The boy who learned to control his anger
Once there was a boy who had a bad temper. One day, his father gave him a bag of nails and told him that every time he lost his temper, he must hammer a nail into the back of the fence while chanting (repeating) God’s Name.
The boy carefully followed his father’s instructions and on the very first day, had driven 37 nails into the fence! Over the next many weeks, every time he got angry he started chanting and went to hammer a nail into the fence, even though his anger made it difficult to drive the nail in steadily. After some time, the boy discovered that chanting made it easier for him to control his anger and hammer those nails into the fence properly.
Soon, he realised that he was chanting even when he was not angry. As his chanting increased, his anger started to reduce and so did the number of nails hammered into the fence. Finally, the day came when the boy didn’t lose his temper unnecessarily and could chant peacefully for many hours a day, even while doing other activities.
He told his father about this and the father suggested that the boy should now pull out one nail from the fence for each day that he did not get angry. The days passed and the young boy was finally able to tell his father that all the nails were gone.
The father then took his son by the hand and led him to the fence. He said, “You have done well, my son. Now look at the holes in the fence. The fence will never be the same. Many times, we do things with an incorrect attitude, like being angry, impatient, etc., without realising the result of our actions. We often hurt other people, physically or verbally, but do not realise that the wounds we cause are like the holes in the fence. They don’t go away by just saying sorry. So, always depend on chanting. It will help you remove any defects, just as it helped overcome your anger. That is the power of God’s Name.”
Moral: Defects of personality like anger, greed, jealousy, etc. cause harm not only to others, but also to oneself. Regular spiritual practice of chanting helps overcome such defects greatly and gives the experience of happiness and peace.