The Feathers in the Pillow

The Feathers in the Pillow

This is an allegory from Judaism – It’s one of the stories that are told for Yom Kippur. I wanted to share it with you all, as it’s so simple and powerful.

A rabbi stood in front of his congregation with a feather pillow in his hand and slashed it with a knife. He then shook the contents out in front of the shocked crowd.

He asked everyone to make sure they gathered all the feathers back together and he sewed the pillowcase up. He then asked the congregation to check if all the feathers had been collected. At first they said ‘yes’, but when they checked carefully they realized that there were still feathers hidden in the room.

He then asked them if the pillowcase looked the same as before he ripped it, even after it had been sewn up.  They answered of course it wasn’t the same as before, as it was now ‘scarred’

The rabbi told the congregation that the same thing happens when we say unkind words. We scatter them around and we can never completely get them back and we end up ‘scarred’. Therefore, think before you speak, it’s better not to let the feathers out.

(Thank you to Alan Cox who shared this story)

3 Responses to “The Feathers in the Pillow”
  1. Rombout says:

    Hello Pryia (and Alan), thank you for sharing! Indeed let’s be careful with what we ‘leave behind’. Makes me think of that beautiful Lou Reed song ‘Perfect Day’: “You’re going to reap just what you sow”…
    Love, Bout

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