• Yehudit Zicklin-Sidikman

On Tell: The Beauty of Stone Soup


I am pretty sure that many of you know the story of Stone Soup. The short version, for those who don’t, is that a person without food enters a town and is looking for something to eat.


They knock on doors, but people are not at all interested in giving them anything.

Finally, they give up on the doors and looking for scraps, and they go down to the river bed, fill their pot with water, build a fire, put a stone in the pot and start heating and mixing the water.

Curious, people from the town start making their way down to the river bed to see what this person is cooking. One after the other they ask “what are you making?” The answer being: “Stone Soup, but it would be so much tastier if I had a carrot.”

You get the point…..


Why is "TELL," the fifth principle of Empowerment Self Defense, like a pot of soup?


When we build the "TELL" piece into our ESD courses, it is a little like building a pot to cook stone soup. We are creating a container for holding the stories, as the participants feel more and more comfortable to share.


When we build the "TELL" piece into our ESD courses, it is a little like building a pot to cook stone soup. We are creating a container for holding the stories, as the participants feel more and more comfortable to share.

When one shares a story today, and the others see that it is a good process, a supportive process, then they too might be willing to come forward and share their story.

Slowly but surely, the soup becomes richer from the vegetables and spices added to the pot, and the sharing of the stories becomes something that is comfortable and healing.

It's a process, but it is one that everyone of those participants learns so that maybe one day, in a different setting, they can be like the foodless travellor who sets up the pot and gives people the safe space to create a nutritious healing soup.