Charudutt Katare

Bad Companionship Ruins Good Character

As I said in my last blog, every person teaches us something, and many a times what not to learn is equally important. Whether the wisdom collated is worth by individuals depends first on whether he or she has used the same to make changes in their personal life and next, if implemented, how many times did it make the desired change in there and in the life of the individuals around.

It’s solely on you from whom to choose and pick wisdom. What is the use of receiving wisdom from an individual who has struggled and never achieved professional and personal heights for himself and his family?

It’s imperative to know that “Bad Companionship Ruins Good Character.” (Quote by Menander)

You must have met these characters who give unmerited advice:

  • “Feel happy with what you have.”

  • “If you don’t have an updated phone or TV, no worries, Phone is merely to make calls or receive them. You can still manage to do calls and receive them with your existing phone”. The same advice goes for your TV.

  • Have you not met people who say, “Life is full of diminishing returns”, it always depreciates? At some point, more money, fame, prestige, travel, or love won’t make you any happier”. “Learn to say I have enough with whatever you have.”

  • “Some who advise, Life is not “fair.” life favors only those at the top. The world would never be fair with you”.

  • I am sure you would have come across individuals who have never tried a particular cuisine advising how good or not so good the taste is.

  • Those who advise on topics of Investment, Marriage, and Relationships while they themselves barely sustain and struggle on these fronts in their life journey.

I remember narrating this story during one of the MDP (Manager Development Program) of 2 companions, Ram and Shyam, who knew each other very well. They came from a common village, and both set out on a mission to find jobs for themselves in a nearby prosperous city. The way to the city was through a huge long river almost 40 km in distance. They boarded a small motor boat that had the capacity to occupy only 20 adults at a time. Unfortunately, the Boatman, out of greed, made 30 people aboard the small boat. While it moved on the way through the deep waters, they experienced a thunderstorm, and the small boat, notwithstanding either the excess weight as well the storm, wrecked into pieces. No idea what happened to the rest of the passengers; fortunately, Ram and Shyam got dragged to a lonely island. Just to mention, Ram was always a work-oriented and enthusiastic boy, while Shyam was a lethargic and dispassionate individual. They both knew that they had got stuck on the island and they needed to survive alone on the island till someone came to rescue them. But first thing first, they both were hungry and for survival, the only source they could find was these two tall coconut trees and the water to drink from the river. There were no fruits or edible plants, nor any fish in the river, so they knew only way to survive these hostile conditions was to climb the tall coconut trees and feed on the coconuts.

Ram said to Shyam, “Let’s climb these trees and pluck the coconuts.” Shyam laughed at Ram and said, “Are you mad look at these tall trees. It’s not possible to climb these trees; instead, let us just wait and take rest under these trees; I am sure the coconuts would fall on their own and let us eat them then”.

Ram said, “You are lazy, Shyam; I know the coconuts would not drop so soon, and I am hungry.” Shyam laughed again and said to Ram, “Go ahead; you will repent for what you are doing.” Ram started climbing a 20 feet long tree while Shyam just sat under one of the trees, watching him climb. Ram was finding it difficult to climb and slipped several times. What he could scale after several attempts was only 5 feet distance. Shyam instead only sat relaxed and mocked Ram every time he slipped. Ram got tired and sat under the tree, meantime Shyam went to him and made Ram gauge the tree from top to bottom and said: “Out of 20 feet, after almost 15 attempts, you could only scale 5 feet. Are you crazy? Listen to what I am saying; let us relax under these trees, and I am sure the coconuts will fall.” On the second day, Ram again made an attempt and could scale almost 10 feet, but hunger was making him weak and feeble, while Shyam continued to laugh out loud. Shyam again said, “Listen, brother, I am sure tomorrow the coconuts will fall, and we can easily suffice our hunger.”

On the 3rd day of their stay on the island, Ram’s body was aching, and with his energy draining, he started thinking, “Maybe what Shyam is saying has a point; let me just gulp some water and then relax under the tree, maybe the coconuts will fall automatically tomorrow.” After that day, they both waited for next 2 days; however, not even a single coconut fell from the tree.

While they waited, sitting under the tree, for the coconut to fall, they both fell asleep out of hunger and on the 6th morning, 2 big coconuts fell one each from the tree where Shyam and Ram were sleeping. There was big “Thadham” noise; the coconuts fell directly on the head of the slumbering Shyam and Ram, and both of them died instantly.

After narrating the story, I asked the listeners at the training program what you think is the moral of the story? With most of them drawing various inferences, including “The one thing that matters is the effort,” many accepted that the story was also of “Bad Companionship Ruins Good Character.”

On a lighter side, one of the audiences stood and said, “Ram and Shyam chose the wrong trees to sleep or doze under; if not those trees, they would be enjoying the coconuts today.” There was a big laugh in the conference hall, and one of his colleagues stood up and said, “My friend, I wish, instead of Shyam, you were there on that island.” Listening to the comment, the entire conference had a belly laugh.

These bring us to a very important question one should ask him or herself at every juncture of life, whether as a child or in college or while working in the corporate world or selecting your neighborhoods, “Whom did or do I hang around with?” (Except for in childhood this responsibility lies with the parents). While you cannot select your parents to whom you are born to, neither your boss, yet one thing which we all can select judiciously are the people around us at every stage of life. Rightly said by George Washington, “It is better to be alone than being in bad company.” No matter how strong you are, the bad company will always leave a negative impact leading to a mere directionless chase. Do not make your life a chase, chase things you are not aware of.

Chasing anything indiscreetly and purposelessly leads to nothing except a temporary sense of gratification and content.

I leave you with this thought, isn’t it that nowadays, chasing something we are not aware of has been the “in vogue,” the trend or buzzword?

What are your thoughts on this blog? Do like, follow, and leave comments on my website ! Your feedback is highly valued and appreciated! Don’t forget to explore my other social media platforms -LinkedIn, Instagram, and Facebook.

Share your thoughts and join the conversation!

"You cannot script genuineness-You need to find your genuine Triggers."

Charudutt Katare

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *