St. Yohanes Berkhmans Todabelu Mataloko

I love one of the stories from the book entitled Children of the Dragon.

Children of the Dragon is a name Vietnamese like to call themselves.

The book contains three folk tales of Vietnamese told from generation to generation.

One of them is “How the Tiger Got Its Stripes”.

One day a thin farmer was walking out past the rice field followed by a very big and strong water buffalo.

They took a rest near a jungle where a hungry tiger was waiting. The tiger really wanted to prey on the buffalo which enjoyed grazing the green grass.

He wondered why the buffalo obediently followed the tiny man anywhere. The buffalo couldn’t answer. He suggested that the tiger asked directly to the tiny man.

With Ha Nguyen, a lady from Vietnam

The tiny man said that it was the wisdom. The tiny man wanted to take the wisdom and share it with the tiger, but the tiger should be tied first to a coconut tree.

The tiger agreed. He was then tied to the coconut tree. The man went away only to come back soon.

“Where is the wisdom?” the tiger asked. The man laughed and said that the wisdom was inside his head.

He then set fire to the weeds at the tiger’s big feet. The rope turned black and broken, and the tiger was free. He ran quickly and plunged himself into the pool of mountain water.

He saw in his reflection big black stripes circling his golden body. He knew he would never forget the magic called wisdom.

So wisdom is magic. Wisdom saves you from danger. Wisdom changes your life. Wisdom makes your life better.

Where is the wisdom? In yourself! In your head, and in your heart. Be open-minded. Be ready to always learn. Be ready to grow!

I remember the four L told by Willy Renandya,  which are important for us: Lifelong learning, Life-deep learning (so go deeper), life-wide learning (by reading a lot), and life-wise learning.

The most important ‘L’ out of those four is the last one: life-wise learning. All the other ‘L’s are devoted to the last one: wisdom, because wisdom is magic! (Nani Songkares)