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Wednesday, February 28, 2018

The Great Lesson

 A father sat in his garden with his three children, and asked them this question:
'Suppose by a mere wish you could have anything your heart desired. What would you choose? "
'Oh, I should wish to be beautiful' said his daughter. 'Everybody enjoys beauty and everybody would like me'.
'How foolish you are, ' said her brother, 'Do you remember how beautiful was your friend, Lalita, before she got smallpox? Beauty is too transient a thing. My wish would be to become rich. Money rules the world, and with it I could purchase anything my heart wanted'.
The other brother then gave his opinion.
'I think you are foolish as our sister. Riches are as easily lost as beauty. As for me, my wish would be for wisdom. No one can deprive me of that.'
The father who had been listening silently, now stooped, and with a stick described a number of zeros in the sand, then added;
'All the things you have mentioned- beauty, riches and learning- are as nothing to a truly wise man. They are like so many zeros. But put a number before the zeros. And you turn them into a great treasure. The only thing that really matters is virtue, for virtue, alone makes a man beautiful, rich and learned.

One conspicuous question in the modern journals is: How can I develop personality?
Ursula Bloom gives this noteworthy advice to young people: Please do not do as I did, at your age, and wise years copying other people.
Of old, to the same question asked by Greek youth, Socrates replied: Know yourself! That was excellent advice; but it did not satisfy, because it did not go far enough.
When Roman youth questioned Marcus Aurelius he said: Be yourself! To the youth of our atomic age, the psychologist says: Develop yourself! That is the answer to the question:
What is personality? Personality is the development of oneself.
A merely striking beauty
Is not so hard to find;
A rate gem is wisdom
Far-reaching power of mind.

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