By T G L IYER :
A lmost any important task can be used as a vehicle for personal development. Work can be a path for personal growth and development. We can choose to make any of the tasks as a spiritual discipline, a discipline in the service of our own evolution. We can take the principles that build our personality and use our work as an arena in which to apply them with the result that both performance and personality will rise. We can take the same principle and apply them in any relationship that will flourish and develop our self-esteem. To many children, the school represents a chance, an opportunity to acquire a better sense of self and a better vision of life, than the quality of life at home. A teacher who projects confidence in a child’s competence and goodness can be a powerful antidote to a family in which such confidence is lacking. A teacher who treats children with respect can provide enlightenment to understand human relationships at home between members also.
A teacher who refuses to accept a child’s negative self-concept and holds a better view of the child’s potential has the power to mould a developing life! A friend once told me: “It was my teacher who made me aware that a different kind of humanity existed than my family and gave a vision to inspire me.” A hundred years is a long time; yet half the time we sleep. Of the other half childhood and old age take half the rest. God gave man this world not for mastery but stewardship. God gave real happiness to man to give most of it to others. We all can try to leave the world a little better place than we found it. When our time comes we can die happy in the feeling that at any rate we have not wasted our time but have done our best. A sign of enlightenment is the ability to be spontaneously, naturally to live with the present moment. We converse with people and most of the talking is done by one and listening is done by the other. Listening means putting all the thoughts out of the mind. If we really believe in what we are doing we have got to persevere even when we run into obstacles.
We toil and try and at an unexpected moment the breakthrough comes. Alfred P Sloan when he was President of General Motors is reported to have said at a committee meeting “Gentleman, I take it that we are all in complete agreement on the decision here. In that case, we may postpone further discussion until we disagree!” Our sports teacher once said: “A match between challengers and champions takes a strange turn. The challengers go into lead, because they just hit the ball. They don’t calculate, manipulate or think of winning. So, they relax whereas champions are under pressure because they have a stake to win. Failure is caused by distraction, preoccupation, anxiety conflict, fear and not having a free mind. Empty the mind, let it work naturally, you will achieve success, satisfaction and supremacy!
Wherever we find ourselves in life, whatever are the circumstances, we can make the situation a field of learning or growing experience! We can choose ourselves to be emotionally immobilised in whatever situation we are. We can be alive enough to get something out of experience. Creative means alive, capable of applying to any situation without consulting another. A lifeless interaction is a situation without any creative streak. Most of the people, who sit around, complain to themselves how dull everyone is. One should stop evaluating happiness on the basis of arriving at destinations. Instead, see life as a continuous journey with no intermediate stations and stoppages. Don’t evaluate life in terms of achievement and success along the way.
Whatever you have achieved now, you have to plan your next achievement! Look upon the whole trip of life as some happy journey. Because, there is no way to happiness; happiness is the way! The corner stone of your attitude must be alertness for taking advantage of your situation. A famous author once said: “In my hour of greatest distress, I found my greatest asset in the form of a new partner. I took this partner into business with me. I did the muscle work and my partner told me how to do it. His name is God”. I asked my partner what I should do. Came the reply that when you accept and implement what is told by the senior partner through your inner voice, you will ride to success, fame and fortune! To be effective, there should be a willingness to risk that is active faith. Achievements are in exact proportion to the emergencies one has to overcome!