Mistake Or No Mistake: Part 1

Long back, we were told a story about a man who goes to jungle for adventure. The story was more like a question to make us think and force us to enquire.

Once upon a time, there was a doctor who used to enjoy making regular trips to a nearby jungle for adventure and studies. However, on his 100th visit to the jungle, something happened.

That day, he left for jungle early in the morning. There was nothing new here as, he always used to leave early for his jungle/study trip. With him, he had carried all usual stuffs like first aid, communication devise, camera and binoculars. Soon, he was deep inside the jungle.

Though he had visited this area before, on that day, he noticed a tiger in that area. The tiger was lying down near the river. The moment the doctor noticed the tiger, he got scared and cried for help. As a result, tiger got up and started staring at the doctor. The doctor, in order to save his life, started running as fast as he could.

Next day, police found his dead body in jungle….

The story ends here. We were then asked a very important question, “Who do you think was at fault? Do you think it was Doctor’s mistake? Was there a mistake or no mistake?”.

When we heard the story for the first time, we were so much disturbed that our first reaction was, “No, Doctor didn’t commit any mistake”. However, as we enquired further, we learnt a very important lesson.

I would like to ask the same question to all the readers of this blog post. Who do you think was at fault? Do you think it was Doctor’s mistake? Was there a mistake or no mistake? Kindly reply through comments.


  1. There’s not enough information to jump to conclusions.
    We don’t know how the doctor died yet. He could have run into a trap, run away without looking so that he got lost and died of dehydration.
    We don’t know that the tiger would have attacked. He drew attention to himself by screaming, but even then, all we know is that the tiger got up and looked at him (it could have been a tame tiger)

  2. Good point Andy! The way you came up with other possibilities shows that you must have thought about it rationally.

    One of us had raised the same point to which, the response was:

    “The body found was half eaten and was confirmed that he was killed by the tiger”.

    Now with this additional information, how can we answer the original question?

  3. It is quite often said in accident and disaster investigations that a disaster occurs, not through a single cause, but as a catalogue of minor errors, any of which could have changed the outcome.
    It seems that the question is seeking something or someone to blame. There were lots of opportunities to avoid the outcome (the doctor could have stayed home, not alerted the tiger, carried a deterrent or a gun), but placing blame after the fact will not change the outcome.
    A coroner would probably label this “death by misadventure”

    Perhaps the question should be “what can be done to prevent this happening again?” rather than “were mistakes made?”

  4. I think he should not got scared and cried for help, he should just passed by

  5. Hi Carfield,

    Indeed, he should have just passed by. Maybe, that would have saved his life. However, what do we need to do to ensure that we don’t react in this way under such situation?

  6. Hi Andy,

    We can definitely consider this to be misadventure. However, can we say that most of the adventures can, in reality, be considered as misadventures (Just that the people involved were lucky in those cases)?

    If we look at mistakes in negative way, it could result in a blame game and we would always search for someone to blame. On the other hand, accepting the mistakes positively can help us to stay aware and avoid it in future.

    We can say it in a different form. If we consider that the event was caused due to mistake made by either this or that side, it results in blame. But if we accept the event to be the result of mistakes from both the sides, we can look into “what can be done to prevent this happening again?” isn’t it?


  1. […] is the second story in the “Mistake Rr No Mistake” series (You can read the first part here). While this story might be the simplest in the entire series, it forms the base for the […]

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