Many students are of the view that they just need to pass their exams with the bare minimum allowed marks.
If they pass, they’ll get that high school certificate or their university degree. The idea being that a high school certificate will get them into university and that a university degree will get them a job.
They miss the point of the exercise. It is not about the result but the process. The trick to learning is to master a subject, not to aim for the bare minimum.
So that when entering the job market, you’re actually useful and don’t have to be retrained from scratch.
Also, going for the bare minimum is the genesis of the mediocrity virus that proliferates our world. The less we expect of ourselves, the less we do and the less we expect of others.
We don’t strive to stand out and make our mark in this world. We strive to fit in so that we are never challenged in any way.
The same is true for our lives and our search to connect with our creator.
We do the bare minimum. We go to church once a week. We say our five daily prayers. We practice Shabbat every Friday.
We do all these things as we’re taught. And, we’re taught to do them with perfect form. But that’s all it is, is form. What’s missing is the intention. Doing form to connect with our creator is the bare minimum.
The trick is to master this existence and put everything into doing so. The trick is to practice every day for the moment of our death. Every moment gives us that chance.
Just going through rituals by rote and doing it under the cover of a mosque, synagogue or church is not going to help ‘buy our way into heaven’. The couple of minutes we spend on our rituals won’t cut it.
The only point of rituals are to focus our attention on the moment so that we are aware of the presence of the creator. So that we can be in awe and gratitude and humility that we have been so blessed.
Our true self comes out in the way we relate to the world and the rest of humanity in it. Every moment gives us a chance to be graceful, grateful and use the muscle of the heart to be useful, kind and beautiful to others. Every opportunity to be kind gets us closer to our creator.
Don’t look to the heavens to find your creator. Look to every human being you touch and you’ll see the divine in them. You’ll meet the creator.
Our intention defines us, not our form. Follow your rituals but most of all be human, be kind, be in awe and be grateful. This is the only chance you and I have of touching the creator.