The Leaking Basket
An old Indian farmer lived on a farm in the mountains with his young grandson. Each morning he was up early sitting at the kitchen table reading his Bhagavad Gita (Holy book). His grandson wanted to be just like him and tried to imitate him in every way he could.
One day the grandson asked, “Grandpa I try to read the Bhagavad Gita just like you but I don’t understand it, and what I do understand I forget as soon as I close the book. What good does reading the Gita do?”
The grandfather quietly turned from putting coal in the stove and replied, “Take this coal basket down to the river and bring me back a basket of water.”
The boy did as he was told, but all the water leaked out before he got back to the house. The grandfather laughed and said, “You’ll have to move a little faster next time,” and sent him back to the river with the basket to try again.
This time the boy ran faster, but again the basket was empty before he returned home. Out of breath, he told his grandfather that it was impossible to carry water in a basket, and he went to get a bucket instead. The old man said, “I don’t want a bucket of water; I want a basket of water. You’re just not trying hard enough,” and he went out of the door to watch the boy try again.
At this point, the boy knew it was impossible, but he wanted to show his grandfather that even if he ran as fast as he could, the water would leak out before he got back to the house.
The boy again dipped the basket into the river and ran hard, but when he reached his grandfather the basket was again empty. Out of breath, he said, “See grandpa, it’s useless!”
“So you think it is useless?”, the old man said, “Look at the basket.”
The boy looked at the basket and for the first time realised that the basket was different. It had been transformed from a dirty old coal basket and was now clean, inside and outside.
‘Son, that’s what happens when you read the Bhagavad Gita. You might not understand or remember everything, but when you read it, you will be changed, inside and out. That is the work of spiritual knowledge in our lives.’
Source: Indian Fable
Continue to do good even if it seems to be going nowhere. Over time, just as water polishes the stone, so too spiritual teachings smoothen the edges in the soul, making it ‘polished’, pure and clean. No inner work ever goes to waste.