By Maulana Wahiduddin Khan
11 February, 2015
Sir Winston Churchill (1874-1965) was a British politician and Nobel laureate who was the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom. He once said: “If we open a quarrel between past and present, we shall find that we have lost the future.”
The wisdom behind this saying is that every one, individuals or nations, have some bitter memories regarding the past. Also, in their present they always face some disturbing problems. If a person is engaged in this aspect of his past and present, he will lose his normalcy. He will not be able to assess things with a calm frame of mind. This makes him unable to plan for the future in the right way.
This kind of thinking is unwise. The fact is that you have lost the past, and the present, too, is not in your control. In such a situation, the best option is to go beyond the past and present in order to make your mind free of things that are beyond your control.
The future is certainly yours. Learn the lesson from past and present experiences. Keeping in mind all these experiences, re-set your priorities, reassess the whole situation and re-plan for your future in a better way.
There is a good example of this principle in British history. In the Second World War the British government wanted to achieve its goal by way of fighting. Although they emerged victorious in the war, their victory was Pyrrhic victory. The British people reassessed the whole matter and re-planned their strategy. In the post-war elections, they rejected Winston Churchill and selected Lord Clement Attlee to lead their nation. Attlee decided to free India instead of engaging in war to continue colonization.
It is dangerous to live in the past. Also, it is disastrous for a person to refuse to go beyond the present. This kind of thinking is not good for anyone, neither for individuals nor for nations. One has to reassess and re-examine one’s life on a daily basis. Only by adopting this practice can you save yourself from negative results.