Friday, August 31, 2007

The caterpillar story

The noted French naturalist, J. Henri Fabre, studied the processionary caterpillars in great detail. What makes this caterpillar special is its instinct to follow in lock step the caterpillar in front of it. this behavior not only gives the caterpillar its name but a deadly characteristic also.

Fabre demonstrated this unusual behavior with a simple experiment. He took a flowerpot and placed a number of caterpillars in a single rile around the circumference of the pot's rim. each caterpillar's head touched the caterpillar in front of it. Fabre then placed the caterpillars' favorite food, pine needles, in the middle of the circle. each caterpillar followed the one ahead thinking that it was heading for food. Round and round went those silly insects - for seven days! After a week of this mindless activity, the caterpillars dropped dead one by one because of exhaustion and starvation.

Think for a while - all that the caterpillars had to do to avoid death was to stop the senseless circling of the flower pot and head directly toward the food which was less than six inches away. However, the caterpillars were locked into a lifestyle and couldn't disentangle themselves from their mindless behavior.

Think for a while - Do we also follow methods and procedures for no other reason than 'it has always been done that way'? How often do we confuse activity with accomplishment? Do we have the ability to change our direction to get out of ruts which cause us to dysfunction at work?


Thursday, August 30, 2007

Himmat karne walon ki

This is a famous composition written by the well-known hindi poet SuryaKant Tripati 'Nirala'. For those of you who don't understand Hindi, my apologies, for everyone else, here's a power-dose of inspiration to charge you up!

हिम्मत करने वालो की कभी हार नही होती!!
लहरो से डर कर नौका पार नही होती,
हिम्मत करने वालो की हार नही होती,
नन्ही चींटी जब दाना लेकर चलती है,
चढती दीवारो पर से सौ बार फिसलती है,
मन का विश्वास रंगो मे साहस भरता है,
चढकर गिरना, गिरकर चढना नाक रगडना है,
आखिर उसकी मेहनत बेकार नही होती,
कोशिश करने वालो की हार नही होती!

डुबकियाँ समुंद्र मे गोताखोर लगाता है,
जा-जा कर खाली हाथ लौट आता है,
मिलते ना सेहज़ से मोती पानी मे,
बहता दुगना उत्साह इसी हैरानी मे,
मुठी उसकी खाली हर बार नही होती,
हिम्मत करने वालो की हार नही होती!

असफलता एक चुनौती है स्वीकार करो,
क्या कमी रह गयी देखो और सुधार करो,
कुछ किये बिना ही जै-जै कार नही होती,
हिम्मत करने वालो की कभी हार नही होती!!


Don't copy, if you can't paste

A well-known motivational speaker gathering the entire crowd's attention, said, "The best years of my life were spent in the arms of a woman who wasn't my wife."

The crowd was shocked!

He followed up by saying, "That woman was my mother."

The crowd burst into laughter and he gave his speech, which was well received. About a week later, one of the top managers who had the training decided to use that joke at his house. He tried to rehearse the joke in his head. It was a bit foggy to him.

He said loudly, "The greatest years of my life were spent in the arms of a woman who was not my wife!"

Naturally, his wife was shell shocked, murmuring.

After standing there for almost 10 seconds trying to recall the second half of the joke, the manager finally blurted out "...and I can't remember who she was!" As expected, he got thrashing of his life time...

Moral of the story: Don't copy if you can't paste.


Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Black pebble, White pebble

Many years ago in a small Indian village, a farmer had the misfortune of owing a large sum of money to a village moneylender.

The moneylender, who was old and ugly, fancied the farmer's beautiful daughter. So he proposed a bargain.

He said he would forgo the farmer's debt if he could marry his daughter. Both the farmer and his daughter were horrified by the proposal. So the cunning money-lender suggested that they let providence decide the matter. He told them that he would put a black pebble and a white pebble into an empty money bag. Then the girl would have to pick one pebble from the bag.

1) If she picked the black pebble, she would become his wife and her father's debt would be forgiven.
2) If she picked the white pebble she need not marry him and her father's debt would still be forgiven.
3) But if she refused to pick a pebble, her father would be thrown into jail.

They were standing on a pebble strewn path in the farmer s field. As they talked, the moneylender bent over to pick up two pebbles. As he picked them up, the sharp-eyed girl noticed that he had picked up two black pebbles and put them into the bag. He then asked the girl to pick a pebble from the bag.

Now, imagine that you were standing in the field. What would you have done if you were the girl? If you had to advise her, what would you have told her?

Careful analysis would produce three possibilities:

1. The girl should refuse to take a pebble.
2. The girl should show that there were two black pebbles in the bag and expose the money-lender as a cheat.
3. The girl should pick a black pebble and sacrifice herself in order to save her father from his debt and imprisonment.

Take a moment to ponder over the story. The above story is used with the hope that it will make us appreciate the difference between lateral and logical thinking. The girl's dilemma cannot be solved with traditional logical thinking. Think of the consequences if she chooses the above logical answers. What would you recommend to the girl to do? Think and then proceed further.

