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  • Maulana Wahiduddin Khan

The Art of Failure Management

AN INDUSTRIALIST ONCE came to me with his daughter. He said that his daughter was getting married soon and asked me to pray for her successful married life. I told him that every marriage is doomed to failure, except for the ones in which the husband and wife learn the Art of Failure Management!

The Art of Failure Management lies in not looking at marriage as something ideal, but as a practical matter and then accepting one’s partner the way he or she is. People generally tend to measure their partners by an ideal yardstick, and when they do not measure up to their expectations, they tend to think that they have not found their ideal soul mate. This happens both in the case of a husband and a wife, and so both partners fail to experience the joys of their union.

The truth is that every woman and every man are almost the same. Physical appearances might be different, but inside, there is no great difference. If couples realize this, then they would rejoice in each other, and accept each other as the best life partners.

The Policy of Non-Interference

I ONCE ASKED an educated person about his family life. He replied that his family life was good and healthy. When I asked him what his formula for success was, he replied, “Non-interference”. This meant that neither he, nor his wife interfered in each other’s affairs.

I agreed that this was the best principle for maintaining harmony in the home. God has endowed man and woman with different temperaments. Every man and woman is different. Therefore, in a marriage, the relationship stems from two different natures. And since God Himself created this difference, we have no power to change it. Instead of making futile attempts to change this difference, we should learn to adjust to it. This principle can be put into these words: The Art of Difference Management.

This difference is not an evil. There is great benefit hidden in it. Differences do not mean mere differences: they should be seen as representing two different capabilities. If both men and women had uniform capabilities, they would be able to achieve very little. For, the absence of uniformity is the secret to intellectual development. It has rightly been said, “When everyone thinks alike, no one thinks very much.” Therefore, the policy of non-interference is the best policy for a normal and happy life, both at home and in the outside world.

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