Oliver Goldsmith was an Anglo-Irish writer, poet and physician known best for his novel ‘The Vicar of Wakefield.’ Not much is known about his early life. He graduated in 1749 as a Bachelor of Arts; later studied medicine and became a qualified physician too. He is the author of many delightful books.
One day, a poor woman asked Dr Goldsmith to go and see her husband, who was sick and could not eat. Goldsmith did so. He found that the family was in great need. The man had not had work for a long time. He was not sick, but in distress; and, as for eating, there was no food in the house. "Call at my room this evening," said Goldsmith to the woman, "and I will give you some medicine for your husband." In the evening the woman called. Goldsmith gave her a little paper box that was very heavy. "Here is the medicine," he said. "Use it faithfully, and I think it will do your husband a great deal of good. But don't open the box until you reach home." When the woman reached her home, she sat down by her husband's side, and they opened the box. It was full of coins of different values. On the top was the direction, ‘To be taken as often as necessity requires.’ Dr Goldsmith had given them all the ready money with him. No doubt, Goldsmith did the right thing – the right cure. All through life we see many qualified persons of dignity but very few are found to be doing the right thing.
One summer, Socrates built himself a house, but it was so small that his neighbours wondered how he could be content with it. "What is the reason," said they, "that you, who are so great a man, should build such a little box as this for your dwelling house?" "Indeed, there may be little reason," said he; "but, small as the place is, I shall think myself happy if I can fill even it with true friends." Socrates was challenging a world of friends to prove their worth. This has to be read with the Diogenes story. Diogenes was always found carrying a lighted lamp even in bright sun, in the lookout for a real man.
Aren’t there enough real men, true friends or men of dignity always doing the right thing, in so vast a world like ours? East or west, the world over is earnestly looking for mask less folks; the picture of a hot sun is never hot. Who will set himself/herself a model? Where shall we find a human being, who is so natural that he speaks what he thinks and does what he speaks? Searching is of no use; it is much more easy to become one. A solid example is a million fold effective than a stream of sweet advises.