Life

what is life exactly?

Archive for the category “STORIES”

Are You a Carrot, An Egg, or a Coffee Bean?

A young woman went to her mother and told her about her life and how things were so hard for her. She did not know how she was going to make it and wanted to give up. She was tired of fighting and struggling. It seemed as one problem was solved a new one arose.

Her mother took her to the kitchen. She filled three pots with water. In the first, she placed carrots, in the second she placed eggs and the last she placed ground coffee beans. She let them sit and boil without saying a word.

In about twenty minutes she turned off the burners. She fished the carrots out and placed them in a bowl. She pulled the eggs out and placed them in a bowl. Then she ladled the coffee out and placed it in a bowl.

Turning to her daughter, she asked, “Tell me what do you see?”

“Carrots, eggs, and coffee,” she replied.

She brought her closer and asked her to feel the carrots. She did and noted that they were soft. She then asked her to take an egg and break it. After pulling off the shell, she observed the hard-boiled egg. Finally, she asked her to sip the coffee. The daughter smiled, as she tasted its rich aroma.

The daughter then asked. “What does it mean, mother?”

Her mother explained that each of these objects had faced the same adversity—boiling water—but each reacted differently.

The carrot went in strong, hard and unrelenting. However after being subjected to the boiling water, it softened and became weak.

The egg had been fragile. Its thin outer shell had protected its liquid interior. But, after sitting through the boiling water, its inside became hardened.

The ground coffee beans were unique, however. After they were in the boiling water they had changed the water.

“Which are you?” she asked her daughter. “When adversity knocks on your door, how do you respond? Are you a carrot, an egg, or a coffee bean?”

Think of this: Which am I? Am I the carrot that seems strong, but with pain and adversity, do I wilt and become soft and lose my strength?

Am I the egg that starts with a malleable heart, but changes with the heat? Did I have a fluid spirit, but after death, a breakup, a financial hardship or some other trial, have I become hardened and stiff? Does my shell look the same, but on the inside am I bitter and tough with a stiff spirit and a hardened heart?

Or am I like the coffee bean? The bean actually changes the hot water, the very circumstance that brings the pain. When the water gets hot, it releases the fragrance and flavor.

If you are like the bean, when things are at their worst, you get better and change the situation around you. When the hours is the darkest and trials are their greatest do you elevate to another lever?

How do you handle Adversity? Are you a Carrot, an egg, or a coffee bean?

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The Mayonnaise Jar and Two Cups of Coffee

 

When things in your lives seem almost too much to handle, when 24 hours in a day are not enough, remember the mayonnaise jar and the 2 cups of coffee.

A professor stood before his philosophy class and had some items in front of him. When the class began, he wordlessly picked up a very large and empty mayonnaise jar and proceeded to fill it with golf balls. He then asked the students if the jar was full. They agreed that it was.

The professor then picked up a box of pebbles and poured them into the jar. He shook the jar lightly. The pebbles rolled into the open areas between the golf balls. He then asked the students again if the jar was full.  They agreed it was.

The professor next picked up a box of sand and poured it into the jar. Of course, the sand filled up everything else. He asked once more if the jar was full. The students responded with an unanimous “yes.”

The professor then produced two cups of coffee from under the table and poured the entire contents into the jar effectively filling the empty space between the sand. The students laughed.

“Now,” said the professor as the laughter subsided, “I want you to recognize that this jar represents your life. The golf balls are the important things–your family, your children, your health, your friends and your favorite passions–and if everything else was lost and only they remained, your life would still be full.

The pebbles are the other things that matter like your job, your house and your car.

The sand is everything else–the small stuff. “If you put the sand into the jar first,” he continued, “there is no room for the pebbles or the golf balls. The same goes for life. If you spend all your time and energy on the small stuff you will never have room for the things that are important to you.

“Pay attention to the things that are critical to your happiness. Play with your children. Take time to get medical checkups. Take your  spouse out to dinner. Play another 18. There will always be time to clean the house and fix the disposal. Take care of the golf balls first–the things that really matter. Set your priorities. The rest is just sand.”

One of the students raised her hand and inquired what the coffee represented. The professor smiled. “I’m glad you asked.

