Re: Re: Success: Talent or hard work?

unknown-user on #88254

You bring up an interesting perspective, Carl, and there are two poles
towards which education lies. Even though a great thinker can be
convicted of only one “right” way of approaching something, couldn’t
this potentially limit their growth and adaptability? If intolerance
crosses the line into rigidity, then it is a potential handicap.

I have observed two approaches to understanding, perception, and
learning. The first is the
pole of self. At this pole we control the boundaries of our
have a sense of resolution and order. Knowledge is defined through a
process of dismissal of everything that is not “right”. It is not
unlike sculpting an image from stone, permanently chiseling away all
unwanted portions. This individual driven to control and master the art
of sound. What you describe as
intolerance towards deviating from the “right” way would be an
expression of this approach.

At the other pole there is a focus on what lies beyond self. This
awakens us to an absence of presumed boundaries, and leaves no
resolution. Self is dissolved in a
sense of
grandeur, timelessness, and an awareness of our inability to fully
It is a dependence on opening
self to be transformed by that which is greater than self rather than
on placing everything we encounter into submission to self through the
assumption of complete comprehension. This individual will
let go of self to comprehend music through a sense of empathy, and is
driven to be transformed by the art of music. Knowledge is gained by
embracing everything and observing relationships in a continually
evolving sense of understanding. This is not unlike a river that is
forever interacting and evolving.

Einstein made many statements
that suggest his thinking would fall towards this second pole such as:

Once we accept our limits, we go beyond them.”

“A person starts to live when he can live outside himself.”

The important thing is not to stop questioning. Curiosity has its own
reason for existing.”

“A human being is a part of a whole, called by us “universe”, a part
limited in time and space. He experiences himself, his thoughts and
feelings as something separated from the rest… a kind of optical
delusion of his consciousness. This delusion is a kind of prison for
us, restricting us to our personal desires and to affection for a few
persons nearest to us. Our task must be to free ourselves from this
prison by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living
creatures and the whole of nature in its beauty.”

Both poles of thought can produce focused
motivation and hard work. The first pole approaches musical expertise
as something to master, and the second pole sees it as something to by
which to be transformed. There are geniuses whose thinking
demonstrates both approaches. It does appear to me that the ability to
extend beyond self allows for the greatest potential for growth and
adaptability in the
long term. It is the river that can erode the granite sculpture over
time. The individual who focuses on self’s definition of the
one “right” way runs the risk of not acknowledging where that line is
properly drawn. It can evolve into the inability to admit
limitations. How do you convince such an individual of
anything? How could such an individual learn beyond their present
accepted system of thought?