The Chinese Bamboo

The Chinese Bamboo plants are just grass.

They belong to the grass family. Yet how strong and durable they are. Not weaklings to be trodden upon. The rise higher than all other families of grass. They are sturdy yet flexible enough to allow them to adapt to different situations.  They are strong yet brittle enough to come of great service.

But they weren’t always so tall, strong and shiny. Their origins tell a different story. When all other grass families grew rapidly, bamboo shoots took months to even show any activity on the surface.

These tall, strong knights in shining armor you see today and make use of, were once the slow ones. Others ignored them as they hardly seemed to grow – not just for months but for years. Would you still have bet on them? Would you still have believed in them, to come of great service to you one day? Would you, even after four years of having planted them, care for them, and water them month after month without frustration?

For four years they remain seemingly inactive. But turns out they are actually busy building the roots in these four years – the essential roots that would one day support the strong and tall structure on the surface.

It takes some time to build the roots, likewise, it takes some time to put in enough effort to support your mastery. It takes time and patience to keep working behind the scenes without any visible results. It takes strength to endure all that pity and lack of faith when you are still building your roots. It takes a lot more than you can guess.

The bamboo plant worked tirelessly for four long years without any appreciation or a kind word or two. No, it wasn’t seeking validation from other families of grass. It wasn’t even listening to their small minds. Why are you wasting time building so many roots you are never going to be taller than a couple of feet? Why are you even trying?

Oh, they could have said this to the first bamboo that grew, why are you even trying no grass has ever done this before?

No, no, no, the bamboo plants are not doing it for appreciation or validation. They are doing it because they have a dream – to touch to the skies. To see the world not just from under the feet but from higher and higher.

So they kept on with their work, without any visible progress on the surface.
They believed in themselves. They persevered.

And for all bamboo plants, on the fifth year, something magical happens.

They just experience a massive exponential growth. They grow up to 90 feet in just six weeks. That’s like doing something impossible in the grass world. At this point they become unstoppable. Success kisses their feet and whatever they touch prosper.

Other grass families far away might say that he/she got lucky but no one now cares to see how they got lucky. No one cared all these years when they were busy building the roots. No one cared when they are left out and thought to be slow.

Yet, now that they’ve grown beyond reach, others come to voice their opinion on luck.

The bamboo plants just refused to conform when others saw limits. They just refused to live their lives under other’s feet. They chose to grow. They dreamed big. And did not let what others said about them affect them. They just got busy building their roots, day after day, year after year – until they were ready to take off.

Until they were ready for greatness.

Yet, bamboo, they are just grass.


Watch this amazing video on the Chinese Bamboo
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