“If practice makes perfect, but nobody is perfect. Then Why Practice?”
This was a question I once heard during a group conversation. It was several years ago, and I was not prepared for such a question. Quite honestly, it completely stumped me. And over the years I have found myself pondering that very question.
Perfection is in the Journey
We practice towards perfection, not for the attainment of perfection. But for the growth of the experience. I practice because I want to be better than I am.
I remember when I was first learning Tai Chi. First I had to learn the individual movements, the form. I started by learning small groups or sections of movements. After awhile, I was able to do a complete form from beginning to end. But, by no means had I perfected my style. I began to focus on my breath. Learning to inhale and exhale with each movement. Once I gained a good flow with my breathing, my entire experience with tai chi changed.
Today, when I practice my tai chi, my focus is on perfecting each individual movement. Working to make each small movement more precise than the last time I performed it. I know longer have to think about what comes next. Or whether I’m inhaling or exhaling at the correct time. With each movement, I can feel the perfection or imperfection of the movement. It is in this experience that I continue to practice.
Perfection is subjective
Perfection in itself is completely subjective. This is why we say “Nobody is perfect.” There simply is no one agreed upon definition of perfection. If I was to reach perfection in my tai chi, I would no longer have the same elevated experience. I would not have anywhere else to go. My journey would be over.
Perfection is in the design
Perfection is in the design. When we learn to replace our subjective idea of how the world should be. With the simple daily practice of a principle-based living. We find the perfection we seek in the design of our person and in the design of a life which gains value in the experience.
When we learn to base our actions on common principles, rather than individual morals or ethics, we find that we can be different, we can authentically ourselves. We can be in complete disagreement and yet still be okay. Both with ourselves and with allowing others to be themselves. If we want to design a perfect world, then let’s work on designing the perfect version of ourselves. And then focus on the action we take to get there, not the destination. Our definitions of perfection do not need to match. Only our desire to share in the practice towards perfection.
“Always aspire to inspire, before we expire!”