Velan was a carpenter. He lived in a village. His mother died a long time back. His aged father, Kuppan, lived with him. Kuppan was very weak. He could not even walk well. 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 and after drinking abused his father.
Velan had a son. His name was Muthu. Muthu was just 10 years old. He was a 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 treated his grandfather cruelly.
One day Kuppan was eating the food his son had given him. The plate fell down and broke into pieces. Velan was working at the other end of the room. He saw the broken plate. He was very angry with his father and used 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. But he was not strong enough 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. A plate made from clay breaks very easily. Then I may scold you severely. So, I want to give you a wooden plate. It may not break so easily.”
The carpenter was shocked to hear this. Only then he realised his mistake. Kuppan was kind to Velan. He had looked after Velan very well. Now, he was old but Velan was treating him badly. Velan felt very sad about his own behaviour. He realised his mistakes. He then became a different person.
From that day, Velan treated his father with great respect. He gave up drinking too. Velan had learnt a lesson from his own son.
Moral of the story: You should honour your parents at all times. It is your duty. It brings you their blessings.
Compiled by Dennis Agaba