No pain, no gain

Arab News - - OPINION -

I read with in­ter­est the ar­ti­cle “No growth with­out chal­lenges” ( May 30) by Ab­du­la­teef Al- Mul­him. The writer has pointed out an im­por­tant thing. It is cor­rect that peo­ple who re­ceive ev­ery­thing on a sil­ver plat­ter or who don’t strug­gle in the early stages of their lives tend to take im­por­tant things in life for granted. There may be ex­cep­tions but gen­er­ally it is true for many peo­ple. This phe­nom­e­non is not unique to Saudis. It is part of hu­man psy­che. We usu­ally value things we achieve af­ter hard la­bor.

Of course that does not mean that the Saudi gov­ern­ment should with­draw the for­eign schol­ar­ship pro­gram. Young Saudi, men and women, should un­der­stand that their gov­ern­ment is go­ing out of its way to fa­cil­i­tate their stud­ies in the King­dom and abroad. It is their duty to pay back their coun­try by study­ing and work­ing hard. The prob­lem, in my opin­ion, is that the young­sters are not made to un­der­stand the im­por­tance of work. In ad­di­tion to that they should be trained in such a way since their child­hood that no work is be­neath their dig­nity and that there is no short cut to success. In or­der to achieve success, we need to take one step at a time. One’s na­tion­al­ity should not be seen as the only cri­te­rion for success. Most of the suc­cess­ful peo­ple in the world who made a name for them­selves started from scratch. For­mer US Pres­i­dent Bill Clin­ton dur­ing his stu­dent life worked as a clerk and learned so much from that ex­pe­ri­ence. This is just one ex­am­ple. Schools in the King­dom should or­ga­nize lec­tures and talks on these in­spir­ing sto­ries of fa­mous peo­ple. de­prive them of their hard- earned money. In ad­di­tion to that there are many so­called schol­ars who de­lib­er­ately raise con­tro­ver­sial is­sues to drive a wedge be­tween Mus­lims and later gain from this un­for­tu­nate di­vi­sion.

I be­lieve that the rea­son be­hind the success of such el­e­ments is our lack of Is­lamic knowl­edge. Un­for­tu­nately, we Mus­lims read the Qur’an with­out prop­erly un­der­stand­ing its true mean­ings. It is very dif­fi­cult for such con­men to be­fool an in­di­vid­ual with sound re­li­gious knowl­edge.

We per­form re­li­gious rit­u­als with­out un­der­stand­ing its true pur­pose. It is un­for­tu­nate that we don’t even un­der­stand the true mean­ings of even the five pil­lars of Is­lam. In­stead of un­der­stand­ing the ba­sics, we are more tempted to raise con­tro­ver­sial is­sues.

Khawar Ja­mal K.L. Khan

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