Peace, Love and Understanding go into a bar . . .
They are arguing furiously as they sit.
“What can I do you guys for?” says the bartender.
“Maybe you can settle an argument.” says Understanding.
“Yeah. Which is the most important to the world?” says Love, “Peace, Love or Understanding?”
Then Peace added “We’d really like a fresh pespective.”
“Hmm. Let me think about it while I pour you guys a round.” Which he proceeded to do.
“Which is the most important? I can’t say. But it seems pretty clear to me that none of you is worth much without the other two.”
“How do you figure?” said Understanding.
“Take love. Without peace and understanding, love will almost certainly turn into obsession, uncontrollable jealously or even hatred. Without love and understanding, peace is just the quiet time between wars. And without peace and love, understanding would just lead to arrogance, smugness and spite.”
Peace, Love and Understanding considered the bartender’s words as he poured another round.
“Point well taken!” said love. “Clearly the most important of us depends vitally on the other two.”
“That however,” said peace “begs the question of which of us is the most important.”
“Why be in a hurry? Talk it over some more. Now that you know all of you are important, it might not be such a sacrifice for two of you to be slightly less important than the third. Maybe Love should sacrifice. Maybe Peace should compromise. Maybe Understanding should show empathy.”
And so the argument went on. Hour after hour, afternoon into evening, as the drinks flowed.
At last call, the three staggered up to the bartender and said “We give up. We have tried our best, and we cannot come to any agreement. The one thing we have agreed on is that we are willing to leave the answer up to you. What, oh wise one, is the most vital quality with which to insure a happy and productive world?”
“Well . . . let’s see. You guys sat over there for around nine hours, giving it all you had to give, and came up with nothing. Am I right?”
“Are you happy?”
“We’re you productive?”
“We would have to say no.”
“On the other hand, during that same period of time, I raked in around $370 plus tax and tip by doing nothing but standing behind a bar and listening to you guys argue. And I might add, I have rarely been more productive and have never been as happy. So . . . the most vital quality with which to insure a happy and productive world? I have to go with patience.”