Before I begin, I want you all to note that I believe so much in Nigeria and that, according to Fela Durotoye, by the year 2025 Nigeria will, undoubtedly, be the most desirable nation to live in. I only write this notes on “Before 2025 so that we all wil see and accept our responsibilities because things will not just happen.
I intend tp pick on some of the challenges of our societies not as presented by many because they paint these challenges as the ones created by others instead of admitting that these are challenges that are self-imposed as a result of misplacement of our priorities and over induldence in anomalies. This should not be a forum where you would want to play the blame game if you intend to comment on any of the series. We will not be able to solve any problem if in the first place we do not accept that we have a problem. Let as accept that we have a problem so that we can start asking ourselves what the solution to the prolblem is. The first of the many topics i will write about, God helping me, is about the issue of optimism and faith.
OPTIMISM AND FAITH
Many of our people (Nigeria – because of the focus of this paper) have come to use optimism and faith interchangeable but this is something I have a big problem with because it explains why we are not getting things done in so many places. you will always find someone who is supposed to use the word optimism using the word faith. Why do I have a problem with these words? Can’t I just let the people be and stop disturbing them because I have a good background in the English language? Is it really a problem of playing upon words or there is something going wrong somewhere that a lot of people are not paying attention to? Let me make things easier by telling you about my perceptible difference between optimism and faith.
Optimism is seen when things are going wrong but a man who is expected to panic because of turn in events refuses to panic. He probably knows that things are likely to go wrong but he anticiates the silver lining in every cloud. he does not just accept the situation as it is. He knows or feels that something can be done instead of just allowing the visible impact of potential danger shapen one’s emotion. Optimism can be viewd in the light of a man who knows that nobody in his family has ever hit the million naira or dollar mark but he hopes that someone will hit it one day – note that he only hopes someone will hit the million naira or dollar mark. He is not specifying who and how it will be hit. He is also not specifying when.
I may agree with you that Faith has Optimism as a primary ingredient but must be quick to tell you that optimism is not the chief ingredient of faith. Faith believes, like many of us do, that things will change but does not limit itself to hoping that things will change. It responds to the call for change. It begins not only to say that things will change but finds practical answers to how things will change. Faith therefore will be much appreciated if we start seeing it as a practical application of optimism. Faith says things will change and it tells you the plan on ground to change it. Faith says this place will change and it shows you what it will become. It does not just hope.
Let us realize that a lot of Nigerians are merely optimistic about what can happen in Nigeria and are practically wasting away instead of doing someting with their lives. If you expect that things will change then you need to put in place a plan to make it change. Don’t just go about shouting and asking people to keep hoping when you have no foundation upon which you can lay their hope. A number of people say that at one time or the other they taught there was no hope for Nigeria but when they find a few young people doing something important they come to accept the fact that there is hope for Nigeria.
Why have they thrown their pissimism into the trash can because of some young people? They simply have found young people who have optimism but will not just go about in the street telling everyone they are optimistic. The proof of their optimism is the action they have taken. Their action explains their optimism and some of the people who will not believe in words come to blieve in their actions.
We have a lot of eloquent speakers in Nigeria who will even confidently and glaringly defeat a white man using the white man’s language for a debate. Oratorial powers should not be used to push more people into a mirage. It is one of the powers we would need to effect the necessary change in Nigeria but let us use it effectively. We are going to cast visions for where we are going. We are going to cast visions for how we are going to get there. We are going to cast structures to be used in attaining the towering heights we want to climb. We would need to set job specification or maybe everyman will begin a search on what his or her on role should be and then we can use oratorial powers to mobilize people into the moving ship of dreams.
It is indeed a suicidal mission to mobilize people through oratorial powers into a moving ship carrying only optimism and no specific direction. Optimism says we are getting there one day. My question is, ‘where are we getting to?’ Faith does not say we are getting there without having said where we are getting to. It tells us where we are going and motivates us to go ahead instead of giving up.
All Nigerians must leave the arena of optimism -hope without action and specific focus or direction and acceptance of responsibilities – and move unto the arena of faith – hope with visible action taken in response to the set focus of direction for a desirable change from where we are to where we want to be.
…to be continued
Fola Daniel Adelesi, (+234 703 790 7851 +234 805 247 2448)
Edible Pen Consult – Motivation – Proposals – Event Management – Product & Service Marketing.