Monday, September 14, 2015
Two Stories that I Want to Share With Religious Bigots!
Once upon a time there was a very wealthy king who was a loving, but strict father to his five sons and five daughters. He loved his children equally and he did not favor any of his children on account of any of their special abilities or standing. He gave every one equal opportunities. But all his children had different abilities and qualities in varying degrees. None of them could be considered equal in all respects. Hence the wealthy king did not make any one his sole successor. Instead he preferred to divide his estate among his children and delegated them some rights to manage their own parts of the estates while the ultimate control remained with the king himself.
His children also grew up and they had children of their own. As independent administrators of their own parts of the estates that their father vested with them, they too worked to make their estates better and now for convenience they were now living in their own mansions strategically located within their own estates. This physical separation now prevented his grandchildren and their children to know more about their grandfather, the original king. As time passed, for the subsequent generations the grandfather king was just a story and not a reality.
Now there was competition among the children and the grand children and the great grandchildren. The healthy competition of the earlier generations now deteriorated in to unhealthy competition among the cousins of the third and fourth generations. Some of the children of the old king died and the king himself, being of a better health lived.
The cousin brothers and sisters began forgetting the fact that they are descendants of the same grandfather. They began to glorify the greatness of their own fathers at the cost of the great grand father.
Competition and the quest for projecting one's own superiority over the others now caused conflicts and fights among the cousin brothers and sisters. My father is greater and more powerful than yours. They yelled at each other while they fought to their own destruction.
Now how does the great grandfather react to this situation? What should he do with these warring great grand children? He is still very powerful. He can use his power to imprison or evict or punish his errant grandchildren. But he is not able to do so because his grandfatherly love to his descendants restrain him from doing so. So he prefers to wait patiently hoping that good sense would come to these misguided grand children some time later.
And in your opinion, what should the grand father do in this situation to end the conflict among his hundreds of grand children? The irony is that all these warring groups take his name while fighting each other!
The other story is perhaps known to many of you.
It is the story of the five blind persons who proceeded to 'see' an elephant in the zoo.
The zoo keeper was compassionate to their blindness. So he allowed them to feel the elephant for themselves. So one blind man felt the elephant's tusk, another its trunk, another its legs, another its tail and yet another its body.
They returned back to their homes and told their children about the elephant. The first blind man taught his son that the elephant is like a hard bent thing with a pointed end like a dagger.
The second one taught his child that the elephant is like a fat python that some time ago came to their hut to swallow their goat.
The third one told his daughter that the elephant is like big pillars of the temple in the village.
The fourth one told his daughter that the elephant is like a flexible broom that her mother used to sweep.
The fifth one told his son that the elephant is like a big rock that they have in their field.
Now the children of these blind men met and began to discuss about the elephant. Each one believed their own father and began to describe the elephant the way they are taught and they could not agree to each other.
But they wanted to show their superiority with their own knowledge. They were not willing to accept the truth in the other ones' descriptions.
So they quarreled over the matter.
My dear friend! When I learn about our religious bigots and spiritually blind fellow beings who fight each other about their own superiority of beliefs these stories come to my mind.