CHINESE FOLK TALE-ANTS
Folk tales of different countries are a source of huge inspiration to the common man if they are digested and assimilated in the right manner. There is a folk tale among the Chinese regarding a kind-hearted man called Ho Kwan who never killed any living creature on purpose.
It so happened that he had treasured one thousand pieces of silver in a casket. His district was full of white ants, some of which invaded his casket and ate a small part of the silver stored therein. Ho Kwan’s family found this out to their utter dismay and even traced the ants to a hollow cave which was an abode to millions of them.
In their desperate attempt to retrieve the silver they thought of putting the ants in a crucible and retrieving the silver. But Ho Kwan objected to it by saying that he could not see any creature being killed.
That night Ho Kwan had a dream in which he was taken to a palace and the king there thanked him for his goodness and told him of a treasure buried under a tree in his garden. The King also blessed him that his generations would enjoy this wealth. The next morning Ho Kwan woke up and dug under the tree and was amazed to get the treasure as promised in the dream. His son became a renowned scholar.
Now this is popular folklore, but what are we to take home from this?
every creature bestowed with life
As overtly suggested we are not to kill any creature, for every creation is dear to God and should be revered by us. I personally don’t feel that God had any hierarchy plans while embellishing the Earth with different creatures. Then why are we so headstrong on our views that humans are the most superior and the most wanted species on Earth?
No species, including man, would survive if the divine ecosystem is hampered. Every miniscule organism is important to sustain life on earth. So let us not intentionally try to destroy any creature.
GOOD lives more
The second lesson, a more subtle one is that the good you do lives after you. The result of Ho Kwan’s good deed was reaped by his children. This thought propels man to do good always. In a way, man is selfish and wants to amass everything that is good not only for himself but also for his children.
There is no harm in this thought, but to get good results we must do good things. Life thrives on the ‘Boomerang Effect’. All the good you do, all the good thoughts you have for others, all the positivity you shed around come back to you as blessings and luck. All the negativity you throw out returns to you as accursed moments and that ‘slip between the cup and the lip’.
we are what we consume
A third interpretation of the story in my perspective is that you are what you consume. This consumption can be in any form. It can be the feelings, emotions, thoughts, or anything that you feed yourself with. The ants had eaten the silver and so silver had become a part of their body.
This is true for human beings as well. Anything that you continually ruminate on becomes a part of your personality. If you all the time have hatred and enmity as your spiraling thought, then you will end up as a morose personality. On the contrary, if love, compassion, and empathy are virtues that rule you, your personality transcends into being nobler.
Who said that evolution comes to a halt? We are still evolving –the change is in our soul. We as humans stand at various tangents and thus not the same. Let us refine and become nobler each day!