“If the fool would persist in his folly he would become wise”
If I keep doing ‘this’, whatever ‘this’ is, some good may come of it … It depends on both the quantity and quality of my effort. I write a lot, I talk a lot. Sometimes what I say is wise sometimes it is foolish, either way it often feels futile; but if I persist with dialogue, not particularly with this idea or that, with dialogue itself as a practice, a ‘way’ as it were, then what I have to say may have some impact. Or maybe it won’t; but that’s the essence of a ‘way’ isn’t it? The path is not less or more important than destination. The path is the destination.
Every morning I practice the Tai Chi short form in the garden. I do it two times; between the two rounds I practice the Wing Chun basic form, Sil Lim Tao, that I learned a few years ago. It’s now an established practice; something I do without fail even if I skip or skimp on anthing else. No teacher is watching and no one watching would be impressed. Undoubtedly I am making ‘mistakes’ but each day I learn something new about the short form or my own practice of it. I have learned to slow down and this morning I started to let go of the ‘poses’. It is a ’24 step form’ but are no pauses to ‘pose’ at the end of each step.
It’s the same in sitting meditation and it’s the same in life. I imagine a watcher, maybe a teacher, to impress. I have no illusions that I’m going to stop posing anytime soon, when I write, when I practice Tai Chi, or when I meditate. There is a saying that ‘when the student is ready, the teacher will appear’. Perhaps it is also true that when the student is ready the ‘teacher’ (and the posing) will disappear.