A king once decided to test the intelligence of his ministers. He announced in court that, he had heard of a very special bracelet, that made a happy man sad and a sad man happy, when he looked at it. The king declared a handsome prize to the person who could find the bracelet and bring it to him. The king knew that no such bracelet existed, but he wanted to see what his ministers did.
The ministers went in different directions. One of them travelled far and wide. He visited connoisseurs of jewellery, antique shops, kings of other lands and asked for the bracelet …..but in vain. One evening he sat outside a mosque and spotted an old man selling cheap rings, lockets and bracelets. He was sitting on the roadside, his wares displayed upon an old worn-out cloth.
The minister went up to the vendor and asked him “ Kind Sir, do you have a bracelet that can make a happy man sad and a sad man happy, when he looks at it? ” The vendor looked at the Minister straight in the eye for a long time and then nodded his head. He signalled to him to wait. The minister looked on, as the old man picked up and old brass bracelet and deftly carved something on it with his nibble fingers and handed it over to the eager customer. The minister read the writing on the bracelet, “ All this will come to an end.” His dry lips broke into a smile. He hurriedly paid the old merchant and galloped away to the king’s palace.
He presented the bracelet to the king and watched the king’s face go pale as he read the inscription: “All this will come to an end.”
Just then a beggar knocked and asked for alms. The king said. “ I do not need this bracelet, give it to the beggar”.
As soon as the beggar read what was written on the bracelet, his haggard face and tired eyes lit up to reveal a toothless smile. The king realized that this world is just a passing phase, nothing is permanent except change. This life is only a transit period, in which worldly pleasures give only momentary comfort and happiness. This human body is but, only a vehicle for which, it has been aptly said “Dust thou art and to dust thou will return.”