We should try to develop our natural potentials. In the heat of high ambition and great expectation, one leaves aside one’s own qualities and starts copying others, wanting to outshine them. Not satisfied with just this, one wishes to let others down. Consequently, one remains in a constant mental tumult. As a consequence thereof, the mind wanders away from the place where one is physically present and no use ever comes out of having the mind at a place where there is physical absence.
What is needed for good results is that we focus the attention of our senses, mind and body Simultaneously in one direction. This gives us immense strength and adding a little hard work to this, we can accomplish any task. On the other hand, when the senses, mind and the body do not work in co-ordination, then even a lot of energy deployment becomes futile for the accomplishment of the desired task and the mind starts remaining restless because one becomes incapable of producing the results which others have already produced.
What an ill effect of copying others!
Nature blossoms on all sides. The tree is important in its own place and the grass in its own too. At one place, a tree is laden with fruits; at another, the banyan tree spreads its branches far and wide to provide shade; in one location, water falls down from a great height; in another, a river flows across a plain stretch of land. There is no comparison in nature. Every unit is independent complementing and supplementing the others.
Our habit of making comparisons has degraded us to such an extent that even in the case of children we do not refrain from comparing. We keep asking our child why he failed to be a topper in his class or remained behind in the school race. “In the second competition also, you could not secure a good place and you are never able to come at par with so-and-so.” What happens is that as a result of the comparative approach we adopt, the otherwise perfectly normal child feels defeated.
God has equipped everyone with certain basic qualities. If one child is brilliant at one art, the other could be bright at something else. If someone is dull at studies, he might be good at sports. If someone is unable to read properly, he might have a beautiful handwriting. If one takes no interest in singing, he might be a great writer. All we have to do is to try and understand the child’s interests and potentials and encourage him to progress in that field.
We have to abandon the habit of making comparative analyses. It all starts when one compares oneself with others thinking that the grass is greener on the other side. Indeed, today man is unhappy not because he does not have a particular thing but because his neighbour has it.
Look at this situation :
A man has two sons and his neighbour has two daughters. The daughters’ father stays upset because he has a lot of responsibilities to fulfill. He thinks that he needs to take a lot of care in the upbringing of his daughters and arrange their marriages in good time. He is upset with the thought that his neighbour is enjoying himself with two sons and no worries, for he would not have to be bothered about the expenditure on weddings. After all, in the end of it, he is the one who is going to take the cake. But the truth is that the sons’ father is far from such a situation. In fact, he is upset thinking that his neighbour is enjoying himself. After marrying away his daughters, he will shove off his responsibility on others and then live life like a free bird with nothing to do. “And poor me! I need two houses for my two sons, I need to settle them and arrange two businesses for them. The daughters-in-law they bring might not adjust, they might want to live separately.”
What a strange situation! The main reason for all this restlessness is that they just can’t refrain from comparison.
In my view, if at all you do have to compare, look at the positive qualities of other people and try to inculcate those in yourself. If the other person is honest, try to supercede him in honesty. If someone is truthful, you should try to be truthful yourself. This will bring pleasure in your life.
We often make the mistake of considering ourselves superior to others and try to search flaws in them. This involves the risk of those flaws creeping into us, because a man becomes what he thinks. So, instead of vices, if we concentrate on the virtues of others, the virtues will automatically start entering into our personality, because the qualities that we contemplate deeply upon do gradually become a part of us. In fact, we won’t even realize when those qualities got incorporated in us. But those qualities should always remain precious in our eyes. Emphasis should be on obtaining qualities – virtues – and not mundane objects.
Now, if you do have to look for flaws, then search for them inside yourself because, if through constant effort, you resolve to do away with your faults one by one, you will be able to outshine others. But here, it has to be kept in mind that if you resolve to outshine others in terms of wealth or appearance, then you will be no better than a thief, robber or an extremely sensuous person. On the other hand, excelling in good qualities will transform you into a sagely person.
Spot your vices one by one and struggle with them. Guard against the infiltration of debased thoughts. If such ill thoughts succeed in staying in your mind for some time, then rest assured that they will find a permanent place to stay. It is said ‘nip the evil in the bud’, implying thereby that if you fail to destroy a bad habit in time, then the seemingly little thing will spread its branches far and wide and overshadow all your good qualities. Even on expending tremendous energy, it will continue to harbour inside you in some form or the other and trouble you for the rest of your life. So, when a bad thought seeks to enter you, nip it right away and refuse it any place in your mind. Instead, convert your mind into a home for several good thoughts.
With full faith in God, if you try with all your heart to remove your vices, they will definitely come to dormancy. Never will they knock your door again. The truth is that superficially we disapprove of such thoughts but, deep inside us, we hold a liking for them. A feeble, semi-desired effort for removal of bad thoughts does not let us free from their captivity. So, with a whole-hearted resolution and prayer to God – Who is forever watching and listening to us – if we decide to beat away the vices, there’s no reason why we shouldn’t be successful. Then we will constantly go on acquiring good qualities.
Considering everyone to be a God-sent soul like yourself, neither should you make any comparisons for yourselves or for your children; nor should you harbour any ill-will for anyone else. That way your children will also change gradually. This change for the better will expand and as a result thereof universal peace will ensue which will facilitate the accomplishment of all your tasks and fill your life with pleasure and enthusiasm.
TO REMEMBER AND DO :
1.Comparison breeds stress. It weakens the epicentre of strength.
2.Instead of comparing, awaken and develop your self-confidence which is capable of taking you to the zenith of success.
3.We should concentrate on our virtues and remember that all the qualities of our Lord are present in us. We only need to make use of them.
4.All you have to do is to see the good, hear the good, speak the good and do only the good.