I had this idea for awhile. The idea of how being prideful can lessen your ability to learn and be overall a better person.
It all started in a book. I believe it was a self help book. A very ordinary one, that is just like most others. In the book, a story was narrated of how a prideful smart person could see the bridge (the answer) but wasn’t willing to cross it. He was afraid and didn’t have the courage to do it. And when people would tell him about their problems, he’d laugh and point out arrogantly that there was a bridge and that they had to cross it. He knew the answer and yet wasn’t able to act upon the answer because of fear and because of his pride.
Though, the story was more about how people should act on the things they know to be correct. Things that they know are the best for them. There is also a central idea of fear and how pride can create it.
Just last week, I was trying to learn the choreography for a dance. My feet weren’t doing the part. My muscles have never done something like it. I wasn’t able to do it with everyone else. There were two options. Either I just chill with everyone else, or I kept practicing by my own to catch up. If i decided to practice by my own, everyone will be watching and it’d be sort of embarrassing.
I feel in so many cases, this is true. You’d have to do embarrassing things to get better at a certain activity. You’d have to risk people calling you a fool or laughing at you. Continuing with the man and the bridge in the analogy, it may be that one of the wood pieces that make the bridge floor will fall down as the man steps on it. It may make him look like a fool. And maybe people laugh at him. However, that is the price to pay in order to arrive to the final destination. A place where the man can find joy in his life. If he doesn’t mind the mocking of people and if he is careful just likes the others before him, he’d arrive to the final destination that will make him a better person.
It sounds stupid to say the smartest way to be is to act is to look stupid in front of most people. And if there was another way to accomplish a better state of being. That is becoming a better dancer, a better student or a better lover… one must make mistakes and even look without much grace. And of course, if we don’t give up and we lose our ego to act clumsy in front of people. If we are able to say sorry if our clumsiness hurt other people, if we are able to continue the path marked by the bridge of no ego… in the other side, we will be able to find a better way to live and act.
After trying to do the correct footwork for awhile on my own, after I kept insisting the main dancer to show me the dance moves over and over again and after a few people had giggle and chuckle at me… I was able to make progress. Haha. Yeah, I actually didn’t perfect the dance footwork. I got close though and I believe I just now need practice. I am sure there will be many cases in my life where I’d have to do the same to be able to perfect myself. And I hope I have the courage to the smartest thing.
This is what I think.