Making the field fertile

Paulo Coelho

The Zen master entrusted the disciple with looking after the rice patch.

In the first year the disciple took care that the necessary water was never lacking. The rice grew strong and it was a good harvest.

In the second year he had the idea of adding a little fertilizer. The rice grew fast and the harvest was bigger.

In the third year he used more fertilizer. The harvest was even bigger, but the rice came up small and had no shine to it.

“If you go on increasing the amount of fertilizer, you will have nothing of any value next year,” said the master. “You give someone strength when you give a little help. But you weaken him if you help too much.”

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Comments

  1. munrocea says:

    A great lesson indeed. I noticed this when watering the garden plants during the dry Hamattan season (West Africa)… too much water too soon and the plant was not strong enough or prepared: the banana plant took on too much growth, brought on flower and tiny fruit, then in the end the branch/stem/trunk (??) collapsed under the weight.

    But also, I could also say – after a childhood of a very exuberant mother to live up to as a daughter, that I really appreciated then and more so now, everything she ever ever did for me. Life isn't all smooth coasting and to know there are immovable, unshakable, yet falliable 'rock's to lean against is perhaps that which allows me greatest strength to grow..
    Life and love are here to be shared… no one is an ace parent are they – I mean, where is the manual book?

    On helping colleagues, this is another issue for me – I find they take on the support, then step up using me as a stepping stone…. great.

    and as for fertilising rice – just make sure it is organic please ;o)
    it's all about balancing the elements.
    bit like parenting i would guess.

    hugs.

  2. Borgny Sofie*Norway says:

    Yes!
    … and that is exactly the reason why I intend becoming a co-active coach;
    To help people helping themselves –
    the answer and treasure is always inside*

  3. Cristina says:

    You weaken him because you make a substitution of your path and your intentions to the path and intentions of the person you want to help.
    Brida docet (= latin: Brida-the Wizzard of Folk, teaches so).
    have a nice day.
    PS.
    Paul from Austria,we are with you.

  4. On helping colleagues munrocea, don’t feel you didn’t help, forgive them, and depending how well you know them, if you make an effort to communicate with them, you’ll understand why. But either way, I don’t think it was time wasted.

    Everyone learns in their own pace, on their own path, no reason to not show kindness!

    love,
    xxoo

  5. Leen says:

    I’m a midwife and this story is so true for the whole delivery process. I think I’ll use the little story to explain to pregnant women that it is so important that we can be there for them, that we can guide them and support them, and sometimes help them little if necessary at the right moment. But that it is so important that we let nature speak so that the mothers body and the baby have all the time they need…

    Love

    Leen

  6. Alex M Uk says:

    Annie –
    I love the story you have shown us, thank you for sharing it, I will keep it and read it from time to time to remind me :)
    Alex
    xx

  7. THELMA says:

    My dear Sido, thank you for your .. Greek comments. It shows that you want to reach me and my heart. I, very much, appreciate it. I love you. The translator does not make a … clear translation. So please will you put it in English. Sorry.
    One day I tried to check the translations that the Google makes. To translate the Blog into Greek. Well it is a … disaster. Sorry to say it, my dear beautiful Paula!
    Love,
    Thelma

  8. Candie says:

    ..We don’t see the end of it!One is making a move foward and the other one is making a move backward than the next day,it’s the contrary..

  9. Irina Black says:

    Equilibrium.What is enough?People belong to different cultures.Overstatement can be as much harmful as understatement.Romantics and pragmatics always straggle to find a compromise.To give and to take-some people can do both.

  10. Alex M Uk says:

    Paul,
    Thank you for your thoughtful words.. much appreciated
    Alex

  11. sido says:

    Thelma ,

    μεταξύ των καλύτερων σας. αν με τον τρόπο που ήθελε ήταν να μην γίνει. επειδή μόνο το δρόμο της καρδιάς σου είναι καλή. Αμούρσκαγια ομπλάστ

  12. THELMA says:

    “Pan Metron Ariston” was a common expression in ancient Greece which translates as “all good things in moderation.”
    ” Πάν μέτρον άριστον”
    To keep the Balance, in everything, although this contradicts with my idea of being enthusiastic and passionate!
    This was the motto of my father who wanted to keep me always in the ‘golden middle way’! In a way it is a wise path, to know how to master your .. passions.;]
    LOVE,
    Thelma

  13. Evuab says:

    Not a Monsanto crop I hope.

  14. Alexandra says:

    Ah, so right.Is true,and I remember that while having the class.I must keep patience and wait for the reply,even if would be easy giving some hints to move on sooner.And most of the times,with some hesitation,the students did have the right reply.Same for the homeworks.Many take private teacher and they expect to do instead of them the homeworks or essays.I never do such,first I discuss the topic with the pupil,to force him to cooperate,so we do the homework together ,I guide and help ,not do the whole in no one place.
    And,from the satisfaction and good marks of my students,I see its working .

  15. Alexandra says:

    Zen master? Thats a problem we have everywhere now.Tomatoes with no taste,but big, apples that seem cart board, so on.But,the bio products you can buy ,at a higher price.Why? That should be normal,to buy bio products at a normal price.

  16. sido66 says:

    “un verre ça va , deux verres ça va , trois verres bonjour les dégâts ….” hips tching tching

  17. munrocea says:

    A great lesson indeed. I noticed this when watering the garden plants during the dry Hamattan season (West Africa)… too much water too soon and the plant was not strong enough or prepared: the banana plant took on too much growth, brought on flower and tiny fruit, then in the end the branch/stem/trunk (??) collapsed under the weight.

    But also, I could also say – after a childhood of a very exuberant mother to live up to as a daughter, that I really appreciated then and more so now, everything she ever ever did for me. Life isn’t all smooth coasting and to know there are immovable, unshakable, yet falliable ‘rock’s to lean against is perhaps that which allows me greatest strength to grow..
    Life and love are here to be shared… no one is an ace parent are they – I mean, where is the manual book?

    On helping colleagues, this is another issue for me – I find they take on the support, then step up using me as a stepping stone…. great.

    and as for fertilising rice – just make sure it is organic please ;o)
    it’s all about balancing the elements.
    bit like parenting i would guess.

    hugs.

  18. Alex M Uk says:

    Great lesson, my daughter is almost 16 and ready to leave school and make decisions regarding her future. I know that I spoil her a little too much and this lesson helps me to know that I need to let her grow herself and not do too much for her as even though it seems natural for me to do everything for her, she becomes dependent on it and then is not gaining strength in life to be able to stand on her own two feet. Reading this has helped me realise that I am not doing her good by doing too much for her, so now I need to let her grow.