A powerful Malla king of Nepal had a son, who was not very bright. He wanted him to have the best teachers, so he called them to the palace in order that they could teach the boy everything that they knew. They did their best, and after a few years, the could answer all their questions.

The king was well satisfied, but one old wise man warned him,’ everything your son knows is about the past, but a truly wise man should also know the .’

A fortune teller was then called to the palace and he, too, taught the prince all about his . Months later, the wise man tested the boy again. The wise man showed the king and his courtiers something which he held in his ; then he closed his and showed it to the boy, asking him to guess what was inside.

‘It is hard, object,’ the boy said, concentrating hard. ‘It is round and has a hole in the middle…It must be a .’

Everyone burst out laughing, because the object was indeed hard, white and round, with a hole in the middle, but it was a pearl, not a grindstone.’

‘True wisdom’, commented the wise man ‘lies not in knowing everything, but in making proper use of whatever we do have.’