People have always fascinated me. They remind me of Miss Marple. Agatha Christie is one of my favourite authors 😊. She maintains that in spite of differences, people are similar . One person resembles the next in some way or other. Many a time when we meet a person, it so happens that they remind us of someone else. That shared characteristic makes it possible for us to gain some understanding of the two. It is an interesting study of character. Reading blogs posted by people from different parts of the world has made me realise that in spite of so many differences there is a sameness in our life.
Two months we came across a person who, on introduction said that he believed in speaking his mind. He did not care what people thought and believed that he had the right to say without hesitation whatever he wanted to tell. If people did not like his words, he would have nothing more to do with them. We were meeting him for the first time. My son asked me about him and I said he was an interesting person who had a lot of ‘aham’ or ego. In the course of the day, that person very gladly told us about his various educational qualifications. He was also quick to point out all that he knew and did not want others to tell him what to do and what not to do!
With all our achievements if we do not have humility, it is serious shortcoming. This person reminded me of some who are over- confident about themselves. They do not like criticism of any sort and are offended if they are criticised. They want an intellectual discussion without criticism. When I heard this, I wondered how could there be an intellectual debate without criticism. Strange are the ways of people!
Such people bring to mind a great scholar who has made remarkable contributions in the field of literature, language, computers, science and technology. He is humility personified. We see him often, walking back to his home. My heart fills with gladness when I look at this old gentleman.
He reminds me of another senior person who is in his eighties and is so interested in life. He writes and also translates. His translation of a novel in Kannada to English earned the prestigious Karnataka Sahitya Academy Award to him and to the author. Years ago, he told Aravind that early in his career he did not get what he liked, so he learnt to like what he got. He is now working on another book and is planning to write another. For him age is just a number.
There are many like these two people who grow through life, doing what they want to do and realising their dreams without talking about them or shouting about their achievements from the rooftops. I think Rabindranath Tagore has rightly said,
‘We come nearest to the great when we are great in humility.’