Tuesday, February 25, 2014

How to Help Others - A Parable of Two Brothers

Two brothers grew up and went there separate ways. One became a scientist at the University of Tokyo. The other became a businessman in Mexico City, Mexico. They were each very successful and one day while talking on the phone they decided they wanted to contribute back to the world some of their own great fortune.

The two brothers decided they would start by using their talents to help people locally. The scientist in Japan had an elder widow neighbor whose yard and hedges were overgrown as she wasn't able to do the work. The businessman in Mexico also had an elder widow neighbor that had trouble keeping her property groomed.

The scientist decided he would build a mobile robot with scissor-like extensions to do yard work. He solicited charity funds and accumulated a team of scientists. They worked night and day for weeks and weeks designing their robot.

The businessman looked around the neighborhood and found a boy from a poor family with no means to earn money. He made a deal to buy him a lawnmower if he would mow his yard once a month for one summer and mow the widow's yard for a reasonable fee that the widow could afford whenever she needed it. The boy accepted the deal. The business man bought him a lawnmower.

Eventually the scientist and his team spent a million dollars building the scissor-hands robot over the next year. It never really walked right, kept falling down, and sometimes cut up the wrong things. The team of scientists eventually got bored and determined this was going to be an ongoing project and went their separate ways finding more interesting things to build and do.

The boy that the businessman made a deal with eventually bought a another lawn mower and other equipment like rakes, clippers and a trailer to haul them. He mowed the widow lady's lawn when needed and also many of the other people's lawns in the neighborhood. He eventually had a sizable business and hired other young men to work for him.

The two brothers eventually talked again and related their efforts. The businessman told how he eventually started other young men who worked and developed skills in the neighborhood. One boy became a house painter after he had bought a sprayer, ladder and brushes. Another became a carpenter who fixed roofs and repaired houses once he bought and learned to use a saw and a hammer. The area thrived and grew into a lovely neighborhood to live in.

The scientist brother told how he was still working on his robot, and though it was not working very well yet, declared proudly that once it was completed, it would be able to do the work of 10 young men. His neighborhood eventually deteriorated and many people moved away. The widow eventually died with her lawn and hedges looking poor and overgrown.

The End