Well, here is what she did:

The girl put her hand into the moneybag and drew out a pebble. Without looking at it, she fumbled and let it fall onto the pebble-strewn path where it immediately became lost among all the other pebbles.

"Oh, how clumsy of me," she said. "But never mind, if you look into the bag for the one that is left, you will be able to tell which pebble I picked." Since the remaining pebble is black, it must be assumed that she had picked the white one. And since the money-lender dared not admit his dishonesty, the girl changed what seemed an impossible situation into an extremely advantageous one!

Most complex problems do have a solution. It is only that we do not attempt to think the lateral way instead of the logical way.


It's not the color that counts

There was a man who made a living selling balloons at a fair.

He had all colors of balloons, including red, yellow, blue, and green. Whenever business was slow, he would release a helium-filled balloon into the air and when the children saw it go up, they all wanted to buy one. They would come up to him, buy a balloon, and his sales would go up again. He continued this process all day.

One day, he felt someone tugging at his jacket. He turned around and saw a little boy who asked, "If you release a black balloon, would that also fly?" Moved by the boy's concern, the man replied with empathy, "Son, it is not the color of the balloon, it is what is inside that makes it go up."

The same thing applies to our lives. It is what is inside that counts. The thing inside of us that makes us go up is our attitude.


The man who called death himself

There was a man who worked for the railroad. One day as he went into the freezer compartment to do his routine work, the door accidentally closed and he found himself trapped in the compartment.

He shouted for help but no one heard him since it was past midnight. He tried to break down the door but he could not. As he lay in the freezer compartment, he began to feel colder, and colder. Then he began to feel weaker, and weaker, and he wrote on the wall of the compartment, "I am feeling colder, and colder; and I am getting weaker, and weaker. I am dying, and this may be my last words".

In the morning when the other workers opened up the compartment they found him dead.

The sad twist to the above story is that the freezing apparatus in the compartment had broke down a few days earlier. The poor worker did not know about the damaged freezing apparatus and in his mind the freezing apparatus was working perfectly. He felt cold, got weaker and literally willed himself to die.

Our sub-conscious mind can be cheated. The sub-conscious mind can only accept and act on information passed to it by the conscious mind. It has no capacity to reject or decline any instructions or information passed to it by the conscious mind. In the case of the poor worker, he consciously thought that he was getting colder, weaker and dying and the sub-conscious mind accepted the above instructions and affected his physical body. That was how he willed himself to die.


Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Man, monkey and lion

Once upon a time, a man was passing through a jungle. He saw a monkey and was attracted to it. He called the monkey and to his surprise, the monkey came near him. The man told the monkey that it was his ancestor and so they should cultivate friendship. With different kinds of gestures, he was able to establish friendship with it.

The man was just trying to kill time using the monkey as company while crossing the jungle.

Suddenly unexpectedly, a lion roared fiercely and pounced in front of them. They scarcely had time to escape. The monkey ran and the man followed suit. They found a very huge tree and soon climbed it. Though they were breathless, they did not stop until they climbed to a safe height. The lion continued to prowl here and there, hoping to catch them when they climbed down. The lion was angry and hungry and awaiting his prey finally sat down under the tree.

The man was clinging to one of the strong branches, while the monkey was sitting on a branch with ease, as if nothing had happened. After a prolonged wait, the lion lost patience and proposed to let one of them go scot-free if the other was offered to him as 'food'. The man and the monkey consulted each other. They even offered to sacrifice their lives for each other, but ultimately concluded that they would live and die together. The lion was disappointed, but not dissuaded. He continued his vigil.

Nevertheless, the wait on the tree proved a testing time for both the monkey and the man. They were feeling drowsy. They were both faced with the danger of falling down while dozing on the tree. Ultimately they decided to take turns to sleep. The monkey would sit wide-awake while the man slept and the man would keep vigil while the monkey had his share of sleep. As decided, it was the man's turn to sleep first, while the monkey kept guard. The monkey slept in the other half of the night, while the man held fort.

When the monkey was fast asleep, the man started contemplating. He thought that if he pushed away the sleeping monkey, the lion, as promised, would allow him to go scot-free. Immediately, he translated his thoughts into action. The monkey was in deep slumber. The man pushed him down. As the monkey was accustomed to such things, he immediately caught hold of the branches halfway and was back to his place in a moment.

Without uttering a single word, he went back to sleep as if nothing had happened. In the morning, the monkey led the man to safety. The lion was still on prowl under the tree.

When they reached at the safer place, the monkey looked in the eyes of the now shameful man, and said, "From now-onwards, please do not allege that monkeys are ancestors of mankind."

Ponder upon this for a second: Isn't a man without humanity inferior to animals?


Will I start to die rightaway?

Many years ago, when I worked as a volunteer at a hospital, I got to know a little girl named Liz who was suffering from a rare and serious disease. Her only chance of recovery appeared to be a blood transfusion from her 5-year old brother, who had miraculously survived the same disease and had developed the antibodies needed to combat the illness. The doctor explained the situation to her little brother, and asked the little boy if he would be willing to give his blood to his sister.

I saw him hesitate for only a moment before taking a deep breath and saying, "Yes I'll do it, if it will save her."

