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> Applying Lessons From Another Activity
Ben Higgins
post Sep 18 2014, 10:32 AM
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There is a famous Zen saying: From one thing know ten thousand things

To me that means that we can apply any wisdom gained from one experience into anywhere else that it applies. I've often found that lessons I've learned due to guitar playing have helped me approach other things with a degree of faith that I'll be able to learn it eventually. Sometimes I've taken something from an unrelated activity and applied it back to guitar playing.

I find that the more we do and the more we open up ourselves to new opportunities, the more resources we have to draw from. Like a giant well of experience, we've got more valuable lessons that qwe can apply back to other areas of our lives.

Can you think of any occasions where you've been able to gain greater insight into your guitar playing due to a discovery or experience in another area of your life ? How did it help you ?


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Cosmin Lupu
post Sep 19 2014, 08:35 AM
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Ben biggrin.gif You are quoting the great Itō Ittōsai

From a certain point on, I started learning based on this principle and I think it should be something that we all must do. Anything we do is based on a set of universal laws which apply everywhere, regardless of the form.

For instance - the power of slowing down. Zen teaches it, martial arts teaches it and you can apply it in ANYTHING. You cannot execute a motion which includes complex aspects, unless you understand it, feel it and apply it in various contexts until it becomes a natural reaction. In order to achieve that, regardless of the activity field, that certain something must be practiced slow, at first. Take strumming for instance. It looks like the most natural thing on earth - right? How did it feel the first time ever? smile.gif

This post has been edited by Cosmin Lupu: Sep 19 2014, 08:36 AM


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Ben Higgins
post Sep 19 2014, 09:05 AM
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QUOTE (Cosmin Lupu @ Sep 19 2014, 08:35 AM) *
Take strumming for instance. It looks like the most natural thing on earth - right? How did it feel the first time ever? smile.gif


Like trying to strum a harp whilst holding a basketball ! laugh.gif


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Spock
post Sep 19 2014, 09:21 AM
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Reminds me of these types of motivational pics I always click "LIKE" on Facebook

Basically, dedication, perseverance and hard work equal achievement. Once someone realizes that it can be applied to any endeavor you set out to achieve from playing guitar to anything else.

Concerning music, I stand by the notion firmly that some people are more naturally gifted than others and can achieve results much quicker by nature than others can - but still that is not an excuse for someone that wishes to learn but doesn't put forth the effort. It depends on priorities for some (like me) where my energies are focused on other things at the moment, but ultimately we have no one to blame but ourselves if we don't accomplish a goal.

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Ben Higgins
post Sep 19 2014, 10:27 AM
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QUOTE (Spock @ Sep 19 2014, 09:21 AM) *
Concerning music, I stand by the notion firmly that some people are more naturally gifted than others and can achieve results much quicker by nature than others can


Yeah this is an interesting notion. I do agree with this but I don't think the activity is specific. I think what is specific about it is that certain people direct their hunger for learning at particular things. So what is greater is somebody's will to learn that thing. If it's at an earlier age it can be better because there hasn't been too many years of meeting negative people and listening to naysayers.. you've got youthful innocence on your side. Or, alternatively, it could be exactly those things that drive a person to seek solace in an activity and then excel at it.

I think there's loads of factors that mean that people will excel at a particular activity.. I don't particularly believe in talent. I don't believe we're born with a gift for music, art or anything. I believe we're born with the natural hunger for learning.. and it's this that we direct in the area that most interests us. For those of you who have jobs that require skills that the average person, like me, doesn't have.. you've used that same hunger for learning to enable you to do something that I can't do. Some people direct their hunger into artistic areas of life, other into more practical areas.

Neither of us have 'talent' but the artists always get called 'talented' or whatever whereas the engineers or scientists or whomever just 'worked hard'. I don't believe in talent but I believe we all direct our passion for learning into the areas that we want the most.

If I compared myself with a top surgeon I wouldn't say that he's a naturally gifted surgeon. Theoretically, I could begin my studies now and try to learn to become a surgeon. If I did, let's face it, I'd probably be terrible at it. But the opportunity and information that I need to have to become one is out there and technically I could physically learn it.

But what separates me from this top surgeon ? Desire, will, passion, intent. That's what makes him do what he does. That's what made him put himself through medical school and study all those years. It wasn't a 'gift'. And the reason I'll never be as good as that surgeon isn't because I lack that 'gift' it's because I don't really want to be what he is which means I'll never put in as much work or sacrifice as much as him or ever be prepared to go as far as him in pursuit of that goal.

This post has been edited by Ben Higgins: Sep 19 2014, 10:36 AM


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Cosmin Lupu
post Sep 19 2014, 03:24 PM
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I agree and not in the same time smile.gif There is a certain pre-disposition towards each field of activity that can be spotted in some folks. One who is 'meant' to do this will have the natural ability exponentially boosted by the sum of factors you have mentioned. I've seen these folks and also the other kind of hard workers, lacking the 'amazingness' that the latter had, but compensating through hard work.

The biggest problem is that the majority of talented folks are usually very lazy or demotivated and they never push through enough so that they may end up where they should be smile.gif These are just my thoughts wink.gif


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klasaine
post Sep 19 2014, 06:19 PM
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I like to say that their 'talent' lies in their desire.

Having said that, at 5' 9" I'll never slam dunk on a regulation court regardless of my desire.
Then again, there's always Derek Fisher.


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Spock
post Sep 20 2014, 01:58 AM
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Natural talent just comes to people, this has been proven time and time again, and in some circumstances in the extreme...

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Ben Higgins
post Sep 20 2014, 10:08 AM
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QUOTE (Cosmin Lupu @ Sep 19 2014, 03:24 PM) *
There is a certain pre-disposition towards each field of activity that can be spotted in some folks. One who is 'meant' to do this will have the natural ability exponentially boosted by the sum of factors you have mentioned.


