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The route to excellence?

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It really is very simple: practice.

The idea that competition leads to excellence is misleading, in that it is not the competition that leads to excellence, but the practice. Competition just provides the motivation. So, if you could find some other motivation for practicing then you would not need competition.

If you actually LIKE what you are doing, some activity, hobby or whatever, then you do it for that reason, for the pure love of doing it. So, in the words of the Beatles: All you need is love.

What then the need for competition? None whatsoever.

In fact, competition is only going to kill what you love, because if you compete you have to push, have to ‘hothouse’ and you have to do it according to a set of rules which is nothing to do with your own inclinations. This then becomes counter-productive, because your mind works best when it is doing what it likes, not when it is being forced to do something according to a set of rules imposed on it.

So, if excellence is your goal, then the best ‘fuel for the car’ is not competition, but LOVE. And you cannot have both, because competition kills love.

If one teases the tangled threads of the situation out even further, one realises that what competition leads to is excellence at competing. Of course you will become good at whatever you choose as the subject of your competition, but not ‘excellent’, because the conditions for excellence are not there: love, which engages the interest and attention and focuses the mind such that it becomes entirely absorbed in what it is doing.

So why would one want to become excellent at competing? In a word: POWER. It’s about defeating other people, about becoming top-dog ---- there is no other use for excellence at competing.

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How is that goal of removing technology from your life going?

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Any comments I make here would be self-indulgent, so I will refrain. Rats, too late.

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