[geocentrism] Re: Puzzle

  • From: "Robert Bennett" <robert.bennett@xxxxxxx>
  • To: "Geocentrism" <geocentrism@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Mon, 16 Apr 2007 15:15:11 -0400

I must say I'm dissappointed to see so many erudite folk needing help in
what I thought to be a simple task! OK here it is -- attached.

Paul D

Wondrous Pot - Solution

The king reasoned thus -

At a purchase price of $1250.000, the pot could be sold (each time for less
than the acquisition price) a maximum of 1249999 times. This represented
many ownership cycles and included the possibility of re-acquisition and
re-sale if the need arose to meet some unforseen eventuality.

Being sold for zero or a negative price - paying the buyer to take it  - isn
't excluded by the rules.

However, at some time in the distant future, after many buy-sell cycles, the
price at which the pot must be offered would reach the lower limit of
$0.001. At this price, no one would buy it because it could not then be
sold, thus condemning its owner to the fires of hell upon his enevitable

This glosses over the point that the pot may be unable to be sold at any
time - a future buyer is never guaranteed.. At any price. .
See RB at bottom

If no one would buy the pot at $0.001, then at the offering price of $0.002,
any prospective purchaser would be aware that he would not find a subsequent
buyer at $0.001 and thus no buyer would be found at $0.002 either. The same
reasoning applies to prospective buyers at the asking price of $0.003 and by
extension all previous asking prices.

A roundabout way of saying the same as above.

Thus the king, knowing that he would not find a buyer, also did not buy.

Wrong auxiliary verb -  may, not would -

If the king could figure this out, why couldn't the salesman, before he
bought the pot??  And the owner before that?  Ad infinitum,.
Thus, the question of original ownership from RB..
 A missing info item is the origin of the pot, since the pot's creator could
not have bought it.

As Martin said - the best analog for the pot is not an albatross, but a
millstone around the neck.
The risk of eternal damnation outweighs any present material gain - the
motivation for salvation, if love of God is not present.

Nevertheless, one of the possible solutions is interesting, for its moral

The key is to consider why the salesman wants to sell the pot. The value is
surely more than the asking price. The bottom line is that he must sell it
to avoid hell(unless immortality is a permitted wish), and there's no
guarantee he will ever be able to sell it (unless that's a permitted wish).
Since the salesman can wish for as many $ as he wants, the asking price is a
In fact he would even give it away or pay the king to take it, but then his
dilemma would be obvious. This is not a pot of gold, but an albatross.
Realizing this situation, the king correctly refuses the deal.

The moral:
What does it profit a man to gain the whole world, yet lose his immortal


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