Material objects can’t earn human dignity.
There was a time when true pioneers, people who understood engineering and marvelled the excellence supercars provided would work hard and earn themselves the dignity and respect of owning one.
Recently, well…it’s kinda just for show; isn’t it?
There’s a gentleman that I know of, who rents supercars — just so he can brag that well; he owns such pricey vehicles.
Though they aren’t his to begin with — but it’s a bragging right he so rightfully wishes for it to be.
Shinny objects never amazed me, I guess it was my upbringing of valuing simplicity and my family’s strict values of not flaunting wealth that always filled me with superstition and discipline.
I now find myself in positions, because of my complete disregard for being amazed by material objects — that people seem to take offence.
“Are you not amazed?” — like Russell Crowe in that movie Gladiator.
“I’m not.” — well then you must be jealous.
Ahh I guess, yeah that might be it — I’m jealous.
I’m jealous that you rented a vehicle out for a night to impress people who won’t be there for you the minute they realise just how disillusioned you are about your self-worth.
I for one, have mine intact.
I’m taking off for a seminar soon, and I am to write about what shapes me and how much do I value education.
It’s an odd time, because realistically young-people do not think university education is of great value for a career; and in most instances they’re not wrong.
I began my explanation of the Cost/Benefit.
I wasn’t a local, I went abroad, I was quite privileged to be able to afford an education at a wonderful university.
Yet, half a million dollars worth of education just seems excessive; in hindsight.
Much like the vehicle, the individual rents.
My peers don’t understand why I never attached the title “Dr.” to my name, even though I worked tirelessly to earn my Doctorate.
I tell them I don’t need it, because it was never for the title.
It was for my inner satisfaction — my self worth; if you will.
It’s difficult to explain that to someone who sees no point in university, and as such I wouldn’t want them to feel insecure by having them calling me “Dr. Nabeel”, I’m just “Nabeel”…the same old punk who started back in Undergrad and would skate around university campus late at night.
Not knowing or worrying about what the future held for me.
I was by no means a superior student, I barely paid attention in class.
I was really just quite fortunate that I found Research, and that’s when things took off for me.
I was hungry, and research kept me well fed.
What do I tell a prospective student when they ask me, “Do you think your education was valuable?”
I think, but then I’m unable to explain exactly how it shaped me.
See, my view of education was never to pursue it because I wanted to make a career — I did it because it’s what fascinated me.
At School, I never thought I’d ever even be accepted in one.
At the same time, after having earned my degree — I am able to recognise the difference between being an enthusiast and just a showman.
I was never a showman, hence my degrees aren’t framed.
They’re locked away from public viewing.
There’s no graduation photograph of me, because I never attended it.
My parents never got to witness me throwing my graduation hat to the sky.
I was sitting in the corner, looking at my degree — appreciating every moment that had come to pass; and thinking of what I’d do next.
Much like those rented graduation gowns and supercars — it was superficial to me.
For me, it was a personal reward.
I never needed an affirmation from the rest of the world to make me feel satisfied of my accomplishment.
Human dignity was good enough.
And always will be.