When was the last time, you felt like re-reading some literary work that you loved at the first glance? Ever wonder why do you feel compelled to listen to that favourite song, time and again? And all these things happen as if, in an autopilot mode. No effort is needed on your part. As time passes, do the written words change or does the tune sound different, every time you listen?
There was an era, when formal education was yet to be born. It was the time, when a skilled person was considered gifted, when people thought more with their hearts. These were the days, when a student had to stay at the teacher’s place to learn a skill.
A master vocalist had left the village residents in awe with his skills. They thought it was best, not to send their children around his house, even to play. Arts weren’t considered a respectable profession. Musicians hardly earned a dime. Many children had already started learning under him. A potter’s son had already surrendered his will to this art and master.
One day, he arrived at the master’s house and began taking regular lessons. But only in a few days, he was fed up of practising the same thing over and over. That day, when all other students left, he complained to the master about it. The master wasn’t surprised at all. This confused the boy more. He asked the boy, what did he like doing more than once. The boy replied that it was running on the road, turning a wheel with his stick. The old teacher asked the boy, how long he could do it. To which the boy replied that he would go on for hours and eventually lost track of time. But he was doing the same thing repeatedly, said the master. The boy questioned, why then, did he find it interesting?
Sounds familiar? Read on to unlock the bemused boys’ puzzle.
The master replied that each time we are in the company of a thing or person, there happens a unique communication. This is the reason why every sunrise paints a different day, why every breath tells us more about life. It is the same secret which potters like your father have come across. Doesn’t your father, turn the same lump of clay on his wheel, a number of times, to give it the desired shape? I make the students repeat the same lesson for days or months until he stumbles upon this technique on his own. The boy began practising with a new zeal, next day onwards.
Weren’t the old masters really wise? What we call revision was really re-vision. Someone removed the hyphen to save time and the word lost its purpose. Revised things were seldom the re-thought over ones. They fell into the old-stuff-in-new-pack trap. While it was done tied with the blind fold of devotion and respect in the old days, today we can analyse what we practise.
Stay with whatever it is, a bit longer. Every glance towards it, will narrate a different story.
Written by: Heramb