A lion was captured and taken to a camp where, to his astonishment, he found other lions who had been there for years, some all their lives, because they were born there.
He soon became acquainted with the social activities of the camp lions. They got together in groups. One group consisted of the society lions, another went into show business; yet another engaged in cultural activities to preserve the customs, traditions and history of the times when the lions lived at liberty. Other groups were religious – they came together to sing heartfelt songs of a future jungle without fences. Some groups were interested in literature and the arts; still others were revolutionary-minded, meeting to conspire against their guards or plot against other revolutionary groups.
Now and then a revolution broke out. One group or another would be wiped out, or all the guards would be killed and then replaced by other guards. Looking around, the newcomer noticed that one lion always seemed deep in thought – a loner who didn’t seem to belong to any group at all – he kept aloof from everyone. There was something strange about him that aroused both the admiration of the other lions, but also their animosity, as his presence generated fear and self-doubt in them.
He said to the newcomer, “Don’t join any groups. These poor fools are concerned with everything except that which is essential.”
“And what is that?” asked the newcomer.
“Thinking about the type of fence containing them.”