Weekend Story-The Cracked Pot
June 27, 2021
In a village, there was an old man who would fetch water from a nearby pond every morning. He would carry the water from the pond to his house in two earthen pots hung at the ends of a wooden staff he hoisted across his shoulder.
Unfortunately, one of the pots developed a crack while the other pot was in good condition. So when the old man would fill the pots and start walking back home, the cracked pot would continuously leak water along the way. By the time the old man got back home, the cracked pot would be half full while the other pot was always full with no spillage.
For years, the old man went with the same ritual. Every morning he would carry the empty pots to the river, fill the water and bring back one pot full and the other pot only half full.
As months rolled into years, the cracked pot started feeling very guilty and ashamed. It started creating a negative story about itself in its head. “I can carry only half the water back while the other can bring all the water it carries. I am so worthless,”
One day as the old man got into the river to fill the pots, the cracked pot found itself lamenting to the old man, “Please forgive me. For years you have filled me with water, hoping to carry a full pot home, but I have always let you down, unable to hold the water because of the crack. I will completely understand if you want to replace me with a pot that is in perfect condition. “
The old man listened to the pots lament with both care and compassion. Then, gently he turned to the pot and said, “Today, when I am walking back home, I want you to look on your side of the path.”
The cracked pot was puzzled. “What is my master saying?” It thought.
As they walked back, instead of wallowing in self-pity, the cracked pot paid attention to what was on its side of the path. Along the trail was a dazzling array of beautiful flowering plants in full bloom. The old man, realizing that the pot had a crack, sprinkled flowering seeds along the path from the river to his house. And, as he walked back, the leaking pot would unknowingly water the seeds every day, and a trail that was once barren was now resplendent with the full bloom of beautiful flowers.
In that instant, the cracked pot saw itself in a completely new light. There was no truth to the story it had created in its head that it was worthless. On the contrary, the flaw of the crack it saw in itself was converted into something of value by the wise old man.
Post Script: This post is for all those who think they are not good enough, competent enough, worthy enough. The fact is no one is perfect. Everyone of us is like the cracked pot, with some flaw or the other. So, no matter the flaws, be kind to yourself. We all have people in our lives who see us as valuable. That is what counts.