Tale of an Old Man

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Once upon a time there was a wise man lying on his death bed. People gathered around him to for their wishes for the upcoming unknown, unseen scary journey through the doors of death. People wanted to hear what were the thoughts of the old man, what could be his confessions. The old man told them the story of his life. When I was a young man, the old man spoke, I wanted to change the entire world. I started struggling towards my goal but I realized that the entire world is too big for a single man to change so I put my efforts to changing the condition of my nation. Soon it became clear that a nation is not for a single man to inspire. I turned my focus onto changing the members of my family for their own good but once again, I could not bring any positive change into the members of my family. As an old man now when I think about the journey, I realize that I chose the path upside down. I should have started to change my own self to inspire the ones around me and the change into those persons would have inspired my nation and my nation would have inspired the entire world.

Having read that story, I wondered for a moment. The path to change should be inside-out path not the outside-in, as the old man suggested. I read somewhere that a wise man tries to learn the lessons from others experiences and the fool tries everything for himself and draws the same conclusion afterwards. A lot of people are aware of this ‘holy grail’ and they do practice it as well, when they’re kids. When I joined my first job as an engineer, I was told that the stuff in reality doesn’t work as suggested by books. I laughed inside my head saying it’s for the sake of theory in books that these machines have been designed and being operated by fools who think that these are something else other than the theories described in books.

After a couple of months I realized that the man was right. The craft to survive in reality is not the practice of theoretical principles rather the craft involves the manipulation. It’s not the manipulation of machines rather it’s the manipulation of how well can you make a fool out of someone else. Certainly it has never been taught to me in my entire educational career and this is when I was convinced that the stuff in reality doesn’t work in accordance to the ‘fair and square’ descriptions written in theoretical volumes. Unfortunately the same principle applies to every person, every nation, every country and the entire world. Principles of humanity are always taught to be used as a crust to sweeten the bitter mode of how things actually work outside the books.

A person might find himself wise enough to follow the old man, to bring about a constructive change into his personality. When that person holds some rank into any social or industrial institution, he’d be told that things don’t actually work like the old man said. Today the tale has been changed. The old man just did the right thing, he didn’t change himself, he moved on with the flow. People in those old times didn’t have the brilliance required to understand what old man did and in the end, eventually, the old man had to come up a theory to cover up why he missed his aims and taught the wrong lesson. If a person corrects himself, he’d be an unfit part of the machinery of this society and the society ‘unwillingly’ will have to pull him out and throw him into garbage. Today the tale goes like this: Although you cannot fool everyone all the times but you have to keep trying to fool them all, all the times. 

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