Yes, this is what I think too. There are other factors such as genetics that help (such as being really tall for a basketball player like Ken's example) or naturally big and muscular (pro football player).

I do believe that there are some things that make us more inclined to have an advantage at particular activities but I'm still not sure about the whole 'natural talent' thing, it just seems to much of a cop out.

I think the natural talent part is in the listening, learning and mimicking aspect of us when we are young.


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Spock
post Sep 20 2014, 10:30 AM
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QUOTE (Ben Higgins @ Sep 20 2014, 05:08 AM) *
Yes, this is what I think too. There are other factors such as genetics that help (such as being really tall for a basketball player like Ken's example) or naturally big and muscular (pro football player).

I do believe that there are some things that make us more inclined to have an advantage at particular activities but I'm still not sure about the whole 'natural talent' thing, it just seems to much of a cop out.

I think the natural talent part is in the listening, learning and mimicking aspect of us when we are young.



There are prodigies. Also people that are wired for better hand sync coordination and mental capacities to grasp different ideas, such as someone may be more inclined to grasp literature as opposed to mathematics. To think it's a cop out is to think most people are on the same playing field at birth - starting at point zero, when like you said, genetically they can be different, this is not just true of muscle mass and how tall someone is, this is also true of mental capacity, awareness and everything else to do with the human body.

Mozart was 8 years old when he wrote his first minuet...

QUOTE
The Symphony No. 1 in E flat major, K. 16, was written in 1764 by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart at the age of eight years. By this time, he was already notable in Europe as a wunderkind performer, but had composed little music.


Then you have kids like this...

Here's a 7 year old girl...


This kid had been playing for 2 years at this point, and you can see the soul bursting out while he plays...


Here's a 4 year old...


Here's a kid (13 at the time) that is challenging Einstein's theory of relativity...


And of course this dude, Daniel Tammet that though autistic, can visualize and recite the value of Pi up to 5 hours, and be perfect - until saying - that's just enough. As well as learn any language within the first days of attempting - even the hardest "Icelandic" in a week.




These may be extreme cases - but the scale slides everywhere in-between too. People are different; geared towards different interests and musical style, likes and dislikes, body shapes, mental capacities, tendencies and every other nuance that can be imagined. To think otherwise is too black and white in a reality filled with vibrant color.

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Ben Higgins
post Sep 20 2014, 01:55 PM
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QUOTE (Spock @ Sep 20 2014, 10:30 AM) *
There are prodigies. Also people that are wired for better hand sync coordination and mental capacities to grasp different ideas, such as someone may be more inclined to grasp literature as opposed to mathematics. To think it's a cop out is to think most people are on the same playing field at birth - starting at point zero, when like you said, genetically they can be different, this is not just true of muscle mass and how tall someone is, this is also true of mental capacity, awareness and everything else to do with the human body.


These may be extreme cases - but the scale slides everywhere in-between too. People are different; geared towards different interests and musical style, likes and dislikes, body shapes, mental capacities, tendencies and every other nuance that can be imagined. To think otherwise is too black and white in a reality filled with vibrant color.


But I agree with you, this is also what I'm trying to say.

Regardless of how young people are when they demonstrate great skill, this can be applied to many different areas of life.

The thing is, most of these child prodigies involve music art, dance or something creative. If you gave kids an opportunity to have a go at something like welding, plumbing, mechanics or 'adult' occupations I'm sure they would demonstrate immense skill on many of these 'non creative' areas too. It's just that these 'normal' applications aren't appropriate for children... so people generally don't learn these skills until they're approaching adulthood or are in adulthood. So when somebody learns a skill later in life, it isn't attributed to 'talent'.

If someone takes to welding you wouldn't say they're a prodigy or talented. It's just that certain activities are do-able at an early age so certain people can demonstrate immense skill at the period where they are most susceptible to great learning and growth.

Some people will be great at eye-hand co ordination, some will be great at solving mental tasks, mathematics.. everyone's brain works better at some things than others. If there's 'talent' then that's what it is, I believe.



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Cosmin Lupu
post Sep 20 2014, 03:07 PM
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By all means - I mean, this is something that was tested on me smile.gif My mom and dad hired an English teacher to read stories to me while I was about 6 years old. I had no clue how to read or write in Romanian just yet, but I was hearing things in a foreign language and I think this helped tremendously with my ear training.

QUOTE (Ben Higgins @ Sep 20 2014, 09:08 AM) *
I think the natural talent part is in the listening, learning and mimicking aspect of us when we are young.



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klasaine
post Sep 20 2014, 06:06 PM
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I too think that some folks are predisposed to do some things better than others but I have known and worked with a couple of 'prodigies' ... they practice like CRAZY and are totally and completely committed to and focused on the task. They don't get distracted.
Most importantly, the prodigies I've known had really good teachers and live in an environment that nurtures that talent and desire.

Mozart's father was an outstanding musician and teacher and Wolfy's older sister was by all accounts one hell of a violinist. There was music being played in the house at all waking hours.
If you are predisposed to really love music and have a good work ethic, you'll be pretty awesome when you're deep in an environment like that.

It should be noted that the majority of musical 'child prodigies' don't end up doing it as a profession. Of those that do - most of them plateau in their early 20s while the rest of the plain old garden variety really good ones catch up and the playing field evens out.

*The bulk of working, professional artists (musicians, painters, etc.) and athletes were dubbed 'child prodigies'. You should kinda be able to kick ass when you're a little kid (between 5 and 13). It's just that the Jay Leno show or currently youtube only features the select few who's parents or schools feel the need to parade them in front of the public.

This post has been edited by klasaine: Sep 21 2014, 02:43 PM


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