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When Avicenna (Ibn-e-Sina), the great Iranian physician and philosopher, was young, one day he was traveling to another city. He was riding a mule and had all his books loaded on another mule. As it happened he crossed the territory of a band of brigands. The bandits saw the lone rider and the two mules as easy prey and attacked and overcame the hapless scholar. They robbed him of all his belongings and the two mules. Avicenna pleaded with the chief of the outlaws to let him have his books back since they were no use to them, but they were the sum total of his knowledge. As it happens the head bandit was a wise and insightful person and could tell that this young student had much potential. He gave him a single mule and his books back and told him, “Remember only that knowledge is yours which is contained in your head.” Avicenna headed the thief’s advice and was on his way to becoming one of the greatest physicians in the history of humanity.

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