As the transfusion progressed, he lay in bed next to his sister and smiled, as we all did, seeing the color returning to her cheeks. Then his face grew pale and his smile faded.

He looked up at the doctor and asked with a trembling voice, "Will I start to die right away?"

Actually, being young, the little boy had misunderstood the doctor; he thought he was going to have to give his sister all of his blood in order to save her!

Such compassion and sacrifice in the heart of a little soul! It would be an understatement to say that we, as adults, need to learn a lot from kids about unconditional love.


That cleaning lady

During my second month of college, our professor gave us a pop quiz. I was a conscientious student and had breezed through the questions until I read the last one:

"What is the first name of the woman who cleans the school?"

Surely this was some kind of joke. I had seen the cleaning woman several times. She was tall, dark-haired and in her 50s, but how would I know her name?

I handed in my paper, leaving the last question blank. Just before class ended, one student asked if the last question would count toward our quiz grade.

"Absolutely," said the professor. "In your careers, you will meet many people. All are significant. They deserve your attention and care, even if all you do is smile and say "hello."

I've never forgotten that lesson. I also learned her name was Dorothy.


Ice cream sundae

In the days when an ice cream sundae cost much less, a 10-year-old boy entered a hotel coffee shop and sat at a table. A waitress put a glass of water in front of him.

"How much is an ice cream sundae?" he asked. "Fifty cents," replied the waitress. The little boy pulled is hand out of his pocket and studied the coins in it.

"Well, how much is a plain dish of ice cream?" he inquired.

By now more people were waiting for a table and the waitress was growing impatient.

"Thirty-five cents," she brusquely replied.

The little boy again counted his coins.

"I'll have the plain ice cream," he said.

The waitress brought the ice cream, put the bill on the table and walked away. The boy finished the ice cream, paid the cashier and left. When the waitress came back, tears rolled down her eyes as she wiped down the table. There, placed neatly beside the empty dish, were two nickels and five pennies.

You see, he couldn't have the sundae, because he had to have enough left to leave her a tip...


Jenny's pearl necklace

Jenny was a bright-eyed, pretty five-year-old girl.

One day when she and her mother were checking out at the grocery store, Jenny saw a plastic pearl necklace priced at $2.50. How she wanted that necklace, and when she asked her mother if she would buy it for her, her mother said, "Well, it is a pretty necklace, but it costs an awful lot of money. I'll tell you what. I'll buy you the necklace, and when we get home we can make up a list of chores that you can do to pay for the necklace. And don't forget that for your birthday Grandma just might give you a whole dollar bill, too. Okay?" Jenny agreed, and her mother bought the pearl necklace for her.

Jenny worked on her chores very hard every day, and sure enough, her grandma gave her a brand new dollar bill for her birthday. Soon Jenny had paid off the pearls. How Jenny loved those pearls. She wore them everywhere to kindergarten, bed and when she went out with her mother to run errands.

The only time she didn't wear them was in the shower. Her mother had told her that they would turn her neck green!

Now Jenny had a very loving daddy. When Jenny went to bed, he would get up from his favorite chair every night and read Jenny her favorite story.

One night when he finished the story, he said, "Jenny, do you love me?"

"Oh yes, Daddy, you know I love you," the little girl said.

"Well, then, give me your pearls."

"Oh! Daddy, not my pearls!" Jenny said. "But you can have Rosy, my favorite doll. Remember her? You gave her to me last year for my birthday. And you can have her tea party outfit, too. Okay?"

"Oh no, darling, that's okay." Her father brushed her cheek with a kiss. "Good night, little one."

A week later, her father once again asked Jenny after her story, "Do you love me?"

"Oh yes, Daddy, you know I love you."

"Well, then, give me your pearls."

"Oh, Daddy, not my pearls! But you can have Ribbons, my toy horse. Do you remember her? She's my favorite. Her hair is so soft, and you can play with it and braid it and everything. You can have Ribbons if you want her, "Daddy," the little girl said to her father.

"No, that's okay," her father said and brushed her cheek again with a kiss. God bless you, little one. Sweet dreams."

Several days later, when Jenny's father came in to read her a story, Jenny was sitting on her bed and her lip was trembling. " Here, Daddy," she said, and held out her hand. She opened it and her beloved pearl necklace was inside. She let it slip into her father's hand.

With one hand her father held the plastic pearls and the other he pulled out of his pocket a blue velvet box. Inside of the box were real, genuine, beautiful pearls. He had had them all along. He was waiting for Jenny to give up the cheap stuff so he could give her the real thing.

So it is with God. He is waiting for us to give up the cheap things in our lives so he can give us beautiful treasure. This made me think about the things I hold on to and wonder what God wants to give me in its place! What about you?


Sunday, August 26, 2007

Don't we all?

I was parked in front of the mall wiping off my car. I had just come from the car wash and was waiting for my wife to get out of work. Coming my way from across the parking lot was what society would consider a bum.

From the looks of him, he had no car, no home, no clean clothes, and no money. There are times when you feel generous but there are other times that you just don't want to be bothered. This was one of those "don't want to be bothered times."

