Friday, August 14, 2009
Practice makes us perfect
Lord Krishna, while answering Arjuna's question on how to control the mind, tells him in Bhagvad Geeta that, although mind control is indeed very difficult, it can be achieved through Abhayasa Yoga (constant practice). We can draw an inference from here that any task can be accomplished if we are sincere and serious about it and practice it.
Every task looks difficult in the beginning. When I began learning driving, I found it very difficult to coordinate the hand, feet and eyes. If I had to change the gear, I would look down and the vehicle would move dangerously to the other side of the road !! With continuous practice, I became an expert driver. Likewise, when we attempt anything new, it seems like a complicated task. That should not deter us. It should rather make us more determined. As we repeatedly practice and perform it, we become masters at it.
I once heard some one saying that for every task there are four stages. The first stage is one of unconscious incompetence - when we don’t know that we are not competent. If we have not tried to do something, we may not know that we don't know. The next stage is conscious incompetence - when we discover that we are incompetent. After practice, we move into a stage of conscious competence - when we are good at doing something.
The fourth stage is the most interesting - when something becomes second nature to us. We can do it without making any conscious effort. It is like sub-consciously chanting your prayers without paying attention and the mind wandering somewhere else. After some time, we discover that we have finished chanting but the satisfaction that comes from having the consciousness is missing. It will be good if we can restrain ourselves from moving into the fourth stage.
" When you are not practicing, remember, someone somewhere is practicing, and when you meet him he will win "- Ed Macauley
"I am not afraid of a fighter who knows thousand different types of kicks, but I am afraid of one who has practiced a kick thousands of times" - Bruce Lee
"Living a life of values becomes easy if we continuously practice it with determination" - Vishwanath Seshadri