Generally speaking, a man is made of following:
1. Nature (Something that is different for everyone, since birth. Like, people are meek, loud, soft, easy going, ease loving, determined, sharp, smart, aloof, etc, etc).
2. Aptitude (The God-gifted package: including IQ / mental capacity, physical well being, five senses, body, soul, natural & basic instincts, etc. Here it is significant to mention that Allah gives a level-playing field to all of us. If someone lacks one out of five senses or a body part since birth, they are compensated in equal terms on other grounds).
3. Integrity, Moral Courage, Concepts & Mannerisms (Which are functions of Grooming by elders, seniors, society and environment in which a person is brought-up. It includes home, street and school environs, as well as society, media, etc at-large).
4. Skills & Knowledge (Which are functions of training and “saw sharpening”).
5. Habits (Which are functions of one’s routine behaviour and form most part of his unconscious / spontaneous acts and words).
6. Qualities & Attributes (Which are observable to others. These are the external view of one’s personality, or how it looks like from outside).
7. Attitude (The way one thinks, feels and acts. The most important element of personality in my view. It is the futuristic parameter of personality. just like aircraft – nose up / nose down – it defines the future of a person. Attitude is so strong that it effects above factors to a large degree).
Now, talking about Success…
After having studied and researched hundreds of people across human history, who were regarded successful, I must say that like “hero”, “successful” also is very much relative in terms of community-thoughts, conceptualizations, nations, schools-of-thought, social norms, religions, cultures, etc. However, the definition that I found in Soorah Al Asr was the most relevant, most beautiful and most true: “Eemaan, Good acts, Enjoining Haq and Enjoining Sabr”…[Al Asr: 3]
I’d agree that what most people define success as something that involves materialistic gains through occupation / profession, and unabated popularity among people. This definition is perfectly okay. I’d summarize it as: Rizq and Izzat.
The honest part is that we all gauge success through this same very criteria, and not from Soorah Al Asr…… + In a society that we live in, the benchmarks of success are worldly and we are all part of this society. We like it or not, our conformations are to the social standards and to break the social inertia is a difficult thing to do.
However, The Book has following guidelines for rizq and izzat.
“Indeed, the most honourable of you in the sight of Allah is the most righteous of you. Indeed, Allah is Knowing and Acquainted.” (Al-Hujuraat: 13).
“Say: O Allah, O Lord of the Kingdom, You give kingdom to whom You will, and take kingdom away from whom You will; and You bestow honour on whom You will, and bring disgrace to whom You will. In your hand lies the good. You are surely powerful over everything. (Aal e Imran: 26)
“And enjoin upon thy people worship, and be constant therein. We ask not of thee a provision: We provide for thee. And the sequel is for righteousness.” (Taaha: 132)
“And whoever fears Allah, for him Allah brings forth a way out, and gives him provision (rizq) from where he does not even imagine.”(At-Talaaq: 2/3)
“Verily thy Lord does provide sustenance in abundance for whom He Pleases, and (for some) He provides in a just measure: for He does know and regard all His servants.” (Israa: 30)
“Fair in the eyes of men is the love of things they covet: women and sons; heaped-up hoards of gold and silver; horses branded (for blood and excellence); and (wealth of) cattle and well-tilled land. Such are the possessions of this world’s life; but in nearness to Allah is the best of the goals. (Aal e Imraan: 14/15)
“And kill not your children for fear of poverty. We shall provide for them as well as for you.” [Al Israa: 31 and Al An’aam: 151]
However, since Islam is a system (1) and a way of life (2) (and not a ritualistic “-ism”), every thing is part of the process. This entails that rizq / izzat is promised by Allah, given all the prerequisites are complete. Like for rizq, effort is to be made, and for Izzat, righteousness is a must. This clarification is stated at this point because, many people get misled on the concepts of rizq and izzat by looking around (their view of) the world, and do not take into account the larger picture in context.
With my above description of Personality determinants and Success, I state to explain that that real success is the result of conforming to Creator’s Will and Criteria (fame and wealth will come handy). Most important challenge for Parents should not be the future success of their kids in terms of fame and wealth. It should be in terms of Eemaan (Attitude, Habits), Good Acts (Qualities & Attributes, Skills & Knowledge), Enjoining Righteounesss and Steadfastness (Integrity, Moral Courage, Concepts & Mannerisms).
1. System is a set of things working together as parts of a mechanism or an interconnecting network; a complex whole.
2. Way of Life consists of the code of conduct, behaviours and habits those are typical of a particular person or group.