A master stood on the edge of a cliff. Not high but high enough that one could not reach down and touch the water. He stood there for a time watching the quite water slams the rock over and over. A person, the master, had never met approached and walked up to the master.
“Is the water deep enough for me to jump off the cliff.”
“yes, the water is deep enough. But,” the master smiled. “ you asked the wrong question.”
The person stopped and looked bewildered for a moment.
“I do not understand.” The person finally said.
“you asked was the water deep enough to jump, yes it is. But the question to ask is different. It is if I jump in the water deep enough to land safely only in water. Or is it shallow and I will land on rock injuring myself.” The master smiled again.
“’ Thank you for the wise words,” the person said, “let me ask you, is the deep water enough for me to jump into from this cliff without hitting the rock and injuring myself.”
“yes,” the master replied.
The person began peeling off their outer clothes down to only their swimming suit and prepared to jump.
The master looked at the person and said, “I was watching the sharks playing there in the small cove beneath the cliff.”
The person hastily pulled their clothes back on and walked away.
The master stood for a time staring at the shark fins as they broke the water. He reflected on the questions not asked and wondered if the answers were not given without questions have a different purpose. As he walked away, the master contemplated the lesson of today, those questions exist, and solutions exist but brought together they have power.
This work is Copyright DocAndersen. Any resemblance to people real or fictional in this piece is accidental (unless explicitly mentioned by name.)