"I hope he doesn't ask me for any money," I thought.

He didn't.

He came and sat on the curb in front of the bus stop but he didn't look like he could have enough money to even ride the bus. After a few minutes he spoke..

"That's a very pretty car"

He was ragged but he had an air of dignity around him. His scraggly blond beard keep more than his face warm.

I said, "thanks," and continued wiping off my car.

He sat there quietly as I worked. The expected plea for money never came.

As the silence between us widened something inside said, "ask him if he needs any help." I was sure that he would say "yes" but I held true to the inner voice.

"Do you need any help?" I asked. I expected nothing but an outstretched grimy hand. Instead he spoke the three words that shook me out of my world..

"Don't we all?"

I was almost thrown out of my 'high and mighty-successful and important-above a bum' attitude that very moment, as those three words hit me like a twelve gauge shotgun.

Don't we all?

I needed help. Maybe not for bus fare or a place to sleep, but I needed help. I reached in my wallet and gave him not only enough for bus fare, but enough to get a warm meal and shelter for the day. Those three little words still ring true.

No matter how much you have, no matter how much you have accomplished, you need help too. No matter how little you have, no matter how loaded you are with problems, even without money or a place to sleep, you can give help. Even if it's just a compliment, a different perspective on life, a glimpse at something beautiful, a respite from daily chaos—you CAN give that help.


Saturday, August 25, 2007

The mail from God

There was no stamp, no postmark, only her name and address. She read the letter:

Dear Ruth:

I am going to be in your neighborhood Saturday afternoon and I'd like to stop by for a visit.

Love Always,

Her hands were shaking as she placed the letter on the table. "Why would the Lord want to visit me? I'm nobody special. I don't have anything to offer."

With that thought, Ruth remembered her empty kitchen cabinets. "Oh my goodness, I really don't have anything to offer. I'll have to run down to the store and buy something for dinner." She reached for her purse and counted out its contents. Five dollars and forty cents. "Well, I can get some bread and cold cuts, at least."

She threw on her coat and hurried out the door.

A loaf of French bread, a half-pound of sliced turkey, and a carton of milk...leaving Ruth with grand total twelve cents to last her until Monday.

Nonetheless, she felt good as she headed home, her meager offerings tucked under her arm.

"Hey lady, can you help us, lady?"

Ruth had been so absorbed in her dinner plans, she hadn't even noticed two figures huddled in the alleyway. A man and a woman, both of them dressed in little more than rags.

"Look lady, I ain't got a job, ya know, and my wife and I have been living out here on the street, and, well, now it's getting cold and we're getting kinda hungry and, well, if you could help us. Lady, we'd really appreciate it."

Ruth looked at them both. They were dirty, they smelled bad and frankly, she was certain that they could get some kind of work if they really wanted to.

"Sir, I'd like to help you, but I'm a poor woman myself. All I have is a few cold cuts and some bread, and I'm having an important guest for dinner tonight and I was planning on serving that to Him."

"Yeah, well, okay lady, I understand.. Thanks anyway."

"The man put his arm around the woman's shoulders, turned and headed back into the alley. As she watched them leave, Ruth felt a familiar twinge in her heart.

"Sir, wait!" The couple stopped and turned as she ran down the alley after them. "Look, why don't you take this food. I'll figure out something else to serve my guest."

She handed the man her grocery bag.

"Thank you lady. Thank you very much!"

"Yes, thank you!" It was the man's wife, and Ruth could see now that she was shivering.

"You know, I've got another coat at home. Here, why don't you take this one." Ruth unbuttoned her jacket and slipped it over the woman's shoulders. Then smiling, she turned and walked back to the street...without her coat and with nothing to serve her guest.

"Thank you lady! Thank you very much!"

Ruth was chilled by the time she reached her front door, and worried too. The Lord was coming to visit and she didn't have anything to offer Him. She fumbled through her purse for the door key. But as she did, she noticed another envelope in her mailbox.

"That's odd, the mailman doesn't usually come twice in one day!" She took the envelope out of the box and opened it.

Dear Ruth,

It was so good to see you again. Thank you for the lovely meal. And thank you, too, for the beautiful coat.

Love Always

The air was still cold, but even without her coat, Ruth no longer noticed.

Blessings usually come in such small moments that we let pass by unnoticed.


Thursday, August 23, 2007

Bill Gates' speech

Bill Gates recently gave a speech at a High School about 11 things they did not and will not learn in school.

He talks about how feel-good, politically correct teachings created a generation of kids with no concept of reality and how this concept set them up for failure in the real world:

Rule 1: Life is not fair - get used to it!

Rule 2: The world won't care about your self-esteem. The world will expect you to accomplish something BEFORE you feel good about yourself.

Rule 3: You will NOT make $60,000 a year right out of high school. You won't be a vice-president with a car phone until you earn both.

Rule 4: If you think your teacher is tough, wait till you get a boss.

Rule 5: Flipping burgers is not beneath your dignity. Your Grandparents had a different word for burger flipping: they called it opportunity.

Rule 6: If you mess up, it's not your parents' fault, so don't whine about your mistakes, learn from them.

