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The Precious Present

Chủ đề trong '1981 - Hội Gà Sài Gòn' bởi Tao_lao, 10/04/2003.

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    The Precious Present
    By Spencer Johnson


    Once there was a boy
    who listened to an old man.
    And, thus, began to learn about

    The precious Present

    â?oIt is a present because it is a gift,â?
    the contented man explained.

    And it is called
    The Precious Present,
    because it is the
    best present of all.

    When the boy asked why,
    the old man explained.

    â?oIt is the best present a person can receive
    because anyone who receives
    such a gift is happy
    forever.â?

    â?oWow!â?
    the little boy exclaimed.
    â?oI hope someone gives me
    The Precious Present.
    Maybe I â?~ll get it for Christmas.â?

    The boy ran off to play.

    And the old man smiled.

    He liked to watch the little boy play.

    He saw the smile on the youngsterâ?~s face
    And heard him laughing
    as he swung from a nearby tree.

    The boy was happy.
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    And it was a joy to see.
    The old man also liked to watch
    the boy work.
    He even rose early on Saturday
    morning to watch the little laborer
    across the street
    mow the lawn.
    The boy actually whistled
    while he worked.
    The little child was happy
    no matter what he was doing.
    It was, indeed, a joy to behold.
    When he thought about
    what the old man had said, the boy
    thought he understood.
    He knew about presentsõ?Ư
    Like the bicycle
    he got for his birthday
    and the gifts he found under the tree
    on Christmas morning.
    But as the boy thought more about it,
    he knew.
    The joy of toys
    never lasts forever.
    The boy began to feel uneasy.
    õ?oWhat then,õ? he wondered, õ?ois
    The Precious Present?
    What could be so good õ?Ư
    so much better then any other
    presentõ?Ư
    that it is called The Precious Present?
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    â?owhat could possibly make me
    happy forever?â?
    He found it difficult
    to even imagine the answer.
    And so he returned to ask the old man.
    â?oIs The Precious Present a magical ring?
    One that I might put on my finger
    And make all my wishes come true?â?
    â?oNo,â? he was told.
    The Precious Present
    Has Nothing To Do With
    Wishing.
    As the boy grew older
    he continued to wonder.
    He went to the old man.
    â?oIs The Precious Present
    a flying carpet?â? he inquired.
    â?oOne that I could get on and go
    any place that I liked?â?
    â?oNo,â? the man quietly replied.
    When You Have
    The Precious Present
    You Are Perfectly Content
    To Be Where You Are.
    Now that the boy was becoming
    a young man,
    he felt a bit foolish for asking.
    But he was uncomfortable.
    He began to see that he
    Was not achieving what he wanted.
    â?oIs The Precious Present,â? he slowly
    ventured, â?o a sunken treasure? Perhaps
    rare gold coins buried by pirates long
    ago?â?
    â?oNo, young man,â? the old man
    told him.
    â?oIt is not.â?
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    The Richness Is Rare, Indeed,
    Butõ?Ư
    The Wealth Of The Precious Present
    Comes Only From Itself.
    The young man thought for a moment.
    Then he became annoyed.
    õ?oYou told me,õ? the young man said,
    õ?othat anyone who receives such a present
    would be happy forever.
    I never got such a gift as a child.õ?
    õ?oI õ?~m afraid you donõ?Tt understand,õ?
    the old man responded.
    You Already Know
    What The Precious Present Is.
    You Already Know Where To Find It.
    And You Already Know
    How It Can Make You Happy.
    You Knew It Best
    When You Were A Small Child.
    You Have Simply Forgotten.
    The young man went away
    to think.
    But as time passed,
    He became frustrated, and, finally,
    angry.
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    He eventually confronted
    the old man.
    ?oIf you want me to be happy,?
    the young man shouted,
    ?owhy don?Tt you just tell me
    what The Precious Present is??
    ?oand where to find it ??
    the old volleyed.
    ?oYes, exactly,?
    the young man demanded.
    ?oI would like to,? the old man began.
    ?oBut I do not have such power.
    ?oNo one does.
    ?oOnly you have the power
    to make yourself happy,?
    the old man said.
    ?oOnly you.?
    The Precious Present
    Is Not Something
    That Someone Gives You.
    It Is A Gift That
    You Give Yourself.
    The young man was confused,
    but determined.
    He resolved to find The Precious
    Present himself.
    And sô?
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    He packed his bags
    He left where he was.
    And went elsewhere to look for.
    The Precious Present.
    After many frustrating years,
    the man grew tired
    of looking
    for The Precious Present.
    He had read all the latest books.
    And he had looked in The Wall Street
    Journal.
    He had looked in the mirror.
    And into the faces of other people.
    He had wanted so much to find
    The Precious Present.
    He had gone to extraordinary lengths.
    He had looked for it
    at the tops of mountains
    and in cold dark ****s.
    He had searched for it
    in dense, humid jungles.
    And underneath the seas.
    But it was all to no avail.
    His stressful search
    had exhausted him.
    Occasionally,
    he even became ill.
    But he did not know
    why.
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    The man returned
    wearily
    to the old man â?~s side.
    The old man was happy to see him.
    They often smiled
    and occasionally laughed out loud
    together.
    The young man liked
    to be with the old man.
    He felt happy
    in his presence.
    He guessed that this was because
    the old man felt happy
    with himself.
    It wasnâ?Tt that the old man â?~s life
    was so trouble-free
    He didnâ?Tt appear to have a lot
    of money.
    He seemed to be
    alone
    most of the time.
    In fact, there was no apparent reason
    why he was happy so much happier
    and healthier
    than most people.
    But happy he was.
    And so were those who spent
    time with him.
    â?oWhy does it feel so good
    to be with himâ? the young man
    wondered.
    â?oWhy?â?
    He left wondering.
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    After many years
    the once-young man returned
    to inquire further.
    He was now very unhappy and
    often ill.
    He need to talk
    with the old man.
    But the old man had grown very, very old.
    And, all too soon, he spoke
    no more.
    The wise voice could
    no longer
    be heard.
    The man was alone.
    At first, he was saddened
    by loss of his old friend.
    And then he became frightened
    very frightened.
    He was afraid that he would never
    Learn how to be happy.
    Untilõ?Ư
    He finally accepted
    what had always been true.
    He was the only one
    who could find his own happiness.
    The unhappy man recalled
    what the happy old man had told him
    so many years ago.
    But as hard as he tried
    he could not figure it outõ?Ư
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    He tried to understand
    what he had heard.
    The Precious Present
    Has Nothing To Do
    With Wishingõ?Ư
    When You Have The Precious Present
    You Will Be Perfectly Content
    To Be Where You Areõ?Ư
    The Richness Of The Precious Present
    Comes From Its Own Sourceõ?Ư
    The Precious Present Is Not Something
    That Someone Gives To Youõ?Ư
    It Is Something You Give
    To Yourselfõ?Ư
    The unhappy man
    was now tired of looking for
    The Precious Present.
    He had grown so tired
    of trying
    that he simply
    stopped
    trying.
    And then, it happened!
    He didnõ?Tt know why it happened
    when it happened.
    It just õ?Ư happened!
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    He realized that The Precious
    Present was just that:
    The present.
    Not the past;
    and not the future,
    but
    The Precious Present.
    He realized that
    the present moment
    is always precious.
    Not because it is absolutely flawless,
    which it often seems not to be.
    But because it is
    absolutely everything
    it is meant to bê?
    at that moment.
    In an instant
    the man was happy.
    He realized that he was
    In
    The Precious present.
    He raised both hands triumphantly
    Into the cool, fresh air.
    He was joyous?
    For one moment?

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