixir. Running back, the second boy doused the tree with the elixir. The tree writhed then turned into a flock of swans that flew away. "I am right," he said. "I have created life instead of taking it away."
Now it was the third boy's turn. He went to the tree and sat down at its base. The other two boys laughed and both said, "He is wrong."
The third boy looked to his teacher and said, "I do not see a tree. I see a place to rest in shade when it is hot; a tower that I can climb and view the entire village. I also see a home for small animals and a place for children to play."
"Who is right?" asked the teacher.
The boy looked to the tree stump that remained of the first boy's answer and the patch of scrambled earth that remained from the second boy's answer. "No one but also all of us. There is an answer for the body, the spirit, and mind. We are right to ourselves where everyone else seems wrong. So none of us are right for saying our own answer is the correct one."
The teacher smile and congratulated the boy for becoming his successor.