Struggle & Learn

Mon12Jul10

The important thing in life is not the triumph but the struggle.
– Pierre de Coubertin

I was in my school the other day when a parent approached me for a `big favour’: she wanted her son studying in the eighth standard to be given the permission to travel by the school bus! We ask the children to use bicycles to reach the school from the seventh standard onwards. The parent had a very justifiable reason for asking this favour: the road traffic is bad and too risky to use bicycle! She was afraid to allow her son to step on the road after seven years of a protected travel in the school bus.

I asked her to teach her son difficult things in life accepting all the risks that go with it. I asked her to make her son to struggle to reach the school and allow him enjoy all the struggle that everyday life offers. Just imagine the struggle our forefathers went through to travel, to communicate, to write, to scale mountains and to do many ordinary things which are very easy today. Perhaps we have made all these things very easy to our children.

One reason why our children do not appreciate the value of what they have may be that they did not struggle to get what they have. May be they got it too easily. May be they were offered all the comforts. Psychologists say that we enjoy those things which we get after a long struggle.

In struggle we learn, and in triumph we enjoy. Learning is more important than enjoying.

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