It just goes to show you that no matter how full your life may seem, there’s always room for a couple of cups of coffee with a friend.”

Confessions Of A Young Banker – The Day I Snapped

Confessions Of A Young Banker – The Day I Snapped.

The Quitter

When you’re lost in the Wild, and you’re scared as a child,
And Death looks you bang in the eye,
And you’re sore as a boil, it’s according to Hoyle
To cock your revolver and . . . die.
But the Code of a Man says: “Fight all you can,”
And self-dissolution is barred.
In hunger and woe, oh, it’s easy to blow . . .
It’s the hell-served-for-breakfast that’s hard.

“You’re sick of the game!” Well, now, that’s a shame.
You’re young and you’re brave and you’re bright.
“You’ve had a raw deal!” I know — but don’t squeal,
Buck up, do your damnedest, and fight.
It’s the plugging away that will win you the day,
So don’t be a piker, old pard!
Just draw on your grit; it’s so easy to quit:
It’s the keeping-your-chin-up that’s hard.

It’s easy to cry that you’re beaten — and die;
It’s easy to crawfish and crawl;
But to fight and to fight when hope’s out of sight
Why, that’s the best game of them all!
And though you come out of each grueling bout,
All broken and beaten and scarred,
Just have one more try — it’s dead easy to die,
It’s the keeping-on-living that’s hard.

— Robert William Service
Submitted by Wayne Coghlan — Canada

This is true. Those that fight despite being out of hope, those that keep on living despite everything that happened.. These are the people who are strong. Who have weathered the storm and emerged victorious. These are the people who fought hard and long to stand where they are now.

The Rose Within.

A certain man planted a rose and watered it faithfully and before it blossomed, he examined it.

He saw the bud that would soon blossom, but noticed thorns upon the stem and he thought, “How can any beautiful flower come from a plant burdened with so many sharp thorns? Saddened by this thought, he neglected to water the rose, and just before it was ready to bloom… it died.

So it is with many people. Within every soul there is a rose. The God-like qualities planted in us at birth, grow amid the thorns of our faults. Many of us look at ourselves and see only the thorns, the defects.

We despair, thinking that nothing good can possibly come from us. We neglect to water the good within us, and eventually it dies. We never realize our potential.

Some people do not see the rose within themselves; someone else must show it to them. One of the greatest gifts a person can possess is to be able to reach past the thorns of another, and find the rose within them.

This is one of the characteristic of love… to look at a person, know their true faults and accepting that person into your life… all the while recognizing the nobility in their soul. Help others to realize they can overcome their faults. If we show them the “rose” within themselves, they will conquer their thorns. Only then will they blossom many times over.

It isn’t easy. To be able to look past someone’s flaw and accept them for who they truly are, is not easy. Being able to help the other realize their full potential is not easy either. But you know, think through the times someone helped you. Be it a minor favor or a major one. I am sure they have touched your life somehow. Remember how they helped you once, and carry it forward (: You never know whose life you’re going to touch in time to come.

Let hurt fade away and always remember when someone does something good for us.

A story tells of two friends who were walking through the desert. During some point of the journey, they had an argument, and one friend slapped the other one in the face. The one who got slapped was hurt, but without saying anything, she wrote in the sand:

“TODAY MY BEST FRIEND SLAPPED ME IN THE FACE”

They kept on walking, until they found an oasis, where they decided to take a bath. The one who had been slapped got stuck in the mire and started drowning, but her friend saved her. After she recovered from the near drowning, she wrote on a stone:

“TODAY MY BEST FRIEND SAVED MY LIFE”

The friend, who had slapped and saved her best friend, asked her, “After I hurt you, you wrote in the sand, and now, you write on a stone, why?”

The other friend replied: “When someone hurts us, we should write it down in sand, where the winds of forgiveness can erase it, but when someone does something good for us, we must engrave it in stone, so no wind can ever erase it.”

Learn to write your hurts in the sand and to carve your blessings in stone.

~author unknown

If you are successful, don’t forget to thank those who helped you get there.

