Sunday 13 July 2014

A parable about wind

There was once a house shared by four old friends, Shona, Elizabeth, Wyn and Niamh. They had lived together for a long time. They all spoke the same language, with slightly different accents, and had broadly similar attitudes and cultures. Over time some friction developed in this house, primarily over bills, how to share out money and how to run the house. Shona decided to leave. But did Shona now want to live on her own? On the contrary, she now wanted to live in a large dormitory, containing not only her former housemates, but also people with very different languages and cultures. The residents of the dormitory wondered whether they really wanted such a fractious new dormitory member. If Shona could not bear to live in the same house as her English speaking former housemates, would she not be a source of trouble and disharmony in the dormitory? If English speakers could not bear to live together what example would that set to the Spanish speakers or the German speakers? The members of the dormitory got together to decide if they should let Shona come and live there. They elected a Luxembourger whose name sounded like rubbish but whose advice was anything but. He looked in an old book and found a proverb saying sorry Shona “She who troubleth her own house shall inherit the wind.”