“बूँद बूँद से घड़ा भरता है” – Drop-by-drop Fills A Pitcher (January 2020)

Namaste Hawan Kids,


After spending the last year learning a number of key mantras of Agnihotra Yagna, our theme for 2020 is हिंदी मुहावरों में छिपा ज्ञान (Hidden Knowledge in Hindi Idioms). While there are thousands of Hindi idioms, we will pick only one each month as the assignment topic and, then, go in its details, understanding its obvious and not-so-obvious meaning (hidden spiritual significance). Our focus will be on the character building side of its interpretation. This month’s assignment topic is “बूँद बूँद से घड़ा भरता है” (Drop-by-drop Fills A Pitcher).


Before going in the details of this month’s topic, let’s talk about what an idiom is and why we picked it as our theme of the year.


An idiom is an expression that succinctly captures a message. Instead of conveying a message in lots of words, the speaker/writer uses idioms to convey the gist in a few words. Mostly, idioms are figurative – not literal. For instance, if someone says “I can’t wrap my head around it”, they don’t mean to imply that they literally cannot wrap their head around something; instead, they mean to say that they are finding it difficult to understand something.


While making language richer and spicier, idioms are also an easier means to capture and convey the subtler, deeper knowledge to a specific audience. This is the part where we will spend majority of our energy.


Having said that, this month’s topic is unique in this sense that, in addition to capturing a figurative meaning, it is literally accurate too. If a faucet is dripping and you put a pitcher to catch the drops, in due course of time, that pitcher will be full. But that’s not the message the author wishes to convey through this idiom. Instead, the message is that it takes a lot of small steps to achieve something bigger, something worthy in life.


We can see this idiom at work in almost every realm of life: health, studies, skills etc. To lose weight or gain strength, one must exercise consistently against increasing resistance for a long period of time; to gain intelligence, a student must read more, pay attention in class, do homework in time, seek help when stumbling upon difficult concepts, and attempt challenging questions; to acquire a skill, an aspirer must seek relevant knowledge from subject matter experts, collect relevant tools, and practice regularly for a long time to do better than what was done before.


What is a common theme in the above examples? It is the acquisition of “right” knowledge and then consistent practice for the attainment of progressive goals. Using this framework, one can achieve success in almost any field of life. Where will you apply this framework in your life?


When it comes to our personality, it is also built drop-by-drop. Every piece of knowledge we have acquired and then put in practice (it’s a critical step), has made us who we are today.


Every month, as part of the monthly assignments, you learn a new character building lesson; as you understand that lesson and put it practice, that lesson (a drop) becomes part of your personality (the pitcher).


Now, let’s think over it! What is contained in our pitcher? Are we proud of what you see in it? Identify one or two drops (lessons) you would like to put in your pitcher?


As the part of this month’s assignment, I am expecting you to…

  • Define the literal and figurative meaning of this month’s idiom.
  • Answer all the questions embedded in the write-up above.


Challenge question (while I am expecting mostly senior kids to answer this question, all kids are welcome to attempt):

  • We may see people taking short-cuts in life. What are drawbacks and disadvantages of taking short-cuts?


As always, I am proud of you. Make us even prouder.



Harsh Mendiratta