Remember, every minute is unforgiving. It cannot wait for you for a second. It will always be sixty seconds. If you have been running in every second, if you hadn’t sat idle, whether you lost or won, this world is yours. Rudyard Kipling gives us a great bundle of advice – if you are ambitious, if you have a dream, if you often feel disappointed, if people blame you, if you lost all that you have struggled for, read this poem.
If you can keep your head when all about you are
Losing theirs and blaming it on you;
If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you,
But make allowance for their doubting too;
If you can remain cool while all else, friends, relatives or classmates, go mad and blame you for no reason, yours is the world. You were always a respected, trusted person but suddenly people around you started doubting you, for no reason. If you allow them to doubt you, if you do not hate them for doubting you, this is your world!
- If you can keep your head – If you can feel proud of yourself.
- All about you – All the people around you.
- When all about you are losing their heads – When all the people around are losing their confidence in you.
- Make allowance – Allow.
- Make allowance for their doubting too – Allow people doubt you without complaining.
Questions & Answers
- What should one do when everyone else is getting angry because of him/her?
When everyone else is getting angry with one, he or she should not lose self control. He should keep his head high and feel confident.
- Why is trusting oneself important?
Trusting oneself is important because if we start suspecting ourselves, there will be no one to give us courage and confidence.
- What should we do when others doubt us?
If you can wait and not be tired by waiting, or,
being lied about, don’t deal in lies, or,
being hated, don’t give way to hating, and
yet don’t look too good, nor talk too wise;
- We need to wait for the right time, right chance, right word, right friend, right job, right spouse and everything else! Got it? Impatience is the biggest enemy of this waiting. If we can overcome this impatience and continue waiting, there are all the chances of a winner in this world.
- Expect people around to be lying. They will tell all the lies against you, false-witness you, take you to the courts of justice and try you. Does that mean that you can tell lies? No, not for earning a living or for a good name. No lies.
- Apart from being lied about, you will be hated by many, may be by everyone. People hate and then they love. People love and then they hate. When you are hated, you start hating them. Can you overcome hating others? If you can, son, daughter, you have won the battle!
- With all these qualities, having overcome hatred, impatience and the urge to lie, you will be the best person in the world, so there is another problem – the world will hate you for being too good, for being too wise. You belong to such a society that hate you if you are exceedingly good or wise.
Questions & Answers
- What are the virtues/values mentioned in the above stanza?
- Why shouldn’t we look too good nor should we speak too wisely?