From inspiring accounts of mountain climbing to several historical battles as well as in the world of business where near bankrupt companies have been turned around – all have one moral “never say die”. Even in our own lives whenever we face tough situations it is only our tenacity and mental strength that helps us overcome.


About dilipnaidu

An open mind! Love to share my thoughts and a keenness to learn. An engineer and a MBA I had a wonderful innings in the Army and later moved to consultancy and teaching. My current interests are music and growing culinary herbs. Love to play golf and do yoga regularly. I am serious on "Living life less seriously". A warm welcome to you be well and be cheerful always.

18 responses »

  1. Paula says:

    There is a lot of truth to this!


  2. Lubna says:

    Sometimes it is our fear of failure that prevents us from being a success.


  3. Sriram says:

    Dear Sir,

    defeat – is the opposite of ‘to do’ – basically it is ‘not to do’. So inherently defeat is passive. It is not doing what one is supposed to or expected to do. Defeat is a subjective concept, however hard society might try to make it objective. So the quote is spot on – and lays threadbare the truth about defeat – that it is subjective.

    Our Masters saw through this game of ‘victory’ and ‘defeat’ – They always maintained that there is no such ‘duality’ – there is no victory nor is there any defeat in the ‘real’ sense, and exhorted us to see beyond the obvious.

    Why do we feel this ‘defeat’ then? where does it arise from? It arises from a perception of not having accomplished what one set out to accomplish – perhaps in the face of unforeseen challenges we simply choose not to ‘try’. However it appears as though there are a few who don’t ‘give up’ trying and go on to accomplish what they set out to accomplish and are said to be ‘victorious’!

    Is it simply that we should not give up trying? or is it about setting a task to accomplish that is somehow within our capacity to achieve? So is victory then a recalibrated target? and defeat is for those who simply did not recalibrate?

    Then comes the role of effort in the victory. There is enough research and evidence to prove that victory / achievement is not merely a function of effort. there are other elements involved in any achievement or performance. Management science talks of three factors – Motivation / Effort (ability) & Environment, The Bhagvad Gita talks of 5 factors that enable performance – ‘daivaadhinam’ being the missing element which is loosely translatable as providence or grace.
    And any formula for victory or performance is a multiplication of the factors – therefore absence of any one of the factors converts a victory into defeat. And since there are factors outside of human control, Our Masters steered clear of concepts of success and defeat and said everything that we receive at the end of effort is ‘prasad’ – a blessing or that which brings us peace.
    So basically there is no guarantee that efforts will lead to the ‘expected’ accomplishment and hence it is necessary that we do not attribute victory to our ‘own’ efforts and hence cannot ’cause’ victory. So it follows that we cannot ’cause’ defeat either.

    Lest one assumes that this is a defeatist mentality, Our Masters clearly point out that ‘action’ is our very nature and there is joy in action and not in ‘victory’ or ‘defeat’ and shifted the focus from ends to where it rightly belongs – the means.

    Lets focus then on the one thing that’s in our control – Effort. Behavioral experts have now come around to accept that the joy in effort reduces when for the same activity, the focus shifts from the effort to a focus on victory or defeat. For inherent in any activity there is no victory or defeat, these labels arise from ‘expected’ outcomes.

    So the joy of learning is driven out by a focus on marks, the joy of cooking is taken out by the focus on ‘appreciation’ from the visitors, the joy of gardening is taken out by the focus on ‘my garden should be beautiful’, the joy of work is taken out by the focus on numbers – sales targets, performance targets and METRICS – no wonder we are a society full of ‘achievers’ and ‘non achievers’ who have won many wars, but have lost out to the battle called ‘Life’. We ‘exist’ and ‘don’t live’…..

    So let’s take this quote to its logical next level – stop thinking about our efforts in terms of victory and defeat; and move on to approaching any activity from the joy in the activity rather than in the accomplishment that follows from the activity.




    • Dilip says:

      Dear Sriram … firstly my Namaste! Your comments really make one think more deeply in such quotes. It seems true that there is no ‘defeat or victory’ in the higher realms. The outcome is result of several variables as such we focus on ‘action’ as that is the only certainty.

      Your take on measurements and metrics is music to my ears 🙂 the rational system recognizes only the ‘black and the white’ – nothing beyond that. Whereas the underlying energies of the intangibles remains untapped.

      Thanks Sri for opening a more enlightened dimension on the quote of the week.



      • Geetha says:

        It’s that time of the year when we start using jargons like SMARTS, ROI….. et al.

        And this, Sir, is music to my ears!

        “Whereas the underlying energies of the intangibles remains untapped.”

        And Mr. Sriram, thanks a ton for the great lessons from the Gita!

        “Whatever happened, happened for the good; whatever is happening, is happening for the good; whatever will happen, will also happen for the good only. You need not have any regrets for the past. You need not worry for the future. The present is happening…”

        Thanks and regards,



      • Dilip says:

        Hi Geetha … thank you for the golden words in Gita Saar …“Whatever happened, happened for the good; whatever is happening, is happening for the good; whatever will happen, will also happen for the good only. You need not have any regrets for the past. You need not worry for the future. The present is happening…”

        Kind regards.


  4. I dont know who said this :

    only two ways a man can be defeated ; either he gives up or he dies…

    sorry for the lack of reference..:)


  5. girish says:

    Respected sir,

    Thank you for a very inspiring lines which kkeps us going treading towards in pursuit of excellence.


    Girish kohli,


  6. girish says:

    Hats off to you shri .Thank you for your inspiring comment which is exceptionally awesome.


    Yours loving brother



  7. Shri says:

    Respected Sir,

    Our greatest weakness lies in giving up. The most certain way to succeed is always to try just one more time.- Thomas A. Edison

    There is always passion, determination and god behind every man, which says him that i am with you, keep trying until you get what you deserves.

    “Pain is temporary. It may last a minute, or an hour, or a day, or a year, but eventually it will subside and something else will take its place. If I quit, however, it lasts forever.”
    – Lance Edward Armstrong is an American former professional road racing cyclist.

    After having survived testicular cancer at the age of 25, after survived from cancer he won the Tour de France a record seven consecutive times.
    This is called a passion and determination of one , which changed the world racing cycling forever.

    Hope we all get inspired from this to do something in life.It is never too late to be, what you might have been -George Elliot

    Missing your classes dear sir. Hope your doing fine.


  8. Tuff to argue with that one Dilip. So true! Margie


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