When I read the prompt for today, the first thing that came to my mind was a story which mom used to tell us (me and my siblings) as children. The story goes thus:
A teacher once gave all his ten disciples a silver bowl, with a narrow neck and a deep and broader bottom. The bowls had all turned black with use. The teacher asked all the disciples to clean the bowls and bring it back to him the next day. So, all disciples got on the job and were quite happy with the results of their hard work.
The next day all the ten disciples arrived and handed over their bowls to the teacher. One of the bowls continued to be black, as it was, when it was given the previous day. This caught the teachers attention, and he asked whose bowl is this? The disciple whom it belonged to, came forward and claimed it was his.
The teacher then asked him: why haven’t you cleaned your bowl?
The disciple says, I have cleaned it.
Teacher :Then why is it still dirty?
Disciple : I have cleaned the bowl from inside. The inside is what should be clean. Please take a look at the other bowls, dear teacher, none of them are actually clean. Anyone can polish the exterior and look clean, but what is the use if there is filth inside? The same philosophy applies to human beings too. You may follow a disciplined regimen to keep your body clean, but if your mind is not pure, you continue to be impure and unclean.
The teacher was very impressed with his philosophy and he happened to be one of the favorite disciples of the teacher. The student went on to become one of the great poets, philosophers, musicians and is none other than the great saint Kanakadasa.
I feel, we should all become aware and practice, on a regular basis to clean our mind and have a pure flow of thoughts. That would then radiate on us and make us better and clean human beings !!