Sunday, September 25, 2011


SLOW DEATH - A Teaching Story

Do you believe in the concept of LEARNING FROM EXPERIENCE? 

You do? Then, here is the story for you to read...

If you try to place a frog in a pot of boiling water the frog will immediately try to scramble out.

Now try this.

Gently place the frog in a pot of water which is at normal room temperature and don’t scare him.

The frog will stay put and remain in the water.

Now place the pot of water with the frog on a stove on a very slow fire so that the temperature of the water starts changing very very gradually, so the rise in temperature is hardly discernible.

You may observe something very interesting happening.

As the temperature rises slowly the frog will do nothing.

At first, the frog may show every sign of enjoying himself.

As the temperature gradually increases, the frog will start becoming groggier and groggier until he is unable to climb out of the pot.

Though there is nothing restraining him, the frog will sit there and peacefully boil to death in the water.


Because the frog’s internal apparatus for sensing threats to survival is geared up to react to sudden changes in his environment, not to slow, gradual change.

It’s the same with us, isn’t it?  

This story is generally narrated to illustrate the concept that change management must be a slow gradual process. 

But there is a much more interesting inference from this story. 

Conventional wisdom says that one learns from experience but this story debunks this theory and in fact highlights that the fact that the concept of learning from experience is in fact a delusion, a fallacy, and in some cases relying on learning from experience may make you complacent. 

In fact, sometimes it is better to "empty your cup" and start afresh. 


Copyright © Vikram Karve 2011
Vikram Karve has asserted his right under the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988 to be identified as the author of this work.
© vikram karve., all rights reserved.

Did you like reading this story?
I am sure you will like the 27 stories in COCKTAIL
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About Vikram Karve

A creative person with a zest for life, Vikram Karve is a retired Naval Officer turned full time writer. Educated at IIT Delhi, ITBHU Varanasi, The Lawrence School Lovedale and Bishops School Pune, Vikram has published two books: COCKTAIL a collection of fiction short stories about relationships (2011) and APPETITE FOR A STROLL a book of Foodie Adventures (2008) and is currently working on his novel and a book of vignettes and short fiction. An avid blogger, he has written a number of fiction short stories, creative non-fiction articles on a variety of topics including food, travel, philosophy, academics, technology, management, health, pet parenting, teaching stories and self help in magazines and published a large number of professional research papers in journals and edited in-house journals for many years, before the advent of blogging. Vikram has taught at a University as a Professor for almost 14 years and now teaches as a visiting faculty and devotes most of his time to creative writing. Vikram lives in Pune India with his family and muse - his pet dog Sherry with whom he takes long walks thinking creative thoughts.

Vikram Karve Academic and Creative Writing Journal:
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Fiction Short Stories Book
COCKTAIL : Short Stories about Relationships By VIKRAM KARVE
Foodie Book:  Appetite for a Stroll

© vikram karve., all rights reserved.

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