Virtue of the Week: Respect

Blessed In Aging

by Esther Mary Walker

Blessed are they who understand
My faltering step and shaking hand
Blessed, who know my ears today
Must strain to hear the things they say.

Blessed are those who seem to know
My eyes are dim and my mind is slow
Blessed are those who look away
When I spilled tea that weary day.

Blessed are they who, with cheery smile
Stopped to chat for a little while
Blessed are they who know the way
To bring back memories of yesterday.

Blessed are those who never say
“You’ve told that story twice today”
Blessed are they who make it known
That I am loved, respected and not alone.

And blessed are they who will ease the days
Of my journey home, in loving ways.


A Story About Respecting the Elderly

Velan was a carpenter. He was living in a village. His mother dies a long time back. His aged father, Kuppan, lived with Velan. Kuppan was very weak. He could not even walk well. He was so weak. It was because Velan did not give him enough food. He had given his father a small earthen plate. Even a small quantity of rice in the plate appeared to be much. Velan was a bad man. He was a drunkard also. After taking drinks, he abused his father badly.

Velan had a son. His name is Muthu. Muthu was just ten years old. He was a very good boy. He loved his grandfather. He had great respect for his grandfather. He did not like his father’s attitude and character, because his father was treating his grandfather cruelly.

One day Kuppan was eating his food out of earthen plate that his son had given to him. The earthen plate fell down. The plate broke into pieces. The food also fell on the floor. Velan was working at the other end of the room. He saw the broken plate. He was very angry with his father and used very harsh words to abuse his father. The old man felt bad about what happened. He was sorry for his mistake. Velan’s words wounded him very deeply.

Velan’s son, Muthu, saw this. He did not like his father. His father was ill-treating his grandfather. He was afraid to speak against his father. He was sad about his grandfather. But he was not powerful to stand in support of his grandfather.

The next day Muthu took some of his father’s carpentry tools and a piece of wood. He worked with the tools to make a wooden plate. His father saw him working.

“What are you making, Muthu?” he asked.

“I am making a wooden plate!” replied Muthu.

“A wooden plate! What for?” asked his father.

“I am making it for you, father. When you grow old, like my grandfather, you will need a plate for food. A plate made from earth mat break very easily. Then I may scold you severely. So, I want to give you a wooden plate. It may not break so easily.”


This video jars the mind about “Respect”. If we could see inside people’s hearts I think we would have more respect for them, regardless of their external trappings.