History over time has never pictured a period of delay as so much of a pleasant experience, but one concept that has always shown up as a welcome relief; often acting as a sustenance pill is one called hope. A stimulant that helps us endure the pains of a traumatic past, last us through the rough times of the present and keeps us running with at least enough momentum to survive that extra day which turns out to be the future. The story is told of a man who seemed to have lost everything in a fire but he still looked unperturbed. When he was asked how he managed to cope through the hardship? His response was “as long as there is life, I still have hope”. The exciting thing about the story is that the man recovered all that he had lost and much more. The moral of the illustration lies in the word ‘Hope’, because hope sustains, hope maintains and hope strengthens resolve.
Hope has diverse ways of showing up, ranging from the inventor who had failed many times over to the student who has sat for the examination many more times than expected, even to the politician who continues to lose one election after another. The common denominator in all of these scenarios is hope, if each of the dramatis personae does not get to give up. Failure is never a pleasurable experience but it meets its match in an undying hope that success can be achieved. Eventually it would have no choice but to give way. Hope brings about a very creative imagination, painting pictures in our head which eventually stimulate our drive and fires our will to go on. Hope coupled with all of these pictures together conceptualize the age long gem called vision. Vision structures the future and makes it almost as tangible as something that can be held. Vision tells about possibilities in the realm of the invisible which can be achieved with the right kind of belief.
On this street called Hope lives that man who believes that the derelict on the street corner can later become the president of the whole nation; that a typical nobody can be the inventor of elusive cure for the dreaded disease called AIDS. On this same street lives that woman who believes that if we do not give up, cancer can be a thing of the past, and with a continuous effort and a collective determination our world can become a better place. Further down the street lives that boy with some tall dreams even though his school grades are not looking too good at the moment. Right across the fence lives the market woman who never got an education but believes that her kids would be educated in some of the most prestigious institutes in the world. At the very entry point of this street called hope, hangs a banner with the quote “In this part of the world, we live by our vision and not by our experience” boldly inscribed on it.
Hope has brought real and inspiring stories such as that of the car company TATA which harboured the belief that they can make the cheapest and the most affordable car, a dream which has come through. Hope has also brought about incremental innovation which has sustained the evolution from the I-Mac to the I-phone to the I-pad, a process that keeps improving. Hope has also brought about successes such as Rwanda – a country transformed from being war torn to one gradually building not just for the now, but for the nation it wants to be through information technology. Endless stories abound with Hope as their baseline, from the transformation of china via innovative monetisation to the present development of Singapore from a structured blue-print. A spectacular one is that of the Chinese company ‘ten cents’ which was grown right from the scratch to its present position of being the one of the largest internet companies that ever existed.
Hope is a street fit for innovators, dreamers, survivors, unrepentant reformers and a people who are audacious enough to believe in change no matter how long. This street exists no where else but in your mind, and it is the tonic that helps us keep our sanity, leads us to keep pulling it all together, and drives us to live through another day. Just like that old woman’s favourite saying, “Hope fuels the strength to keep on keeping on”. Through the rain, through the storm, through the fire and through the pain, hope is a candle that would never burn out, if the one who harbours can just believe. One street that definitely has requisite requirements but it is down to word belief. Hope is the key that unlocks the castle of endless opportunities.