Rule 7: Before you were born, your parents weren't as boring as they are now. They got that way from paying your bills, cleaning your clothes and listening to you talk about how cool you thought you were. So before you save the rain forest from the parasites of your parent's generation, try delousing the closet in your own room.

Rule 8: Your school may have done away with winners and losers, but life HAS NOT. In some schools, they have abolished failing grades and they'll give you as MANY TIMES as you want to get the right answer. This doesn't bear the slightest resemblance to ANYTHING in real life.

Rule 9: Life is not divided into semesters. You don't get summers off and very few employers are interested in helping you FIND YOURSELF. Do that on your own time.

Rule 10: Television is NOT real life. In real life people actually have to leave the coffee shop and go to jobs.

Rule 11: Be nice to nerds. Chances are you'll end up working for one.


The power of Teamwork

Continuing the series of wonderful presentations, here's your chance to observe closely what is teamwork... just follow this link and let it sink inside of you:


A pitcher of milk

There was once a king who had a large number of courtiers. Each one of these courtiers declared he was ready to sacrifice his life for his master, and that he was the most sincere being ever born.

In course of time, a saint came to the king. The king told him that there never was a king who had so many sincere courtiers as he had. The saint smiled and said “No. I do no believe that!”

The king asked the saint to test it if he wished to. “Ok then”, the saint stood up and declared before the king “I would perform a great prayer which would extend the your reign by a several years. But there’s a condition. A small tank would be made into which each one of your courtiers will pour a pitcher of milk in complete dark of night.”

The king couldn’t control his surprise “Come on, is this the test?!” But the saint had declared his plan.

So the very next day, the King asked his courtiers to come to him, and told them what was to be done. As expected, they all expressed their joyful assent to the proposal and returned. In the dead of night, they came and emptied their pitchers into the tank. All was done smoothly, and this reinforced the doubt the King had upon this test. But something really shocking happened next day.

In the morning, the tank was found to be full of water, with no trace of milk!

The courtiers were assembled and questioned about the matter. Upon strict questioning, it was found out that each one of them had presumed, that, since there would be so many pitchers of milk already, their pitcher of water wouldn’t be detected!

The King stood there speechless and dismayed. But he thanked the saint for giving him this lesson of his life.

The king learned that blind faith on anyone seldom works for you--when we meet people, we meet wheat mixed with chaff. Therefore, its our responsibility to separate truth from what meets the eye. The courtiers learned that it never helps to cheat in teamwork--you've to put your sincerity into it to make it work, instead of relying upon the efforts of others.


Poor man's shoes

A young man, a student in one of our universities, was one day taking a walk with a professor, who was commonly called the students' friend, for his kindness to those who waited on his instructions.

As they went along, they saw lying in the path a pair of old shoes, which they supposed to belong to a poor man who was employed in a field close by, and who had nearly finished his day's work.

The student turned to the professor, saying: "Let us play the man a trick: we will hide his shoes, and conceal ourselves behind those bushes, and wait to see his perplexity when he cannot find them."

"My young friend," answered the professor, "we should never amuse ourselves at the expense of the poor. But you are rich, and may give yourself a much greater pleasure by means of the poor man. Put a coin into each shoe, and then we will hide ourselves and watch how the discovery affects him."

The student did so, and they both placed themselves behind the bushes close by.

The poor man soon finished his work, and came across the field to the path where he had left his coat and shoes. While putting on his coat he slipped his foot into one of his shoes; but feeling something hard, he stooped down to feel what it was, and found the coin.

Astonishment and wonder were seen upon his countenance. He gazed upon the coin, turned it round, and looked at it again and again. He then looked around him on all sides, but no person was to be seen. He now put the money into his pocket, and proceeded to put on the other shoe; but his surprise was doubled on finding the other coin.

His feelings overcame him; he fell upon his knees, looked up to heaven and uttered aloud a fervent thanksgiving, in which he spoke of his wife, sick and helpless, and his children without bread, whom the timely bounty, from some unknown hand, would save from perishing.

The student stood there deeply affected, and his eyes filled with tears. "Now," said the professor, "are you not much better pleased than if you had played your intended trick?"

The youth replied, "You have taught me a lesson which I will never forget. I feel now the truth of those words, which I never understood before.

And do you know what those words are?

"It is more blessed to give than to receive."


To whom does this gift belong?

One day Buddha was walking through a village. All of sudden, a very angry and rude young man approached him, called him by names and began insulting him. "You have no right teaching others," he almost shouted, "you are as stupid as everyone else. You are nothing but a fake!"

Buddha was not upset by these insults. Instead he just smiled and replied "tell me, if you buy a gift for someone, and that person does not take it, to whom does the gift belong?"

The man was taken aback by such a strange question thrown back at him. But he regained his rude composure and answered in an obvious brash tone "It would belong to me, because I bought the gift."

The Buddha smiled again, and said, "That is correct. And it is exactly the same with your anger. If you become angry with me and I do not get insulted, then the anger falls back on you. You are then the only one who becomes unhappy, not me. All you have done is hurt yourself."

