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God seeks the truth but waits
The moral lesson? One does not gain anything by seeking revenge. The more one gives in to the thought of revenge, the more it consumes him. And if that goes uncheck, it can mean the death of whatever spark of nobility lies in the human person. The world, for all its cynicism, does recognize that spark when it is given a chance to break through the dark and negative elements that seem to always stifle and put it out. We have proof of that spark in the great men and women, sung and unsung, who graced this side of existence. Aksionov is as ordinary as any of us. He has every reason to avenge what seems on the outside the loss of his life. But he fights it off. Aksionov takes, what Robert Frost refers to as, "the road less travelled by". And that is where Tolstoy's title of the story comes in. God sees the truth- Aksionov is not the killer but God must wait for Aksionov to make, on his own, the right choice, the right move. And that makes all the difference- the very reason for Tolstoy's story's universal appeal. -Jesse A. Enciso

Ivan Dmitrich Aksionov is a merchant living in a town in Russia, Vladimir. Although Aksionov is prone to drinking, he is not violent, and he is responsible and well liked by people that know him. One day he decides to go to a fair as a business venture, but his wife pleads for him not to go because of a nightmare she had the previous night. Aksionov doesn't consider his wife's dream and leaves for the fair. Aksionov meets another merchant on his way, and the two decide to travel together. They check into an inn and have a good time drinking, then they retire separately. Aksionov wakes early in the next morning to get to the fair and leaves without the other merchant. Not far down the road, Aksionov is stopped by some policemen. They explain a merchant was just murdered and robbed, and then they search Aksionov's bag. They find a bloody knife, and despite Aksionov's claims that he is not the...