Charles Plumb was a navy jet pilot. On his seventy-sixth combat mission, he was shot down and parachuted into enemy territory. He was captured and spent six years in prison. He survived and now lectures on the lessons he learned from his experiences.

One day, a man in approached Plumb and his wife in a restaurant, and said, “Are you Plumb the navy pilot?”

“Yes, how did you know?” asked Plumb.

“I packed your parachute,” the man replied.

Plumb was amazed – and grateful: “If the chute you packed hadn’t worked I wouldn’t be here today…”

Plumb refers to this in his lectures: his realisation that the anonymous sailors who packed the parachutes held the pilots’ lives in their hands, and yet the pilots never gave these sailors a second thought; never even said hello, let alone said thanks.

Now Plumb asks his audiences, “Who packs your parachutes?….. Who helps you through your life?…. Physically, mentally, emotionally, spiritually?……. Think about who helps you; recognise them and say thanks.”

~author unknown

Gratitude my friend. Gratitude.

A Poor But Rich Family

When I was in the Final Year of my Graduation Studies, we visited one of our friend’s home for a lunch. I had no idea about where he lived, I mean, how it could it be?! I just knew that he took the bus from his home to our college.

The moment we reached his house, I found the staircases of his building were not so good nor was his home painted very well. I can’t describe in words but it was not even the type of house in which a typical middle class Indian family lives in.

One of the greatest things I did find there were loving parents. We sat on the ground for the lunch because they didn’t have a dining table. His mother served us very delicious food, smiling throughout and showed care for the entire lunch session; that I can never forget.

His father worked as a normal mechanic and I wondered if he earned enough money to support their 2 sons.

While we were taking lunch, his father returned home to meet with us. When he entered their home, his hands were dark black and his clothes were very dirty. I remember our friend had no hesitation about his father and made our introductions. I think it is rarely what we see in today’s generation. How loving this family was!

Now, I am telling you the remarkable moment of the story. As soon as his father came in, after just 4-5 minutes, our friend asked us if we wanted “Papad” ( A Typical Indian Food ) to eat. Before we could say anything, our friend’s mother said there were no “Papad” in the house.

Quickly, our friend asked his father if he could get some. Very gently and kindly his father brought it for us, after going through many staircases even though he was looking tired.

Don’t you think of this as Richness of a Poor Family? I think all readers would agree with me.

The story doesn’t end here… the interesting part still continues.

Today, our friend is a Team Lead in one of the leading MNC(s) that is Oracle. He is able to pay high rent in Hyderabad and have a new, beautiful home. Not only that, he helped his brother financially in his studies and is still helping.

So, friends, what can we figure out from this story?
The moral I understand is this:

“The amount of money you make won’t win others’ hearts; the only way is with love and kindness. The second point is that struggle and bad periods are needed in life for everyone, as it makes us strong. If you have strong willpower, goals and also the attitude of hard and smart work, you can definitely be a successful person in some areas of life, if I am not wrong. God always helps.”

Some moments you always cherish in life.

I am planning to ask our friend for one more lunch or dinner at his home when comes back to our hometown. And I always tell him and remind him of one of the most remarkable days of my life, the day I had lunch with him and his parents.

— Copyright © 2010 Keyur Shukla
Keyur is a SAP Consultant from India

How heartwarming a story to read! In the modern society, people tend to focus too much on material items. Trying to keep up the impression on others, having this branded item and dining at that fantastic restaurant, etc. Yet the simplest warmth come forth not from the amount of money we have, but from the simple love that stems from within. We go through life so rushed, and when such a story surfaces, we stop to think; feel like we’ve just read a great story; thinking how nice to have a story to share of our own in the same manner and then move on in life. But we forget. We forget that we can do the same too. It has happened to us sometime in life. We all know it, that’s why we can relate to such experiences. Try to recall. Recall and reminiscence. Are you getting the warmth feeling back?

The Ass and the Mule.