Buddha carried his thought forward "Look my friend, if you want to stop hurting yourself, you must get rid of your anger and become loving instead. When you hate others, you yourself become unhappy. But when you love others, everyone is happy."

The young man stood there hypnotized by the saint's presence and his words that ripped the devil in him apart, and the very next moment the transformed man in him gratefully asked "You are right, O Enlightened One, can you please teach me the path of love? I wish to become your follower."

The Buddha answered even more humbly "Of course. I teach anyone who truly wants to learn. Come with me."

I am sure you've got the message: No one can insult you unless you accept the insult on your self.


Monday, August 20, 2007

The vaccum cleaner salesman

A new vacuum cleaner salesman knocked on the door on the first house of the street. A tall lady answered the door.

Before she could speak, the enthusiastic salesman barged into the living room and opened a big black plastic bag and poured all the cow droppings onto the carpet.

"Madam, if I could not clean this up with the use of this new powerful vacuum cleaner, I will eat all this s**t!" exclaimed the eager salesman.

"Do you need chilly sauce or ketchup with that" asked the lady.

The bewildered salesman asked, "Why, madam?"

"There's no electricity in the house" said the lady.

Don't just act on impulse. Gather as much know-how as you can before making the final commitment towards a project.


The car tyre

One night 4 students were playing till late night and didn't study for the test which was scheduled for the next day.

In the morning they thought of a plan. They made themselves look as dirty and weird as they could with grease and dirt. They then went up to the dean and said that they had gone out to a wedding last night and on their return the tyre of their car burst and they had to push the car all the way back and that they were in no condition to appear for the test.

So the dean said they can have the retest after 3 days. The student's trick had worked! They said they will be ready by that time, and proudly went back.

On the third day they appeared before the dean. But the Dean explained that since this was a special condition test, all four were required to sit in separate classrooms for the test. They all nodded as they had prepared well in the last three days.

The test consisted of 2 questions with total of 100 marks:

Q1: Your name ......................... (2 marks)
Q2: Which tyre burst ............... (98 marks)


Ms Eddy, and Jack the begger

One day a woman was walking down the street when she spied a beggar sitting in the corner. The man was elderly, unshaven, and ragged. As he sat there, pedestrians walked by him giving him dirty looks. They clearly wanted nothing to do with him because of who he was -- a dirty, homeless man. But when she saw him, the woman was moved to compassion.

It was very cold that day and the man had his tattered coat -- more like an old suit coat rather than a warm coat -- wrapped around him. She stopped and looked down. "Sir?" she asked. "Are you all right?"

The man slowly looked up. This was a woman clearly accustomed to the finer things of life. Her coat was new. She looked like she had never missed a meal in her life. His first thought was that she wanted to make fun of him, like so many others had done before. "Leave me alone," he growled.

To his amazement, the woman continued standing. She was smiling -- her even white teeth displayed in dazzling rows. "Are you hungry?" she asked.

"No," he answered sarcastically. "I've just come from dining with the president. Now go away."

The woman's smile became even broader. Suddenly the man felt a gentle hand under his arm. "What are you doing, lady?" the man asked angrily. "I said to leave me alone."

Just then a policeman came up. "Is there any problem, ma'am?" he asked.

"No problem here, officer," the woman answered. "I'm just trying to get this man to his feet. Will you help me?"

The officer scratched his head. "That's old Jack. He's been a fixture around here for a couple of years. What do you want with him?"

"See that cafeteria over there?" she asked. "I'm going to get him something to eat and get him out of the cold for awhile."

"Are you crazy, lady?" the homeless man resisted. "I don't want to go in there!" Then he felt strong hands grab his other arm and lift him up. "Let me go, officer. I didn't do anything."

"This is a good deal for you, Jack," the officer answered. "Don't blow it."

Finally, and with some difficulty, the woman and the police officer got Jack into the cafeteria and sat him at a table in a remote corner. It was the middle of the morning, so most of the breakfast crowd had already left and the lunch bunch had not yet arrived. The manager strode across the cafeteria and stood by the table. "What's going on here, officer?" he asked. "What is all this. Is this man in trouble?"

"This lady brought this man in here to be fed," the policeman answered.

"Not in here!" the manager replied angrily. "Having a person like that here is bad for business."

Old Jack smiled a toothless grin. "See, lady. I told you so. Now if you'll let me go. I didn't want to come here in the first place."

The woman turned to the cafeteria manager and smiled. "Sir, are you familiar with Eddy and Associates, the banking firm down the street?"

"Of course I am," the manager answered impatiently. "They hold their weekly meetings in one of my banquet rooms."

"And do you make a goodly amount of money providing food at these weekly meetings?"

"What business is that of yours?"

"I, sir, am Penelope Eddy, president and CEO of the company."


The woman smiled again. "I thought that might make a difference." She glanced at the cop who was busy stifling a giggle. "Would you like to join us in a cup of coffee and a meal, officer?"

"No thanks, ma'am," the officer replied. "I'm on duty."

"Then, perhaps, a cup of coffee to go?"

"Yes, ma'am. That would be very nice."

The cafeteria manager turned on his heel. "I'll get your coffee for you right away, officer."

