An old fable showcased the scene of a renowned scholar being ferried across a wide river. To impress the boatman, the scholar described his various acquisitions in varied learning. However, when he learnt that the boatman had been only to basic school, he declared, ‘You have wasted half your life by not going to college.’
Mid-stream, the boatman asked him, ‘Sir, did you learn to swim?’ The scholar replied that he never got the time for such things as he was pursuing greater knowledge. The boatman calmly replied, ‘well, in that case, it seems your entire life may go to waste… we are sinking!’
So often, so many of us take undue pride in our qualifications and eventually we deride the know-how of those who may not have certifications such as ours. True knowledge should bring in humility and an open mind towards other learning competencies. Arrogance leads to oversight of our own adequacies.
Learning from books can bring up only so much learning. We need to be better at practical wisdom, too. Of course, scholars would never survive without the handy knowledge possessed by those who toil. After all, earthy wisdom combines knowledge with a useful skill and the right attitude. And the right attitude is one which recognises every competency with the dignity it rightfully deserves.
No lesser are those who own a different proficiency...
Let’s BE BETTER at respecting every competency!
- Pravin K. Sabnis