To Be Better Off is Not Better
Dan Crawford (1870-1926) spent most of his adult life serving as a missionary in Africa. When it was time to return home to Britain, Crawford described to an old Bantu the kind of world he was about to return to. He told him about ships that ran under the water, on the water, and even those that flew above the water. He described English houses with all of their conveniences, such as running water and electric lights. Then Crawford waited for the old African to register his amazement. "Is that all, Mr. Crawford"? the aged man asked. "Yes, I think it is,? Crawford replied. Very slowly and very gravely, the old Bantu said, "Well, Mr. Crawford, you know, that to be better off is not to be better.?