Once in a kingdom, lived a Hermit named Hemanth, inside a forest. Hemanth was famous for his wisdom, and people would come to him for help. One day, King Vijay dressed in simple clothing and went to the forest, to meet Hemanth.
When King Vijay reached Hemanth’s place, he saw that Hemanth was digging a hole in front of his hut. Hemanth was thin and frail, King Vijay approached Hermit Hemant and said, “I came here for your help, I have three questions. Can you answer these”? King continued and asked Hemanth-
“First, what time need to remember and not to miss, so not to regret later?
Second, which people are the most important and need to deal with and which are not?
Third, what are the most important pursuits and which one, therefore, has to be taken before others?”
Hemanth listened to King but didn’t answer and continued digging. Seeing him, King said, “Give me the shovel. I will do the rest of the digging.” Hemanth handed him the shovel and sat down on the ground. After digging for an hour, Hemanth said, “Now you rest. I will dig.” But King didn’t give him the shovel, and he kept on digging. They heard someone running towards them.
As they turned around, they saw a man running with his hands pressed to his stomach and blood flowing from between his fingers. The man ran up to King and fainted on the ground. A large wound on his stomach was observed by the King and Hemanth. They carried him inside the hut and laid him on the bed. Next morning, King looked for the wounded man.
When King went up to him to check his wound, he said, “Please forgive me. You don’t know who I am. I am your enemy, and I had sworn to kill you. I had been keeping an eye on you for a long time. I knew you came alone to see the Hemanth, and I had planned to kill you on your way back. But as the whole day passed, and you did not return.
I left in search of you and came upon your knights instead. They recognized me and tried to kill me. I tried to run from them, but my wound didn’t allow me to do so. I should have bled to death if you hadn’t cared for my wound. I intended to kill you, and you have saved my life. Now, if I live and if you wish it, I will serve you. Please forgive me.”
King went back to Hemanth and said, “Wise man, answer my questions.” “But your questions have already been answered,” said the Hemanth. “What? How have I been answered?” asked the King. Hemanth smiled and replied, “If you had not had mercy of my weakness yesterday, have you not have dug these beds for me. If you had gone back alone, your enemy would have attacked you, which would make you regret that you did not stay with me.
Therefore, the most important time was when you were digging the beds. I was the most important person, and the most important pursuit was to do good to me. And later, when that man came running to us, the most important time was when you were taking care of him, for if you had not bound up his wound, he would have died without having made peace with you. Therefore, he was the most important person and what you did for him was the most important deed.
Always remember that:
The most important time is only now, and it is the most important because it is the only time we have power over ourselves
The most important person is with whom you are now, for no one can know whether or not he will ever have a deal with any other person
The most important pursuit is to do good to him since it is for that purpose alone that man is sent into this life.”