Today, the first parable from the new category of posts, which we called "coaching stories" on our coaching blog. Their aim will be to inspire and invite reflection on various topics.
And we will do it using various stories, parables, and even fairy tales and jokes. Let the power of metaphor, imagination, and sense of humor work in all their glory!
Often the hero of our parables will be the Master - the Wise Mentor. And his answers to a variety of students' questions will reveal deeply hidden truths. And often such truths that we have right in front of our noses, but we can't see them.
We start with the story of the jug. In a nutshell, it says that the most important thing in life is to know what is most important to YOU.
The Master's Tale of Filling the Pitcher
One day, as usual after the martial arts exercises, the master was answering the students' questions and doubts. There were a lot of them that day because yesterday they all returned from the city, where they met with students from other schools at the annual competition.
The meeting was full of various comparisons and assessments. The students had a bit of a grudge against their master for not teaching them the details and secrets of combat, but for paying attention to meditation, mind, condition, inner peace, and emotional control. It is different in other schools. They teach kicks, holds, and punches right away there.
The master listened and did not look surprised at all. At one point he turned to one of the students and said:
- Take this jug and fill it with stones.
The student was throwing stones into the pitcher. He chose as big as possible in order to quickly complete the ordered task.
"Done," he said.
The master looked at the filled jug and turned to all the disciples:
- Is the pitcher full?
"Full," they almost replied in chorus.
- Are you sure it's full? The master asked again.
- Yes, it's full, no stone will fit anymore.
Then the master started pouring gravel into the pitcher. Several handfuls of it fit. The students looked speechless, and the master asked:
- Is it full now?
- Well, a fantastic example, Master. But you outsmarted us, the students replied with a laugh. - It's only now full.
Then the master started pouring fine sand. And again he poured over a dozen handfuls. None of the students laughed this time.
"It's full now," they replied.
Then the master started pouring water into the jug and poured a dozen or so measuring cups. The students watched silently.
- Is it full now? The master asked again.
"Yes, it must be full now," they said firmly.
And the master started slowly pouring salt in and poured in a dozen handfuls again ...
If you start filling the pitcher with small stones, gravel, or salt, there will be no place for large stones.
If you start filling your head with details and trifles,
there will be no room for really important matters.
The story comes from the book “Bajki chińskie, czyli 108 opowieści dziwnej treści” by Zbigniew Królicki