you can’t take it with you when you go
One morning I wasted nearly an hour watching a tiny ant carry a huge feather cross my back terrace. Several times it was confronted by obstacles in its path and after a momentary pause it would make the necessary detour. At one point the ant had to negotiate a crack in the concrete about 10mm wide. After brief contemplation the ant laid the feather over the crack, walked across it and picked up the feather on the other side then continued on its way.
I was fascinated by the ingenuity of this ant, one of God’s smallest creatures. It served to reinforce the miracle of creation. Here was a minute insect, lacking in size yet equipped with a brain to reason, explore, discover and overcome. But this ant, like the two-legged co-residents of this planet, also shares human failings. After some time the ant finally reached its destination – a flower bed at the end of the terrace and a small hole that was the entrance to its underground home. And it was here that the ant finally met its match.
How could that large feather possibly fit down a small hole? Of course it couldn’t. So the ant, after all this trouble and exercising great ingenuity, overcoming problems all along the way, just abandoned the feather and went home. The ant had not thought the problem through before it began its epic journey and in the end the feather was nothing more than a burden.
Isn’t our life like that? We worry about our family; we worry about money or the lack of it, we worry about work, about where we live, about all sorts of things. These are all burdens – the things we pick up along life’s path and lug them around the obstacles and over the crevasses that life will bring, only to find that at the destination they are useless and we can’t take them with us.
source: an ant story
Once there lived a king cobra in a small hole. When he was small he ate little creatures. As he grew up he began to eat eggs, lizards, frogs and rabbits. And when he grew up further he started to eat even other smaller snakes. His pride grew with him.
All small animals began to fear the king cobra. This boosted up his pride. He began to think “Now I am the most powerful creature. I am the king of the forest. All animals fear me. Let me move from this small hole to a bigger place”.
He searched for a place to suit his size and status.
Finally he came across a big tree. He selected the tree for his house. He saw an ant hill near the tree.
He thought “Why should there be an ugly ant hill near my royal house?” He hissed aloud “I am king Cobra, the king of the forest. I order the ants to vacate immediately”. There was no reply. He got wild and struck at the ant hill.
What a surprise! In a minute thousands of ants swarmed up the king cobra biting him everywhere. The king cobra could not bear the pain. He ran away.
MORAL : Pride goes before fall.
source: King Cobra and the Ants
food for thought
All of us tend to look up to big people for lessons on how to get better. We are keen to learn the secrets of their success. But we forget that sometimes the biggest lessons in life come from the smallest folks around us. Now that’s a good lesson to remember!
Take ants for instance. Would you believe those small creatures can teach us how to live a better life? Jim Rohn – the great motivational guru – developed what he called the ‘Ants Philosophy’.
He identified four key lessons from the behaviour of ants that can help us lead better lives. Jim Rohn is no more – but his messages continue to inspire. Here then, are the four lessons from Rohn’s ‘Ants Philosophy’.
1. Ants never quit. Have you noticed how ants always look for a way around an obstacle? Put your finger in an ant’s path and it will try and go around it, or over it. It will keep looking for a way out. It won’t just stand there and stare. It won’t give up and go back.
We should all learn to be like that. There will always be obstacles in our lives. The challenge is to keep trying, keep looking for alternative routes to get to our goals. Winston Churchill probably paraphrased the ant’s mindset when he offered this priceless advice: ‘Never give up. Never, never give up!’ ….
….And there’s just one more lesson to learn from ants. Did you know that an ant can carry objects up to 20 times their own weight? Maybe we are like that too. We can carry burdens on our shoulders and manage workloads that are far, far heavier than we’d imagine. Next time something’s bothering you and weighing you down, and you feel you just can’t carry on, don’t fret. Think of the little ant. And remember, you too can carry a lot more on your shoulders!
you can’t take it with you when you go, but what you leave behind will live on in others, memories… make them good ones!