If we widened our world view, many more people would benefit from our presence, our choices and our actions. If we considered others around us and far from us, if we looked at what effects our choices may have on some other person we know or those we do not know or even those yet to be born, then our view would be of great help not only to the ‘now’ but also to the future.
Anthony de Mello S.J, a spiritual writer, tells many interesting stories. I will include two of them here:
The Royal Pigeon
‘Nasruddin became prime minister to the king. Once, while he wandered through the palace, he saw, for the first time in life, a royal falcon.
Now Nasruddin had never seen this kind of a pigeon before. So he got out a pair of scissors and trimmed the claws, the wings and the beak of the falcon.
‘Now you look like a decent bird,’ he said.’your keeper had been neglecting you.’
Monkey salvation of the fish
‘What on earth are you doing? Said I to the monkey when I saw him lift a fish out of the water and place it on the branch of a tree. ‘I am saving it from drowning’ was the reply.’
These two short stories illustrate what may happen when we consider the world to be only what concerns us and limit ourselves to only our ways. Like Nasruddin we may often be convinced that we are doing the right thing and even blame another person for not doing their part. I wish to throw a challenge to each one of us, before ‘getting a pair of scissors and trimming the claws, the wings and the beak of the falcon’ take time to gather information about the ‘royal falcon’ and you may just discover the great beauty in it as it is. Before ‘hanging the fish on a branch to save it from drowning’ first find out about the ‘life of a fish’. In other words in whatever we do, it is better to seek clarity from others especially where one is not sure. This would be a very helpful principle for students in terms of consultation; consult others who have already understood the concepts you are struggling with or you are not sure of, find out from books that have the information you need and consult your teachers as the experts on whichever field you are seeking clarity.
As we see in the monkey story, the intention of the monkey was very good, that is to save the fish. However his world view did not go beyond himself thus it posed danger to the fish. When we limit our perspectives to ourselves, we often embrace a selfish motive, we go for what pleases us irrespective of what it may do to others and this, in most cases would be destructive!
Widen your world view, be considerate and make the world a better place than you found it.
By Sr. Victorine Nyang’or Ibvm