The Boatman And The Student

I read the following story in Krishna Voice and wish to share it.

In India, especially in Bengal, there are many rivers. One student of technology was going home, and he was on the boat.

The student asked the boatman, "Do you know what the stars are?"

The boatman said, "Sir, I'm an ordinary boatman. What do I know about these stars?"

"Oh. Then fifty percent of your life is wasted, useless."

Then he asked, "Do you know about these trees? Do you know any science of botany?"

The boatman said, "Sir, I'm an ordinary laborer. What do I know about botany?"

"Oh. Then seventy-five percent of your life is useless."

In this way the student of technology was asking the boatman, "Do you know this? Do you know that?" And the boatman was replying, " I'm an ordinary man. What do I know all these things?"

Then all of a sudden there was a black cloud, and there was a storm, and the river began to well, and the boatman said, "My dear sir, do you know to swim?"

"Oh," the student said, "no."

"Then your knowledge is a hundred percent spoiled. Now you've to go down the river. Your life is finished."

They dropped into the river, and the technology student, because he did not know to swim, was grabbed by the waves in the storm.

Moral: Modern technology has no remedy for birth, death, old age, and disease. These are the real problems. But these problems cannot be solved by modern scientific advancement of knowledge, they have practically been set aside.


  1. very true. :-)
    v find so many ppl who boast of their knowledge but which is of no use without wisdom

  2. good inference ...human beings need to be reminded ....


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