Raghav (name changed) was an IIT-JEE aspirant; the brutally competitive exam was called IIT-JEE before it could become JEE (mains) and JEE (advanced). Raghav hadn’t succeeded in the first attempt so he decided to give it another shot. This young man happened to be a hard-working, sincere and intelligent in his approach and he had all the ingredients required to crack an IIT entrance. The only thing he was unaware about was the importance of living in the present. Let me give you a glimpse of what it had cost him and how horrible that was!

One could see this guy studying round the clock. Sleep, he had suggested, was a hazardous by-product of life. Finally, a month before the competitive-exam season could commence, Raghav saw his worries take on him and his health. Due to studying under pressure, he had damaged his eyes and was advised, at least a month-long bed rest. He had to open his eyes, every four hours, only to administer the prescribed eye drops! All efforts, all hard work that he had put in, for three long years was in vain. Raghav wasn’t able to appear for any competitive exam.

Everything in our life has one purpose – MONEY. ‘Money makes the mare go’ is a very popular saying. And that’s perfectly true, if seen in the present context. It is the environment that surrounds us makes us live lives for money, and we need to limit this mentality.

We are induced with the notion of money in an early age. They say, it is the most important thing in life and once you have it, other things shall follow. All our secondary school life is spent in worrying about results, not because we want to score for ourselves, but because we want to score for something much more important in the future.

We study in class 10th so that we might be able to opt for PCM in classes 11th-12th. In the process, all students opting for commerce, by choice, are looked down upon! We study in class 12th for a good college, in a ‘good’ college for a ‘good’ PG college and finally for a good job! So, we have been doing things to control the future! Controlling the future is still a topic of research, as we know it!

Still don’t see it? Here’s another instance. Kota has a very famous Radhe-Krishna temple wherein the walls are full of “Bhagwan, please IIT me admission dila do!” messages and prayers. To top it all, they offer 1 kg ladoos in exchange!

If God’s eye is considered to be active in Kota and on its students, the contradicting fact, according to a report, is that 8 suicide cases have been reported this year. This is the complete case – we have bet our lives on something that’s going to happen in future; something we just cannot control!

It is a race and that ironically, a compulsory one. ‘Run fast and make money’ is the underlying principle. As we all know it, it’s a rat race. And even if you win the race, you would still be a rat, ready to participate in another race!

This is the reason why the quality of education has slipped in India in the past few decades. Recently in an interview with the Hindustan Times, Mr. Narayan Murthy quoted, “We do not have enough high quality institutes in India”. The research field has never aroused interest as we attach more importance to materialistic happiness. The director of IIT Delhi, Mr. Pankaj Jalote has mentioned in a recent conference that a 3-tier system of including research universities with vocational courses was required.

The only thing that would help is living in the present. The present moment is what we have to make a difference! All successful people have done that and are still doing so! What they know is how to make hay while the sun shines! And not to think about times when the sun wasn’t shining or may not be shining!

Organizations like flipkart, amazon etc. have been established by people who knew how to make money from what they loved to do. An example we all know about is Apple Inc. It had been set up by people who loved doing experiments with technology. Love, as we all know, is an emotion attached to the present. You just cannot be in love with something you may get in future!

For all of us who have been through job interviews, we are judged on our capacity to perform in the present rather than assurance to perform sometime in future. We are, and will always be, evaluated on the quality of future building rather than future-worrying!

We are more worried about the marks we get rather than the knowledge we could have earned. The entire education system has been reduced to a mere training session of many years. There wouldn’t have been so many rape cases if we had educated (and not just trained) individuals in the country!

The long and short of all this is- A pressure cooker cannot win. Pressure might just take on your health as proven by Raghav’s example. And pressure comes when we think about the results. More specifically, you need to dedicate yourself to your chosen degree while pursuing it. That’s your present. That’s the reality. You may choose to think about what to pursue next, but if that’s going to be at the cost of your current education scenario, both the degrees would have no meaning!

Sachin Tendulkar has always advised his juniors to go out to the field and enjoy the game! This is what he himself would do and score a century. That was also the reason as to why he had a clean career without any allegations!

We too, are not made for worrying all along. We do not have the remote control for our future. We do not know if we’ll perform well in a test or score low. We do not know if we are going to be rich or ultra rich. All that we know is that we can make the most of this moment and stay beautiful!


Disclaimer: Views expressed in the article above are the author’s own. Featured Image credits:  University of the Fraser Valley, Flickr CC-BY-2.0