Simplicity wins hearts

The following story is from “The Alchemist“.

“Our Lady, with the Baby Jesus in her arms, decided to come down to Earth and visit a monastery.  The monks proudly joined in a long queue, and each of them came before the Virgin to render their homage.  One declaimed beautiful poetry, another showed his illuminated paintings of biblical subjects, a third repeated the names of all the Saints.  And so on, one monk after the other, praising Our Lady and the Baby Jesus.

The last monk of all there, was the humblest in the whole monastery, who had never studied the learned books of the time.  His parents were simple people, who worked in an old travelling circus, and all they had taught him was to throw balls into the air and juggle with them.

When it was his turn, the other members of the order wanted to bring the homage to a conclusion, since the old juggler would have nothing important to say and might lower the image of the monastery.  But in the bottom of his heart, he also felt a burning need to give something of himself to Jesus and the Virgin.

Ashamed, conscious of the disapproving looks of his brothers, he took a few oranges from his bag, and started to juggle them in the air, saying that juggling was all he knew how to do.

It was at that moment that the Baby Jesus, sitting on Our Lady’s lap, smiled and started to clap his hands.  And the Virgin reached out her arms, inviting him to hold the baby.”

I read this and re-read this a dozen times and I am so happy that this story goes on to impress on the fact – Follow thy heart.

Sometimes, even learning the books of the time and reciting them, might not have any meaning to life, if that is not what your heart want.

That simple juggler was the only one who made Baby Jesus happy, because he did what his heart told him to do.  And there is no need to shy away from doing juggling, among the learned people.  When you be yourself, you are being honest and it will help you to shine among others.

And that holds true in front of God.  The other monks who recited poems or the names of all the saints were not called by the Virgin to come and hold the Baby.  Its simplicity that always wins and simplicity is just by following thy heart.


36 Replies to “Simplicity wins hearts”

    1. beautiful ! How simply you expressed that ‘simplicity’ carried so much importance..Yes,being yourself and honest are the two best things one can do in one’s life…

      Liked reading it ! 🙂


    2. Yes, Nu, first indeed. 🙂

      I loved this simple story and the simple thing which it tried to tell us all. Its what my heart cries for all the time.


      1. you know I’ve read this novel already but haven’t given this scene so much importance..sometimes what we might overlook is what other’s point out and bring it to you 🙂 you just did that 🙂


      1. LOL Nu !!! 🙂

        Absolutely Swaram, thats why I sometimes end up reading the same book many a times…would love to know the intricate meanings between lines and relate them to my life. 🙂


    1. Yes, Shilpa, we complicate more and more and brood and sulk at what to do….Some truths abt life are so simple, that we dont see them as lessons. 🙂


  1. How true!!! … We often undermine our strengths as something ‘passe’ without realising that they have the power to win over hearts! Well nicely written Uma 🙂


    1. Thanks Sagarika, yes, the human mind is capable of understanding whats the best thing to do, but we always fail to listen to our heart. Lets take time out of our busy life, to listen to what our heart is telling us. 🙂


  2. Simply superb… Thanks for sharing this 🙂 one Have to follow what their heart says… But the fear of losing and disapproval makes us to take a different course 😦 I thought i Have read this book… But i didn’t read properly… I Have to read it again…


    1. I think thats the biggest job every human being has – to thrash the fear which surfaces when he wants to follow his heart, isnt it ??? Even though its so simple in words, its damn difficult when faced with real life situations……but we should try and succeed.

      Its in the preface of the book, Kanagu, by the author himself. I read from cover to cover. 🙂


  3. Good one.

    I donno if this is relevant here, but for my first interview with a well known pharamceutical, I did something similar (though I laugh at my own guts now) ! It was the first round and we were about 26 in all. Each of us were asked to speak for 5 mins on a subject known very well. One by one, people got up to speak and they spoke on globalisation, chemistry, managament and what not. I believe, I was the 11th or 12th person and I had no clue on what to speak till my turn came. and when it finally came, I got up and said, “The topic I know the most is about me and I am going to bore you all with something on myself” . I then continued for 5 mins speaking about my background and finally sat down. and at the end, I was one among the chosen 5 for the next round 🙂


    1. I appreciate you, Vimmuuu, for being honest and simple at the same time. Thats why you got selected. Yes, its absolutely relevant. Glad you shared it here. 🙂


  4. When there is a fight between the heart and the mind…Just listen to your heart and you will be the most happiest and the most satisfied person…..
    Thanks for sharing this wonderful story..:) 🙂


  5. Wow. Nice one. I’ve read this book thrice — but this particular portion didnt really stay in mind. Now, it always will. Amazing how someone else’s perspectives can open our eyes sometime 🙂


    1. Truly said, Priya. Perspectives differ. If I like a particular part of the book, I read it and re-read it again, to make sure it stays with me. 🙂


  6. Its lovely Uma!!!! I’ve read it earlier but rereading hasnt dimmed its significance one bit….thanks for sharing!!!

    Infact I’d love to come across it again and again…


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