God’s Dilemma

A story narrated by Robin Sharma in one of his books (Who Will Cry When You Die)
reads like this. Thousands of years ago, it was believed that everyone who walked the earth was a god. But humankind abused its limitless powers so the supreme god decided to hide the godhead, the source of all of this potential, so that no one could find it. The question then became, where could such a thing be hidden? Three advisors suggested to god. One said, it could be placed deep in the ground, the second advisor suggested the bottom of the deepest ocean and the third one’s suggestion was to put it on the top of the highest mountain. But for god,all of these was not acceptable, since god feared that it was within man’s capability to dig the earth deep enough, to dive deep into the ocean or even attempt climbing the highest peak and finding it. After reflecting for some time, the supreme god found the solution. “I will put this source of all human power, potential and purpose inside the hearts of every man, woman and child on the planet, for they will never think to look there.”

The hidden ‘treasure’

Now you know what is hidden within your heart. So, if you want to realize the three precious ‘P’s, viz. human power, potential and purpose, (which together I call the treasure) you have to first look within. That is, create a self-awareness.


Human power is unimaginable and perhaps has no barriers or boundaries. Mankind’s discoveries right through the ages provide ample proof of this power, the power to think, to imagine, to create something new and something which is useful to the mankind as a whole.


Next comes the potential. Deep within every human being is lying hidden vast potential which is not known to the individual. Do not think that a particular task is impossible. It is realizing this and acting on this belief that will bring out the potential/capabilities in you to accomplish the task. The fear factor or the self-doubt will never bring out the potential in you.


Again, and perhaps the most important, is the purpose. Whatever you do, do it with a purpose, a meaning. Identify what purpose a certain act by you will achieve. The purpose has to be meaningful and of use to others.

A quote by Anai Nin says, ‘There is not one big cosmic meaning for all; there is only the meaning we each give to our life, an individual meaning, an individual plot, like an individual novel, a book for each person.’ So give a meaning to your life, live it and leave a legacy when you die – the legacy of a life which can be emulated by many to find meaning to their own lives.

Live life and Leave a Legacy

Robin Sharma’s father told him, when he was growing up. ‘When you were born, you cried while the world rejoiced. Live your life in such a way that when you die the world cries when you rejoice.’ I would like to modify this slightly – it is not necessary to make the world cry, rather make the world remember you, remember your deeds, the principles and values for which you lived, through which they could make a purposeful living.

Self Analysis – the SWOT way

SWOT stands for Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats. These not only apply to organizations, but also to individuals. In the case of individuals, some simple steps are given below.

One has to know one’s own strength, the strong points based on his skills and expertise. While these should be protected and developed, there should be an urge to acquire additional skills.

At the same time, it is very important to be aware of one’s own weaknesses; one may be weak in terms of certain attributes like communication, negotiating skills etc. There should be continuous attempts to focus on these and try to reduce this weakness gap.

Opportunities should be seen with the right mindset and never missed. Opportunities knock at every one’s door at one time or the other, and it is up to you to grab the right opportunities to move up the ladder in your career.

Threats could come from colleagues wanting to outsmart you. You should anticipate threats and try to take necessary steps to overcome these. In these days of stiff competition in all fields of activity, one has to not only try to excel, but should make extra efforts to be better than the best,

Adversities – how to deal with

Adversities could some time open up new opportunities. Rather than getting demotivated, you should think of facing them boldly and look at ways to turn them in your favor. In Shakespeare’s Richard II, John Gaunt advises Bolingbroke, his son, when the latter is banished to France, thus: ‘Gnarling sorrows hath less strength to bite when a man mocks them with scorn and sets them light’. You should learn to mock at sorrows and face adversities with courage – again, as John Gaunt advises, ‘imagine each flower a fair lady, each step a measured dance.’


Goldsmith says, ‘like reptiles in a corner of a stupendous palace, we peep in, look about us, wonder at all we see, but are ignorant of the great architect’s design.’ But do not bother, always look for the ‘treasure’ within you, which has been bestowed upon you by God.


About cvsubramaniam

Former Director, Department of Electronics & Informatiin Technology, Government of India.. Authored Book on Human Resource Management. Published 80 plus articles on HR, Management, S&T, general topics.
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