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THE WISE OLD MAN’S LESSON


A wealthy man requested an old scholar to wean his son away from his bad habits.

The scholar took the youth for a stroll through a garden. Stopping suddenly he asked the boy to pull out a tiny plant growing there. The youth held the plant between his thumb and forefinger and pulled it out.

The old man then asked him to pull out a slightly bigger plant. The youth pulled hard and the plant came out, roots and all.

"Now pull out that one," said the old man pointing to a bush. The boy had to use all his strength to pull it out.

"Now take this one out," said the old man, indicating a guava tree. The youth grasped the trunk and tried to pull it out. But it would not budge.

"I – It's impossible," said the boy, panting with the effort.

"So it is with bad habits," said the sage. "When they are young it is easy to pull them out but when they take hold they cannot be uprooted."

The session with the old man changed the boy's life.

REFLECTION

Habits form character and character is destiny- we sow our thoughts and reap our actions; we sow our actions and reap our habits; we sow our habits and reap our characters; we sow our character and reap our destiny. Thus, first we form habits, then habits form us.

Bad habits are like a comfortable bed, easy to get into, but hard to get out of. It is easier to prevent bad habits than to break them.

There is an old saying that, one can't kill a frog by dropping him into hot water. As we drop him into the hot water, he reacts so quickly that he immediately jumps out unharmed. But if we put him in cold water and gradually warm it up until it is scalding hot, we have him cooked before he knows it. The encroachment of bad habits in our lives is very much like this.The chains of bad habits are generally too small to be felt until they are too strong to be broken.

Conquer your bad habits soon or very soon they will conquer you


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