Weekly Reflections: 2020: Dawn of optimism



Dr Abdul Saboor

Hope is the most graceful stuff of human mind that opens the new vistas of progress and prosperity. Its inclusion in business, domestic and professional affairs brings the real dignity and decency in human life. Some thinkers argue that success in any field of life is the key product of hope keeping other things usual. Similarly, the character of nations is built on the pillars of optimism. It is by eradicating the weeds of hopelessness and discouragement that the seeds of optimism may be sown in the ‘nation state system’ to the tune of bringing good fruit even out of odd situations. For turning pessimistic situation into optimistic scenario, the nations have to pass through the vicissitudes of daunting challenges.

Optimism needs to be dawned in a country like Pakistan where majority of the population in almost all fields of life are looking digressed and disappointed. Every nine persons out of ten around us seem to be spreading pessimism for nothing. Whenever any traditional kind of intellectual talk is initiated in public and professional life, majority of the speakers and stakeholders start distributing disappointment.

Has anyone ever heard about teachers distributing hopes to their learners and doctors offering the trust of life and health? Perhaps the answer is a big no. What to say of politicians and economists, even religious scholars in their sermons tender hopelessness for blunt announcements of hell are generally made about our ultimate fate. Such kinds of attacks have put the public in a condition of inferiority complex.

If nations are to be ruined, the best starting point is to snatch the element of hope from the people particularly the young ones. Hopelessness would lead them away from their own selves, their families, their motherlands and ultimately from the Creator. Resultantly, some of them may be touching to such a state of hopeless mind as directing towards atheism. Some start participating in the mob of so called intellectuals spreading nothing but despair and desperation. In the long run, the repercussions are not less than the radioactive effects of Atom Bomb.

It is quite worrying that in the young generation, hope is taking sick breaths. It appears as if in the race of materialism, there has been emerged craze for luxury life. There is no full stop in our dreams and desires. We want more power to have more of everything. Since we set the dream to be rich over night without doing any reasonable struggle, we quickly jump into a hopelessness situation when the undue desires are not accomplished. If the process continues for some time, we enter into a chronic domain of hopelessness and pessimism.

More or less; good or bad is always happening in every society. Hope means to bring the good at the forefront and keep the pungent smell of oddity away from public. Thus, for the optimism to be dawned in the economic, political and social milieu, two things may be taken into consideration. First, out of the odd events, some good lessons of hope can be configured. As for instance, if a leader is using pessimistic language, one can take the lesson that one would not do the same thing if an opportunity arises. Secondly, one needs to propagate good news more and more widely with complete dossier of optimism. Showing ‘green garden’ without any background validity is not what hope stands for. It is a complete package of possible positivity and truth.

To counter the social and media markets where mostly hopelessness is being sold among the ignorant and innocent public, we would have to introduce the value of optimism among them by creating a parallel niche market. The fact should be kept in mind that distribution of disappointment is an easy task but spread of positivity takes much time, energy, intellect and patience on the part of development practitioners and social reformers. Even in the efforts of launching the movement of optimism, there might appear pessimists in the way who could stop the serious efforts towards dawn of optimism.

One also needs to realize that most of  the pessimists are snatching dreams and hopes from people not on the basis of some animosity rather they have been trained all through their life on the same pattern of hopelessness. What good optimistic note or statement one can expect from a person who has been victim of hopelessness for last many years. The best and simple solution lies in listening to the voices of true intellectuals who always keep the hope alive. There is no need to fascinate from scholars who are trained of making mountains out of a mole hill. They even dig out pessimism out of an optimistic story.

Psychologically speaking, it is quite interesting to note that the missions of our life can easily be chased and finally accomplished if we maintain the strength of hope in our endeavors and initiatives. Similarly, business activities and state governance may flourish well under optimistic scenarios; so is the case of financial and stock markets. So, in most of the cases, solution of the problem lies within the system; no doubt causes are springing up from outside.

Pakistan, where hope has become a rare commodity in its intellectual and social markets, is standing at a critical juncture of history where the flag of optimism needs to be hoisted. As a nation we must accept that we would remain alive when the oxygen of hope is provided to the masses. The productivity and efficiency of human resource is significantly enhanced when one is optimistic in every pursuit of life. Even when a very important project is in progress but hope is dim, the success is quite unlikely.

This year should be celebrated with new pledges of hopes and optimism. For that matter we will have to tackle all the oddity and negativity spreading from various corners. We will have to stop honoring value for those who are always habitual of announcing bad news. This year should be declared as the ‘Year of Hope”. A country wide movement needs to be initiated for dissemination of pearls of optimism in schools, colleges and universities in addition to public offices. Hope begets hope. The real optimism can be activated by staying hopeful and positive. Hope for the best is the real key for removing the dust of disappointment.


The writer is Professor of Economics and Dean, Faculty of Social Sciences, PMAS Arid Agriculture University, Rawalpindi. He can be reached at drabdul.saboor@uaar.edu.pk