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Weekend Story-Alexander’s Three Wishes

Having conquered many kingdoms, Alexander the Great was finally returning home. But unfortunately, in the course of his journey back, he fell ill, and very quickly, his health deteriorated. When death stared him in the face, Alexander realized how meaningless all his conquests, wealth, and power were.

Now he longed to see his mother’s face and say his last goodbye to her. But, he realized that his fast deteriorating health would not permit him to get back to his distant homeland. So, the mighty conqueror, pale and helpless, called his generals and told them, “It is inevitable, I am leaving this world soon; I have three wishes; please carry them out without fail.”

Bowing in respect and reverence towards their Master, the generals agreed to abide by their king’s last wishes.

“My first wish Firstly, I would like my physicians to be the only ones to carry my coffin,” Alexander said. After a pause, he continued, “As a second wish, I would like the path leading to the graveyard to be strewn with gold, silver, and precious stones that I have collected.” Then, taking a moment to rest, Alexander continued, “And, finally, let both my hands dangle out of my coffin.” 

Alexander’s strange wishes puzzled the people gathered there. No one dared to question Alexander about his strange wishes. Finally, it was Alexander’s favorite general who mustered the courage. Kissing Alexander on his pale forehead, he asked, “O king, we promise you that we will fulfill your three wishes, but can you tell us why you make these strange wishes?”

In response, Alexander took a deep breath and said:

“I would like the world to know the three lessons I have learned just now. 

I want my physicians to carry my coffin so that people can understand that no doctor can really save anyone from the clutches of death when it is time. So let people not take life for granted.

Through my second wish of strewing gold and silver on the pathway to the graveyard, I want to make people realize that I spent all my life chasing wealth and power, but today I am in a state where I cannot take anything with me. So Let people realize chasing wealth beyond everything else is futile. 

As for my third wish, I would like people to know that I entered this world empty-handed and that I will leave this world empty-handed.

After saying these words, the king closed his eyes and breathed his last.

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