Thursday, March 4, 2010

Monkey, Banana and Ladder Story.

I read following story on the internet and this story really has point.

The Monkey Story
The experiment involved 5 monkeys, a cage, a banana, a ladder and, crucially, a water hose.

The 5 monkeys would be locked in a cage, after which a banana was hung from the ceiling with, fortunately for the monkeys (or so it seemed…), a ladder placed right underneath it.

Of course, immediately, one of the monkeys would race towards the ladder, intending to climb it and grab the banana. However, as soon as he would start to climb, the sadist (euphemistically called “scientist”) would spray the monkey with ice-cold water. In addition, however, he would also spray the other four monkeys…

When a second monkey was about to climb the ladder, the sadist would, again, spray the monkey with ice-cold water, and apply the same treatment to its four fellow inmates; likewise for the third climber and, if they were particularly persistent (or dumb), the fourth one. Then they would have learned their lesson: they were not going to climb the ladder again – banana or no banana.

In order to gain further pleasure or, I guess, prolong the experiment, the sadist outside the cage would then replace one of the monkeys with a new one. As can be expected, the new guy would spot the banana, think “why don’t these idiots go get it?!” and start climbing the ladder. Then, however, it got interesting: the other four monkeys, familiar with the cold-water treatment, would run towards the new guy – and beat him up. The new guy, blissfully unaware of the cold-water history, would get the message: no climbing up the ladder in this cage – banana or no banana.

When the beast outside the cage would replace a second monkey with a new one, the events would repeat themselves – monkey runs towards the ladder; other monkeys beat him up; new monkey does not attempt to climb again – with one notable detail: the first new monkey, who had never received the cold-water treatment himself (and didn’t even know anything about it), would, with equal vigour and enthusiasm, join in the beating of the new guy on the block.

When the researcher replaced a third monkey, the same thing happened; likewise for the fourth until, eventually, all the monkeys had been replaced and none of the ones in the cage had any experience or knowledge of the cold-water treatment.

Then, a new monkey was introduced into the cage. It ran toward the ladder only to get beaten up by the others. Yet, this monkey turned around and asked “why do you beat me up when I try to get the banana?” The other four monkeys stopped, looked at each other slightly puzzled and, finally, shrugged their shoulders: “Don’t know. But that’s the way we do things around here”…


  1. hahah, good story, i know your blog is related to sikhi issues and these days pet topic of sihs are rehtnama, amrit/kesh and dasam granth. its duty of writer to explain his view clearly, otherwise reader can take it according to his own experience. SSA

  2. Taranjit

    I think the meaning is that we are doing rituals because some body told us so. That some body told us because some body else told him or her so. I came across lot of Sikhs (I am in USA) who do lot of rituals because their parents or friends do so. I ask them why you do certain rituals, answer is every body else does. An example they spray perfume on Sri Guru Granth Sahib in our Gurdwara and I asked one sewadar why he does that, he told me because Granthi does it, I asked granthi sahib and he told one of the Management member told him. Then I asked the member and he told me that he saw it some where else, may be on TV.

    May be at some place there may be smell and they sprayed perfume to take care of the smell and then the whole thing started. If we do not follow and think that you do not need any fragrance in front of Sri Granth Sahib, you will not do the ritual. SO we sikhs are following the same way monkeys are following in the story.

    Let common sense prevails among Sikhs and follow Sri Granth Sahib instead of following rituals.

    Sarbat Da Bhalla.


  3. Veerji
    Beautiful story depicting the condition of majority of sikhs today. This is what Guru Nanak sahib changed by challenging the rituals of his times.
    unfortunately sikhs have fallen in same pit.