Maulana Wahiduddin Khan | The Times of India, New Delhi | January 2, 2014
According to a survey reported in this newspaper (Aug 13, 2013), out of the world’s hundred richest people today, 27 are heirs and 73 are self-made. Of the self-made, 18 have no college degree and 36 are children of poor parents, but some billionaires had neither a degree nor wealthy parents. In other words, super-achievers are not born, they are selfmade people. It is not external favour that makes one a super-achiever, but one’s own struggle. Super-achievement is not got through inheritance, but is self-acquired success.
No one is a born a billionaire, but everyone is a potential billionaire. It is the unfolding of one’s own potential that makes one a billionaire or superachiever. Nature does not discriminate between one person and another. Nature’s gifts come to everyone equally. It is the receiver himself who either utilises them or not.
So-called deprived persons are in fact privileged persons. Their state of deprivation serves as inner motivation. When they see others are progressing, it creates a strong incentive in their minds. It is this incentive that makes a person, super. It inculcates a strong urge in the individual to make something of his life.
Any state of deprivation brings about a kind of brainstorming which enhances inner spirit. They enter the world of competition working to their full capacity. They develop the spirit of do or die. It is this spirit that leads them to success.
There is a saying that ‘Mr X was born with a silver spoon in his mouth’. This kind of birth creates a kind of contentment in the concerned person, and this kind of contentment kills motivation. While one who was born in a poor family without a silver or a golden spoon, develops a kind of discontent that ought to activate one’s mind and trigger a fire within one to do hard work.
You can seldom find a family that started its history with a treasure of gold and diamonds. For every family, the treasure of gold is a phenomenon of the future, not of the present. Every family initially started its history from rags, and not from riches. The story of rags to riches is not the story of exceptional persons, but is common to all. In fact, the story of rags to riches is the story of every successful family or successful person.
There are numerous examples of one rising to a high position through one’s own struggle, while one’s children might have turned out to be ‘dull’. The reason is simple. The parent started his life with the spirit of discontent, while his children started their lives with ‘contentment’. This reason is responsible for the difference between parents and children.
One who is born into a poor family and achieves success by way of struggle, achieves one more thing, which is more important than wealth – that is, intellectual development. His circumstances automatically develop an intellectual struggle in his mind. This struggle unfolds his inner capacity, and consequently he emerges as an intellectually developed person.
One who is born in a state of affluence could become intellectually dwarfed, while one who is born in poor circumstances could emerge an intellectual giant.
The laws of nature are greater than everything else. They are eternal: they cannot be changed. The law of nature in this regard says that it is not ease but effort, not facility but difficulty that makes achievers out of ordinary people. So, the future is full of hope and opportunity!