A Muleteer set forth on a journey, driving before him an Ass and a Mule, both well laden. The Ass, as long as he traveled along the plain, carried his load with ease, but when he began to ascend the steep path of the mountain, felt his load to be more than he could bear. He entreated his companion to relieve him of a small portion, that he might carry home the rest; but the Mule paid no attention to the request. The Ass shortly afterwards fell down dead under his burden. Not knowing what else to do in so wild a region, the Muleteer placed upon the Mule the load carried by the Ass in addition to his own, and at the top of all placed the hide of the Ass, after he had skinned him. The Mule, groaning beneath his heavy burden, said to himself: “I am treated according to my deserts. If I had only been willing to assist the Ass a little in his need, I should not now be bearing, together with his burden, himself as well.”

Do unto others what you want others to do unto you. Treat others badly, and the opposite happens. Not often, but it does happen. E.g. If you bully someone, you’ll be bullied as well. People who stand up for those who deserve it. (:

Different perspective of love

My husband is an Engineer by profession, I love him for his steady nature, and I love the warm feeling when I lean against his broad shoulders. Three years of courtship and now, two years into marriage, I would have to admit, that I am getting tired of it. The reasons of me loving him before, has now transformed into the cause of all my restlessness.

I am a sentimental woman and extremely sensitive when it comes to a relationship and my feelings, I yearn for the romantic moments, like a little girl yearning for candy.

My husband is my complete opposite, his lack of sensitivity, and the inability of bringing romantic moments into our marriage has disheartened me about love.

One day, I finally decided to tell him my decision, that I wanted a divorce. “Why?” he asked, shocked. “I am tired, there are no reasons for everything in the world!” I answered.

He kept silent the whole night, seems to be in deep thought with a lighted cigarette at all times. My feeling of disappointment only increased, here was a man who can’t even express his predicament, what else can I hope from him?

And finally he asked me: “What can I do to change your mind?”

Somebody said it right, it’s hard to change a person’s personality, and I guess, I have started losing faith in him. Looking deep into his eyes I slowly answered: “Here is the question, if you can answer and convince my heart, I will change my mind, Let’s say, I want a flower located on the face of a mountain cliff, and we both are sure that picking the flower will cause your death, will you do it for me?”

He said, “I will give you your answer tomorrow…”

My hopes just sank by listening to his response. I woke up the next morning to find him gone, and saw a piece of paper with his scratchy handwriting, underneath a milk glass, on the dining table near the front door, that goes…

My dear, “I would not pick that flower for you, but please allow me to explain the reasons further…”

This first line was already breaking my heart. I continued reading.

“When you use the computer you always mess up the Software programs, and you cry in front of the screen, I have to save my fingers so that I can help to restore the programs.
You always leave the house keys behind, thus I have to save my legs to rush home to open the door for you.
You love traveling but always lose your way in a new city; I have to save my eyes to show you the way.
You always have the cramps whenever your “good friend” approaches every month; I have to save my palms so that I can calm the cramps in your tummy.
You like to stay indoors, and I worry that you will be infected by infantile autism. I have to save my mouth to tell you jokes and stories to cure your boredom.
You always stare at the computer, and that will do nothing good for your eyes, I have to save my eyes so that when we grow old, I can help to clip your nails, and help to remove those annoying white hairs. So I can also hold your hand while strolling down the beach, as you enjoy the sunshine and the beautiful sand… and tell you the color of flowers, just like the color of the glow on your young face…
Thus, my dear, unless I am sure that there is someone who loves you more than I do… I could not pick that flower yet, and die…”

My tears fell on the letter, and blurred the ink of his handwriting… and as I continue on reading…

“Now, that you have finished reading my answer, if you are satisfied, please open the front door for I am standing outside bringing your favorite bread and fresh milk…”

I rush to pull open the door, and saw his anxious face, clutching tightly with his hands, the milk bottle and loaf of bread…

Now I am very sure that no one will ever love me as much as he does, and I have decided to leave the flower alone…

That’s life, and love.

When one is surrounded by love, the feeling of excitement fades away, and one tends to ignore the true love that lies in between the peace and dullness. Love shows up in all forms, even very small and cheeky forms, it has never been a model, it could be the dullest and boring form… flowers, and romantic moments are only used and appear on the surface of the relationship. Under all this, the pillar of true love stands… and that’s our life… Love, not words win arguments…

– Anonymous.

When someone does not love you the way you want them to, it does not mean that they do not love you.

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