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Congruence … in many ways, is the opposite of hypocrisy.
I try to live with as much congruence as I can; I have often failed - but I always try to correct and improve the way I live in the world.
I cannot reasonable expect from others that which I do not believe in myself. The way I act and behave in one area of my life, should ideally, flow and resonate into other areas of my life. But why be congruent? What is the outcome of being incongruent - or incongruent for that matter?
When we act congruently, we come across to others as being honest, believable, trustworthy … because we are perceived as being ‘steady’, even predictable. But for me, acting congruently, or perhaps more accurately, living congruently, means I am clearer on who I am … what I am about … what I represent.
There is nothing more objectionable that someone who talks about the importance of things like honour, respect, loyalty, trustworthiness, etc … yet they behave as if they abhor these very traits. The person who talks about honour, but behaves dishonourably, demeans the idea of honour for everyone; they cheapen the meaning of the word; they devalue it’s currency.
We shouldn’t sell the idea of martial arts fitness - when we ourselves are not fit; we cannot reasonably demand that others respect us, when we have no respect for others; we shouldn’t proclaim how honourable we are, we we act ignobly when no-or else is watching.
Congruence is not an easy thing to embody in every nook and cranny of our lives; I know in my own case, and through the course of my life, I have been incongruent on many occasions … but it is something I continue to strive for and as I get older (and hopefully wiser) - my life will continue to become more and more congruent. Just like fitness, happiness and a swag of other virtues … our behaviours are more likely than not taking us toward where we want to go … or away from where we want to go? Just like walking in remote and unfamiliar areas … the best course of action is to constantly check our direction … constant course corrections … are the key to getting where you want to go! JBW