A Thorny Rose? Or a Rosy Thorn?

Dr. Matiur Rahman, JP Morgan Chase Endowed Professor of Finance and MBA Director, McNeese State University, USA.

January 08, 2013

Roses are symbols of romanticism and love. They bloom in various exquisite colours. Some are blood-red. Not all roses spread sweet flagrance. The roses stand on stems covered with sharp thorns. They protect the roses. Careless grabbers get hurt by sharp thorns and injuries may leave some marks on hands. At the same time, every rose has duality of beauty and tragedy. Colourful petals are beautiful and sharp thorns on the stem that protect a rose may turn out to be tragic. The sharp thorns also represent challenges and hurdles to overcome, to enjoy the beauty of roses.

Life is full of challenges that we must face and the hurdles on the way, we must overcome. This is the only way we can build ourselves and enjoy the success in life. A successful life is beautiful as a flagrant rose. A failure in life is tragic. However, success and failure are subject to definition and interpretation by individuals. Individualistic and selfish pursuits may bring only material success like a rose with closed petals. On the other hand, collectivism and selfless pursuits of life usher in material, moral, spiritual and intellectual successes. They are like full-bloomed flagrant roses. In short, life is full of dualities.

Life has multiple facets with endless activities between birth and death. Proper executions of goal-oriented activities shape a coveted destiny. Mis-steps and misguided executions of activities are bound to result in tragic failures. The proper goal in life is not to strive only for personal material gains. This ought to be to make positive differences in lives of others. Not being able to do so is indeed a failure of life.

Money is sweet as honey. We all want more and more of it. But how much do we need to lead a decent life? Money brings luxuries and comforts, not happiness and peace in life. Greater accumulation of money should diminish its marginal utility. However, an insatiable thirst for money makes an exception to this economic principle.

Politics is an integral part of life. This is one of the best ways to serve people in the country. Active participation in politics is not for all, but others can influence it through judicious exercise of voting rights as responsible citizens. Politics is also a risky chess. Only the skilled and the intelligent can play. Politicians have to boldly face challenges and overcome hurdles with integrity, honesty, and dedication to serve the country. They can enable the country to bloom as a flagrant beautiful rose.

Our politicians must know where they stand in light of the aforementioned. The answer lies inside. They need to look beyond what eyes cannot see. "The only real valuable thing is intuition"–Albert Einstein. Life need not be pain any more. Politicians must act as they promise. Swindling must stop. End political romanticism. The country belongs to all

Matiur Rahman, PH.D.
MBA Director, JP Morgan Chase Bank Endowed Professor of Finance, McNeese State University, Lake Charles, USA.