The Value of Wisdom
Knowledge is not some destination point to which one has to arrive. Learning, understanding and building knowledge is exciting and hard journey, which takes place throughout our lifetime. The thing is that at one point in life you need to ask yourself what you want to be, what kind of work you would like to do with all of your love and passion, and what you want to accomplish during your life. These are not easy questions to ask yourself, but they are very important questions you should find an answer too.
Nobody is born with all the knowledge and capabilities and somehow all that starts coming out of us. Unfortunately, many behave like that. We all come to this world more or less in a similar way and the difference is what a person can make out of themselves and their lives. The beautiful thing about life is that we are all here for a period of time and what we are capable of creating during our existence is all that we have.
Some understand certain qualities earlier and others take a longer time developing them. Look around for a moment and notice all the great values we are surrounded by. Ask yourself which of these values and qualities you would like to be part of your being and which ones you think you can further improve. If you truly believe in certain values then strive with all your heart to become your deepest convictions, your essence and make them an inseparable part of your character. You need to know, whoever has true appreciations for what matters, they know it is not important what is your birthplace or from which place you are coming from. What is important is what are your personal qualities, how well you do your work, the power of your creativity, how great your ideas are, how well you threat others around you, what are your virtues, how much you care for the ones you love and your family, your culture, your religion and your country.
Most of the great people have not been noticed. They did not receive any great awards. Most of them have never given a speech or have never found a time to write a book. To truly be a great person is doing very simple acts of kindness, every single day of your life.
One summer, just before finishing my last year of high school after my tennis practice, I was laying down on the grass lawn of the old Royal Golf Club in Belgrade. I realized that beside some good and dedicated people, there are a great number who behave in a very careless way towards others and do their work in an very sloppy way, without paying much attention about quality of the work and what they are making. As a young person, I was surprised with many average things I was surrounded by, with lots of examples of work and service poorly done, and had very little respect for what the future may bring to all of us.
That day I gave promise to God and to myself that whatever work I have to do, I will approach it and do it in the best way and to the best of my capabilities and knowledge I have at that moment in time. I made a promise, I will use all of my power to produce and offer the best quality of work and the best quality of service for the job I was offered and that I will do this every time for the rest of my life.
I knew there are many things I need to learn. I realized that at times I will make mistakes and at times I will not do things as I expected from myself. I made an obligation to myself to do all I can to correct myself, to learn and to do all I can to do my work better next time. This became the principal and inspiration I have decided to follow throughout my life.
When you are growing up many people tell you how life is in some way pre-made for us and you cannot do much to change it and that you need to accept the fact and live that life given to you. Imagine how limited such life would be and how much of a terrifying idea that is.
You have a chance to make your life much broader and with much more substance and value if you come to realize one simple and very important fact. Everything in this world and all the things we are surrounded by are made by people who are not much more different from you and me. You have to realize that it is never to late to change yourself, to learn new things, to have determination and to use all your power to make your life and life of the people around you better.
You need to realize that if you want, with lots of work, knowledge and time you can make things better and that you need to push away that horrifying idea that life has some predetermined form you need to live. You need to see that you can instead, use all your power, and all of your capabilities to change it. You can realize that in time with great will, determination and with great ideas and values you can give the life a special meaning. You can realize you can make your own creations and your own products and you can influence your life and the world that surrounds you and make it far greater. When you realize and learn this fact, from that moment on you will never be the same person you were before.
You may not agree with everything I have written in this book, maybe you’ve had some other experience and you can be inspired to add or improve upon certain thoughts and meanings and for some you may learn a lot. Some of the things are in some way more important than others, however, everything that is written here gave me a certain degree of knowledge and development, a certain degree of happiness, understanding and helped me add to my wisdom.
I know that I did not do everything to my expectations but with every new day of my life, with the help of my faith and with my deep conviction in my values, I am working hard to make myself and this world around me better.
Pray like everything depends on God and work as everything depends on us.
May God bless you.
Harvard University, Boston April 4, 2014