The officer watched him walk away. "You certainly put him in his place," he said.

"That was not my intent. Believe it or not, I have a reason for all this."

She sat down at the table across from her amazed dinner guest. She stared at him intently. "Jack, do you remember me?"

Old Jack searched her face with his old, rheumy eyes "I think so--I mean you do look familiar."

"I'm a little older perhaps," she said. "Maybe I've even filled out more than in my younger days when you worked here, and I came through that very door, cold and hungry."

"Ma'am?" the officer said questioningly. He couldn't believe that such a magnificently turned out woman could ever have been hungry.

"I was just out of college," the woman began. "I had come to the city looking for a job, but I couldn't find anything. Finally I was down to my last few cents and had been kicked out of my apartment. I walked the streets for days. It was February and I was cold and nearly starving. I saw this place and walked in on the off chance that I could get something to eat."

Jack lit up with a smile. "Now I remember," he said. "I was behind the serving counter. You came up and asked me if you could work for something to eat. I said that it was against company policy."

"I know," the woman continued. "Then you made me the biggest roast beef sandwich that I had ever seen, gave me a cup of coffee, and told me to go over to a corner table and enjoy it. I was afraid that you would get into trouble. Then, when I looked over, I saw you put the price of my food in the cash register. I knew then that everythingwould be all right."

"So you started your own business?" Old Jack said.

"I got a job that very afternoon. I worked my way up. Eventually I started my own business that, with the help of God, prospered." She opened her purse and pulled out a business card. "When you are finished here, I want you to pay a visit to a Mr. Lyons. He's the personnel director of my company. I'll go talk to him now and I'm certain he'll find something for you to do around the office." She smiled. "I think he might even find the funds to give you a little advance so that you can buy some clothes and get a place to live until you get on your feet. And if you ever need anything, my door is always open to you."

There were tears in the old man's eyes. "How can I ever thank you," he said.

"Don't thank me," the woman answered. "To God goes the glory. Thank him. He led me to you."

Outside the cafeteria, the officer and the woman paused at the entrance before going their separate ways. "Thank you for all your help, officer," she said.

"On the contrary, Ms. Eddy," he answered. "Thank you. I saw a miracle today, something that I will never forget. And... And thank you for the coffee."

She frowned. "I forgot to ask you whether you used creme or sugar. That's black."

The officer looked at the steaming cup of coffee in his hand. "Yes, I do take creme and sugar -- perhaps more sugar than is good for me." He patted his ample stomach.

"I'm sorry," she said.

"I don't need it now," he replied smiling. "I've got the feeling that this coffee you bought me is going to taste as sweet as sugar."

What goes around, comes around.


Saturday, August 18, 2007

5.75 questions

Another fantastic presentation that lets you think deeper, and prepare you for some action... and all done in a real fun way!

Here's the link for you:

Enjoy the questions!


Friday, August 17, 2007

3 Olympic gold medals!

A little girl - the 20th of 22 children, was born prematurely and her survival was doubtful. When she was 4 years old, she contracted double pneumonia and scarlet fever, which left her with a paralyzed left leg.

But at the tender age of 9, she removed the metal leg brace she had been dependent on and began to walk without it.

By 13 she had developed a rhythmic walk, which doctors said was a miracle. That same year she decided to become a runner!

She entered a race and came in last.

And for the next few years every race she entered, she came in last. Everyone told her to quit, but she kept on running.

One day she actually won a race, and then another. From then on she won every race she entered! Eventually this little girl - Wilma Rudolph, went on to win three Olympic gold medals!

Winners never quit.


Thursday, August 16, 2007

Philosophy of Charles Schultz

The following is the philosophy of Charles Schultz, creator of the "Peanuts" comic strip...

Can you:

1. Name the five wealthiest people in the world?

2. Name the last five Heisman trophy winners?

3. Name the last five winners of the Miss America Pageant?

4. Name ten people who have won the Nobel or Pulitzer Prize?

5. Name the last half dozen Academy Award winners for best actor and actress?

6. Name the last decade's worth of World Series winners?

How did you do?

The point is, none of us remember the headliners of yesterday. These are no second-rate achievers. They are the best in their fields. But the applause dies. Awards tarnish. Achievements are forgotten. Accolades and certificates are buried with their owners.

Here's another quiz. See how you do on this one:

1. List a few teachers who aided your journey through school?

2. Name three friends who have helped you through a difficult time?

3. Name five people who have taught you something worthwhile?

4. Think of a few people who have made you feel appreciated and special?

5. Think of five people you enjoy spending time with?

Easier now?

Well, the the lesson is: The people who make a difference in your life are not the ones with the most credentials, the most money, or the most awards. They are the ones that care.

"Don't worry about the world coming to an end today. It's already tomorrow in Australia ." (Charles Schultz)


Sunday, August 12, 2007

Most important body part

My mother used to ask me what the most important part of the body is. Through the years I would take a guess at what I thought was the correct answer.

When I was younger, I thought sound was very important to us as humans, so I said, "My ears, Mommy."

She said, "No. Many people are deaf. But you keep thinking about it and I will ask you again soon."

