King Krishnadeva, was a follower of Saint Tukaram whom he called as Guruji. Once Saint Tukaram asked King Krishnadeva to show his treasure. The king felt very happy and personally showed Guruji each & every corner of his rich treasure hold. It was a huge collection of diamonds, rubies & other precious stones.
Guruji – “How much profit you make from these stones?”
King – “Nothing. In fact, I have to spend a lot on keeping a tight security around them”
Guruji – “Let me show you a stone even more precious than these.”
King Krishnadeva found this a good way of having some more time with his Guruji. He knew he had the biggest and the best of precious stones. He knew, a more precious stone did not exist. However, he did not want to dampen the spirit of Guruji. He wanted to indulge Guruji. A small part of him was also curious to know if there was even the remotest of remote chances of a more precious stone existing in his kingdom without him knowing about it. In two minds, King Krishnadeva started walking with Saint Tukaram.
They left the treasure hold, they passed the market place, they were on the verge of the boundaries of the town. King Krishnadeva was getting curiouser by the minute. However, he chose to remain silent.
Saint Tukaram stopped when they reached the house of an old widow Sita Devi. She was making flour using a grind-stone. Guruji smiled. King Krishnadeva was surprised.
Guruji – “This very stone makes flour for hungry people. It helps Sita Devi make a living. Isn’t this more precious than all of your stones?”
King – “You are right, but……..”
Guruji – “There is a great difference between being expensive & being useful. What you call precious is only what you believe is expensive. Those stones have, otherwise, no value. This old rugged grind stone is helping people make a living while your stones are wasting lot of unnecessary money just on security.”
King – (Bowing down) – You have opened my eyes. I have understood the difference between precious and expensive. I will always keep this in my mind.
How about discussing this story with your children. Here are some discussion topics…
1) What are their thoughts on this story?
2) Among their possessions, do they have somethings that explains the difference between ‘Precious’ and ‘Expensive’
3) Do they see their parents make the mistake King Krishnadeva did?