Wednesday, May 31, 2006


I wonder how many have come across this meaningful analogy about life and our fixation with material wealth.

A group of working adults got together to visit their former University lecturer. The Lecturer was happy to see them. The conversation soon turned into complaints about stress in work and life.

The lecturer just smiled and went to the kitchen to get an assortment of cups - some porcelain, some in plastic, some in glass, some plain looking and some looked rather expensive and exquisite.

The lecturer offered his former students the cups to get drinks for themselves. When all the students had a cup in hand with water, the lecturer spoke: "If you noticed, all the nice looking, expensive cups were taken up, leaving behind the plain and cheap ones. While it is normal that you only want the best for yourselves, that is the source of your problems and stress. What all you wanted was water, not the cup, but we unconsciously went for the better cups."

Just like in life, if Life is Water, then the tangible things, wealth, money, property, investments, and all the material acquisitions are the cups.

They are just tools to enable, maintain, and furnish Life, but they by themselves are not the quality and richness of Life, per se. Thus, if you just concentrate on the cup alone, you even switch off the basic natural instinct and orientation inside you to taste, flavour, savour, and enjoy the water in it. Thus, you miss out what Life is all about, and get miserably fixated with an excessive obsession with possessions.

The riches you have do not automatically help you to have a more wholesome life of aesthetic and fulfilling richness. - unless you intentionally drive yourself to have a rich life from the riches you have; unless you desire the water and other contents inside the cup and not be covetous for just the cup alone.


Blogger The Malaysian. said...

Excellent piece. I'll make sure I'll remember it and use it as an analogy when required. You write very well and your selection of topics is very good. Keep it up. Cheers.

2:51 PM  

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