Friday, January 2, 2009

OF BUMBLE BEES AND ELEPHANTS



Oh, that is a picture of the chocolates I had got for this New Year’s day. Just loved the funny bumble bee like wrappers with wings. Later at home, when I had a second look at these cute looking pieces, my mind started taking off ….

YES, there is a great message that bumble bees carry for all of us !

A bumble bee can fly (defying all laws of science as per which it should never be able to fly even an inch up) because it does not know that it can not fly . Forget about the fact that it’s flying capacity is very limited … just a little up the ground; but the fact remains that it flies !!

Contrast this with an elephant standing where it is with just a rope tied to a small little wooden pole, that it can very easily uproot and break free.

Forget about uprooting the pole and walking away, the elephant does not even try to pull out the pole because it knows (from past conditioning from childhood) that it can not do that. How ??

Elephants when they are very young are trained by their mahouts to stay at one place by tying them with thick ropes / iron chains to heavy beams or tree trunks. When the young elephant pulls to break free, it fails as it obviously can not move something like a big tree or a beam; soon it gets tired and gives up. Over a period of time, the mahout plays this trick using smaller trees and weaker poles and the elephant eventually believes that its attempts to pull out the pole will always fail. It merely gives up and stops even trying to break free whenever tied thereafter, irrespective of the size of the pole or chain.

Something similar happens with we human beings, too. People, who at tender age are too much protected or trained about what is possible and what is not, usually end up playing too safe as grown-ups, unwilling even to try out many of their goals and aspirations, as they somehow know that they can not ! Even at times, lessons we learn in our formal education which teach what can be done and what can not be done draw boundaries to our creativity and imagination. I wonder, would Thomas Edison have invented so many things , had he gone through the routine brainwashings of formal academics!! Well, not to suggest that education is bad – rather, each must appreciate what true education is . And to me, true education releases our ability to analyse, comprehend, put things to perspective and the infinite ability of one’s mind to open up beyond what has been taught .

Now coming back to my chocolates … err.. bumble bees …it occurs to me that, at times, it is much better not to know about your limitations … so that you do not limit what you can.

You limit what you can, if you think you know what you can not. Knowledge is power, no doubt about that. But do avoid this trap of knowledge !!

So, what would you like to be ?

A bumble bee

Or

A tied big elephant ( putting to shame all its might and intelligence ) staying tied to a weak pole

Or

A big elephant courageously ripping up the chains that are holding it down and

marching on into its own jungle of freedom !!

An advertisement by Nike reads as follows :

“All your life you are told the things you cannot do. All your life they will say you’re not good enough or strong enough or talented enough; they will say you’re the wrong height or the wrong weight or the wrong type to play this or be this or achieve this. THEY WILL TELL YOU NO, a thousand times no, until all the no’s become meaningless. All your life they will tell you no, quite firmly and very quickly. AND YOU WILL TELL THEM - YES.”


Everytime I read this ad, I feel a surge of renewed vigour and belief in myself. And now these bumble bee chocolates !!

9 comments:

Middle Way said...

I love this post! What a great analogy for life. I need to remember this!

snigdha said...

Nice to know that u have also visited my site and liked this post. Thanks .

Juliet - LifeMadeGreat said...

Hi Snigdha

Our beliefs can limit us so much. It's about conquering the fears that those beliefs envoke in us - not easy!

Nice analogies.

Juliet

Sneha said...

Hey!
Lovely post. Just the reinforcement one needs at times :)

snigdha said...

Yeah baby, glad that u liked - this is something one would do well to always remember in life !

Daphne said...

Hi Snigdha,

I love this post about the elephants and bumble bees! Yes, so much of what we are capable of depends on what we believe.

Hey, I've been looking for an RSS feed on your site so I can subscribe via Google reader. This way it's much easier to keep up with your updates. Sorry I've missed quite a few posts. Do you have a feed?

avinash said...

Nice post Snigdha. But how many times in life can we decide whether we want to be a bumble bee or a tied elephant? I know that's a loser line but most of the times in my life i have felt like that.

Ur posts r inspirational though. Gr8 going

Also plz visit my blog www.ideasoftheskull.blogspot.com
I m a new blogger n hope bloggers like u will help me out.

snigdha said...

Thanks Avinash.. for dropping by. Iwill definitely visit yours.

By the way, why have you missed out on the 3rd option ? Do not allow yourself to be "conditioned" and keep alive the spirit of always questioning: how real is the reality (i.e. the perceived reality)and muster up courage to ACT !!

Rajeswari said...

Hi Snigdha,
I really admire your views..And thanks for your kind words about my blog.Very precious to me.