One day, a father went to his three sons and told them that he would die soon and he needed to decide which one of them to give his property to. He decided to give them all a test. He said, "Go to the market, my sons, and purchase something that is large enough to fill my bedroom, but small enough to fit in your pocket." From this, I will decide who of you is the wisest and is worthy enough to inherit my land." So, they all went to the market and bought something that they thought would fill the room, yet was still small enough that they could fit into their pockets. Each son came back with a different item. The father told his sons to come into his bedroom one at a time and try to fill up his bedroom with whatever they had purchased. The first son came in and put some pieces of cloth that he had bought and laid them end to end across the room, but it barely covered any of the floor. Then the second son came in and laid some hay, that he had purchased, on the floor but there was only enough to cover half of the floor. The third son came in and showed his father what he had purchased and how it could fill the entire room yet still fit into his pocket. The father replied, "You are truly the wisest of all and you shall receive my property." What was it that the son had showed to his father?
The son had showed his father a match. When he lit the match, it filled the entire room, yet it was still small enough to fit inside his pocket.