A man fell to the ground in pain. A thorn has stuck under his left foot, which pierced deep into the flesh. He was down in pain for several hours. Another thorn from the same bush that was fallen to ground when the man stepped on it, watched the man's suffering the whole time, and sympathized with his pain. So it spoke, "I am so bothered with your misery, that I am willing to help you. Utilize me to remove the thorn that got stuck in your leg!"
The man who is suffering from extreme pain from one thorn already, could not agree another thorn's help. He had doubts on his mind that utilizing another thorn's help would double his suffering. So, he ignored it.
Repeated persuasion from the thorn did not convince him. The blood was bleeding all through the time, but he was reluctant to take its help. As he could not walk, he just waited there holding his left foot up in air, for someone to rescue.
After several hours, a Saint who was passing by, inquired him about his situation. The thorn who offered its help earlier narrated the conversations that happened between them.
The learned man smiled and said, "Oh, suffering man! Your dubious mind is making you to avoid the help that is being offered, and so increasing your misery. You are misinterpreting other thorn as bad and declining its offer to help. But, is it not the rule that a thorn can only be removed by another thorn. Though they both evolved from the same bush, one is causing you a misery, while one is willing to provide a relief. You have to use one to eradicate other."
The man after listening to saint's philosophical statements was convinced to get help.
The Saint picked up the thorn that offered help, and using it, removed the thorn that was stuck in the man's foot. The suffering man was relieved now.
Showing the thorn that helped him, the saint said, "You would not keep this thorn life long with you considering its goodness quality, do you?"
The man replied, "I do not."
This time, showing the other thorn that was removed from his foot, the saint said, "You would not want to pulverize this bad one to pieces, considering the grief it provided to you all this time?"
The man responded with the same answer again.
Another question was asked by the saint, presenting both thorns to the man, "So, what would you do with these?"
The man replied, "This is what I will do", and threw both back into the back of the bush, so as to land away from the pedestrian way.
The saint further said, "Remember to use the other thorn next time, before even it offering the help. It will save some of your misery."
Both smiled at each other, and went on their way.
Now, as far as thorns are concerned, the bad one was neither mistreated, nor the good one was privileged. Both were rested side by side on the same ground.
The bad thorn said to the good one, "I am sorry on my actions!", to which the good thorn replied, "You did your duty, and so, I did mine. Now, we are both back to our positions!"
[There will be a constant struggle between good and bad throughout the life journey. Both are manifestations of the same force, as how both thorns came from the same bush. Bad thoughts are to be negated by good thoughts, as how one thorn abated the misery created by the other. And, once utilized, both needs to be taken away from the mind so as not to bias only the good, and ignore the bad, as how both thorns were displaced after the operation of using one to remove other. For spiritual progress to happen, it was recommended the good to be termed equally with bad. As needed, both should be acknowledged warmly and use good one to recover from bad one. The journey should go on with these cycles, until one day, when there will be neither of good or bad tendencies to compare, but only one.]