DVG: Three Must-Haves for Achievement

Sri D V Gundappa has written, in Kannada, an amazing short book titled “Baligondu Nambike” (A belief for life). The purpose of this book is to elucidate the importance of having a goal in our life and pursuing it with all vigour, to grow personally.

The book contains a number of short chapters covering different aspects of the topic, and ends up providing a framework for having a goal and achieving the same.

In one of the initial chapters, Sri DVG gives an extra ordinary insight into three main gunas or attributes (qualities) that each individual must possess if he is to expect any success towards achieving his goals. Below is an attempt to translate that small, but wonderful essay.

(Note: I have tried to do a literal translation, instead of paraphrasing. Deficiencies in the quality are therefore completely due to my incompetence with language)


At the outset, our people must have shradda or belief in life. Life — jeevana — is a big thing. It is not sin to live. Nor is it a shame to try and live life in a good manner. To shape our lives into a good one and then utilise it well is our duty — such a mindset should set in firmly in all people. That is progress! Progress means movement towards the higher, or keeping something good as the goal and moving forwards — or upwards — towards the same.

What is the meaning of ‘good’? This is a very important question. I have already analysed to some extent (in previous chapters). That which a lot of people, since a long time, have declared as good and as worthy of pursuing — that wealth — that good situation — let us also consider that as ‘good’ for ourselves.

Secondly, the faith that our people have in effort and hardwork must increase. No matter what difficulty arises, there is always something at least, that we can do through our own efforts, in order to resolve the situation — where we can analyse and determine what is good for ourselves — and achieve the same. It is therefore our duty to determine what that work is — and attempt the same with confidence, and with prudence. Such an attitude of never giving up, and always putting in the efforts, must become firm in our people. The result of such an attitude towards efforts are the various scientific accomplishments. Such sciences are what can lead to further progress.

Thirdly, in the daily behavior of people, a certain sweetness — certain friendliness — must develop. Their courtesy and culture must be natural. In other words, instead of remaining under control due to the fear of external agencies such as governments, mathas, family or local communities — people must remain within acceptable bounds due to their own internal goodness (conviction). Civilised behaviour, developed as a result of thought, rather than blind devotion, must be predominant.

Thus (a) belief and energy in life (b) attitude of hard work & efforts and (c) courtesy towards all — these three must become naturally strong in our people. The manifestation of these three are (a) progress (b) science & knowledge (c) goodness respectively. Belief in these three, coming from deep conviction, is the most important preparation for the upliftment of our society (people).


Wiser words have rarely been said. DVG was truly an intellectual giant.

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