There are some lazy people who do not want to take the trouble to do something properly and therefore invent rationalizations for not making the effort, usually using generalities such as “love,” and “freedom,” which are meaningless unless they are lived.

When I was learning Japanese, a man from Japan said to me, “If you are going to speak the language, learn to speak it properly.” This made a big impression on me. If you are going to become a doctor, you must pass medical exams and learn to do the procedures correctly. If you want to play a Mozart Sonata, or sing a Mozart opera, I suggest you follow the marks that Mozart wrote. People will differ in the way they sound because of the difference in capabilities, but they will all be playing or singing the notes Mozart wrote. I have never heard of an undisciplined opera singer, or a lazy concert pianist. Similarly, if you want to teach T’ai Chi Chih, you must first do it correctly yourself or it becomes a sham. Teh – inner sincerity – demands that you practice what you preach. The Japanese monk, Senzaki, said, “It is better to discipline ourselves than to have life do it for us.” Those who drift aimlessly might take note of this remark.

This article is published in Spiritual Odyssey.