Criterion of Success

By Dr Ashraf Amin 

MAN is born creative, ambitious, and progressive. He is dynamic and always aims at excelling. However at times he fails to grasp up with the true spirit of success and excellence. He is sometimes carried away by the opinions of others. His success is steered by the views of others. In short he is lost in mass consciousness. This stays true with our generation. Our youth have a great difficulty in defining success. They perceive money and prestige as the ultimate parameters of success. In fact the general psychology of society prompts them to see things through the lens of money, power and prestige. They would hardly think of contribution to social welfare as the primary goal of their career. As soon as they set out to achieve the goal of securing a lucrative job or making an enterprise of material fortunes, they would already surrender their creativity, wit and wisdom. Their efforts and aims are not self-driven but society driven. They have been made subservient to someone else’s aspirations.

The contemporary mind-set that pervades our society defines and measures success in terms of monetary-gains. We would be often seen lauding an IAS officer or Doctor for that matter, but we would be miserly in acknowledging the contribution of an innovator or scientist or a social activist. Our general psychology does not allow us to produce social scientists, thinkers, reformers and philosophers. Money and matter seem the pivotal elements in taking up our career. And when success is measured in terms of money and prestige belittling other career options, society as a whole loses real assets of scholars, thinkers, innovators and social workers.

God has favored every single being with a unique trait that makes him distinct from the rest of his fellow beings. That characteristic trait is manifested in the profession one takes up, when one listens to his heart and soul. The society flourishes only when there is a wholesome development in  its  all domains. The  teachers, parents imposing career choices on their students and wards beyond their capacities or tastes is not only unethical but equally barbaric. They not only distort the personality of a student but also rob society off from his/her genuine contribution. The harms induced by wrong choices in careers under the impression of general thinking are not only reflected in the split personality one attains as result but also in the form of suicides or drug addictions. A young man must ascertain that success is self-defined. Success is not measured through luxurious homes and large cars,huge office rooms and rocking chairs. Success is measured by the contribution one makes to the cause of humanity, to the cause of virtue and righteousness.The worst feeling that one gets even after getting a deluxe job is when he feels a misfit at his working place. He constantly curses his choice. He realizes that he was made for something else. Success is not pleasing the general psychology of the society. Success is reforming the thinking of society. Success is reminding the society what priorities to take up, what matters to solve first. Success is feeling good, proud at one’s own place, in one’s own profession. Success is satisfying one’s own intellectual conscience.

  • The author is Assistant Professor, Department of Religious Studies, Central University of Kashmir

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