fbpx


Visitez notre section française & Consultez notre contenu en français.

Does Challenging Childhood Lead to Success?

12 May, 2022
Q I have a belief that people born into poverty, or very difficult circumstances, perhaps with a physical or mental disability, are often more driven and passionate about success, for themselves and for others.

Indeed, those people with challenging childhood often achieve amazing things in life, and their upbringing actually gives them an advantage over others who have a safe, "normal" upbringing.

Am I right?

Answer

In this counseling answer:

People who grow up with very little often learn to appreciate what they get later in life.

For those who are born with challenging childhood, it depends on a lot of factors like, the individual him- or herself, their constitution, and their makeup, along with the environmental factors.

Human beings are complex and human existence is as much art as it is science.


As-salamu `alaikum,

Often I think that is the case. People who grow up with very little often learn to appreciate what they get later in life. Of course, this also has to do with the individual and their non-material circumstances, such as their relationships with parents, and so on.

I know of two people very close to me who grew up with very humble upbringings, and I have always admired their appreciation for what they have in life and the way they go about things.

Challenging Childhood

As for those who are born with physical or mental challenges of different kinds, again, I think it depends on a lot of factors, one of which is the individual him- or herself, their constitution, and their makeup, along with the environmental factors.

Does Challenging Childhood Lead to Success? - About Islam

How were they raised — nurture vs. nature? Well, it’s both according to Islam. Were they brought up to feel sorry for themselves or with the notion that they could achieve anything if they worked hard enough and were dedicated enough?

Again, I don’t think there is a real science as to whether or not this happens. I think there are certain factors that, when present, can facilitate individuals to achieve amazing things in life. However, I don’t think it’s an across-the-board kind of law or principle.


Check out this counseling video


Human beings are complex and human existence is as much art as it is science. I think it important that we strive hard to learn about people and their life stories, such as

  • Their fears
  • Their motivations
  • Their worldviews
  • Their upbringing

Rather than putting simple labels on groups of people or assuming that people are like plants and animals (as if condition A exists, then B will result every time).

The beautiful and miraculous aspect of human existence is seen in its mystery and richness. We should embrace this, I believe, by striving to understand people as individuals and approaching each individual life and life story as a sacred manifestation of the Creator’s greatness and mercy.

We often like to clump people into neat little categories and generalizations, which completely undermines any appreciation for Allah’s creative genius.

By doing so, we also assume to know everything about people, making it convenient to pass judgment on them without getting to the truth. This is really un-Islamic in my opinion, but we all do it and should therefore remind ourselves to be mindful of its dangers.

Salam.

**

Disclaimer: The conceptualization and recommendations stated in this response are very general and purely based on the limited information that was provided in the question. In no event shall AboutIslam, it’s volunteers, writers, scholars, counselors, or employees be held liable for any direct, indirect, exemplary, punitive, consequential or other damages whatsoever that may arise through your decision or action in the use of the services which our website provides. 

Read more:

About Dr. Abd. Lateef Krauss Abdullah
Dr. Abd. Lateef Krauss Abdullah is a Research Fellow at the Institute for Social Science Study’s Community Education and Youth Studies Laboratory, Universiti Putra Malaysia. He received his B.A. from the University of Delaware (U.S.), his M.S. from Columbia University (U.S.) and his PhD from the Institute for Community & Peace Studies (PEKKA), Universiti Putra Malaysia in 2005 in the field of Youth Studies. Abd. Lateef is an American who has been living in Malaysia since 2001. He is married and has 2 children.