Ambition to Aspiration Essay 1

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  • Topic: Mind, Goal
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bition to aspiration

“Ambition educates the senses, calls into action the will, perfects the physical constitution, brings men into such swift and close collision in critical moments that man measures man.” Ambition is an eagerness to acquire personal advantage, wealth, power, status. It is an eager and sometimes an exorbitant desire for elevation, honor, power, supremacy or simply the achievement of something. The origin of this word comes from the word “ ambicioun ” and explains the yearning for money and wealth or power in general. Ambition is basically an instinct. No matter what background or age you are, you are surely ambitious in any way. This eagerness is not only a driving force for both individuals and society but could also end in a fiasco. We set our goals and try to achieve them being ambitious. Sometimes trying to reach our goals is a risky undertaking but only through this we find our talents and get more mature. Ambition is the desire for personal achievement. It provides the motivation and determination necessary to help give direction to life. Ambitious people seek to be the best at what they choose to do for attainment, power, or superiority. Ambition can also be defined as the object of this desire.

Aspiration is a gentle but firm determination to achieve something. Aspiration is related to the Latin spiritus, breath, and comes from the French aspirare meaning ‘ to breathe out ’. Aspiration is a form of desire tempered by thoughtfulness, integrity and a self-interest that takes into account the interests of others too. While ambition is focused totally on the goal, aspiration never loses sight of either the goal or the means used to attain it. Aspiration allows us to ‘ breathe freely ’ (assāsa, M.I,64) after we have achieved our goal, because we know we have done it without compromising our values or disadvantaging others. Aspiration also understands that while mundane goals may be useful in this life, spiritual goals benefit us in both this and the next life and will eventually lead to the state of complete fulfilment where we no longer strive for any goal, i.e. Nirvā ṇ a. The Buddha said one should, ‘ put forth his whole desire, exert himself, make a strong effort, apply his mind and resolve ’ to attain such goals (A.IV,364). And when he said that one practising Dharma should be ‘ moderate in his desires, ’ he meant we should aspire towards worthwhile goals without allowing our aspiration to degenerate into ambition.

Ambition is not necessarily negative, but it does have a tendency to override integrity in its drive to get what it wants. And when it does get what it wants, it sometimes misuses it. Successful actors who end up becoming drug addicts, star athletes who cheat in order to win yet another medal, and wealthy businessmen who dodge taxes or steal from their shareholders in order to accumulate even more, would be examples of this. As the Buddha said, ‘ Because of his craving for riches, the fool undermines himself ’ (Dhp.355). All too often, ambition just keeps us ‘ going round, ’ i.e. it further entangles us in samsara. The so-called Self -Improvement Movement in America would be a good example of a philosophy of life based on ambition. Behind all the talk of ‘ the passion for excellence ’ , ‘ being best you can be ’ and ‘ contributing to society, ’ usually lies raw greed and selfishness.

“Some say the world will end in ice…
Some say in fire and never feel to trigger war….

Best example we can take is HITLER”… Other examples are as follows……
1.The fourteen-day Mahabharata war was fought because of the ambitious hope of their throne. According to Ramayana, Queen Kaikeyi had...
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