In a village just outside a big city lived a mother with her son. Unlike other children, the boy didn’t go to school. Instead he received a home-schooling education from his mother. He was a fast learner and in his teenage years he grew an astute figure.
Everyone of his relatives wanted to know what the son wanted to be when he grew up but they never received an answer from him. Only to his mother that he said, “Mother, I think for centuries our country had been led by the wrong people, people who didn’t care about their fellow countrymen.” Somewhat pledging, he continued, “I want to be the president of our country, mother. I want to work for the people, to lead our country into prosperity. That’s what I want to do with my life, mother.”
His mother nodded and replied, “Then prepare yourself for it, my son.”
Years went by; the son went overseas to advance his education. Six years later he returned to his home country and kept his pledge to work for the people. After ten years of a promising political career, he was elected president.
He was the right man in the right place, wise, astute, and patient. He chose the right people in his government and made nothing but well-informed decisions and sound policies. Within two years his country developed into a strong economy. Prosperity was not beyond the grasp of the commoners, even the peasants. The education level of the country was also well-developed that now it became a well-respected country in the eyes of other countries.
However his successes were the source of envy of his political opponents, some of whom were once his dear friends. After their propagandas were to no avail, they started creating riots to destabilize the nation.
The president, knowing that there were a group of people who wanted to see him fall from his throne, turned to his mother who was sitting in the garden of his presidential palace. Complaining about their ingratitude and insolent behaviors, he feared that one day their radicalism might result in him falling in dishonor.
His mother smiled. Soon she replied, “My son, you once said that you wanted to be a president and now you are given the chance. You have emerged at the top of your people. Like a palm tree you have grown so tall. Foliage and bushes are free from the wind, but only the tall trees catch violent wind. Now if you don’t want to get troubled by so much wind, then don’t grow so tall.”
The president felt his mother was slapping his face with her words, but nevertheless he listened to her intently. Standing before the tall palm tree, he gazed at the tree, delving himself into the world of the transcendence, contemplating. Understanding the message, he promised to his mother and to himself not to complain again.
Written by Subhan Zein in Canberra, 22 January 2012