Several years passed before she asked me again. Since making my first attempt, I had contemplated the correct answer.

So this time I told her, "Mommy, sight is very important to everybody, so it must be our eyes."

She looked at me and told me, "You are learning fast, but the answer is not correct because there are many people who are blind."

Stumped again, I continued my quest for knowledge and over the years, mother asked me a couple more times and always her answer was, "No. But you are getting smarter every year, my child."

Then one year, my grandfather died. Everybody was hurt. Everybody was crying. Even my father cried. I remember that especially because it was only the second time I saw him cry.

My Mom looked at me when it was our turn to say our final good-bye to my grandfather. She asked me, "Do you know the most important body part yet, my dear?" I was shocked when she asked me this now. I always thought this was a game between her and me.

She saw the confusion on my face and told me, "This question is very important. It shows that you have really lived in your life. For every body part you gave me in the past, I have told you were wrong and I have given you an example why. But today is the day you need to learn this important lesson."

She looked down at me as only a mother can. I saw her eyes well up with tears. She said, "My dear, the most important body part is your shoulder."

I asked, "Is it because it holds up my head?"

She replied, "No, it is because it can hold the head of a friend or a loved one when they cry. Everybody needs a shoulder to cry on sometime in life, my dear. I only hope that you have enough love and friends that you will always have a shoulder to cry on when you need it."

Then and there I knew the most important body part is not a selfish one. It is made for others and not for yourself. It is sympathetic to the pain of others.


Thursday, August 9, 2007

I can sleep when wind blows

Years ago, a farmer owned land along the Atlantic seacoast.

He constantly advertised for hired hands. Most people were reluctant to work on farms along the Atlantic. They dreaded the awful storms that raged across the Atlantic, wreaking havoc on the buildings and crops. As the farmer interviewed applicants for the job, he received a steady stream of refusals. Finally, a short, thin man, well past middle age, approached the farmer.

"Are you a good farm hand?" the farmer asked him.

"Well, I can sleep when the wind blows," answered the little man.

Although puzzled by this answer, the farmer, desperate for help, hired him. The little man worked well around the farm, busy from dawn to dusk, and the farmer felt satisfied with the man's work.

Then one night the wind howled loudly in from offshore. Jumping out of bed, the farmer grabbed a lantern and rushed next door to the hired hand's sleeping quarters. He shook the little man and yelled, "Get up! A storm is coming! Tie things down before they blow away!"

The little man rolled over in bed and said firmly, "No sir. I told you, I can sleep when the wind blows."

Enraged by the response, the farmer was tempted to fire him on the spot. Instead, he hurried outside to prepare for the storm. To his amazement, he discovered that all of the haystacks had been covered with tarpaulins. The cows were in the barn, the chickens were in the coops, and the doors were barred. The shutters were tightly secured. Everything was tied down! Nothing could blow away. The farmer then understood what his hired hand meant, so he returned to his bed to also sleep while the wind blew.

When you're prepared--spiritually, mentally, and physically--you have nothing to fear. The hired hand was able to sleep because he had secured the farm against the storm.

Can you sleep when the wind blows through your life?


Wednesday, August 1, 2007

Chains of failure

As I was passing by the elephants, I suddenly stopped, confused by the fact that these huge creatures were being held by only a small rope tied to their front leg. No chains, no cages. It was obvious that the elephants could, at anytime, break away from the ropes they were tied to but for some reason, they did not!

I saw a trainer near by and asked why these beautiful, magnificent animals just stood there and made no attempt to get away.

"Well," he said, "when they are very young and much smaller we use the same size rope to tie them and, at that age, it's enough to hold them. As they grow up, they are conditioned to believe they cannot break away. They believe the rope can still hold them, so they never try to break free."

I was amazed. These animals could at any time break free from their bonds but because they believed they couldn't, they were stuck right where they were!

Like the elephants, how many of us go through life hanging onto a belief that we cannot do something, simply because we failed at it once before? Right now, just take a moment to reflect upon your chains in life--I wish you all strength & luck in breaking them apart!


The woodcutter

Once upon a time a very strong woodcutter asked for a job with a timber merchant, and he got it. His salary was really good and so were the working conditions. For that reason, the woodcutter was determined to do his best.

His boss gave him an axe and showed him the area where he was supposed to fell the trees. The first day, the woodcutter brought down 15 trees.

‘Congratulations,’ the boss said. ‘Carry on with your work!’

Highly motivated by the words of his boss, the woodcutter tried harder the next day, but he only could bring 10 trees down. The third day he tried even harder, but he was only able to bring down 7 trees.

Day after day he was bringing lesser number of trees down.

‘I must be losing my strength’, the woodcutter thought. He went to the boss and apologised, saying that he could not understand what was going on.

‘When was the last time you sharpened your axe?’ the boss asked.

‘Sharpen? But I had no time to sharpen my axe--I have been very busy trying to cut trees’ the woodcutter uttered a puzzled response...!

Does that resonate with you? When was the last time you updated your skills? Most of us never update our skills. We think that whatever we have learned is very much enough. But good is not good when better is expected. Sharpening our skills from time to time is the key to success.