The learned Pandit

pandit in a boat

Value- Truth

Sub value- Practice

One day several men were crossing the river on a ferry boat. One of them was a learned Pandit.  The Pandit decided to discuss the Hindu scriptures with a fellow passenger in order to pass the time and show off his knowledge.

So he turned to one of them and began, I presume you have read the Upanishad?

The passenger humbly replied, No Sir, I have not!

You didn’t! said the Pandit in surprise. A quarter of your life has been wasted!�

But then you must have read Shashtras! the Pandit continued.

No, Sir, I can’t say that I have! the passenger replied, feeling quite distressed.

Well then half of your life is wasted! said the Pandit arrogantly.

What about the six systems of Hindu philosophy?asked the Pandit in a final effort to begin an intellectual discourse.

I am afraid I haven’t even heard of them, Sir! the passenger replied.

Not heard of them? Then, my friend, three-fourths of your life is wasted.

Just as the Pandit said this, he found the boat suddenly began to pitch in increasing violent waves.

There is a storm and I cannot control the boat! the boatman shouted.  It is going to capsize! Jump overboard and swim to the shore!

The Pandit looked terrified.  Don’t you know how to swim? the fellow passenger asked.

No, I never learnt swimming! the Pandit moaned.

You never learnt swimming! Then your whole life is gone, Panditji  the passenger replied smugly as he jumped out of the sinking boat.


Mere knowledge is not enough. Its practical application is needed. One may have acquired lot of knowledge and well read but when it does not help one in the time of need there is no use of that knowledge.


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