- The meaning of proverb
- Illustrations Business and studies
- Adventurous people
- The disadvantages of changing always
No moss forms on a rolling stone. Only a motionless and stagnant stone is encrusted with moss. As a matter of fact, the proverb implies that a person who is always changing his occupation and pursuits, and never sticks to anything with strong determination and has no singleness of purpose, makes little out of life. In order to enjoy the benefits of prosperity in life, it is necessary that one should have a well chalked out plan and stick to it. He should not be discouraged if he is not successful at first. Constant labour and perpetual devotion to his cherished ideal will eventually lead him to success. One who is fickle-minded and wavering in his determination is like a weathercock changing its direction with the slightest guest of wind, will find that nothing but utter ruin or failure is his lot.
No doubt, there is a good deal of truth in this, as few illustrations will show. Take business life for example. In these days of vicious and cut-throat competition and rapid fluctuations in business circles, it needs special attention and constant toil to establish business and achieve success in it. A man, who remains drifting from one business to another, cannot produce any satisfactory results by his fickle efforts. As the proverb says, “He who hunts two hares loses both.
The same is true of studies. A person who wants to specialize in one subject must devote all his time and attention to it. The student who takes up English and then goes in for Mathematics and fed up with that, takes up History, and drops this again for Philosophy, will be a “jack of all trades but master of none.”
But “rolling stones” like adventurers, explorers, travellers and discoverers are generally those who possess restless energy and hate the idea of settling down permanently to any steady dull occupation. They gather no “moss” for themselves, but certainly, they gather vast store for the world in the shape of new knowledge. Therefore, this proverb does not entirely forbid the change of place. Many men have improved their prospects in life by boldly transferring their talents to distant lands. They have generally found better opportunities of displaying their capabilities in their new home.
Though many have become prosperous by changing their homes and going to distant lands we must not forget the fact that the number of those who have ruined their fortunes by this restless lust for wandering is infinitely greater. The continual change of place may be useful for the hirelings of the depraved traffickers whose criminal activities have been detected and who always remain in quest of new hideouts unknown to the police. Aimless idlers, habitual drunkards, professional gamblers and other riff-raffs or the scum of the earth may at least be said to lose nothing by moving from one place to another, for they are equally unsuccessful everywhere and have nothing to lose. But a studious and honest man, by leaving the place where he has flourished and thrived; sacrifices many advantages. It will take him a considerable passage of time to build up again a reputation like the one he has left behind him. We must remember that fortune never always favour. Fortune is a goddess to fools alone and fools rush in where angel fears to tread. Fortune, woman and weather are not dependable. It is our duty, therefore, not to be wavering, restless or mercurial, for success in life depends wholly and solely on “one aim, one business, one desire”.