I, Chinggis Qan
I ask of you: by what measure- ment is the value of a man’s life determined? Is it how much wealth he has accumulated? Or how many wives and children? Perhaps it is how large the land over which he rules and how many peoples reside in those lands. Or how many he may call nokor (friend) to whom he would give his life or their own. If these are the measures of the value of a man’s life, is it enough to have only one or two, or must a man possess all for others to say of him – his life is truly valued? Often have I pondered the question. Perhaps, like beauty, the value of a man’s life remains in the eye of the beholder. A farmer who tills the soil and produces food for others may be said to have a life of great value for what he does sustains others. Even more so than the nobleman who owns vast tracts of land yet produces nothing for others unless the nobleman has brought to those who depend upon him prosperity, health, and peace as opposed to fear, disease, and poverty. Does the value of a man’s life even matter in the great heaven of things?
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