THE STORY OF THE CRACKED POT

THE STORY OF THE CRACKED POT

A water bearer had two large pots that hung on the ends of a pole he carried across his shoulders. Each day, the water bearer made a long walk from the stream to house. One of the pots was perfect and carried the entire portion of water. The other pot was cracked and so it always arrived at the house only half full. This continued for years.

The perfect pot was proud of itself and pleased that it achieved all that it was made to do. The cracked pot, however, was terribly ashamed that it could only accomplish halfofwhat it was made to do.

Feeling like a failure it asked the water bearer, “Why do you still use me? I feel so ashamed that my crack makes water leak out all the way from the stream to the house.”

The man smiled and replied, “Have you ever noticed that there are flowers on your side of the path, but not on the other pot’s side? I have always been aware of your flaw. So, I planted seeds on your side of the path. You unknowingly water them every day as we walk back. If you weren’t the way you are, we would not have flowers adding such grace to the home and to offer in the temple.”

We get to learn from this story that a spiritual person, like the water bearer, must know that everything, a situation or flaw has a purpose and we should accept it and make the best use of it to keep our happiness intact. The omnipresent cosmos knows our flaws and understands what’s best for us. It blesses us with people or situations that we are capable of handling. Hence, whatever comes our way just needs to be embraced with joy. This joy will only result in overall joy of everyone.

Had the water bearer given up on the cracked pot and replaced it he would’ve missed enjoying the line of flowers that he had grown over the years. He converted the pot’s flaw into a blessing. Same way, if we give up on people keeping just their flaws in focus, we lose the chance of the joy that their flaws could’ve given us.

On the other side there was this perfect pot who was proud of its perfection. This story also makes us realize that perfect people and situations keep us far away from enjoying our life to the fullest. Just like the perfect pot missed enjoying the flowers on its side. Even Buddha, when saw something beyond his perfect life realized that there is so much more this life has to offer. Intellectually what we deem as perfection is actually a limitation to our joy. When we learn to see perfection in the flaws of life only then will we actually be perfectly happy.

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