A student was one day taking a walk with a professor. The Professor was commonly called the students’ friend because of his kindness and patience in dealing with them.

As the two walkers meandered, they saw a pair of old shoes lying on the path. They supposed that it belonged to a poor man who was working in a field nearby.OLD SHOE

It was nearing the end of day. The student turned to the professor, saying: “Let us play a trick on the man who must be nearly finishing his day’s work. We will hide his shoes, and conceal ourselves behind those bushes, and wait to see his perplexity when he cannot find them.”

“My young friend,” answered the professor, “we should never amuse ourselves at the expense of someone. But you are rich, and may give yourself a much greater pleasure which means a lot to the poor man. Put a coin into each shoe, and then we will hide ourselves and watch how the discovery affects him.”

The student did so and they both hid themselves behind the bushes close by.

The poor man soon finished his work, and came across the field to the path where he had left his coat and shoes.

While putting on his coat he slipped his foot into one of his shoes; but feeling something hard, he stooped down to feel what it was, and found the coin. His face glowed with astonishment and wonder. He gazed upon the coin, turned it round, and looked at it again and again. He then looked around him on all sides, but no person was to be seen. He put the money into his pocket and then began to slip his other foot into the remaining shoe. Imagine how his surprise was doubled on finding the other coin.

His feelings overcame him. He fell upon his knees, looked up to heaven and uttered aloud a fervent thanksgiving. man-praying-on-one-knee2He spoke of his sick and helpless wife, his children without bread and gratitude to the generous person who had gifted him the timely bounty. His family was saved from perishing by an unknown hand.

The student stood there deeply affected, his eyes filled with tears. “Now,” said the professor, “are you not much better pleased than if you had played your intended trick?”

The youth replied, “You have taught me a lesson which I will never forget. I feel now the truth of those words, which I never understood before:
‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’

About padmum

You could call me Dame Quixote! I tilt at windmills. I have an opinion on most matters. What I don't have, my husband Raju has in plenty. Writer and story teller, columnist and contributer of articles, blogs, poems, travelogues and essays to Chennai newspapers, national magazines and websites, I review and edit books for publishers and have specialized as a Culinary Editor and contributed content, edited and collaborated on Cookbooks. My other major interest used to be acting on Tamil and English stage, Indian cinema and TV. I am a wordsmith, a voracious reader, crossword buff and write about India's heritage, culture and traditions. I am interested in Vedanta nowadays. I am now an Armchair traveller/opinionator/busybody!
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  1. Maxi says:

    This is a heart warming story, Padmum and a stunning lesson. Thank you for sharing.
    blessings ~ maxi


  2. Noopur says:

    Beautiful story… I liked the way professor guided his student. The poor man got big happiness, from the very little efforts.


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