LESSONS from FAILURE. Smooth 98.1
It’s another beautiful day and I welcome you to SMOOTH-LIFE with OLAKUNLE SORIYAN. First, my new solution, LESSONS FROM FAILURE Premium Card is out! It works to reduce you error rate by over 70%. And beyond receiving well researched thoughts on your phone daily, your PIN also gives you access to an incredible community of users, sharing value of all kinds and using research findings and unique stories, audio downloads and much more. You should subscribe today. Today is LESSONS FROM FAILURE. I have failed so much to know that humility is virtue. I believe humility is a learnt behaviour. But in all areas of life where the expression of humility is critical, the most vital point of expression of humility is in our points of view. We should have the humility to accept that as one person, we simply cannot be more knowledgeable than the world.
It is a part of our dignity to understand that all we know is only an expression of what we have studied; and that there’s so much more than we can ever study or even know. More is unknown than is known. Everything on Earth, everything ever observed with all of our instruments, all normal matter adds up to less than 5% of the Universe. Do you know what matter is? Matter is anything that has weight and occupies space. Now, that includes everything on earth, cars, planes, ship, houses, machines and equipments, human beings, land mass, oceans…everything that has weight and occupies space is matter. Now, studies have shown that only 5% of the universe is known matter. So, all we have found and used since the beginning of the world till now is only 5% of matter. You can imagine all that is still unknown. With this, a level of humility should trail our perception of what we think we understand. The whole of available matter is, in itself, only about 25% of the universe–a very small fraction of the Universe. 75% of the entire universe is dark energy and only 25% is matter, with a critical part of it unknown. Obviously, more is unknown than is known. What this should do is to lead each us to a human state of openness of view that allows us to live free of prejudice and unnecessary sentiments.
Now, the understanding that in one of us cannot contain all that can be known should drive each of us to a point for respecting our own ignorance and valuing the contents of others. There is ignorance in all humans. The knowledge of all things belong to God only, and the knowledge of only what our individual or collective experience can deliver is part of our humanity. At our best, our expertise is the emancipation of the ignorance of others; and their expertise will be the solution to that which we could not have possibly studied on our own. One person cannot be all things to himself, yet, fools try to be so. One person cannot be his own country, president, police force, army, teacher, student, and all that society can offer. No! We must be all we can be but also allow others to be all they can be. As a lawyer, you will not be judged for not being able to assemble a gun, but you will be judged if you cannot wear your law wig. As a police officer, you will not be judged for not been able to defend a criminal in court, but you will be judged if you cannot shoot a gun. It’s all about staying within what we know and allowing the expertise of others to set our natural ignorance free. We cannot know all things and improvements will be pointless if we can reach our highest possible state of perfection. If truly, perfection eludes us as human beings, withholding judgment must be nature. The first contact with anything should create curiosity, not prejudice or conclusions. Once you understand this, it becomes easy for you to resist the temptation to think we know enough to disregard the experience of others. There is not enough in any man to empower anyone to treat with disdain, the wisdom of the elders for example. We all have a duty to give credits to those who have solved our so called problems especially the ones we never saw, even if it’s just an uncle or a friend. If mistakes are proof of our imperfections, then humility should always be our comforter.
Now, I define Humility as the ability of human species to recognize the boundaries of truth, wisdom, authority, order and legitimacy; and to understand them enough to compel all thoughts, words and actions to accept, promote and defend them as a matter of supreme urgency. Every question that we ask is a sign of humility. Humility doesn’t mean stupidity because at times it may seem so, especially when you are in conflict with an older person, your boss, your senior colleague, or what have you. And never forget that inspite of your justifiable rights, nothing will immune you from giving authority and honor to whom is it due. Humility settles scores faster. It’s the magnet that draws us very close to peace and harmony. In fact, humility withholds the capacity to lift us from where we are to where we ought to be. While humility reveals itself outwardly, humility is from within. The fact that you met people on ground even before you found yourself on this side of heaven should be humbling; and if you continue, it’s just a matter of time, your pride will reveal your new pain and struggle. Arrogance and Pride are the true enemies of destiny. They limit your reach for favor, withdraw peace from you, attract more adversaries; and to crown it, it has the capacity to shorten your life span. Curiosity and questioning are the ingredients of a defined posture of humility and that is what we should always show anywhere, particularly with authority, whether at work, home, or with peers. Then, at times, correction can be tough and painful. But its goal is to lift you. A doctor gives you pain when you are injected, but you don’t keep malice with the doctor because you are clear that you are being helped. Humility is what helps you to see the good and noble intention of those correcting you, even when it is painful. Humility is the key that opens your next breakthrough and if you want peace, power, prosperity, progress; humility should always be your posture recognizing truth, wisdom and authority. When we esteem other people over our self, this is a true practice of humility. This, by anyway does not communicate weakness; in fact, this attitude communicates strength, maturity and wisdom. Humility opens more doors than intelligence or skill. Trust me, the humble heart will eventually surpass the heart that is clothed with pride and arrogance. I have failed so much to know that this is life.