Monthly Archives: June 2017

The Cracked Pot



A water bearer in India had two large pots, each hung on each end of a

pole which he carried across his neck. One of the pots had a crack in it,

and while the other pot was perfect and always delivered a full portion of

water at the end of the long walk from the stream to the master’s house,

the cracked pot arrived only half full. For a full two years this went on daily,

with the bearer delivering only one and a half pots full of water to his master’s house.

Of course, the perfect pot was proud of its accomplishments, perfect to the end for

which it was made. But the poor cracked pot was ashamed of its own imperfection,

and miserable that it was able to accomplish only half of what it had been

made to do. After two years of what it perceived to be a bitter failure, it spoke to

the water bearer one day by the stream.” I am ashamed of myself, and I want

to apologize to you.” “Why?” asked the bearer. “What are you ashamed of?”

” I have been able, for these past two years, to deliver only half my load

because this crack in my side causes water to leak out all the way back

to your master’s house. Because of my flaws, you have to do all of this

work, and you don’t get full value from your efforts,” the pot said.

The water bearer felt sorry for the old cracked pot, and in his compassion

he said, “As we return to the master’s house, I want you to notice the

beautiful flowers along the path.” Indeed, as they went up the hill, the old

cracked pot took notice of the sun warming the beautiful wild flowers on

the side of the path, and this cheered it some. But at the end of the trail,

it still felt bad because it had leaked out half its load, and so again it

apologized to the bearer for its failure. The bearer said to the pot,

” Did you notice that there were flowers only on your side of your path,

but not on the other pot’s side? That’s because I have always known

about your flaw, and I took advantage of it. I planted flower seeds on

your side of the path, and every day while we walk back from the stream,

you’ve watered them. For two years I have been able to pick these beautiful

flowers to decorate my master’s table. Without you being just the way you

are, he would not have this beauty to grace his house.”