In a kingdom where wisdom and inquiry thrived, a monk returned from his worldly travels to the welcoming embrace of a king's palace. Intrigued by the monk's presence, the king approached him with a burning question that had lingered in his heart for two decades.
"I seek to meet God," the king confessed, his voice filled with longing. "Can you help me?"
The monk, with serene wisdom, offered a simple yet profound response. "Before seeking to meet God, first, know yourself."
Perplexed, the king pressed on, insisting that he sought a direct encounter with the divine, devoid of explanations or guidance. But the monk remained steadfast in his counsel, urging the king to understand himself before embarking on a quest to meet God.
Undeterred, the king persisted, and the monk presented him with a small piece of paper, asking him to inscribe his name, address, and titles as a means of introduction to God. Yet, as the king penned his worldly identifiers onto the page, the monk gently pointed out the transient nature of such labels.
"Your name, your titles, your possessions—these are not your true identity," the monk revealed. "They do not define who you are."
As the king grappled with this revelation, the monk guided him further, questioning whether changes in name, status, or age would alter his fundamental essence. Through this introspection, the king realized the impermanence of external markers and the enduring nature of his inner self.
Confronted with the uncertainty of his own identity, the king realized the depth of his ignorance. But in that moment of realization, he also discovered the path to true understanding.
"I do not know who I am," the king confessed, humbled by the revelation.
With compassionate wisdom, the monk affirmed the king's journey of self-discovery, affirming that in knowing oneself, one comes to know the divine. For the essence of God resides within the depths of our own being, waiting to be unveiled through the journey of self-awareness and introspection.
Armed with this newfound insight, the king embarked on a quest not only to meet God but to know himself—a journey that would lead him to the ultimate truth of existence. And in that pursuit, he found that the path to God was illuminated by the light of self-awareness, guiding him towards the eternal union of the self with the divine.