Jagjit Singh, famous gazal singer, was a post-graduate student at Kurukshetra University when he “deserted” it, went to Mumbai, underwent grueling training sessions with masters of music for a decade, and then ventured out to reap its fruit.
In order to get the reward of mastering a musical instrument, a musician goes through fatiguing practice sessions.
Ghulam Ali, Pakistani singer, says after hours of hard sessions, his master used to give him a rupee as a reward and appreciation.
An aspirant to IAS, looking for a secure and satisfying future, outlines for himself a grilling, exacting course of study.
We often undergo hard times that we may have soft life discipline and while training we realize that bad times are good times! We often prepare for good fortune by undergoing a series of difficult experiences.
Even at the most ordinary levels of living, there are the constant rounds of arising, dressing, attending to routines. At higher levels, there are attempts to do creative work, responsibilities we sense or assume, dreams that drive us on.
We confront circumstances not to our liking. It rests with us whether these shall be, for us, hard times or soft times.
Think of singer practising long hours, training and conditioning him, the student slugging away toward his distant objective, the artist working at details under the light of his vision.
Similar times – discipline, training, self-control — are part of the preparation for our good times along the way of life. To be given charge over many things, we should undergo the training of being faithful to things, even when they do not seem worth the effort.
Every hard experience is an exercise. Or a bit of training, which can be used in order that later we may have greater satisfactions. This important truth applies to all events and conditions, large and small.
Anything, which does not go right, is an instrument of our developing capacities for greater achievement. Every failure helps us in eliminating some flaw or error.
We find new zest, new power, and new resources when we thus take command of our lives and begin to use daily routine and all experiences as “exercises” in preparation for our progress. Wisdom demands that we set ourselves higher goals, which demand still more of us and require the discovery of still greater powers within. There is a powerhouse inside us but we fail to switch it on!
Take the case of an aspiring writer. A lazy one or the alibi minded wants to become a writer without going through the heartbreaks. He blinks away the fact that good writing comes from a disciplined mind. Real success stems from the inner recesses of the soul, nor from luck or lottery.
To set for oneself this kind of objective is to undergo self- discipline, difficult denial. But the results will be most satisfying.
One should not seek hard experiences for their own sake. Such morbidity leads to martyr complexes and false goals for living. The goal of creating character is hard enough for anyone.
One need not waste time in practicing difficult exercises. Before you, demanding your attention in the performance of the duties and privileges of the day are dozens of such exercises. They are more difficult than artificial regimes, and also more fruitful.
To master our daily rounds and complete them in poise and peace is to prepare for richer life ahead. We need not invite bad times, but we must recognize them when they come and use them.
Whatever the circumstance, we remember must that its use is to create in us capacity for more happiness and greater success. “The soul refuses all limits. It affirms always in man an optimism, never a pessimism”, says Ralph Waldo Emerson.