DIGGING THE MOUNTAIN

By Yi Dong

This metaphor is intended to ease fear of judgement and enhance determination

It was a long time ago, long before machinery was created, long before electricity was discovered… There was a poor village hidden in a valley in the deep and far away mountains. It was so far away that going to the next village took months by climbing through the mountains. The villagers have been growing potatoes generations after generations. They had been surviving on potatoes. Because there is no way out to other villages, they could not trade their potatoes for anything else… One day, a man called Luke started digging the mountain which blocked their way out with a shovel.

 

Another man walked by and asked, “What are you doing?”

“I’m removing the mountain and building a way out of our village so we can trade our potatoes for something else. We could do with some fabric for better clothes, or seeds for other crops.” Luke said.

The man, shocked for a second, began laughing and said “This is so stupid Luke. Do you see how big the mountains are? You and your shovel will never make a difference!”

Luke took no mind and continued digging…

 

The next day, Luke was out there digging the mountain again. Some villagers come around and said to him, “Luke, stop doing this. Do you see how stupid it is? You cannot possibly do this.”

Luke took no mind and continued digging…

 

The next day, Luke was out there again digging the mountain. The entire village came out to look at him. People were laughing so hard and pointing at him saying he is so stupid. Kids were throwing stones at him and making fun of him. But Luke took no mind and continued digging…

 

The next day, Luke’s family asked him to stop digging the mountain. They too thought it was a stupid idea and they were embarrassed. But Luke took no mind and continued digging…

 

Day after day, year after year, Luke never stopped digging the mountain. The villagers became used to this and no one laughed at him anymore. Day after day, year after year, Luke never stopped digging the mountain. His son started shoveling the mountain with him.  Day after day, year after year… Luke’s grandson even started shoveling the mountain with him…

 

One morning, a man opens his door and notices in front of him a road leading through the mountains… really deep into the mountains…. He begins walking on the road… and walks and walks and walks… He walks for a day and at the end of the road, it is another village! And there he finds Luke and his family, laughing and drinking with people from the other village. Next to them there is a cow cart full of fresh vegetables, fruits, and new clothes…