Life Is Like Coffee (Revisited)


The following is an often-quoted parable by an unknown author. With credit to her or to him, I am passing it along once again with a few short concluding remarks.

“A group of alumni, highly established in their careers, got together to visit their old university professor. Conversation soon turned into complaints about stress in work and life.Offering his guests coffee, the professor went to the kitchen and returned with a large pot of coffee and an assortment of cups – porcelain, plastic, glass, crystal, some plain looking, some expensive, some exquisite – telling them to help themselves to the coffee.When all the students had a cup of coffee in hand, the professor said: “If you noticed, all the nice looking expensive cups have been taken up, leaving behind the plain and cheap ones. While it is normal for you to want only the best for yourselves, that is the source of your problems and stress.

Be assured that the cup itself adds no quality to the coffee. In most cases it is just more expensive and in some cases even hides what we drink. What all of you really wanted was coffee, not the cup, but you consciously went for the best cups… And then you began eyeing each other’s cups.

Now consider this: Life is the coffee; the jobs, money and position in society are the cups. They are just tools to hold and contain Life, and the type of cup we have does not define, nor change the quality of life we live.

Sometimes, by concentrating only on the cup, we fail to enjoy the coffee. Savor the coffee, not the cups! The happiest people don’t have the best of everything. They just make the best of everything. Live simply. Love generously. Care deeply. Speak kindly.”

Are you more preoccupied with the size, condition, and style of yours or other’s cups? If you are, don’t scold yourself, but do take a moment to savor the coffee in your cup. When we get too caught up with the coffee cups of life, they can be the obstacles to keep us from moving from success to significance. That’s what we all came here for in the first place isn’t it? And on your deathbed, I’ll bet that it is the taste and rich aroma of that coffee that you will remember and not the container.

P.S. And I’m not even a coffee drinker! LOL



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