As I was going to cook curry today, I entrusted my son with a list of ingredients and told him to bring them soon. When he returned, I remembered that I had forgotten to tell him to bring curry leaves and felt ashamed to tell him to go again and bring them. But getting curry leaves wasn’t an issue because the house we resided in had an enormous curry tree with huge branches always swinging in the wind. Most passers-by felt it was their duty to snatch its leaves. People do not consider it a sin to pick and eat things from vendors’ carts or to pluck flowers and leaves in someone else’s garden without permission. For me, educating my children in a community, where such stealing is not considered unlawful, was and is a great challenge. Because my children consider cheating very bad, they suffered a lot in examination room, and its impact could be clearly seen in their results.
Finally, I told my son to ask the elderly lady, who resided below and was the owner of the house, to give us some curry leaves. My son went to her and asked her for the leaves. She said: “Pluck them from the tree – there is no need to ask permission for this.” The matter was solved, curry was ready and I was feeling happy in my heart.
Truly, there was strength in her speech: where stealing is considered to be a sin, asking others for things is also not a good option.
Later, I told my mother this story, feeling proud and brave. However, my good- hearted mother made me re-think the whole scenario and said: “Noor-ul-Ain, it would have been great, if you would not have sent your child there asking for curry leaves. Tell me, would you feel good seeing your children ask things from others? Make them self-reliant. It would have been a lot better, if you would have cooked the curry without the curry leaves or sent him again to the market.” I felt ashamed in front of her. Truly, there was strength in her speech: where stealing is considered to be a sin, asking others for things is also not a good option.
My mother gave special attention to her children’s training. Her golden principles helped us in training our children. Mothers should train their children, focusing on instilling good moral and social values in them – this will help build a healthy community as well as fulfill the dream of our leaders: Quaid-e-Azam and Allama Iqbal.