The topic is ‘Seeking Permission’. So do I have your permission to say something?
Well, I am a nice boy, your wonderful classmate and a neighbor. Whenever I want, I rush to your study room in your absence and take out your geometry box, books and crayons. I know I am your fast friend. There are no formalities between us, so why to seek your permission? Only unknown or not-so-close people have to bother for permission. Many times, while you were playing out in the ground, I ate your lunch as I was hungry. Whenever I want, I pluck the beautiful roses from your garden. Do you like this?
No ... no ... never. Only this will be your answer; isn’t it? However nice a person may be, however close in relation, you would never like that he frequently takes away your personal belongings without seeking your permission. But what if you are also a person of the same type? Do you think others will like you? No .. never. Everybody loves his belongings, his personal things whatever they may be .. big or small, important or trivial, costly or commonplace. With each thing a person’s sentiments are linked and we can’t judge whether a thing is important for him or not. If we become so impolite as to take away anyone's property without seeking his or her permission, it is like theft. Such people are not liked by anyone and you, too, will not like such a person. May be, your friends or neighbors do not say anything openly but if you can read their faces, you will notice that you have displeased them. If they do not say anything, it is because they are perhaps not impolite like you or they are forgiving and do not want to lose you because of this one shortcoming or, in some cases, may be they are afraid of you and do not want to pick up a quarrel. You should understand it and if you want to be a reliable friend or neighbor, you must stop this habit now.
It does not mean that we cannot use anyone’s property. At times we need something we don’t have. Of course we can use other’s property if we have obtained permission. For example, a number of guests have suddenly come to your house and you do not have suitable crockery to serve them tea and snacks. Sharma Aunty is your very close neighbor. Her son is your fast friend. Mr. Sharma loves you like his own son. If you go to Sharma Aunty and politely ask for crockery, generally she would happily give you the best available cups and plates with her because most people feel ‘valued’ when we seek help from them or ask anything. If, however, you recklessly rush to her kitchen and fly back taking the cups and plates saying “Aunty! I am taking these things for some time”, she will surely be annoyed even if you can’t notice easily.
If you are hungry, ask your friend politely to share some lunch with you. If you need a book, ask humbly but never try to take away anything, any time as if it were your own property. If you continue with this bad habit, you will gradually lose your best friends, they will never even let you see a new book or a toy they have bought. Your neighbors and people will start avoiding you and nobody will treat you seriously.
Now, pause a little ...
Answer the following questions and see how much this element of "Seeking Permission" is in you!
A. One of your neighbor has a photocopy shop. Whenever a person wants to get a document photocopied, he first looks at the paper and tries to read the contents of the document. Your reaction is:
- Oh! There is nothing serious about it. He has to see everything before photocopying.
- No, he should not try to read the contents. His concern is only to photocopy the document.
- So what if he reads? What was in your document? Why are you making so much fuss about?
B. You are passing through a street. There is a grape vine in the campus of someone’s house. Some bunches of grapes are creeping out of the boundary wall. You wish you could have some of these grapes.
- You will ask the house-owner if you can have some of the grapes.
- No need of permission for grapes which are not in the campus of one’s house.
- You will make your mouth saying “grapes are sour” and pass away.
C. Your classmate, Ravi, has some work in the school library in the leisure period. He has left his school bag with you. In that case:
- There is no harm in searching his bag if he has brought any comics that you can read in leisure.
- No, you should not open his bag without his permission.
- He is your close friend. You can search his bag. No formalities between two close friends.
D. A boy has suddenly met a road accident. You know that your room-mate in the hostel always keeps a First-aid Box.
- You will not use his First-aid box without his permission, whatever happens.
- You will wait 10 minutes if he comes and gives his First-aid Box.
- You will use his First-aid Box and later tell him about this incident.
E. The habit of seeking permission before using someone’s property, whatever it may be, is a quality which:
- Gives us chances to use someone’s belongings more frequently.
- Increases the bond of trust and reliability.
- Saves us from police action if the property is lost or damaged.
F. I asked Sanjay to let me test drive his new motorcycle his father gave him on his birthday but he politely refused.
- I know he is becoming proud day by day and insulted me by saying ‘No’.
- I think he has the right to say ‘No’ and I should not feel hurt.
- He said ‘No’? Ok ... I will buy a costlier motorcycle and show him.
Now Score Yourself
The ideal answers are : A. 2, B. 1, C. 2, D. 3, E. 2, and F. 2. Give yourself 2 marks for each correct answer. If your score is below 8, you need practice to imbibe this good quality of ‘seeking permission’ before using anyone’s belongings.