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Saturday, August 11, 2012

Ancient story on Planning

Long time ago in ancient India, there existed a very peculiar village.  It was a very prosperous state and had everything in abundance. The peculiarity about it was the way they chose their king. 

One of the kingdom's priced possessions was a white elephant called "Airavat".

 Every 5 years Airavat was given the responsibility of choosing the king. So on the decided day after every 5 years Airavat would walk down the streets of the state with a crown in his trunk. Airavat would bless anyone on the street with the crown and that person would be declared king for next 5 years. 

But there was also a flip side, whoever becomes the king, after the tenure of his reign, was deserted and taken to the jungle across the large river. It was a dense forest and once he was thrown to the jungle there was no chance for him to survive. So whoever became the king would feel happy, but also sad, because he knew he would die after 5 years.

This was going on, until a very wise man, "Mansukh" became the king. He was very happy with the opportunity and did some phenomenal work during his reign. And then the destined day came, like every time guards walked in his room with ropes, to tie him up and take him away. But to everyone's surprise, Mansukh readily got up and asked the soldiers not to bother. 

Unlike every time, where the king would plead everyone to leave him, Mansukh was actually happy to go with the soldiers. He walked down the streets proudly and reached the boat, which was to carry him across the river. For the boatman also, it was utterly surprising. He expected the king to be carried forcibly by the guards, tied in rope in the most helpless condition, but here was Mansukh, who was walking down calmly, with a pleasant smile on his face.

When he got on the boat, the boatman could not resist, but ask him the secret of this calmness and happiness. What Mansukh told him really revealed his reason for the smile? He said that like every king he knew what is going to happen. So from the day one he started preparing for it. 

He said in the first year, he got the jungle cleaned and made it a habitable place. 

In the second year he invited the best of architects and got the best township constructed. 

In the third year, he invited scholars and other institutions to open universities. 

In the fourth year, he invited various traders and business people to start trade. 

In the fifth year he had lot of families and people moving in to this modern town and living happily. 

Mansukh explained to the boatman, here I was king only for 5 years but when you drop me on the other side, there would be people standing to welcome me and there I will be a king for life time

This is as simple as it can get. This all what you should have in mind, when you are planning for your retirement. 

So, to summarize here is what I learned from the story

· The inevitable is coming; there is no point in worrying about it


Start early, any delay will have a big impact

via Paresh Mehta