- Negligence of this aphorism by people
- Truth of the saying in daily life custom
- The importance of saying in politics
- Law of God
This aphorism has become so stereotyped that is often neglected in practice. If people would know the significance and truth contained in this saying, the world can bear the semblance of an ivory tower. Wars can be prevented, accidents can be averted, deaths can be delayed and diseases can be eradicated. The maxim signifies preventive measures before getting into trouble rather than repent and think out the means of getting out of trouble afterward. But more often we keep the door open for evil to enter. “Closing the stable door after the horse is stolen is of no use” the proverb teaches us to shut the door in time and to be immune from approaching harm, loss and danger. Of course, it must be acknowledged that there are many incidents that cannot be avoided. But after all there is no harm in adopting precautionary and preventive measure before the calamity starts ravaging us.
The truth of this saying can also be discerned in our everyday life. If vaccination is taken before hand, polio or infantile paralysis – a fatal disease can be averted. If proper steps be taken in formative years, many pitfalls that may prove mortal in the coming time, can be averted. Every evil should be nipped in the bud, so that its progress may be checked in time.
The Chinese have implicit faith in the saying that prevention is better than cure. It is said, in China a doctor is kept in fee so long as the family enjoys perfect health. As soon as a member of the family falls ill, the allowance of the doctor is stopped, because they hold the view that the business of the doctor is to keep people healthy and not to treat when they are ill.
As in disease, so in other things, prevention is better than cure. It is better to check the onslaught of hunger and population explosion than cope with it when its ravages are observed in the whole country. It is better to avoid temptations than think of overcoming them when they get hold of us. It is better to put out a spark of fire than think of extinguishing the blazing fire after it has burnt the house to ashes. It is better never to touch a chalice of wine than take a vow of abstaining from it afterwards. Similarly, for the building up of our character, it is necessary to take repressive measures against evil habits in the beginning rather than allow them to grow and try to eradicate afterwards.
The breach of the golden rule of “prevention is better than cure” is attended with dire and grave consequences in all walks of life. In politics also the same truth holds much water. Suppose an uprising or sedition begins to show it among a people, what should a wise statesman do? Should he let the seditious elements to continue the activities of their plunder and pillage or should he try to quell it with iron hand? No, he should at once take steps to pacify the disgruntled elements. But if he sits silent, serious consequences might result. Take the case of French Revolution.
It is the law of God that no catastrophe comes without portending its symptoms. God has given man intellect, prudence and foresight to pay timely heed to the dangers and disasters and to prevent them before they raze him to the ground. If this is done, many of the ills of human life can be avoided. But due to slothfulness and inertia, he pays no heed to the warning of danger and allows it to overwhelm him. Can there be more idiotic and ruinous course of action than this? Many primitive human races fell victim to celestial visitation simply because of the reason that they paid no heed to the prophetic warnings of the wrath of God. Why should a man sleep an unconscious sleep, wait and lament afterward his house has been sacked and plundered.