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Old 11-11-2013, 09:05 AM   #27
OwlMatt's Avatar
Dojo: Milwaukee Aikikai
Location: Wisconsin
Join Date: Dec 2009
Posts: 401
Re: I Don't Care That Much

Mary Malmros wrote: View Post
Well, I don't care enough about aikido by any of those standards, either -- not when you put it that way. On the other hand, I do care enough about aikido to put up with, shall we say, rather blunt and not uncommonly physical expressions of frustration from my sensei. I do care enough to give up my evenings for class time plus a 45 minute drive each way, and it would be pretty hard to get me to move away from my dojo at this point. So what are we really talking about here? You can't quantify commitment in terms of the actions you'll put up with, the distance you'll travel or the time you'll spend, because they all mean different things to different people. Moving continents means one thing for a 22-year-old gap-year kid, and another thing for a homeowner with a mortgage that won't just put itself on hold because you feel the need to train. You can't use the same yardstick to judge the dedication of different people, because different circumstances have different definitions of what it means to have some skin in the game. And that's the measure of dedication: what it costs you. The cost of a cup of coffee is trivial to the average middle-class office worker, but is all he has to a homeless person. I've seen poor people give to those with even less, while better-off people rationalized how the poor person didn't deserve it, wasn't doing enough to help himself...wasn't dedicated enough, I guess...and used that rationale as an excuse to give nothing. Compare the cost of training of a parent of three kids who gets to training two or three days a week on average, and the 22-year-old uchideshi-wannabee with no responsibilities who trains daily. Who is paying more for their training?
That's kind of my point. Things all have different value to different people, based not only on their interest in the thing in question, but also on their circumstances. In light of this, I think it's very arbitrary and largely futile to try to judge who cares enough.

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