Sunday, August 1, 2010

Nature - the Supreme Teacher

Age : 6+ years
From a distance it looked like a small, tiny, bright green speck on one of the branches of a huge Peepal tree. A new leaf was in the making. A new life, a new odyssey, a new journey was about to commence. It was a bright sparkling green leaf and within two days he unrolled his face towards the sun. The leaf glistened even brighter and shimmered in the rays with twinkle in the eyes. The tiny leaf was thrilled to see such beautiful world lit by shining sun all around. The dawn sun rays were slanting on the Peepal tree and were imparting a divine glow to everything that came in their fold bringing promise of a lovely day and a wonderful life. Gradually the leaf began noticing the tree he was connected to, he realized that he is a part of a huge tree, a member of a big family with many such beautiful leaves as his siblings and relatives. He was thoroughly enjoying being a part of a giant tree and to be experiencing such enchanting surroundings.

With the cheerfulness befitting a young soul as him, he got engrossed in observing and soaking up everything around him. Suddenly he heard a voice, somebody was calling him. He looked around, it was one of his relatives - a leaf just below him. But that leaf was quite unlike himself, he was all wrinkly, shriveled and almost pale yellow. The wrinkly leaf welcomed the new leaf and started talking to him as all elderly people do. They enjoy interacting with all and especially kids. The new leaf was playful and very observant too. While talking to the yellow wrinkly leaf, the young leaf asked him - "Why are you so different? Why do you have so many lines but I don't? Why do you look so shriveled?" This inquisitiveness made the wrinkly leaf laugh a little and he said, "You won't understand it now, but you will slowly come to know what these lines mean. Just keep observing things around you and you will get these same lines over a period of time."

It was spring time, the time when earth gets adorned with all fascinating new things - new baby plants raising their heads out of soil, beautiful flowers look like multicolor garlands around the necks of the plants and trees. The new leaf was feeling blessed to be a part of this big party going on in the nature. Some days passed and nature started displaying some changed colors all around, the Sun was getting more hotter, the water was less, even the soil looked very dry and cracked and the leaf felt thirsty almost all the time. Some of the little leaf's siblings and relatives were wilting, drying and dying in need of more water. But even in this scarcity, they all were trying to watch out for each other and share whatever the little water they had amongst themselves. United they stood to be of service to others forgetting about their own hardships. The little leaf learnt some most important lessons in his life during this time - sharing the limited possessions with everybody, to remain united even and especially in adversity and in spite of struggling hard to stay alive and green, the tree was always trying to be helpful to others by offering shade and resting place.
But this tough time also did not last long, soon there were gurgling and grumbling thick black clouds in the sky followed by much awaited rainfall. The parched soil got to quench its thirst to its fill and so did all the leaves, flowers, branches, stem and of course the roots. The leaf was happy for himself and for all his treemates. There was abundance of water but this was the time when they all were missing the warmth of the sunrays and then the leaf realized, it is easy to forget about the blessings when we have them. In the absence of these same blessings we tend to feel their need and value their presence in our lives.

After a couple of months it felt like the clouds have poured out all the water that they had been accumulating over time and they have no more, and the cool harsh winds started blowing and shook the trees hard. It was the dreadful time for all the leaves, especially the older ones because they were being shook vigorously by the winds and even after striving hard, they were not able to hold onto the tree. The leaf which was no longer a little leaf himself could see a lot of empty spaces being created on the grand Peepal tree, ready to welcome a new cycle of life, some new leaves and their new journeys. And on one such rough day the young leaf's first pal, the elderly leaf also bowed down to these mighty winds. The little leaf looked at the yellow leaf lying lifeless on the ground and felt a deep personal loss. While going down, the wrinkly yellow leaf asked the little leaf to now look at himself and see how many lines has he developed. The leaf did the same and was shocked to see almost the same kind of lines and wrinkles on his own face as he had noticed on the elderly leaf when he had just arrived on the tree.

The leaf was adequately equipped to comprehend everything, his own experiences had been his teacher all through. He was feeling honored to have these wrinkles as they signified his maturity over time. These were the lines of wisdom, of gain, of loss, of togetherness, of separation, of abundance, of scarcity, of life and of death. The leaf had the poise to appreciate the great inevitable changes in nature, one life making room for another for the larger betterment and growth. The leaf felt enriched and complete. These experiences were his prized treasures and the life lessons that he learnt were priceless.


  1. An excellent parable! " is easy to forget about the blessings when we have them. In the absence of these same blessings we tend to feel their need and value their presence in our lives."
    These stories should be put into a book, Vibha.

  2. Hey thanks Sandhya, I always look forward to your comments.
    Putting them in a book... a guess a long way to go still!! But would love to do that someday.

  3. Finally I got some quiet time to read it. I didn't want to read it in a rush.

    Simply beautiful, Vibha! Wonderful thoughts very well written. It reminded me of the fact that all forms of life are so similar and so closely related. Keep writing ... you are so good at it!

  4. Thanks Ruchi for such encouraging comment.


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