Was I Really Successful?

If I look at my life a couple years back, it wasn’t really that bad. I had complete financial independence and a well paying job. My employers appreciated me and my team members looked up to me for advice. I still remember a comment from a colleague ‘I want to be Maria when I grow up’.

I was emotionally independent as well. Most of the time, things were at peace.

And I was not ignorant about the fact that there are many people around me who envy a life I was living. In fact, I even said it out loud once during a lunch at a friend’s house.

But was I really successful? Forward my life to the present, I now realize what a sorry state I was in at that time. A few months back, in his weekly bayan, my Shaykh Hazrat Humayun Hanif DB compared this success with a fish that falls in the trap of a bait.

When a fish sees a bait in the water, it considers the bait as a success. The fish thinks that if it can reach the bait and get there, it will be successful. The fish makes it its goal. It thinks of it as an achievement. Sadly, the fish is not wise enough to understand the reality. Only when it gets close and falls under the trap, it dawns on it what that thing was that looked like a success goal. The sooner it realizes the reality, the easier it is to free itself out. And the deeper it goes in the trap, the harder it is to come out.

Realizing that now, I understand that I was not successful. I was only trapped in that bait thinking of it as my success, not even able to see the basic reality. Even a fish doesn’t take that much time to realize it’s a trap and it tries to free itself.

This is actually the worst kind of situation because a person who is trapped in this bait does not even realize the reality. It is worst than being depressed. Because when you feel lost, depressed and disappointed in life, you then start looking for a direction. If you know you are lost, you will ask around for directions and ask people to help you. And then, there is a good chance you will find the right direction.

But if a person thinks he is successful and he is enjoying his life, he doesn’t find the urge to even look for directions. It’s just like someone who boards the train which is headed to Quetta and thinks he is going to Lahore. He thinks he is successful because he is in a train and the train is comfortable. He just doesn’t know what a sorry state he is in. If he is lucky, he will realize it before he arrives at the final station.

So , think about it while life is giving you chances. Are you really successful?

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