Radhanath Swami – Experience is the best teacher…

A few years ago, I met an old friend of mine. We grew up together as little children. He told me, ‘You know everything we rebelled against our parents for, now that I am grown up, I realize they were always right, and I was always wrong. If only I would have listened to them, how much easier my life would have been today. It’s taken so many miserable situations, so many knocks on my head to finally come to the conclusion that what they told me was right.  If I would have listened, I could have learned it then and there.’

There is a saying that experience is the best teacher, and a fool learns by no other way. Usually they only tell the first part; they don’t like the second part. A fool learns by experience, whereas an ignorant person doesn’t learn even after experience. An intelligent person, however, learns by hearing.   There was a saying when I was young, ‘Never trust anyone over thirty.’ What happened to all those youngsters? Now in their forties and fifties, they look back and think, ‘How I wish I had taken advice from those people over 30. How much better my life would have been!’

– Radhanath Swami