The older I get the more I appreciate the wisdom contain in the colloquial sayings of my mother tongue. It is my strong belief that every culture has its own collection of these colloquial sayings and they, too, are full of wisdom. All these are hundreds, if not thousands, years old. They are actually the comments made after years and years of keen observations, insightful perception, thorough study of human actions, behaviors and human nature. These are oral wisdom passed down to us by our ancestors. The knowledge, experiences, understanding, comprehension contained in them are our guides through life if we are alert enough to recognize them. They are to save us from ‘reinventing the wheels’, to save us from suffering the same pains, frustrations, agonies they had gone through.
Many of us do not even know such treasures existed and even those who have the opportunities to come across some of the precious gems, the significant meanings of these gems are lost on them. I regret not paying much attention to them when my parents were around and also for not giving them the due attention that they rightfully deserved. It will be my priority now to gather as many of them as possible.
“The days our parents are giving to us to take care of them are not that many.”
This is my own translation so it may not be so accurate but it is an advice to us to take care of our aged parents while they are still around. It is so beautifully expressed – ‘the days our parents are giving to us to take care of them…” ! It is telling us it is a privilege given us by our parents to perform our filial duties, an opportunity granted us to reciprocate for the sacrifices made, the love given, the things we are enjoying and we now possess.
“The days….are not that many”
It alerts us that the days left for us to carry out our filial duties are not many. It is advising us not to procrastinate. It is good not to procrastinate in such things, or we may live to regret our inactivity.
Most of these sayings are short and sweet, just like the one above. The saying has a ‘urgent tone’ about it, I do hope those who still have their parents around would not ignore the message. I will end with an other saying – ‘When you take drinks (drink water), always remember its source.”