Value Of Life

Once a man went to Guru Nanak and asked him the value of life. Guru Nanak gave him a stone and told him to find its value from various people without selling it. The man went to people around him and asked them the value of the stone. A vegetable vendor offered him one sack of potatoes, a fruit seller was ready to exchange one dozen oranges, a jeweller was okay to give him thousands of rupees; and the person selling precious stones said that the stone was precious and invaluable. The man was confused and went back to Guru Nanak and again asked him the value of life. He said, “These answers explain the value of our life… You may be a precious stone, even priceless, but people will value you based on their capacity, their experience with you, belief in you, their interest to deal with you.”

I found this story very interesting and pondered upon it.

Recently the frequency of news about children getting into frustration, anxiety, depression and harming their life has increased to a great extent and the scenario is scary. It makes all of us think, “What must have gone wrong for the child to take such an extreme step?” Reasons of such cases may be low marks, high self- expectations, break-ups, pocket money, parental pressure, etc. Aren’t these very petty matters to compromise on one’s life?

Increasing competitions, rat-race, low satisfaction and materialistic approach has a major impact on our lifestyle. Consequently, stress levels are ascending and values like tolerance and patience are descending. Children are not able to handle emotions like anger, sadness, envy and jealousy which blow up into anxiety, depression and self-harming behaviours. Such behaviours may mean tremendous insecurity and low self-esteem in children. The emotional connect between parents and child is dipping and open communication between them is very rare. 

This situation needs to change now. Children must realize that their life is not so cheap that it can get swayed by small incidences. Children, set your routine in such a way that you get time to play in fresh air or ride a bicycle. Talk to your parents and friends to share your concerns and find appropriate ways to handle it. Remember, there are no problems without solutions. Consciously develop a hobby to make you feel good about yourself.

Parents need to take a step ahead to be in alignment with their child’s emotions. Sometimes over pampering or over protection also causes stress in children. Help children to practice life skills like identifying emotions and expressing them the right way. Encourage them to do better in all activities and not only academics. Most importantly accept your child as s/he is and do not compare with anyone else. Talk to them about swinging situations in life and the fact that developing resilience helps us to move ahead.

Isn’t the lesson given by Guru Nanak is a thought in itself?

Always remember,
Respect yourself, you are unique and no one can replace you!


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