Character, as they say, is everything. Like friendship, it takes ages to develop character but it can break or get besmirched in a moment. All this is well and fine but the question is what is character? There are no easy answers to this question as the very notion and concept of character defies easy and facile definitions. The dictionary describes “character as one of the attributes or features that make up and distinguish an individual”( https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/character). But, yet again, this definition is too broad and too vague to offer anything substantive by way of meaning of the word or term “character”. Oftentimes, and both generally speaking and by way of the particular, character- both the word, term and practice it connotes- denotes and refers to morals of a person. That is, the reference is usually made to moral depth , gravitas and elan of a person. In and under usual circumstances, a person’s moral fibre is not tested. It is tested and a man held to be a person of great character under extraordinary conditions when a one course of action taken by a person could entail paying a price. It is under these circumstances- financial, emotional, economic and so on- that a person’s character comes out in its fullest. Ideally, every person should emerge smelling of roses when it comes to character and character development thereof but being human and weak, not all emerge highly from this. But, the quest to develop character must be on and continue at both individual and collective levels. The question is how? Character can perhaps only be developed when we put ourselves to higher and exacting moral and ethical standards and develop the virtues thereof that are the necessary concomitants and ingredients of a noble and a virtuous character. But, this can, in turn, best be done when a person or persons perpetually and always feel(s) that they are or do operate under a moral calculus that is sanctioned by the Almighty. It is then that character can be developed more robustly till character building and development thereof becomes an actual habit so much so that a robust value system-both at the individual and collective level- develops and becomes the operative grid and dynamic of all. If and when this happens, society will be better off as it will be comprised of individuals that have a higher moral and value system and character thereof.
Share on Facebook Follow on Facebook Add to Google+ Connect on Linked in Subscribe by Email Print This Post