Forget the bad,remember the good of others

To forgive may be divine but to forget is human

Life these days is so competitive that it has become so stressful that many of us have lost the peace and tranquility of the innocent and care free childhood days. Most of the time the unhappiness in our inner self is due to our own making – taking to heart the bad others do to us and forgetting the good they have done. If we can reverse this situation then our lives may be more peaceful, contended and happier. The following story illustrates this fact very nicely.

There were 2 good friends who set out on a journey across a desert to another town. As they were walking on the desert sands it was hot and they were getting tired and exhausted. There were some disagreements between them on a certain issue. In the spurt of anger one of them slapped the other for passing a sensitive remark.

The man who received the strike took it calmly but he wanted to record his displeasure at what his friend has done to him. As they were all alone in the middle of the desert, there was nobody for him to narrate his displeasure of what his friend had done to him. All he could do was squat down and write on the sand the words, “My best friend slapped me today”.

They continued their journey not talking much to each other until they reached an oasis. There was a stream and they decided to take a bath and freshen up before proceeding with their journey. While they were in the stream a swift current swept the man who was hit before into the depths of the river and as the man could not swim he shouted for help. There was no one else in the vicinity except his friend who had earlier slapped him. His friend quickly without hesitation dived in and saved him.

Soon when they had finished washing up they wanted to continue their journey. The man who almost drowned wanted to record the latest incident as well. He saw a large rock standing near by and he carved the following words on it, “My best friend saved my life today”.

They then continued their journey across the desert and reached their destination. After completing their business there they returned home along the same path a few days later. At the same oasis they noticed the words on the rock written earlier very clearly, “My best friend saved my life today”. On reaching the place where the man was slapped they could not see the words written on the sand, “My best friend slapped me today”. The winds had blown and erased those words away.

The friend who slapped asked the other for the reason for writing the way he did. To that his friend answered, “the bad you did to me I wrote on sand which was blown away but the good you did I wrote on rock and that it will remain forever. You are my friend, I will keep to heart the good you do to me not the bad”.

This is what we should do in our own lives - forget the bad others do to us but remember forever the good they do. If we can do that life will be more peaceful and happy.

Let's reflect on our lives to see whether we harbour any ill feelings against anyone.If so we must act to heal those wounds in our hearts.Jesus forgave those who even tortured and crucified him. We may not reach up that level of magnanimousness in our hearts but, at least for a start, we can forget the bad others do to us.

Dr.Chris Anthony

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