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Make a difference

india Updated: Jan 04, 2010 01:12 IST
PP Wangchuk

New Year resolutions have become a compulsive obsession with me. Even though never more than half of the resolutions were fulfilled, that never bothered me because I had the satisfaction that I had tried my best. And that my next attempt at them would be easier.

Aren’t there certain occasions in life when there is greater pleasure in the attempt to succeed?

My point is that one might resolve to do a hundred things, but if one doesn't resolve to become a better human being, one’s life is wasted.

To become a good human being, one does not need to do great sacrifices. Small courtesies like vacating your seat in a bus or train for one more deserving, to help the blind cross the road or just to speak politely are steps to peace of mind and happiness. Let's remind ourselves that the source of happiness lies hidden in giving, and not in acquiring.

Acquiring wealth in the rightful means is greater in value than acquiring knowledge, provided your wealth is spent in a manner that makes a difference to others.

I don’t try to undermine the value of knowledge. It is important to the extent that it helps in creating conditions for an environment that is good for all. It is an idea that leads to making wealth, and it is wealth used in a meaningful way that leads to a free and just society.

We need to resolve to lead a meaningful life. That can come through only if we all resolve to take definite and visible steps to bring in the desired changes.

Let’s recall what Plato had said, “He who commits injustice, is made more wretched than he who suffers it.” Experience shows this happens with those who don’t tread the path of dharma.

Oh yes, one more resolution: to be less talkative. The more we talk, the more we become irrelevant. Hadn’t William Hazlitt said that silence is one great art of conversation. Let that be our guiding line for the New Year.