“There’s a sure way to be well liked, to gain a lot of good friends, to be respected in your community and have plenty of opportunities come your way. Show your good self always.”
One of the most important tenets of Chinese art is continuity. A painter or potter is highly respected if he could copy the works of his master to such extraordinary likeness that one cannot differentiate his work from that of his master’s when placed side by side. Likewise, his master would win praises for his generosity in imparting his knowledge and skills to his disciples to such a degree that not only his disciple is now at par with him in terms of skill and creativity, continuity is assured even when he is no longer capable. From there, the disciples would be encouraged to develop styles of their own under the watchful eye of the master and that is how Chinese art sustains and evolve. With duplicates around. And only those with training, experience and a keen eye can differentiate the copies from it’s original.
“Some twenty five years ago I found a wallet stashed with some cash and a cash cheque amounting to rm22-25k (can’t remember the actual figure) while I was alighting from my car. And so, I took it upon myself to contact the person who lost it even though I was taken on a wild goose chase all over the island. Those days no one carries handphones around. What more, his name was not even listed inside the phone directory. And whatever the circumstance was, and how inconvenient that would make me, it has always been foremost in my thoughts that what if the cash is an urgent need and what if I myself were to lose that wallet. Nothing closer to this importance ever came to my thoughts.
Yesterday, the same thing happened to me. In my haste, I misplaced an envelope filled with important personal documents in a public institution. When I realized it, I was back in Penang after hours on the highway. I was completely distraught and I didn’t get a good sleep last night. But this morning, the finder called.
As I recall back those years, I asked myself what if I wouldn’t have been so kind then, will I deserve the kindness that I receive today? To me that’s a HOG repaid. HOG btw means heart of gold. It’s also a reminder to me in case I have forgotten that not everyone out on the streets is bad or greedy. Despite the changes that has happened towards our society, kindness still exist. And I am thankful indeed that there still are hogs around.
And so I rewarded the finder the same way I was rewarded some twenty five years ago.”