Did you know that the first-ever Sanskrit shloka came into being by a matter of pure chance!
Mistakes are inevitable. The young, old, intelligent, not-so intelligent everyone makes them.
Many great inventions happened by sheer accident!
The microwave radio waves melted the chocolate in the Engineer's pocket giving rise to the indispensable microwave cooking, by mistake! Plastic happened by mistake. Corn flakes happened by mistake too!
From Penicillin to potato chips, many great inventions happened by mistake.
Did you know the first-ever Sanskrit poet, Valmiki, who wrote the great epic Mahabharatha also chanted just by chance? He recited the first-ever shloka by mistake! This is how it happened.
Once, Sage Valmiki was on his way to take bath. He came across a beautiful stream called "Tamasa". He was so captivated by the beauty of the stream that he wanted to bathe and meditate on its banks.
While stepping into the stream, he heard the sweet chirping of two birds in love – a pair of Krowncha birds. He was pleased to see the happy bird couple and stood there and watched them.
Suddenly, the male bird fell from the sky after being hit by an arrow. The silent and beautiful area was soon filled with the female bird’s cry of agony. Unable to bear her partner’s demise, the female bird, too, died of sorrow.
Sage Valmiki then realized that the male bird was hit by a hunter. Consumed by rage and grief himself, Sage Valmiki poured out his heart in this first-ever spontaneous Shloka;
"Maa nishada pratistham tvamagamahsāsvatI: samaa:
Yat kraunchamithunaadekam avadhi: kaamamohitam"
You will find no rest for the long years of Eternity,
For you killed a bird in love and unsuspecting
This shloka is considered to be the first shloka in Sanskrit literature and Valmiki became the first-ever poet, Adi Kavi. Later Lord Brahma appeared before him and urged him to write Ramayana in the same poetic manner, and thus the epic, Ramayana, was born.
So, how should we respond to the mistakes of our children?
"Why did you make this mistake?", can make them defensive. They might come up with ways to cover up their mistake and even lie. Now that's something we don't want happening.
"What can we learn from this mistake?"
"What can we do to ensure that the same mistake doesn't happen again?"
Such questions can help transform their mistakes into learning experiences. And who knows, their next mistake could be their next EUREKA moment!