Hot water does not burn down the house.

Hot water does not burn down the house.

Honesty is the best policy.

This maxim teaches us that if a man maintains honest behavior in every day life, it will reveal his good character and sincerity and pays him honor and high status in the long run…though it does not show him any instant result. Honesty gives a man long-lived advantage. Sincere people are always honest. A person who is sincere at work that is a man who comes at the right time in the morning and carries out his work and who is true to himself is known as an honest person.

So honesty and sincerity are the two faces of same coin. Such men set an example to the society and a dishonest man yields short-lived advantages and sometimes snatches the satisfaction of mind, causing mental agony. If a man is honest, good fortune will come through his way soon.

There was once a poor woodcutter living near the forest. He was cutting wood near the river and suddenly the iron mould of the axe slipped and fell into the river close by. The woodcutter was very upset and prayed to god to help him as the axe is the only source of his livelihood. The river goddess appeared to him and asked him what he is crying for. The man narrated the happenings, the goddess went to the bottom of the river and brought out a golden, silver and iron axe and asked him which his axe is. The wood cutter promptly replied that it was the iron axe and the goddess was very happy and gave him all the three and rewarded him for his honesty. So we can always be sure that honesty will be rewarded in due course of life.

Hot water does not burn down the house.

The literal meaning of the proverb is we cannot do much damage with a softer object however big it might be. It does not matter how steaming hot one boils some water. One cannot then pour it on the roof or on any wall of the house and expect any structural damage. Traditionally this Swahili proverb has been used to deny the effectiveness of the strenuous efforts of a lesser person against a greater or stronger one.

Wise people see tragedy more often than not in the context of possibility. Their mental house in life has room in it for unexpected and unsolicited setbacks. We help one another in life not by denying the hot water events of our friends…but by affirming their abiding strength and vision. The Sukuma version of this proverb says that arguments between a husband and wife are a normal part of married life. They don’t ruin a marriage. The couple has to work through their problems.

Hot water does not burn down the house.


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