My mother's advice: 'The truth always comes out'
With Mother's Day coming up on May 13, we invited readers to share the best piece of advice their mothers ever gave them. Here is the first set of responses!
First up is this entry from Pavan Chebolu:
While my mother has taught me many things, below are the three pieces of advice that stand out and shaped my character:
1. Never tell lies: If you tell a lie, you have to tell more lies to cover up the first one. And the truth always comes out sooner or later.
2. The secret to being happy is to give others as much as you can -- but don't expect anything in return. If you don't have expectations, you won't have a reason to feel bad.
3. One who compromises on his or her goals is a second-class citizen.
Tell us a special story about that one incident that reaffirmed your faith in your mother's judgement. Simply write in to firstname.lastname@example.org (subject line: 'My mother's advice'), because we'll be publishing the best entries right here on rediff.com
And if you can, do send in a photograph of you and your mom to publish alongside!
Image: Pavan Chebolu (right) with her mother
Photographs: Pavan Chebolu
'Her whole life from the age of 16 to 64 is an example to me'
Next we have Geeta Subramanian elaborate upon her mother's advice:
The very word 'mother' brings tears whenever uttered. I have grown up seeing this most enterprising, resourceful, truthful, straightforward lady. The best advice she gave me and even inculcated in me is dutifulness. She says no matter what, we should not forget our duties -- by fulfilling them we can always prove ourselves right.
One more thing I'd like to share here, is that she never ever gave me advice which would prove fruitful only to me; even at 40, I'm still scolded by her and shown the right path. I bow to this lady who has given birth to me and brought me up in such a way, following which I am bringing up my child. Thank you Ma, for being there.
It's not only a matter of one or two pieces of advice -- her whole life from the age of 16 to 64 is an example to me. It gives me the inspiration and courage to survive in a family and make the bonds strong enough by overcoming all odds, whatever they may be. My salute to my mother and all mothers of the world.
Photographs: Geeta Subramanian
'Never stand surety for anyone'
And here are some more motherly wise words from various readers:
It was in the first week of December 2003, when I decided to leave my hometown for further studies some 2500 kms away to be precise, that my mother whispered to me, "Be the best wherever you are and be kind to people -- not only to your superiors, but to everyone you meet".
-- Ngonyo Jacob Krocha
When people sleeps, their luck also sleeps. Even simply keeping awake will not do -- you need to keep yourself busy.
-- Deepak Padhy
"Nothing is more trustworthy than steadily building up your inner strength. Gods, gurus, scriptures, commandments, psychiatrists, counsellors, astrologers are all secondary."
Those are my mother's words. She was an agnostic, not an atheist. Despite holding a degree in philosophy, she was not an intellectual by any standards, but she had an open mind. Not a dogmatic disciplinarian, she didn't raise me in a strict parental fashion. She was not prone to giving frequent advice, but once in a while she would emphatically indicate as mentioned above. At 78, when she passed away, she looked frail, but was mentally much alert and sound. That was thirty years ago. I have benefited a great deal more from her than even from my dad, who was an internationally reputed scientist and an idealist.
-- Bhaiyya Joshi
My mom was a very simple and down-to-earth person and she seldom advised people about doing things in life. Her last and final words to me were: "Never do the wrong things in life, never stand surety for anyone and never bully anyone. The Almighty watches everybody and every good deed leads to God. Today something may be yours, but not tomorrow -- it may be someone else's. Life does not come with a guarantee."
-- Nalini Jagnat Kudalkar
This is a special thanksgiving note to my mother for all the values that she has instilled in me. As kids, we never got a chance to play with the latest gizmos etc. We were a simple middle-class family with a decent living. Today we are successful in every aspect of life because of her. We never got a chance to appreciate her for her endless sacrifices, love and devotion to her family members.
The biggest thing I've learnt from her is to make the best use of available resources. It appears a simple statement, but goes far beyond explanation. In our day-to-day lives, at times we felt deprived of costly toys, Barbie dolls etc but she was the one who tried to make us happy by teaching the art of doll-making. We were more than happy. Later on even my friends (more well off than us) asked her to make some for them. She still is a pillar of strength for all the family members. In my own quiet way, I want to thank all the mothers of society along with my mother, as it is far beyond explaining what a mother does. So THANKS...
-- Vand Sha
Illustration: Uttam Ghosh