The 18th Horse

There was a father who left seventeen horses as an asset for his three dependents. When the father passed away, his family opened up the Will.

The Will of the father stated that the eldest son should get ½ (half) of the total number of camels, while his daughter should be given 1/3th (one-third) and his widow should be given 1/9th (one-ninth) of the total number of horses.

As it was not possible to divide seventeen horses into two or seventeen by three or seventeen by nine, the three were in a dilemma. So, they decided to consult their village elder, a wise of man and close family friend.

The wise man read the Will patiently. After giving some thought, he brought one horse of his own and added it to the seventeen horses. That increased the total to eighteen horses.

Now, he read the deceased father’s Will and started distributing the horses.

Half of 18 = 9, so he gave the eldest son 9 horses; 1/3rd of 18 = 6, so he gave the daughter 6 horses; and 1/9th of 18 = 2, so he gave the widowed mother 2 horses.

Now add this up: 9+6+2 is 17and this leaves one horse behind, which the wise man took it back!

The attitude of negotiation and problem solving is to find the 18th horse i.e., the common ground. Once a person is able to find this 18th horse, the issue is resolved. At times it may be difficult to reach a solution, but the first step is to believe that there is a solution. If we think that there is no solution, we won’t be able to reach an amicable conclusion!

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