Posts Tagged ‘conservation’
Solid Fame ©
I wanted to try my hand at sea fishing like the way Hemingway did; so when I had a chance I chartered a boat for a day. Suppose I tell you the name of the boat was Harry Morgan. Wouldn’t you think I was far gone into it? I mean the Hemingway thing?
Call it a beginner’s luck I caught the strangest looking fish as soon as I learned to cast a line. The captain of the boat said, ‘It is a flounder. No doubt of that.’
It was not a Marlin that I had hoped for but a flounder. A monster of a flounder!
I said that it was a flounder but with the most peculiar habit of weeping. Captain Bill looked at my catch and gave a cry. He had never seen such luck as I had. The fish began to beat its tail, ‘Give my life back and I shall fulfill your wildest dream.’
The captain was standing next to me and I asked, ‘What shall I ask him, Bill?’
‘Fame! Fame!’ the captain hissed in my ear. So I told the flounder, ‘Make me famous.’
The fish wanted to know ‘famous for what?’
I couldn’t give the specifics so I said, ‘Fame, it is not all that difficult?’
The fish said my wish was granted.
At the end of the day I headed to the nearest bar. I knew what fame meant. ‘I shall be on every one’s lips.’ I said to myself.
The bar where fishermen frequented was choking full. But as soon as I stepped in those who hung out made way for me. I knew I was famous. They were all looking at me and in their envy I knew the flounder was a genius.
While ordered for a shot of whiskey I heard one comment, ‘He is very famous!’
‘Famous for what?’
A pause. The first voice spoke, ‘I dunno.’
It was greeted with a guffaw. I saw red and I went back to the end of the wharf. I was alone, and called out, ‘Flounder, flounder.’
The flounder surfaced and asked, ‘what will you be now?’
‘I want to hunt and kill a lion.’ The flounder said, ‘Go and you shall indeed kill one.’
I went to Africa for big game hunting. I shot my first lion and I went home. I was on every one’s lips. But no single one spoke in my favor and they all damned for having killed one of the last two remaining lions.
I was upset. And I had no use for such fame.
So I went to my flounder. I said, ‘Flounder make me famous. This time make it certain it is for solid reasons.’
The flounder said, ‘There is now only one way you can secure your fame. Are you ready for desperate measures?’
I answered, ‘yes.’
He whispered into my ears and I directly went back to Africa and killed the last lion.
Next day the papers were full of it. I was the cynosure of all eyes. People paid money to be photographed in my company. They wanted my autograph. Celebrities vied with one another to dine with me. They even followed me everywhere, cheering me all the way. In fact they never had enough of me.
‘Whoever heard of a flounder riding our streets? Or bagging a lion!’ So sang they all.
There is even a proverb, ‘getting a load of Flounder Fred’ meaning one is famous in whichever way you looked.( reprinted from Elves Bells)
Posted in Aesop, fables, history, Aesop and the Ass, modern fable, cartoons, tagged Aesop fables, Aesop for the Modern reader, Benny Thomas, conservation, man, monkeys on February 21, 2012 | Leave a Comment »
In the heart of a forest loggers were sent by a multinational Company. They set up their camp in that remote part intent for a long stay. Their work progressed as the rainforest decreased steadily.
A Monkey one day found his homestead where his forefathers had made home almost gone.The lumberjack who was to fell the last tree told the monkey to move on.
‘No Monkey tricks,’ said the man, ‘where my livelihood is concerned.’
‘Are we not related?’ asked the monkey appealing to him, ‘Didn’t my ancestor help you to your feet when you wanted to walk on two feet?’
The lumberjack waved him away saying, ‘Am I asking you to help me to stand on legs?’ The monkey knew it was useless to make him change. He scampered to safety as the mighty tree shook and the noise of the steady Thwak!’ of the axe made him angry and sad.(to be cont’d)
A child who sees a leaf falling for the first time does not know why it has fallen. But in its downward flight the child knows a certain thrill that shall never return again in its intensity. Whereas the earth shall keep that purity, wonder and knowledge through every child. Generations after generations it shall remain young. This is magic: innocence of a child sustains it.
The secret is with the earth and the child.
This secret shall be kept as long as there are children, and there are as many trees. The day he sees a tree as a tree and thinks nothing but profit he will begin cutting it down. He has signaled thereby to all he has lost his sense of wonder.
Once that sense of wonder is lost trees do not stand a chance; nor would the earth remain young as before. A day shall come when a child shall see the earth and see only a monster waiting to swallow it whole.
