I found this story from Paolo Coelho the other day and really wanted to share it.  Paolo is the master story-teller who wrote the Alchemist, a wonderful allegorical tale that I would suggest to anyone.  I recently stumbled upon Paolo’s blog and it is a fantastic resource and recommended reading.

Needing to adapt to the times, the devil decided to have a sale to get rid of his stock of old temptations.  He placed an ad in the newspaper and attended to his customers with great enthusiasm.

He had some great stock; stones for the virtuous to trip over, mirrors for increasing one’s self-importance and spectacles for decreasing the importance of others.  There was also a curved dagger that was for use on someone’s back and a tape recorder that only recorded gossip and lies.

“Don’t worry about the price,” the Devil shouted to his customers, “Take them home and pay whenever you can.”

One customer noticed three tools lying in a corner, each with a hefty price tag.  They were quite worn and attracted little attention.  Curious, he asked why the discrepancy.

“They are worn because they are the ones that I use most of all.” He answered, “If they drew a lot of attention, people would learn how to protect themselves.  However, they are all worth the price I am asking.  One is Doubt, the other is the Inferiority Complex and the final one is Bitterness.  Out of all of my temptations, these ones work most often.”

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