Friday, May 14, 2010

The Path of the Apprentice

Even those who are acknowledged by others as masters know that their learning from the path is never done. Learning more about your chosen field does not stop because someone gives you a certificate and others are always complimenting you on your work.

The person who approaches their work with openness, joy, a desire to learn more and perform better is always ready to accept new bits of knowledge and try new techniques. The person with this sort of disposition looks at details of their work and pursues refinements. When someone else in their field does something innovative, they are appreciative and say things like "that's interesting. I hadn't thought of doing it that way before."

On the path of the apprentice, the master does not always call themselves by that title because they know that they enjoy their work and that others have respect for what they do.

The person who is truly the master does not always flaunt their title, sometimes as a counterpoint to those who acquire a title too easily and use it simply as a self promotional gimmick, and sometimes out of a sense of true humility, acknowledging that one who is enjoying their journey on the path is never really finished.

On the path of apprenticeship, masters know that they are never finished with their journey, that there is always something interesting along the way, and that even a person who has achieved excellence and recognition is still an apprentice on the path. And this is not a disappointment. It is a pleasure.

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