THE CRACKED POT
A young woman worked for a merchant who lived on top of a hill. She worked as the merchant’s laundress and every day she had to walk down the hill to collect water from a stream. She had two pots to carry water, which she hung upon a pole she could carry over her shoulders. With time one of her pots got a slender crack along its side. She observed the crack on the pot and decided she could still use it.
Every day, the woman carried those pots down the hill to the stream, filled them to the brim, and walked back up the hill, balancing the pole across her shoulders. By the time she reached the house, the cracked pot would be only half full while the other pot delivered a full portion of water.
The cracked pot glanced at the other pot and saw water filled to the top, and it began to feel desolate. The full pot was proud of its accomplishment while the cracked pot felt ashamed and miserable that it was able to accomplish only half of what it was meant to.
After a few years of what the cracked pot perceived to be a failure, it spoke to the lady. “I apologize for my flaws. The crack on my side, has made me useless. I spill half of the water. I’m of no good!” the pot said.
The lady felt sorry for the old cracked pot, and she said, ”But pot, you don’t understand. You haven’t been paying attention. Look around you. As we return to the master’s house, I want you to look at the path we traverse”.
When the lady carried the water up to the hill, the pot carefully observed the path up the hill. For the first time the pot stopped looking inward and instead looked out. On his side of the trail the pot noticed beautiful flowers growing in abundance. While the other side had no flowers.
As the women reached the top of the hill, she asked, “Did you notice the beautiful flowers on the path? They are only on your side of the path. I had always known about your crack, and I took advantage of it. From time to time, I scattered seeds on your side which you have watered over and over again. Without you being just the way you are, the path uphill would not have this beauty.”
The cracked pot was overjoyed. All its sadness was gone. He understood that the very thing he thought to be his flaw turned out to be a blessing of the flowers along his side of the path.
Every one of us is unique and we have our own flaws. And it is our little quirks and faults that make us and the world so interesting.