The poem ‘If’’ by Rudyard Kipling contains many moral values that might change a person to be a ‘man of the Earth’. The poem is full of advice and principles on how to live a good life. This poem teaches us to be someone that lives not only for themselves, but also for others. If these principles are practiced, everyone can live in peace and harmony. In all, the poem is about having balance.

The line, “If you can dream – and not make dreams your master” is a very important principle for having balance. Meaning, dreams should not be your only aspirations, goals, or thoughts. At the start of this line, the narrator praises dreams and longings, but warns against becoming blinded with those wants. Dreams should not be all a person works for. This quote means that people should not be a slave to their dreams, constantly working for their dreams and wishes. There are other things we should work towards, other than our selfish desires.

If Kipling believed people should not be slaves to their own dreams, it is inferred he believes a person should spend time working towards something other than their own goals. Maybe the reason he writes this is to tell people the key to owning “the Earth and everything that’s in it”, is not working for their own dreams, but doing good deeds for others. If by doing all the principles in Kipling’s poem “If” a person can be fulfilled, then by not having some of these principles, a person might not be fulfilled. Consequently, if people work only for themselves, they cannot be truly happy.

There are numerous examples of unhappy people who have spent their whole lives focusing on their dreams and goals, but still end up unsatisfied. I believe there is a great deal of satisfaction in serving and blessing others. Giving up time and effort to help someone is a fulfilling and humbling thing. It enables you to step back and realize life is not about dreams, but about helping others along the way.

The poem ‘If’’ holds many good ideals that might make a you a ‘man of the Earth.’ It also states that dreams should not be your only wish or purpose. We should work for things other than selfish desires. If people simply labor for themselves, they will not be happy. Life is about helping others, not serving yourself.

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