I came across this story a few weeks ago and promised myself that I would post it when I had a moment to record it. It was a real eye-opener for me. It made me reflect on how much noise pollution can affect us all.
Listen to the audio clip. Don’t forget to review the vocabulary first.
A sage asked his disciples, “Why do people shout at each other when they are upset?” The disciples thought for a while, and one said, “We lose our calm and so we shout!”
“But explain to me, why do you shout when the other person is right next to you?” asked the sage.“ Well, we shout in order to make sure the other person hears us”, tried another disciple.
The sage asked again:“ Isn’t it possible to speak to him or her with a soft voice? Why do you shout at a person when you are angry?” The disciples gave some answers but none satisfied the sage.
Finally, the sage explained.
“When two people are angry at each other, there is a distance which arises between their hearts. To cover that distance they must shout, to be able to hear each other. The angrier they are, the louder they will have to shout to hear each other through that great distance.” Then the sage asked, “What happens when people are in love? They do not shout at each other but talk softly. Why? Their hearts are very close. The distance between them is very small.”
The sage continued, “What happens when their love for the other grows even more? They do not speak, they only whisper. Their hearts come even closer with love. Finally, they need not even whisper… they only look at each other and that is all. That is how close people are when they love each other. The heart is like one.”
- A sage: a wise person
- A disciple: someone who accepts and spreads the teachings of a famous person.
- To shout: to say something loudly
- To be upset: to be angry or unhappy
- To arise: to happen or occur
- To whisper: to speak in a soft voice
Fluency Builder: Answer the questions with your teacher or a friend.
- What do you know about Mahatma Gandhi? Read an article on the web & tell someone his story.
- Do you believe that if we speak softly when we get angry, we can feel less upset?
- Describe the level of noise pollution in your household or office in this period.