Friday, August 26, 2005
Does Practise Make Perfect?
Let's take an example of a skill I'm very proficient at - typing. My typing speed is very fast, I would imagine between 95 to a 100 wpm (words per minute). I first learned to type about 15 years ago. I could type very fast with two fingers but I wanted to learn touch typing. So I borrowed a friend's typing manual. I allocated a whole afternoon to the task; I was determined that by the end of that day I would know how to touch type. I achieved my goal but I was going at snail's pace. As I had a computer, I had the opportunity to practise but I was still very slow. I guess I wasn't motivated to type any faster. I soon went back to studies where I put my typing into practice writing essays. I still wasn't that fast.
After college I became a professional temp. When you register with employment agencies you have to take their typing tests. To begin with my maximum speed was about 45 wpm, which wasn't that fast but I was pretty accurate. I believed my anxiety about taking these typing tests slowed me down. It was enough for me to get by.
From time to time, I registered at new employment agencies. I noted my typing speed was gradually increasing. It would seem that I needed the practice in order for my speed to improve. Or did I?
The last time I registered at agencies for work I decided to take two tests on the same day. At the first agency I didn't feel a lot of rapport with the lady giving me the test. My typing speed was about 53 wpm. During the interview, I still couldn't connect with the woman. I didn't feel I wanted to work for that agency. I went through the motions, answered their questions, left them my CV (curriculum vitae/resume) and left.
An hour later I went to my next interview. This time, I had a nice chat with the lady giving me the test. Her relaxed attitude made me feel relaxed. When she told me my typing speed I nearly fell off my chair: 95 wpm. I had a good interview and was soon working for this agency until I stopped temping.
What made the difference from a typing speed of 53 to 95 wpm within one hour? My inner state and rapport. What is rapport? It is the ability to be in harmony with others. When you are in harmony you are experiencing love. In other words, I felt relaxed and good about the environment and I performed better. This demonstrates that it is not always about practising but how one feels that makes the difference.
If my performance can improve so quickly just because I am in rapport with someone, what would happen if I am in a state of Love, being my real Self, all the time? How can one be Love all the time? There are two ways one can achieve this.
The love that we experience as human is conditional. I love you because you are my son, daughter, husband, friend; or because of what you do or say or how you behave. The Love that we all are - Self - loves us regardless of actions and behaviour. It's no use imagining someone loving me and magnifying that love because no human has ever loved me the way Self loves. Fortunately, I do have the experience of being loved unconditionally which I have felt as an overwhelming feeling of joy and bliss. If I didn't have that experience, I could imagine what if would feel like to be loved no matter what, and how good it would feel to be totally accepted. Then I go about my business with this feeling.
Love in action.
How do you know you are love if you are not experiencing it? You can experience love by giving without conditions and expectations or you can imagine how it is to give without expectations. This website is Love in action. I also like to imagine myself as radiant light, without beginning or end, that is forever giving of Itself. When I am being Love I am being the Source of Love. All it takes is for me to practise this exercise a few times a day.
Being the Love that I am has amazing results. People pick up on your vibes as friendly and they feel drawn to you. People interpret this Love in their own ways according to their needs at the time. Yesterday in this public toilet, I saw a woman changing her baby's nappy. The baby was wailing throughout. While I was washing my hands, I looked across and smiled at the baby. The moment I said hello the baby stopped crying and grinned at me. When I walked out I saw another baby and she also grinned at me. Maybe I should get a job as a nanny like Mary Poppins. Nah! I don't do nappies.
When I am being Love, I am in harmony with all, as Love is the essence of all - visible and invisible. And where there is Love, one should expect the unexpected.
The spiritual path, in my view, is about being our true Self that is Love. You could spend years, lifetimes even, studying truth principles, following a teaching and practising spiritual rituals, hoping that one day you will wake up and be Self. On the other hand, you can realise you are already Self by simply being your real Self, Love.
"Seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness [be Love]; and all these things shall be added unto you." (Matthew 6: 33)Forget practise makes perfect, just be Love.
Is life that simple? It sure is.