The great Physician, Dr. William Osler. What particularly was astonishing - Dr. Osler's life story evident in the way explained his abilities (and inabilities too).He was the most famous physician at that time (he lived till 1919). Just like many of us, his student days were all worrisome for him.


While Osler was studying medicine in Montreal, Canada - it was a typical student life like any of us - characterised by fear, anxiety, suspicion, tension, and worries about the future. The reams of material he had to study for his examinations simply overwhelmed and frightened him into a paralytic state. Added to these nightmares was another bigger fear, in the best scenario he passed the exams, would he be able to get a job. Private practice required huge investments - he had to live in a highly competitive world (hmm....early 1900s were bad enough....eh - I thought it was bane of our times). He was thus hounded by fears after fears, and was deluded into thinking that future was a goner and bleak. Dark clouds of tension, gloom and depression loomed large in his mind. It was a stranglehold in a nutshell and while he was groping in the dark, he read a line from Thomas Carlyle -

"OUR MAIN BUSINESS IS NOT SEE WHAT LIES DIMLY AT A DISTANCE, BUT TO DO WHAT LIES CLEARLY AT HAND".

These 20 Golden Words, brought about a sea-change in his behaviour and changed the course of his life. From the quagmire of depression, dejection and desperation, he was lifted to great heights, kindling in him the spark of inspiration which transformed him into a great person, capable of even greater deeds. It was worthwhile to note that the famous John Hopkins Hospital which registered an unprecendented all round development under expert guidance of this once-upon-a-time Nervous wreck, Dr. Willain Osler. Further, he had rare privilege of serving in four great universities. He was also Professor and Head of Department of Medicine in Oxford university. During an address to the University of Yale, he confided these facts to them and said, "My fame as a popular author coupled with Professorship of Oxford University may have led many of you to infer that I am a born genius. Nothing can be farther from truth. My closest friends know that I had just been a person of mediocre intellectual capability".

When asked to explain what then was the secret of his miraculous success - he came out with his own gem, "HE COULD ACHIEVE IT ALL BECAUSE HE LIVED ONLY IN THE PRESENT"

He further said, "I never squandered the present in idleness or in day-dreams about distant future., nor did I waste time brooding over the past events. I harnessed his mental energy entirely to completing successfully and efficiently the task on hand - those scheduled for the present. It is the present that gives shape to the future. Discard the regrets as you discard the rags. Don't extend an open invitation to tensions by anxiously dreaming about the events of tomorrow. Shut the doors of the past and lock them. Plan to the extent within the periphery of the present and go on working relaxedly - most importantly, START THIS MINUTE. Don't worry about the dead yesterday nor about the unborn tomorrow. If you take care of today, it takes care of tomorrow. In order for all our future plans to work, it is of utmost importance to realize that present should be utilized with maximum efforts - Exorcise the Devils of your Mind"

I also like recall a statement a friend of mine uses (my favourite quote), "Past is an enchased Cheque, Future is a Promissory Note - both has no value today. Present (can also mean Gift) is the Cash in Hand, ready to be exploited. Present = Gift given by the divine in our hands"

Have a wonderful PRESENT!!!