Good or Bad? Who Knows?

There are 2 version of this story I know.

In old India, there lived a King who loves hunting. One day, he went hunting with his great Doctor. While hunting, the King was pricked by a strange plant on his middle finger. The finger became swollen and painful. The doctor applied a special ointment to the wound and bandage the King’s finger.

The King then asked, “Will my finger be alright?”

The Doctor answered, “Good ? Bad ? Who knows ?”

A few days passed and the King’s finger became worse. He summoned the doctor and asked, “Will my finger be alright?”

The Doctor answered, “Good ? Bad ? Who knows ?”

A few days later, the King’s finger was badly infected and has to be amputated from his hand. The King was furious and ordered the doctor to be jailed and hang in a month’s time.

Meanwhile, after a week’s of recovery, the King went hunting again. This time he was more unfortunate. He was capture by a cannibal tribe. Before the tribe can burn him as a human sacrifice, the priest noticed he had only nine fingers. It was the tribe’s believe that only a person with full and perfect body can be use as sacrifice. So they released the King.

Back to the Kingdom, the King immediately ordered the release of the doctor. The doctor was summoned to the King. The King said: “Great doctor, because of you, I lost my finger but in turn, it saves my life.”

The Doctor said, “Good ? Bad ? I know. Great King, if not because of you putting me in jail and thus I cannot go hunting with you. If not, I would have been captured by the tribe and used as the sacrifice. Thank you, you save my life !”

from book “The Worm – Ajahn Bram”


A farmer had one old horse that he used for tilling his fields. One day the horse escaped into the hills and when all the farmer’s neighbors heard about it, they sympathized with the old man over his bad luck. “Bad luck? Good luck? Who knows?” said the farmer.

A week later, the horse returned with a herd of wild horses from the hills and this time the neighbors congratulated the farmer on his good luck. “Good luck? Bad luck? Who knows?” said the farmer.

Then, when the farmer’s son was attempting to tame one of the wild horses, he fell off its back and broke his leg. Everyone agreed that this was very bad luck. Not the farmer, who replied, “Bad Luck? Good luck? Who knows?”

Some weeks later, the army marched into the village and forced every able-bodied young man to go fight in a bloody war. When they saw that the farmer’s son had a broken leg, they let him stay. Everyone was very happy at the farmer’s good luck.

from “Chinese Story – Anonymous”


So is it bad is always bad? Some time it turns to be good, we’re just not noticing yet.
Good or bad, who knows? The answer is: God. He knows everything is good for His child. 🙂


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