Manish Takes a Stand
Manish: I am sure in a mess. I don’t know what I should do.
Rita: What’s wrong? Are you in trouble?
Manish: I have a terrible, horrible, gigantic problem. I wish I could crawl into a hole and never come out.
Rita: What happened? It can’t be that bad.
Manish: My friends were studying for the math test we have to take tomorrow in school, and they have all decided to cheat on the test.
Rita: We are Jains, and we learned in Pathshala that we should not cheat. Anyway, you always pass the math tests with a hundred.
Manish: My mother helps me study and I study a lot, that’s why I have been passing all the tests.
Rita: Well, then why are you so upset?
Manish: The boys at school want to use my paper to cheat from.
Rita: Oh, no! You didn’t agree to that, did you?
Manish: No, but I didn’t say they couldn’t either.
Rita: Why not?
Manish: I did not want to make them mad. They would call me names, and I just
hate to be called names.
Rita: Well, if you cheat, you will be in big trouble.
Manish: I wouldn’t be cheating, just the others.
Rita: You need to be honest. Helping them on the test is not being honest, which makes you a cheater too. That’s dishonest, and then you will get pap (bad karmas).
Manish: What should I do?
Rita: You know what is right. You need to stand up for what you believe in.
Manish: Even if they call me all kinds of names that I don’t like?
Rita: They will do that for a little while, but soon they will forget it.
Manish: I will ask my mother if they can come to my house to study, then they won’t have to cheat. They can make good grades honestly.
Rita: See, you answered your own question. Great!
Manish: Now, I don’t have to be upset or worried.
Rita: How does worrying solve your problems?
Manish: Well, I guess it doesn’t. The best answer is to stand up for what is right, and always follow the Jain principles we have learned.
Rita: I agree to that.