Benefit of Sharing – Sorrow Halved; Joy Doubled! (Post No.6396)

 Compiled  by London Swaminathan

Date: 16 May 2019

British Summer Time uploaded in London –  20–33 am

Post No. 6396

Pictures shown here are taken from various sources including google, Wikipedia, Facebook friends and newspapers. This is a non- commercial blog. ((posted by AND

A mother who was in the habit of asking her children, before they retired at night, what they had done to make others happy, found her two daughters silent.

She spoke tenderly of habits and dispositions founded on the golden rule, “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you”. It is in the Vidura Niti , Tamil Veda Tirukkural and the Bible.

Still these bright little faces were bowed in silence, and the question was repeated.
“I cannot remember anything good all this day, dear mother, said one of the little girls.; only one of my classmates was happy, because she had gained the head of the class, and I smiled on her, and ran to kiss her. She said I was good. That is all dear mother”.

The other spoke still more tenderly,
“A little girl who sat with me on the bench at school, lost a little brother; and I saw that, while she studied her lessons, she hid her face in the book and wept . I felt sorry, and laid my face on the same book, and wept with her. Then she looked up, and was comforted, and put her arms around my neck; but I don’t know why she said I had done her good.”

It is a remarkable circumstance, but a true one, that the joy is increased by the same thing that lessens sorrow, by sharing it with another.

Every man rejoices twice, says Jeremy Taylor, when he has a partner of his joy. A friend shares my sorrow, takes half of it away; but he shares my joy, and makes it double.


How to stop Swearing!

Rowland Hill was once returning from Ireland, and found himself much annoyed by the conduct of the captain and mate , who were both given to the habit of swearing. First the captain swore at the mate, then the mate at the captain; then they both swore at the wind, when Mr Hill called out with a strong voice, for fair play;

“Stop, stop”, I cried.
“If you please, gentlemen, let us have fair play. It is my turn now.”
“At what is your turn?” asked the captain.
“At swearing”.

“Well, they waited and waited, till their patience was exhausted, and then told me to haste and take my turn. I told them that I had a right to take my own time”.

To this the captain replied, with a laugh,
“Perhaps you don’t mean to take your turn at all”.
“Pardon me, captain, I answered, that I do, as soon as I can find the good of doing so”.
Mr Hill didn’t hear another oath for the rest of the voyage.


Leave a comment


  1. Joy shared is doubled or multiplied, sorrow shared is halved or divided- this seems to be based on a Swedish proverb. There are many versions in popular literature. This is a highly romanticised notion.
    The normal human experience is that people gather in joy, to celebrate the pleasant.But is it so easy to share sorrow? Company dwindles when misfortune strikes. Adi Sankara asks in Bhajagovindam:

    क्षीणे वित्ते कः परिवारः Kaheene vitte ka: parivara:
    Where is the company, when your wealth declines?
    We suffer in solitude. Poet Ella Wheeler Wilcox writes:

    Laugh, and the world laughs with you;
    Weep, and you weep alone;
    For the sad old earth must borrow its mirth,
    But has trouble enough of its own.
    Sing, and the hills will answer;
    Sigh, it is lost on the air;
    The echoes bound to a joyful sound,
    But shrink from voicing care.

    Rejoice, and men will seek you;
    Grieve, and they turn and go;
    They want full measure of all your pleasure,
    But they do not need your woe.
    Be glad, and your friends are many;
    Be sad, and you lose them all,—
    There are none to decline your nectared wine,
    But alone you must drink life’s gall.

    Feast, and your halls are crowded;
    Fast, and the world goes by.
    Succeed and give, and it helps you live,
    But no man can help you die.
    There is room in the halls of pleasure
    For a large and lordly train,
    But one by one we must all file on
    Through the narrow aisles of pain.

    We bear the pain of sorrow and suffering alone. Macbeth pleads in pain to the doctor:

    Canst thou not minister to a mind diseased,
    Pluck from the memory a rooted sorrow,
    Raze out the written troubles of the brain
    And with some sweet oblivious antidote
    Cleanse the stuffed bosom of that perilous stuff
    Which weighs upon the heart?

    But the doctor says the patient must cure himself:

    Therein the patient
    Must minister to himself.

    But it need not be so always. Valmiki’s distress and sorrow gave rise to the first Kavya- out of Shoka shloka was born!
    Arjuna gives expression to his shokam indriyanam uchchoshanam = “sorrow blasting my senses”- almost the same sentiment expressed by Macbeth. But Arjuna turned to a divine doctor, who not only cures the sorrow, but removes the very cause.

  2. Laugh, and the world laughs with you;
    Weep, and you weep alone; — is true. This is what happens in most of the cases. Mental health deteriorates when no one is there to share the grief or sorrow.

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: