Episode # 116 – “There can be no short-cut for success” – Vidura’s important advice to King Dhirdiraashtra!!!

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In the previous episode also we ‘ve continued our discussion pertaining to the importance given to our food habits by our “Sanaathana Dharma”. In due course we had witnessed yet another explanation as to why should we avoid consuming non-vegetarian food and what are its spiritual implications. We’ve seen various spiritual dimensions wherein we found that non-vegetarian food items are hazardous to our spiritual growth in this important human life of ours. Hence let us take a vow today that we would slowly reduce the consumption of non-vegetarian food and gradually over a period of time, stop its consumption completely.

Now we shall move on to the next aspect of Vidura’s explanation. After a long accord on food and its purposes, Vidura explains that if we perform any action in a hurry, it would end up in a disaster. Hence we need to realize that we need to exhibit calmness, steady attitude and patience in whatever we do. Here we need to note two words – Hurry and Steady. Outwardly we might think that the word “Hurry” is exactly the opposite to the word “Steady”. We mistake “Steady” to being “Slow”. It is not actually true. “Steady” is not exactly “Slow”. It means, “uniform” and “Without any tension”. Given any kind of activity, for instance there is an infrastructure construction – Say a flyover in a busy road junction. We can undertake it in two different ways – One through extremely fast means to finish up the flyover construction in no time! The other way is to take it steadily over a period of time, analyze the activity, understand the problems and challenges behind it and then proceed further to complete it.

Now which method is better? If we have to undertake this flyover construction at a tremendous speed, it might end up in a disaster, because our focus is only on speedy completion, but not other important parameters such as safety, strength of the construction and its longevity. Whereas if we undertake a steady approach, we shall be able to understand the soil condition better, plan the construction materials accordingly, analyze other potential problems that may arise during and after the construction activity, etc. and then proceed, we shall be able to achieve near perfection in what we want to do and the full benefit of constructing the flyover will be realized.

We’ve been hearing the story of the hare and the tortoise for a long time now isn’t it? What happened in the case of the hare? It was in a sort of a hurry and at the end of the game, it messed up its chances of winning it. Whereas, the tortoise was very patient and undertook a slow and a steady approach and was finally able to win the race with ease. Of course I’m not saying here that we should perform our activities slowly. We should be extremely careful in differentiating between being “Slow” and being “Steady” in our approach. This is one big misconception that happens everywhere – Even in the case of students appearing for exams. Students should realize that they have three hours in hand to complete a 100 marks paper and they have to plan their time accordingly. Many a times we would see students rushing up their writing speed towards the end of the examination time. They would be in some sorts of a tension to finish writing within the stipulated time period. But this tension would not arise if they had analyzed the question paper in the beginning itself – This is a very important strategy for students! We should take some 5-10 minutes to go through all the questions in the paper, prioritize which questions are lengthy and which of them are short, along with the mark allocation for each question. Based on that, we need to strategize which question should be answered first and which question should be answered last. This is what is called a “Steady” approach and this is exactly what Vidura is talking about here too – He is not asking us to be slow. Instead, he is advising us to be steady in what we do. The moment we get tensed in the examination hall, we would start forgetting the answers even for easy questions. Instead, if we undertake a steady approach, we would be able to find a suitable answer even for the question that we do not know! This is possible because our mind is very clear. We know what we are doing and we have strategized our approach in a channelized manner. This is extremely important in today’s world.

Thus Vidura advises King Dhirdiraashtra here, “Oh King! You are exhibiting unwanted hurry by encouraging your son Duryodhana to snatch the kingdom from the Paandavas! Instead, if Duryodhana and yourself undertake a steady approach and give the due portion of the kingdom to the Paandavas, it is not a tough task to work together with them and uplift the kingdom! This can be done so easily, if your approach is steady! But rather, you’re adopting a “short-cut” and a “fast” approach in a way that you are denying the Paandavas what they truly deserve!”

Hence the message from today’s episode is that, whatever activity we undertake in our personal or professional life, we need to approach it in a steady manner rather than through a quick or a short cut method to attain success. From the whole of the above discussion, one important aspect that can be highlighted is that, there is no short cut for success in life! Let us ponder upon this important aspect for today and try to introspect within ourselves. We shall wait till the next episode for further discussion on this important point. Stay tuned! 🙂

Published by Dr. Jeayaram

Holds a PhD in Management Psychology from Universite Paris Saclay, Paris, France. Also an Asst. Professor of Human Resources management at Amrita Vishwa Vidyapeetham in Kerala, India. A professional South Indian classical musician (singer) performing concerts. Through this blog, I'm trying to bring out the richness of Indian culture & values and I request your support and feedbacks in making this humble effort a success!!

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