By T G L IYER:
W e seek to avoid failure at all costs. In doing so, we miss valuable life lessons. We are exposed to approval and failure early in life. We seek our parent’s approval and thereafter the teacher’s approval and thereafter the Boss’s approval and so on. It only means that we seek the approval of everyone and rarely our own approval. The interpretation that failure is painful and approval is divine is our usual interpretation. Remember, that the world is made of winners and losers.
The joy you get when you overcome an obstacle is the maximum joy you derive in the process of living. Socrates, the Greek Thinker and Philosopher said: “I have lived long enough to learn how much there is I can really do without. He is nearest to God who needs the finest things”. There are three things to keep life simple. One is joy which is difficult to define. We feel elated when we achieve something which we thought was not possible. Joy is a feeling we get when we have accomplished something which in the beginning we thought was not possible. A second factor is love. It could be love of parents, teachers, a superior or ultimately God Himself.
A third factor is peace which is a factor which we can have only if the mind is controlled. It was Swami vivekananda who said: “A man may have never entered a Church, Mosque or Temple and enjoyed the company of people who have come there to pray asking for nothing. If we ask for anything it is not readily given by God but He won’t withhold it if you deserve it. It is God within himself that gets awakened through prayer and lifted above the vanities of the world. We are all Godly if we are satisfied with what we have and not attempt to accumulate wealth, gold, money or many other things we see around us. It is the mother who comes first to deserve our love and affection. It was she who brought us into this world and lovingly fed us to grow, said many fascinating good words when we went to school, and taught us the difference between good and bad. She was busy for the whole day cooking food, washing clothes, drying them up and clean the house so that we come home to a peaceful well kept place and smiled when we came home after doing business.
The hot cup of coffee she gave on arrival after a tiring day was not only enjoyable but lifted the spirits and gave good sleep to wake-up and start another day to start. Although she has departed to Heaven we still hear her enduring words telling us how to live and make life happy. Even when she scolded it was divine because they were lessons you remembered! Life is most precious when there is something for which we are prepared to die. All of us are carrying abilities and talents that we never use. The only thing that we are lacking is action. In other words, our ability and talents would work when we work. If we don’t, our talent and ability would be of no use.
If we try to do something which we have not tried before, we would know what we possess. In fact, there is not much difference between high achievers and the rest of us. The difference is that achievers do something new facing the challenges and sometimes ending in failure. But failure teaches us something that is to avoid where it will not work. Once we decide to take a new step we realise that we may fail or succeed. But that does not matter because our lives are full of opportunities to succeed or fail. Our actions alone determine our worth and quality of life.
The only people who don’t make mistakes are dead people. Developing a philosophy of life is extremely difficult. It was Aristotle who said: “Happiness is the meaning and purpose, the whole aim and end of human existence. If you do not tell the truth about yourself, you cannot tell it about other people. Most of us fail to realise that just communicating with a person in need can relieve suffering. The power of simply listening to a person in pain is monumental in the healing process. Not only the person who is suffering will benefit and we too get part of it. abraham lincoln, the American President once said: “I will work and prepare and my day will come. This came when from a man who lost scores of elections, suffered a nervous breakdown, faced the death of his child and went bankrupt. Optimism and positive thinking in the face of tragedy have seen many persons go from failure and triumph.”