April 07, 2009

Sand And Stone

Two friends were walking through the desert. During some point in their journey, they had an argument, and one friend slapped the other one in the face.

The one who got slapped was hurt, but without saying anything, wrote in the sand:

"Today, my best friend slapped me in the face."

They kept on walking, until they found an oasis, where they decided to take a bath.

The one who had been slapped, got stuck in the mire and started drowning, but the friend saved him.

After he recovered from the near drowning, he wrote on a stone:

"Today, my best friend saved my life."

The friend who had slapped, and then saved his friend, asked him, "After I hurt you, you wrote in the sand, and now you write on a stone, why?"

The friend replied, "When someone hurts us we should write it down in sand, where winds of forgiveness can erase it away. But when someone does something good for us, we must engrave it in stone, where no wind can ever erase it."

I think that writing your hurts in the sand, and carving your benefits in stone, might be a hard thing to do sometimes, but it would probably be very good for one's mental and emotional peace of mind to do so.

The thing is, that it's often easier said, than done.

A Story Of Two Pictures (A Re-Post)

The part of history that I read concerning the Apache warrior, Gernonimo, was sad, to me. When I posted that, I, obviously, was unaware of another part of his history depicting the heinousness of his treatment of his captives. I know that he went after his enemies with a vengeance because of what happened to his wife, children, and mother, and I don't know how to evaluate that.

Why do any of us do the things that we do, that go against the values and morals of another? I think in the grand scheme of things that the choices we make in our lives are greatly influenced by past circumstances, whether good or bad. That said, it is still our choice to make.

It could be said that our environment has everything to do with what we become, but if that were completely true, I would hate to think of where, or what, I would be now.

Thinking about all of that reminded me of this poem:

A Story of Two Pictures

Two pictures hung on the dingy wall
Of a grand old Florentine hall-

One of a child of beauty rare,
With a cherub face and golden hair;
The lovely look of whose radiant eyes
Filled the soul with thoughts of Paradise.

The other was a visage vile
Marked with the lines of lust and guile,
A loathsome being, whose features fell
Brought to the soul weird thoughts of hell.

Side by side in their frames of gold,
Dingy and dusty and cracked and old,
This is the solemn tale they told;

A youthful painter found one day,
In the streets of Rome, a child at play,
And, moved by the beauty it bore,
The heavenly look that its features wore,
On a canvas, radiant and grand,
He painted its face with a master hand.

Year after year on his wall it hung;
'Twas ever joyful and always young-
Driving away all thoughts of gloom
While the painter toiled in his dingy room.

Like an angel of light it met his gaze,
Bringing him dreams of his boyhood days,
Filling his soul with a sense of praise.

His raven ringlets grew thin and gray,
His young ambition all passed away;
Yet he looked for years in many a place,
To find a contrast to that sweet face.

Through haunts of vice in the night he stayed
To find some ruin that crime had made.
At last in a prison cell he caught
A glimpse of the hideous fiend he sought.

On a canvas weird and wild but grand,
He painted the face with a master hand.

His task was done;'twas a work sublime-
An angel of joy and a fiend of crime-
A lesson of life from the wrecks of time.

O crime: with ruin thy road is strewn;
The brightest beauty the world has known
Thy power has wasted, till in the mind
No trace of its prescence is left behind.

The loathsome wretch in the dungeon low,
With a face of a fiend and a look of woe,
Ruined by revels of crime and sin,
A pitiful wreck of what might have been,
Hated and shunned, and without a home,
Was the child that played in the streets of Rome.

Origin and Author Unknown

*I posted this, originally, in 2007. It seems that I have come to a stand-still when it comes to writing anything worthwhile, lately. I hope you all can bear with me, until I can get back into the swing of things.