EXPERTISE IN ARTS AND CRAFTS


       Expertness in the practice of arts and crafts is a mingalar. It is a  source of great benefits and happiness. The following story gives a  good example:
      Once upon a time, there lived a young blacksmith in a village  in the kingdom of Kasi. He had worked so hard in learning the craft  that he became one of the best in his trade. In the making of knives,  swords, and spears to sewing needles, he was an expert.  Near the village in which he lived there was a rather big village of a thousand households of blacksmiths. The headman, a highly skilled blacksmith himself, had a young daughter famed for her beauty and decent up-bringing.
       When the young smith of that other village heard of the news about her, even without having ever seen her, he fell in love.  Therefore, he thought he would try to get the lass in marriage by way  of a show of his professional skills. He made a very small sewing needle out of a special kind of iron. He punched athreadhole in the needle.
       The needle was forged in such a way that,in all practicality,it floated in water. And then, he made a sheath to house the needle in the  same way as for the needle with a thread hole. He placed the needle in the sheath. And again, he made a second sheathing of the same kind. Then, he put the first sheath into the second sheath. And so on,he made seven concentric sheaths placed one  inside the other. He put this cormbination of needle and sheaths in a quiver  and took it to the smirhs' village.When he got in front of the headman's house, he shouted that he was selling needles.
        The headman's daughter came out of the house and very mildly said,"People from other villages came here to buy needles. Big brother, go to some other village to sell yours." To this, the young smith replied,  " My needle is not like any other, It is very special. If only your father sees this needle of mine, he will not be able ro help but say words of praise and, I think, he might even marry this young 'sister' to me."
       The headsmith overheard their conversation. He had the young man invited into his house, and asked him to show the special needle. The young man said,"Father,it would be better if other smiths join you than you alone see it." And so, the head smith sent for the other men in the village. When all were gathered, the young man extracted the small sheath from the quiver in preparation for the show. "Young man , is that the needle?" asked the head smith. The young man replied, "No, sir. It is nor. It is only a sheath."
         The head smith inspected the sheath tn close scrutiny.As the sheath had a thread hole,it looked like a needle,not a sheath. The young man took the sheath from the head smith's hand and, using his nails, he took out the sheaths one after another. Last of all, the small needle appeared.
       The head smith together with all other smiths and spectators looked at the needle and were spellbound with a  wonderment that  saw no end.  That was not all. The young smith wanted to show more. He asked for an anvil under- block and a copper bowl full of water.
     He made an arrangement in which a big black smith held the  wooden block steady, and another man held the water-filled copper  bowl underneath it.  When all was ready, he planted the needle on the  block, and hammered it down with force. The needle penetrated the  wooden block right through, and dropped into the bowl. It did not go  down to the water bottom, nor did it surface to the top.It floated  in the mid section of the water in the bowl.
      All of the blacksmiths agreed, " We could not make this kind of  needle. Not only that , we have never ever seen such a thing before." They struck their palms on the folds of the arms, and said more words  of praise. The master blacksmith liked the young man's great skills.  So, right then and there,he married him with his daughter.

Written By Sayar Min Yu Wai
Translated By Sayar U Nyi (Myanmar to Eng)
 Source : 550Nipada, Suci Zat.