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What is a successful life ?


Maharaja Swathi Thirunal died at the young age of 33, but his achievement within that short span of life was amazing. 

His musical achievements were on par with that of the musical trinities.  He composed over 400 classical music compositions in both Carnatic and Hindustani style. He learned many languages, encouraged musicians and other artists. 

He was a great ruler and administrator. He established a well-formulated code of laws, courts of justice, introduced English education, constructed an observatory, installed the first Government printing press, established the first manuscripts library in Trivandrum . 

There were many great men like him,  Adi 

Sankaracharya, Mathematician Ramanjam etc, who died young after great achievements. Other mortals can’t even dream of a small percentage of what the great men achieved. 

Their life was successful?  Yes, you will say. 

But, in a personal level, when a close relative of mine, extremely benevolent, extraordinary intelligent, died at the peak of his life and career, I DIDN’T feel that his life was successful. He grew right before my eyes. I was witness for his humanitarian activities, compassion for all living beings, but with all that, he died miserably.  

On what ground do I say his life was successful? Going by his brilliant academic or his career achievements or the palatial houses he built or the love and affection he showered on his family? 

For me and his mother, it would have been enough had he scored average marks in studies and lived with minimum facilities, but lived long. 

We would have, then called his life as successful. 

What is the purpose of living for a hundred years, without name and fame and without enjoying the pleasures of life, you may ask.

That creates another question what is enjoyment ? Are not passing exams creditably and holding coveted positions, causes for enjoyment? You may ask. 

Btw, one thing I want to tell you. I had no courage to meet, face to face, the mother of the boy mentioned above. After a long gap of more than a year, when I gathered courage and met her, I didn’t console her with the words:

‘His life was successful. So, don’t worry’

No I didn’t say that. 

As a coward, I took shelter under an oft quoted one word- Vidhi ( Fate ) 

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