Our life is governed by constants, agree?
There are times when we aim for something, and try all our guts out to achieve that aim, but it ended far from what we foresee, or predict. We have consider all the variables and parameters that are within our control, and took out all the manipulative variables, but still the results turned us down.
I was in the meeting this morning, discussing about this one hell of a spreadsheet, to calculate the amount of material and time needed to produce certain length of a pipe. It is generated so that it can calculate to the most accurate value, the cost of any particular pipes with just minimal input. We went through the spreadsheet, checking each and every formula incorporated inside that damn file. Which cell linked to which, where this value come from, which table uses the VLOOKUP function, and any other function that you can imagine inside a spreadsheet file.
Until we go through one cell, green highlighted, with one number, 1.2.
"This number for what aa??"
"Oh this is a factor, the last thing we should consider before finalizing this spreadsheet"
"Then why 1.2?"
"It's the number to make the calculated end values to be as close as possible to the production's data. Ideally it should be 1 la, right? We should revisit this cell after all the formula and tables are corrected, and compare with production's data to find the exact number to be put in the cell."
And this made me thinking, even after we spent months to get all the calculation correct, there are things that beyond our control, beyond any thinkable formula or equation we ever known, to calculate the end values. We are depending on that 1.2 value, which we cannot derive from any source . This 1.2 value will only be known correct or not after the actual outcome.
Can I call this 1.2 is a constant? Can laa, eh?
The most known constant, I believe is Pi, π. The value, 3.14159 to 5 decimal places, is a number that far beyond our control. If we manage to gather all the greatest physician of all times, and willing to pay them all the fortune in the world, for them to change even the a single number in Pi, nothing is more impossible than that. Pi is created to be that way, and it will stay forever that way.
Moving further, let's imagine we have a set of equations that should lead us to one define value. For instance, taking back the Pi value above to calculate the volume of one normal cylinder. Mathematically, we will not be able to get the correct value if we do not include Pi in our calculation. We can use all the know equation in the world, but none of them will give us the right answer without the Pi.
So, we are very much dependent on Pi, in this case, right?
We run our life, with many plans ahead of us. We want to achieve this and that in certain period of time. But as we know, life is full of surprises. These surprises are something we cannot predict and uncontrollable. Well, this is what I can relate with the constant thingy.
It is something like we receive our salary at the end of each month. Pretty much calculation is done after we received the money. This and that to be bought. Pay the credit cards, bill, car loans and everything. From our thorough calculation, referring to past experience, after sum out all the manipulative variables, the salary should be enough until the next salary comes in. Let me ease the pain in your head by below (examples for us to get the better picture):
Manipulated variables (pembolehubah dimanipulasikan):
1. Total ringgit we eat each day.(depends on the lauk and drinks)
2. Brand of cigarette.
3. Night activity (lepak at mamak, snooker, futsal)
4. any other miscellaneous which we still can live our life without them.
Controlled Variables (pembolehubah dimalarkan):
1. Loans payments.
4. Everything else that are essential for us to run our life as normal as it is.
Responding Variable (pembolehubah bergerak balas)
1. Balance of our salary at the end of the month. Say, 100 ringgit in Maybank account.
*Just for example. I know most of us have more to pay than the list above.
So after all the payments, we are happy that for that particular month, our pocket should not be burden with extra things to pay. We just follow based on our calculation and strictly discipline ourselves (what lauk to take during lunch/brand of cigarette, limit our night activity based on the early calculations and everything).
But, are we very sure that at the end of the month, the amount of money in the Maybank account is 100 ringgit? Can we confirm our calculation is 100% correct? What if somewhere in the middle of the month something happened, sucking every single penny out of our pocket. Can we predict that? Did we incorporate that into our calculation? How should we account for surprises?
OK maybe you can say that all those things can be counted as probability. Yup agreed to that. That is why we save some of our money to face those probabilities. Preparing if that probability happens. I believe we prioritize our savings based on the probability, as well. We will save more money for high probability occurrences (i.e to buy something we like). And for things with the least probability, like 1/100000000000000000000000000, no one will ever think to save even one ringgit, for that thing, right?
But still, can we confirm that 1/100000000000000000000000000 will not happen to us? How can we calculate that 1/100000000000000000000000000 probability will happen once, or twice, in our lifetime? What is the constant to use to calculate that? Anyone can answer?
Yes. There is no answer to that. There are things in life that beyond our control. Many of them. Even we calculated meticulously, with every variables, probability, statistics, constants, and every known formula, we still cannot predict what exactly will happen to us in the future. There are so much unknown constants and variables in this world. Like, we already tried the best we can, but still we cannot achieve that something we want.
So friends, redha with what Allah gives us. He is far more superior that all those formula, equation, probability, statistics, constants, algebra, derivations, and everything. Those are all His creations. He knows beyond any calculations in this world. He just knows. Our knowledge is so limited, no one can calculate what will happen even in one second ahead of us. Allah knows everything, the past, the present and the future. We as makhluk, just live our lives accordingly, follow what Allah instructed us to do and leave all the things He prevented. If something happen out of our way, believe that Allah knows what is best for us.
Dah jom solat.