Desiderata By Max Ehrmann : Summary

          “Desiderata” by Max Ehrmann:  Summary

  • Inner Silence:

    The poet advises people to accept noise. He reminds them that there is peace when you are silent. There are many kinds of interruptions in our way. Lots of people are impatient and in a hurry. They have no peace in their life. All of us should aim at being peaceful with ourselves. This is possible only if we learn to be on good terms with everyone. The poet advises to give voice to your opinions truthfully without giving up your principles. Listen to others patiently, even to those who are dull and ignorant as they too have the right to speak and share their views.

  • Avoid being Vain and Bitter 

   It is important to keep away from those who are rude, loud and aggressive persons because such persons are neither at peace with themselves nor do they let others remain in. These people disturb your mental peace. The poet advises not to compare yourself with others as it can have a negative impact. There will always be some people who are more successful than you, still there will be others, less successful than you. So comparing yourself with such people can make you either vain or proud. Whatever we achieve or whatever we plan, we should enjoy and relish it. We should remember our uniqueness in the world. Only then can we lead a peaceful and happy life. 

  • Being Cautious

  We should take interest in our profession, however humble it may be. With hard work and conviction we can reach the top  position in our career. But  the poet cautions us to be aware of trickers, who can cheat us and let us down. At the same time, the poet says that the trickery of some people should not blind us to the goodness prevalent in this world. There are so many virtuous persons. The world is full of motivation and we can get inspiration from so many people. 

  • Be  Yourself

  It is very important to be what we are. We should try to present ourselves as we are.  We should focus on our own self and  our qualities rather than making a pretence of what you do not have because pretence does not last long. He especially asks people not to make a pretence of love and affection for love is the only virtue that lasts forever. But at the same time we should not be cynical towards love. In this world of dried up feelings and disillusionment, love is as fresh as the grass. 

  • Calm Acceptance 

    We should accept our age  calmly. We should not try to force ourselves to be young. It is better to give up the “things ”  of our youth in old age without any fuss. He advises us to

    “Take kindly the counsel of years,”
means learn lessons from your own past experiences and those of your elders. He further suggests to strengthen your spirit so that you could face any sudden misfortune. But do not be distressed by imagining future misfortune. We should not let fears assail us, for most of the fears are the product of fatigue  and loneliness. We should be disciplined but should not torture  ourselves with self control.  It is better  to be gentle with ourselves. Anything which is forced or excessive is bad. 
  • Faith in God and in his Creations   

     Every thing in this universe has its own place. We are as much a part of the universe as trees and stars. Whether you understand it or not, everything in this universe is happening as it should. So we should be at peace with God and with ourselves. 

  • Be  Cheerful

    The poet’s final advise is that  though the world is full of noise and chaos, with all its fakeness, drudgery and shattered dreams. It is still beautiful. What we need is to look at the brighter side of the things and to be at peace with God and oneself. We should try to be cheerful  and happy.  

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