How the path was made

By Paulo Coelho

In issue 106 of Jornalinho (Portugal), I found a story that has a lot to teach us about the unthinking choices we make.
One day, a calf needed to cross an area of virgin forest in order to return to its field. Being an irrational animal, it forged a tortuous, curving path, going up hill and down dale.
The following day, a dog passed that way and used the same path to cross the forest. Then it was the turn of a ram, the leader of a flock, who, seeing the path already opened, led his companions along it.
Later, men began to use the path too: they came and went, turning to right and left, having to crouch down and to avoid obstacles, all the while complaining and cursing – and quite rightly too. But they did nothing about creating an alternative.
After all this intensive use, the path became a small road along which laboured poor, heavily-laden animals, obliged to spend three hours covering a distance which, had they not followed the path forged by the calf, could easily have been covered in thirty minutes.
Many years passed, and the little road became the main street of a small town, and later the principal avenue of a city. Everyone complained about the traffic, because the road followed the worst possible route.
Throughout all this, the wise old forest laughed to see how blindly men follow the path already made, never asking themselves if that is indeed the best choice.

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  1. tania chilby says:

    hey diddle diddle the cat and the fiddle the cow jumped over the moon ,the little dog laughed to see such fun and the dish ran away with the spoon ..Blessings Tania

  2. rainer says:

    This behaviour might be observed. In some municipalities the make no paths when they create parks. They look how the people will go and then build according to the trails paths.

  3. agnieszka says:

    Dear Pualo,

    Many people think that common paths are the easiest ones. It’s safer to stick to the familiar places, roads, they say.
    There’s only a few who dare to explore the unknown.
    It takes courage, time, a lot of effort.
    They think that it is a waste of time, waste of life.
    For me it would be a waste of human life not to at least try.
    It would be a waste of the gift we all received from God, gift of life. Like throwing it to the garbage.
    Besides, finding your own way, your own path, is so exciting, so magical.
    You always find something new, something nobody else haven’t found yet.
    Every one of us has his/her own dreams, own vision of life we want to experience.
    Nobody can live our life and we cannot live somebody else’s life.
    We wouldn’t be happy.

    Live until you out of breath,
    that is your choice,
    with every breath you take,
    you’ll hear the voice,
    follow your intuition,
    go to the unknown,
    feel the air,
    the excitement,
    of unexpected world.