Hitler’s Third Reich was built up on the foundation of hatred. It was meant to endure for 1000 years. But it could only manage 13 years. Why? Hatred consumes much more vital resources in human and material terms so much so it cannot be cost effective. Jihadist elements who employ female suicide bombers or African militia using child soldiers are spendthrifts sacrificing their future for the present gains.
It takes money to make money. Right? How is it that those who have made money want more? Greed seems to keep man as though he has got ants in his pants. He may wheel and deal as though ants are out to get at him but do you think he would be able to amount to much? Greed consumes as hate. We see both working overtime these days.
While on the subject of greed I might speak here of two great philanthropists who lived to give away their wealth wisely and for making at least some difference to people who needed a push at a time they needed most. Carnegie and Rockefeller had greed in their blood. But life experience gave them a certain kind of infusion to make their vitality achieve something else. It was not wealth per se but by it they could put various aspects that made their lives an uneven weight of struggles, achievements, tears and happiness on a single standard. Wealth for them was the means. Consider now a man far less endowed say for example Johnny Appleseed, was not his contribution to the world as vital as anything that Carnegie could achieve with money? Johny Appleseed made the difference because of something that is rooted in life: he cared.
Life thrives on soils where wealth, science, technology, arts literature and people are all means to make the world richer. Richness comes from love that can be used in right proportions so each aspect is helped by other parts . For example, wealth funds science and research in turn leads to technological innovations. It can either lead to terrible weapons to wage war or serve as the means to wean the childish notions of man for self- aggrandizement. For the latter, arts and literature act as an ennobling incentive. In this what is the place for religion, one might ask. I shall discuss this in another post.
In this post we are considering only the aspect of life on a finite mode, where wealth is not cost effective if it is not allied with love.
As a Christian and humanist I believe God as the creator of the cosmos. Man as a steward has his place whatever be his belief, gender, age or status. What was God’s command to Adam regarding his creation? He gave dominion of all the beasts of the field, birds, herbs to Adam. (He didn’t say,’ slash and burn rainforests for quick profits’.) In that command lay the moral essence of man.
When one neglects one’s moral sense one is setting a trap for oneself. Since I had cited Napoleon in an earlier post let me come back to him. Napoleon neglected his role as a steward. His ambition and his brilliance as a strategist got in the way, I suppose. In terms of transactional energy Napoleon could marshal energy of all those who followed him to battle or who espoused his cause in the Chamber of Deputies. Bonapartism was a force to reckon with. For example at first there were 100 deputies in the French Chamber. But by 1898 there were none. Bonapartism was dead within 77 years after his death. He was weighed in the balance of morality and found wanting.
Moral sense when properly put to use earns you dividends.
Tailspin: Man is body and spirit. As he sows while in body must reap in that inner world I shall name as Spirit world. Transactional energy is directional in that no victor can rest on his laurels. He must move on as the Little Corporal did. Moral Sense operating in the Spirit Realm makes use of men and events as a warning to all. Energy is its weapon.
Moral sense of man is not born out of any religion; of course it helps to give a man’s innate moral sense its flavor. Mother Teresa did it in a different way than Gandhi did. Gandhi’s non violence was born out of the principle of Ahimsa while the Catholic Nun took a leaf out of the New Testament.
Who is worthier the fire-and brimstone preacher like John Calvin or Johnny Appleseed? Didn’t Calvin let torture as a weapon to protect his own authority? Some might argue torture was in accord with the prevailing attitude of that age. ‘Jesus Christ, the same yesterday, today and forever’. God’s words do not change according to fashions of the world. Didn’t Jesus speak thus, ’And whosoever will be chief among you let him be your servant...’Mt.20:27 No wonder what ails Christianity now is the accumulated evil of such hypocritical teachers who misused God’s name for their own selfish gains. The Calvin doctrine may be a theocratic rule but who should apply it but man? Only that bit by bit he loses from whence his authority derives and also whatever moral sense he had in the first place.
Johnny Appleseed, born John Chapman (September 26, 1774 – February 18, 1845), was an American pioneer nurseryman who introduced apples to large parts of Ohio, Indiana, and Illinois, mainly Ohio. He became an American legend while still alive, largely because of his kind and generous ways. He was a missionary but that didn’t stop him from making that part of the world a better place with his conservation programmes.(ack:JC ,J.A-wikipedia)