It was room no 111 in HMS Hostel, Jaipur Engineering College where on the metal almirah of my roommate Vaibhav that this quote was written, “The Easy Way may not be the Right Way”. I used to see and ponder over it many times in those two years that me and Vaibhav shared that room. We had not written it, it was there on the almirah when we got it. I felt many times that it was like a message and was trying to imply something. But in those college days, who cared 🙂
Coming to think of it now, 6 years after college life ended and after being roughened up by the real world, its meaning is a lot more clearer. Everything we do, every problem we face, has two solutions or approaches to it. There will be an easy way, and one right way to do any task. The easy way might seem to be the only option, everybody might be doing that, but we will know whether it is the right one or not from our heart.
Let me put it another way. Life is like a mountain which we have to climb. There are two ways, the easy way and the right way. The easy way might be the elevator, we can stand on it and it will take us to the top. No problems whatsoever. The hard and right way would be to climb the mountain. This way we will get tired, might even get injured, but it will be challenging and an adventure. Both ways get us to the top, one way lot easier than another. But what we don’t see here is that the easy way keeps us weak and vulnerable. In the mountain of life when we come to a point where the elevator is not working or not available, we will be struck and not have the strength and skills to get past this problem.
What it also means is that going the easy way might benefit us in the short term, but in the long term, the right way will never fail us. In life, there are bound to be ups and downs and a wise man always remains prepared for the tough times. Choosing the path is a choice we have to make, and based on this choice, there will be consequences in future. And the short term good we see in the easy way is also an illusion and not real. For example, we can escape a cop by paying a bribe. That is the easy way, we got out quickly and cheap, and everybody seems to be doing it. But if we look in perspective, it also promotes corruption in society which spreads like a disease. And since we live in the same society, sooner or later, we will find ourselves in a disadvantageous position because of the disease which came into existence and spread when we choose the easy way.
I know it is easy to talk about such things but very difficult to apply when life presents such situations. And that is why choosing between the easy way and the right way is a test of moral character more than anything else. It is about working for the greater good, taking decisions that might seem tough (but right), and making some sacrifices (if required) for a better future for ourselves and future generations to come. So the next time we are faced with a tricky situation, let us ask ourselves, “Am I taking the easy way or the right way?“. The answer to this question and the path we take will decide our future and of the people around us.