It was the coldest winter ever. Many animals died because of the cold. The porcupines, realizing the situation, decided to group together to keep warm. This way they covered and protected themselves; but the quills of each one wounded their closest companions.

After awhile, they decided to distance themselves one from the other and they began to die, alone and frozen. So they had to make a choice: either accept the quills of their companions or disappear from the Earth.

Wisely, they decided to go back to being together. They learned to live with the little wounds caused by the close relationship with their companions in order to receive the warmth that came from the others. This way they were able to survive.

Source |   Jacky Ford, Assemblies for Busy Teachers
(, 2012) page 67


The best relationship is not the one that brings together perfect people, but when each individual learns to live with the imperfections of others and can admire the other person’s good qualities.


Once the Mullah tried gardening.
He planted all sorts of seeds in his garden
and waited for the beautiful flowers to spring up and bloom.
A few did come up.
But alas, the garden was mostly filled with unsightly weeds.
They grew more quickly than the flowers.
And they too budded. bloomed. and distributed wafts of seed.

In desperation the Mullah made his way to the palace
to consult with the palace gardener.
This man was known for his skill with plants.

“I have tried everything,” complained the Mullah.
“I pull them out.
l hoe them out.
I plant more flower seeds.
And what do l end up with?
Weeds! Weeds! Weeds!”

The gardener considered all this for a while.
Then he offered his wise advice:
“I think the best thing for you to do …
is learn to love the weeds.”

Source | Margaret Read MacDonald, Earth Care: World Folktales to Talk About
(August House, 2005) page 98


One other version of the story

A gardener took inordinate pride in his lawn was plagued with large crop of dandelions.

He tried get rid of them. He tried everything. Still they returned. Still they plagued him.

Finally he wrote to the local council, thinking that they must have the answer. He listed all the measures he had taken and asked “What shall I do now?” On official letterhead, by return post, the reply came: “We suggest you learn to love them.”

Source | unknown


“I destroy my enemies when I make them my friends.” | Abraham Lincoln

Sometimes in life things don’t turn out exactly as planned. The job isn’t the dream position you’d thought it was. The paradise island turns out to be a bit of a nightmare. Your partner snores at night and leaves the top off the toothpaste. Your team loses in extra time.

You can try to resist, swimming against the tide to make things different. Or, sometimes you can relax and go with the flow. Not give up exactly, just give in to the inevitable. And it’s amazing what can happen. The thing you wanted to change might just end up changing you.

Many grownups hate dandelions. But look at children. Children love them. They like to blow the seeds and see where they land.