Man is a concentrated, disheveled and disproportionate amalgam of dreams and desires, of hopes and wishes and of emotions and feelings. He constantly observes his surroundings which may include worthless to priceless inanimate objects, manifests of nature which include but are not limited to: the atmosphere, greenery, rivers, mountains, plains, etc. All these objects stimulate him, provoke his thought process and eventually evoke a response from him, often leaving life-changing impressions on him. But the faction of reality which influences man the most is none other than beings of his own race-people.
Unbeknownst to him, a man’s mind is sub-consciously observing, integrating and altering his behaviour in response to the presence, actions and overall aura of other people. In layman terms, man is constantly comparing himself with other homo-sapiens, identifying the differences between them, categorizing them, placing their merits on opposite sides of the scales and weighing them. If he emerges superior from the mental stand-off, he feels unimaginable and unmatched ecstasy which may or may not be accompanied by hatred, loathing and pity toward the other person of lower status, fame and fortune. On the contrary, if he’s placed lower on the status scale, he feels inferior, unwanted and disposable.
However, exceptions are a part and parcel of reality owing to a minuscule but disturbing group of outliers who diverge from the normal thought process of the majority of humans.
As a consequence, some people do not compare themselves to others. Either they’re satisfied by their progress in life or they’re simply too ignorant or thick-headed. Like they say, “Ignorance is bless.”
Returning to the discussion regarding the former, majority of people, we will consider the case scenario in which the person identifies and labels himself inferior to another person. When such a realization dawns on him, his natural, inborn and innate competitiveness awakens from the curse of deep slumber and rises like the majestic, elegant and gallant phoenix, engulfing his heart in a tornado of fury and ignites in him a passion to struggle, to work from dawn to dusk, but most of all, a desire to attain success and to bring the other person to his knees.
The road or path to success is filled with gruesome trials and tribulations, all hell-bent on discouraging the person, to crush and destroy his self-confidence and self-esteem and to prevent him from attaining his goal, no matter how great or small, how noble or wrong it may be.
At some point along the hurdle-filled path to success, fame and fortune, an obstacle appears which, despite all efforts, solutions and techniques employed by the person appears unfazed. Each failed attempt is a devastating blow to the driving force of the individual, each time forcing him to question his abilities, intentions and motives.
After repeated unsuccessful attempts at overcoming the aforementioned obstacle, the person achieves a very intriguing, complicated and dangerous psychological condition characterized by the feeling of helplessness, anger, frustration and hopelessness: desperation. What makes this particular state so interesting is the fact that, despite the impossible hurdle ahead, and the feeling of helplessness, the person still harbours a desire to succeed despite the odds stacking against him. Logically speaking, a person should throw in the towel when he cannot cope with the circumstances. But a person blinded by the allure and charm of success and engulfed by desperation behaves surprisingly different in such circumstances. He follows one of the two paths-either the path leading to success or the one descending into the abyss of madness.
If the person is naturally gifted and possesses superior intelligence or if he’s encountered a similar problem in the past, he troubleshoots the problematic hurdle with all his strength and effort, utilizing every aspect of his mental and material arsenal. If the effort is more than threshold level, he overcomes the obstacle and proceeds onto the path of success. The question arises: what’s the role of desperation in this scenario? The answer is surprisingly simple. This state of desperation forces him to use EVERY possible method in an attempt to rectify the problem. If there is no desperation, the person does not use every possible loophole, which often go against the moral and ethic values of the individual.
Alas, similar to the concept of Yin-Yang which states that light and dark are intertwined, one man’s success is often reciprocated in another man’s failure. Some people are not innately gifted, do not possess problem-solving skills or simply cannot cope in stressful and demanding situations. When such unfit and unworthy people reach the aforementioned uncrossable hurdle, desperation does not serve as a means of salvation for them. It does not lead them out of the pitch-black darkness nor does it serve to enhance their mental skills. Such people simply give up and stare blankly into the face of failure as desperation clutches them and drags them into the abyss of madness. To put it simply, they lose their much-needed mental balance and succumb to the hectic mental pressures of society.
Hence, it is inferred that desperation is a double-edged sword. It can benefit or harm an individual, the outcome solely depending upon the person’s natural faculties, his upbringing, environment and his dealings with fellow individuals.