A brilliant boy of 10 wrote a story during one of my evaluation protocol . He described a boy of 10 years as the only son of working parents. He portrayed the boy as very sincere and obedient and exceptional in many abilities. Once when this hero of the story was leaving his home for school after locking his house he saw an old, ill clad peasant shivering in cold. This boy felt pity and to express his feelings he went inside his house and selected the best option to help the old peasant. He took some oil from his house and also helped the peasant to apply on his body. Other options like providing blanket or making him stay inside were ruled out logically by the intelligent hero . Satisfied with his work and taking the hearty blessing from the peasant he proceeds to the school. No sooner he left the old man started experiencing stinging pain of ants on his body. The oil had attracted the red ants from the adjacent tree and now they were feasting on the old man. Sooner few juvenile delinquents approach the peasant and start bullying and playing pun on him. They try to spit on him. They had eaten stolen candies and their saliva is loaded with sugar. Their saliva gets sprinkled around the old man and the ants leave him for better options.
The question asked by my client “Who did the good job? The good child who tried to help but increased the agony or the goons who in delinquent behavior that relieved the old man’s pain?
This opens up the issue for discussion with a 10 year old boy with good intelligence. The concept of intention. If my client understands that it is always the intention that matters in life and not the end result it shall resolve his conflict. If he understands that out come does not depend solely on one factor of effort and it may never be near what we expect, he will have solace with in. He can then understand that his parents sometimes express anger and he is scolded because of good intentions in their heart. The court of law sees the ‘ mens rhea’ in a crime rather than ‘actus rhea’. Behind every action of humans there has to be an intention. No actions, even the unconscious or in sleep, can occur without intentions. This highlights the impact of intention in our behavior. .