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Concentration is the key to success

It is common knowledge that I do not agree with the views of Charles Darwin (1809-1882). However, it is a fact that he is considered one of the most famous thinkers of modern times and played a major part in the intellectual formation of modern man.

Darwin achieved this position of eminence in the modern world by dint of exceptional hard work. The Encyclopedia Britannica (1984) says of him: “All his mental energy was focused on his subject and that was why poetry, pictures and music ceased in his mature life to afford him the pleasure that they had given him in his earlier days.” (5/495)

Such intellectual concentration is vital to peak achievement in any field, be it right or wrong. Man has to be so engrossed in his work that everything else pales into insignificance beside it. Unless everything else loses its interest for him, he cannot climb to any great heights of success. If we examine the lives of the truly great, we find that they all worked in the same dedicated way.

In any task of greater or lesser complexity, there are always aspects of it that present problems that appear to be insoluble at first sight. Sometimes innumerable facts have to be marshaled which can be interpreted only with the keenest of insight. Often a mysterious, elusive factor emerges just at a point when one thinks that all questions have been answered. Such difficulties can be overcome, and such secrets unveiled only when one’s total intellectual capacity is directed towards the unraveling of the mystery. Without the utmost devotion and one hundred percent concentration, success will remain forever beyond one’s grasp.

Maulana Wahiduddin Khan is an Islamic spiritual scholar who has authored over 200 books on Islam, spirituality, and peaceful coexistence in a multi-ethnic society.

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