Thursday, April 08, 2010

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Hope is NOT a Strategy


As practitioners of BJJ, we all have something in common; we are all probably, people of Action. We enjoy the state of being that action gives us. When circumstances require action, we tend to act – not dwell, not ponder, not pray, not hope – we act. In fact, I think that this is one of the most important ways in which people differ from one another; some people wait, while others act.
Many, many people think if they pray and think and visualize hard enough, then the universe will provide for them. I think this is just so much rubbish. It’s not that I have anything against visualizing, praying or even hoping – but I do very much understand that it’s action that sets us on a path to achieving things. I do not doubt that millions of starving people are thinking and wishing and praying for food, the world over – and I do not see any result. When the ship is sinking – hope is simply not a strategy; while getting a life-vest, a bag full of supplies and leaping into a boat is. The universe will not manifest anything for those who just sit there and ask it for help – the universe doesn’t give a shit. We, each and every one of us, possesses free will; and this free will allows us to choose our course of action – but even after choosing it, we must will ourselves into taking action.
Taking action is what gave us fire; it is what gave us literature, art and it is the tool by which we have carved the countless steps that have allowed us to climb out of the darkness of our distant past. If there is one great skill that each of us should nurture and develop in the short time that is allotted to us – it is the ability to escape the seemingly safe confines that are offered by hope and prayer and instead, train ourselves to take action.
I think that prayer, visualisation, goal setting and even wishful thinking do have their place; these things give us clarity of purpose and open our eyes to opportunity and solution – but it is the ability to act that moves us ever forward.

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3 Comments

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Anonymous 7:53 pm

I agree. I used to be the praying kind. I found that by merely doing so I was relying solely on prayer and forgot to take actions. It didn't work out for me, in more ways than one. Everyone has theories on how (or if) things in this world of ours work, just like any techniques in BJJ. But a wise man once said, "the truth can withstand any amount of debate".

Clint

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Anonymous 12:12 pm

This is such a great post! I only wish it was as easy to take action as it is to sit and hope and pray. So many of life's failures come from sitting on the sideline.

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Anonymous 9:58 am

There is the old joke about the guy who begs God to let him win the lottery. When he doesn't he curses God out! A big hand appears and knocks him on his arse, a voice booms from the sky "At least buy a bloody ticket"!

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