Respect the divine and love people


This is an excerpt from a commencement speech given at the graduation ceremony of Mongolian Aspiration High School.

Life is a film. It is different from the movies you watch in cinemas, because here you write the script and play the main role at the same time. You can see a movie any time you want, whereas life happens only once.

Having graduated from high school, you have concluded the first part of your own film and are about to embark on the next chapter Your parents, brothers, sisters, and friends might have had a great influence on your script up until now, but from today, you will write it largely on your own.

Let me convey my warm congratulations to you on this special day, when an old chapter of your life ends and a new one begins. I am here, joining your celebrations today, to share what I’ve learned about having success, happiness, and a long and healthy life. Life is always full of opportunities. However, opportunities knock on your door quietly. This is why some people let them pass without noticing. Just like the next bus always arrives at a stop, opportunities come to you one after another.

People who know what their destination is get on the bus. Have you decided where you want to go? People who have determined their goal and cause are the ones who take advantage of opportunities and achieve success. The earlier you write the script of your life, the better an idea you will have about your objective and cause. Those who have not written their script have no choice but to play a supporting role in someone else’s script.


Successful people always have their own goal. They do a great job writing their script early on, play the main role with success, and achieve their dream. The majority of them believe in themselves rather than fate. People who believe in fate end up missing their goal because they think that nothing is dependent on them, regardless of how hard they try. Instead of waiting for fate or fighting it, it is far better to make up your mind and to try developing yourself.

Young people have many big dreams, great passion, and strong energy. However, not everyone understands that achieving these dreams requires relentless dedication and hard work. Many people try achieving success quickly and jump from one opportunity to another in an attempt to grab success more quickly than others.

One can embark on his or her path only after defining their goal. A magic carpet that flies you to your destination in no time is only found in fairy tales. In life, you can only use your own two feet. You can only take one step at a time. Even the journey of a thousand miles starts with a single step. If you are dedicated, disciplined, and determined enough, your steps are not just added up – they are multiplied. Taking one step a time means that you should fully concentrate on your task at hand.


Twenty years ago, I discovered the formula for success from a book written by Japanese management legend Kazuo Inamori. Ever since that time, I have been trying to use that formula in my life. In March last year, I finally had an opportunity to meet him and traveled to Kyoto. The formula says that the success in your life is mindset multiplied by passion and ability. The point about multiplying means that a person with average ability can achieve greater success than those who are stronger in ability. You should never forget that the foundations of your ability – your body, face, health, and talent – come from your parents. What you can claim to be yours is your success.

Your passion depends on how much you want to achieve your goal. The person who has a clear idea of his or her mission can dedicate everything to achieving it. Ability and passion can be measured on a scale of one to 100 points, whereas mindset ranges from -100 to 100. Those people who are always full of envy, complaints, and hate have a negative mindset, which greatly limits their potential for success. On the contrary, people with a positive mindset are likely to have more achievements.

I suggest you evaluate yourself using this formula, and repeat it every few years. Mr. Inamori wrote “Respect the divine and love people” on the first page of his book, which I have been reading for these past few years.


Recently, I had an opportunity to speak to Dr. Stig Steen, a famous cardiothoracic surgeon from Scandinavia, and learned more about how to live a long, happy life. I traveled to Igelosa Center, located not very far from Malmö, Sweden, and met him. I shared my experience in greater detail in one of my weekly columns. He advised that people should define their purpose, exercise, have good relationships, get enough sleep, practice the omission of bad habits, receive good nutrition, and have a positive attitude.

If you combine the first letters of these key words, you have “PERSONA”, where “per” in Latin means “to send” and “sona” means “sound”; which translates to communications and relations. Dr. Steen preaches this because he has heard from the last words of people that happiness is felt from relationships in which people understand and love each other. He says that a person who can love and understand others can bring light to the dark.

If you look at Mr. Inamori’s formula in this light, purpose relates to passion, attitude relates to mindset, and the rest (energy, relationships, sleep, omission, and nutrition) can relate to ability. In any case, happiness means that words and actions are the same. Or, as the Dalai Lama put it, it is making peace with ourselves and obtaining peace in the outer world at the same time. You can watch my “defacto” television interview with the Dalai Lama on my website:

Confucius once said that happiness is when you are understood, greater happiness is when you are loved, and the greatest happiness is when you love yourself. Write your own script as early as possible, and articulate what happiness and success mean in your life. Remember that the path to success is not straight but bumpy. Regardless of which chapter you are in, always respect the divine and love people.