3. Separation

The novice asked the backup master: "Now that I regularly backup all my files, am I enlightened to the Tao of Backup?"

The master replied: "By regularly backing up all your files you are on the path to enlightenment, but you will never achieve enlightenment until you scatter your backups to the four corners of the earth. Does the dandelion drop all its seeds at the base of its stalk? Does the cuckoo lay its eggs in one nest? So long as your backups are in one place, you are vulnerable to the fortunes of the world."

But the novice did not listen, and that night the building burnt down, destroying the novice's computer and all his backup tapes. The novice, went to the master and said: "Master, I have lost all of my files. What shall I do?"

The master said, "Do not despair, for yesterday I took one of your backup tapes and posted it to my brother in China. He will return it."

It was only later that he told the novice that he had posted it by sea mail.

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