Parable of the spoons

meditation-2214532_1280A holy man was having a conversation with the Lord one day and said, “Lord, I would like to know what Heaven and Hell are like.” The Lord led the holy man to two doors.

He opened one of the doors and the holy man looked in. In the middle of the room was a large round table. In the middle of the table was a large pot of stew which smelled delicious and made the holy man’s mouth water.

The people sitting around the table were thin and sickly. They appeared to be famished. They were holding spoons with very long handles and each found it possible to reach into the pot of stew and take a spoonful, but because the handle was longer than their arms, they could not get the spoons back into their mouths. The holy man shuddered at the sight of their misery and suffering. The Lord said, “You have seen Hell.”

They went to the next room and opened the door. It was exactly the same as the first one. There was the large round table with the large pot of stew which made the holy man’s mouth water. The people were equipped with the same long-handled spoons, but here the people were well nourished and plump, laughing and talking.

The holy man said, “I don’t understand.”

“It is simple,” said the Lord. “You see, they have learned to feed each other while the greedy think only of themselves.”

~ author unknown



The story suggests that people have the ability to help and nourish each other. Each has been blessed with that ability. But those that refuse this ability are left to suffer., but the problem, as Haim points out, lies in how the people treat each other.

It also shows that hell isn’t eternal fires. Instead, it is a painful circumstance caused by a person’s way of thinking. And in order for that person to end their suffering, they must change their ways.

It emphasizes the need for us to work together. In separation, we destroy each other. But in unity, we create a world of beauty, abundance, health, love, peace and happiness.

What about you? What messages do you see?