The Most Important of All Human Qualities Is a Sense of Hope

It’s interesting to observe that some people fray under the pressure of experience, but eventually learn they’re called to mend their life along the way, whereas for others this experience is not liberating. Like Humpty Dumpty, they have a great fall and apparently are unable to learn new things or to unlearn old ones. Consequently, to be a human being is, one wonders, to find the nectar available to us in our own journey. But lots of people pretend that they already know everything they need to know.

It is really incredible that in this day and age human beings remain as foolish as ever they were. Meanwhile, let’s remember that the apostle Paul warned us, “be transformed by the renewing of your mind” (Rm. 12:2). He thought about our interior life. I do believe that the most important task in our lives is to make connections, that is, to make relations. Would there be another way to learn?

We live in a materialistic society and are trained from our earliest days to be acquisitive. No doubt, this materialistic outlook has seriously influenced our education. The other day, someone told me with sadness, “the only thing people are interested in today is earning more money.” It seems that Mammon is worshipped as never before.

We have the task to live a good life without excuses. Although the moral implication of the attitudes of modern man is daunting, this should not dilute, or block, our search for companions for our journey. It is we who are responsible after all. So, it’s foolish to blame others for our failures. The most important of all human qualities is a sense of hope. A sense of hope may take various forms, but the effect is always the same. It’s only natural for healthy beings to look forward to something better.

Do you remember the Lilliputians and their neighbors attack each other because they couldn’t agree which end to break an egg? Maybe aren’t we all living like that? This is one of the chief functions of satire and irony. They enable us to see that many of our actions are comic or absurd. We are always reminded by good mentors that a happy and fulfilling life is not really far removed from ourselves.

The sense of hope must be single out as man’s most important quality because it is associated with life itself. There’s no future for human beings without hope.