Modern Parables

28 Dec

Lessons to Learn

Lost in the flood
There was a man who prayed very much. He expected God to help him but he had his views about how God should help him. Once, it began to rain continuously and the whole area was flooded. When the water levels were still low, the man noticed that there was a land-rover going around rescuing people who were stranded. The man did not avail of that help. The man who always depended on God expected that God would do something special to save him. The flood waters rose higher and then a boat came by rescuing people. The boatman told him to hop onto the boat but the man refused to do so. He kept saying that God would save him from the flood. The rain continued to fall, the water rose higher.

The man then found a way to get the highest point around, a little hillock, and prayed to God to save him. When the rose higher still, a helicopter came around picking up the last few who could be saved. The pilot kept pleading with the man to come on board but he persisted in his fixed idea that he wanted God to help him. It is difficult to understand what his ‘God idea’ was. All we know is that finally he drowned. Well, when he finally caught up with God he didn’t lose time in complaining to God, ‘I prayed to you, but you didn’t come to save me.’ God replied, ‘I sent you a jeep, a boat and then, I sent you a helicopter, but you refused to use all the help I sent you. What more did you expect from me?’ The poet Tennyson said, ‘more things are wrought by prayer than this world can dream of.’ Prayer will work if we do what we can and don’t leave everything to God.

Car breakdown
Once there was heavy rain in heaven and outside heaven, and the ground was slushy. The car in which Mr. Moses and his family were, had broken down. They were a bit worried they would not be able to get back into heaven. A Prophet and his disciples were walking on the same road and noticed that the family was in some difficulty. Moses told them that they were waiting for someone to come and help them. After a while, the Prophet and his companions saw another car, that of Mr. Joshua and his family. The father was at the wheel and the family, –two grown-up sons and a grown-up daughter– was pushing the car.

The Prophet and his disciples felt sorry for the family especially for two little children in the car with the mother. They rolled up their sleeves and began to push the car together with the sons and daughter. In a while, the Joshua car was out of danger and moved on. When the Guru then looked back they saw the Moses car was still there, stuck in the mud! The story goes that they didn’t get in that night into heaven. Moses was just too dependent and just didn’t ask for help. God helps those who help themselves. Joshua believed in interdependence, and got the help he needed.

Frogs in the well
Deep in a certain forest there was a well where many big and small frogs lived. For many years they did not see the light and the warmth of the sun, the beauty of nature and the grandeur of living in a wonderful world. One summer day, a daring swallow ventured to enter the well and sitting on the walls of the well began to sing beautiful songs which captured the attention of the young frogs. The swallow invited the frogs to a life of freedom and joy on earth. She praised the blessedness and friendship of all the animals and the other creatures on earth. The little frogs listened attentively and wanted to follow the swallow and come out of the well.

The big frogs were angry and scolded the little frogs for listening to the fairy tales of the swallow. They told the little frogs to forget the swallow’s invitation and to continue to do their work in the well where they were comfortable and secure. The little frogs continued to argue with the big frogs and won the argument that they were not really very happy in the well. They wanted to experience the world of the swallow which seemed so beautiful, free and prosperous.

In the morning the swallow came back and sang her songs to the frogs and invited them to follow her. The frogs were scared to leave the place of security, comfort and the place of their ancestors. But some of them decided to follow the swallow and enjoy liberty and freedom and to share their love and warmth with others. When they came out of the dark and lonely well they saw a completely different world and began to experience a different life full of joy, happiness and prosperity. Sometimes we need to have the courage to leave our comfort zones in order to set new goals and experience happier achievements.

Council in Hell
There was a council in hell. The issue was that the devils saw more people were going to heaven than landing in hell. They wanted to dissuade people from going to heaven. One devil said he would go to earth and tell people that there was no God and that they would believe. Other devils said, ‘Nonsense! They know that there is God.’ Another said he would go and tell people that there was no hell and so they would continue sinning and then quite naturally just fall into hell. The devils did not agree for they knew that men still believed in Heaven.

Finally the last devil came up and said he would go to earth and tell people that there was plenty of time and so they could enjoy themselves without trying to do anything. The devils seemed to think this would work. They began to spread this message and people fell for it. There are many people who postpone, delay and neglect their work because they believe that there is no hurry. They believe that things can always be done later, which of course seldom happens. Laziness prevents people from setting goals. Procrastination is the easy way that takes people to hell!

[from Petals & Pebbles: by E.Dias and T.D’Souza –publ:CreateSpace -2013 ]

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