Saturday, January 27, 2007

Why I Study (give me a kiss)



alright i know you are all eagerly awaiting a post. I taught a seminar on 70s tv shows yesterday, we were watching and dissecting "Barney Miller" show from 1975. I got pulled into some wine after and long conversations. I am in the midst of finals, I am sorry I told you that because remember this blog is not about me, it is about my life and my relationship to it, to undertstand it, observe, revel in its abusrdity and beauty though i mention the exams things only because it is related to what this post is about. I wrote this to understand why I study and what it means. I know people study for different reasons, and the predominant reason is to get a job and survive, I respect that, though I am in the other camp. What camp that is I don't know. Here is an idea with my post on studying. Peace.


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In the process of studying I realize who I am and what I value. What becomes illuminating is the process and how I choose to engage myself with it. There is a difference in whether I see this process as a burden or strengthener, whether I see the exam as an enemy or teacher. The best metaphor is athletic, of building, strengthening myself to function at a harmonious level. I remember my father in times like this as he stressed to me the importance of loving what one does. The importance of discipline, a routine and how even if one is unable to focus one must make the time to sit down, do one's duty. The act of studying was elevated to the spiritual.

I enjoy what I study and see its grander purpose and meaning in my life. It makes a difference what one studies as at times a forced discipline is used to do things one does not want to do or understand. Krisnamurti cynically noted "Discipline is evoked in order to get you to do things you don't want to do" I agree to an extent though discipline also paves the way and provides you with the opportunity to experience something new. I remember the first time I started running, how difficult it was and my inclination was to stop, give up and yet I had George, my best friend push me on, he said" you will see you will see, keep at it and you will hit a new world" and discipline is what brings you into that new world and thats the power of teachers. They give you the strenght to work hard, remind you whats at the end of this, reassure you that it gets better, guide you through the mud, help you in reflection, questioning, understanding the purpose and process without becoming arrogant and overly skeptical. A teacher-student relationship still has to be based on being humble and accepting that someone has something in our best interests. It challenges our faith in the goodness of humanity and only with a strong faith are we able to accept what one has to offer, other wise excessive questioning lead one to an incapability unable to grasping only that which can be understood through submission. I must allow to myself to simulatanously submit and have faith in my ability to be who I am, free, independent and clear. I need to build that as well.

Rather than fear as a motivator one must work to reduce stress and do things in an unrushed manner. Be systematic, like the sun and all of nature. Work hard and be not afraid to become dull and dim, you will only becoming more brilliant, like a diamond slowly polished and cleaned to be set in the mid day sun.

Cuba showed me the relationship between art and discipline. The best artists I met were fully dedicated with heart and soul, blood, sweat and tears to what they did. and they approached it as a doctor would a patient, a worker in his factory, they had the same dignity and they lacked all affectation, and bohemian astetic, it wasn't done for rebellion, it was done as a skill, it was given worth and dignity, they were not otstrasized, they very exemplified, given merit and importance. It changed the concept of what it means to be an artist and one of the most fasinating aspects of the revolution.

1 comment:

Quinta said...

Well said.