"Not Minding the Mud"
extracted from "The Old Woman of Taishan"
Part of practice, part of any real learning, is failing. There is nobody that can learn something flawlessly, not even geniuses. You don’t pick up a violin and suddenly start playing.
It takes time, practice, and repeated mistakes. Every mistake is a gift because it tells you where there is a possibility of improvement. You need to learn through your own experiences. That includes success and failure.
The key to practice is knowing how to recover from the failures; knowing how to get knocked down, roll over with the force of being knocked down, and come back up on your feet, again and again and again. That’s practice.
It’s that process that finally brings us to a point of breaking through. That, in and of itself, is enlightenment. That’s what it means to be human.