Criticism. Opinion. Perception.

While sitting in class, I was reminded of a story I once heard about Shiva and his wife Parvati. In this story, Shiva and Parvati wanted to understand what life was like in the human world. So they travelled to the human world using Shiva’s vehicle, Nandi the bull. Once there, they concealed their divine forms using their magical powers.

They began travelling down a path. Shiva was riding on top of Nandi and his wife was walking beside him. A human passing by thought to himself, “Why does that man ride on the back of that bull and make his wife walk, what a cruel man he is, he should be the one walking.” Hearing the thoughts of the passer-by, Shiva got off Nandi and placed his wife on the back of the bull.

Then another human passed by and thought, “Look at that man he is hen-pecked by his wife, he should put his wife in her place.” Hearing this Shiva asked his wife to come back down, which she did. Then they both together walked beside the bull.

A third time, a human walked by and thought, “Look at those two fools walking when instead they could be riding on the back of that bull in comfort and style, never before have I seen such foolishness.” After hearing this, both Shiva and his wife got on the back of the bull and began going down the path.

When they came across a fourth human, the human seeing them thought, “How cruel, those two are forcing that bull to support all of their weight, they should be ashamed of their cruelty.”

After hearing the thoughts of the fourth human, Shiva and Parvati grew tired of the human world and returned to their heavenly realm.