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A soldier’s decision
A soldier was captured while fighting in an enemy king’s land. It was well known that this king would make captives fight one another. This was commonplace during his reign. For these fights, the king had built several large arenas. He often awarded the winners by setting them free or even having them join his elite army corps.
The soldier, however, decided he had seen too much violence. He now felt that all life was sacred. The night before his first match, he made a risky decision. He decided that he would not engage in combat. He knew he might never be set free, but it was a decision that he was willing to accept.
In the morning, he was led from the prisoner’s compound to one of the king’s arenas. A gate coated in rust stood between him and the floor of the auditorium. He was worried, but he knew what he had to do.
When the gate opened, he calmly walked to the center of the arena and sat. He started to meditate. His foe, Darius, who was skilled in the realm of sword fighting and was typically not very aggressive, would not fight the quiet soldier until he attacked Darius first.
Darius tried to provoke him by hacking at the air close to his head with his sword. But the soldier was not distracted. He sat quietly, as if he were dumb, and looked calmly up at the sky. Even when Darius nicked him on the cheek with the edge of his sword, the soldier did not move.
At last, he threw down his sword and shield and gave up. “I can’t fight someone who refuses to fight me!” Darius shouted to the king.
The king was very impressed with the soldier. Never in any battle had he seen someone so brave. As a result, he gave the peaceful soldier amnesty. The soldier’s actions proved to the king and everyone in the arena that peace was more powerful than fighting.