Can I Learn To Live Successfully Within My Limitations?

This is the final post in a series of seven posts regarding Step 49 of Steps to Knowledge. In this step, I am reviewing my practice and experience of the first 48 steps.  I am sharing what I wrote when I actually did this step, with additional commentary as needed.

Step 43 – My will is to know God – “My will is to glorify God and to enjoy Him forever.  My will is to represent God.  My will is to realize God.  My will is to will the will of God.  Even when I’m distracted my will comes back.”  I was improvising on the first question and answer of the Westminster Shorter Catechism, ‘the chief end of man is to glorify God, and to enjoy Him forever.”

Step 44 – I wish to know my own strength – “Find my strength to find my strength.  Bring forth my strength.  Create my strength.”  A student of Steps to Knowledge in Qinghai Province, China, commented, “It’s like the bird learning to fly. The information, the instinct, is in the genetic blueprint, but the bird still has to learn to fly. The bird doesn’t just jump out of the nest and soar into majestic flight at the first go. It might flop, stagger, waver, or fall, but the learning will take place as the bird exercises this ability which it technically doesn’t have yet, but will have.”  The bird has to find flying.  I have to find my strength.

Step 45 – Alone I can do nothing – “I have been very unkind to my little, limited self.”  I have expected it to create its purpose, meaning and directions, which are all jobs above its pay grade.

Step 46 – I must be small to be great – “I will work successfully within my limited context”  I’m recalling that after Swedish poet and avid pianist Tomas Transtromer suffered a stroke disrupting his right side, Ulf Grahn composed a series of left-hand piano pieces for Transtromer to play.  That’s an instance of working successfully within a limited context.

Step 47 – Why do I need Teachers? – “After Steps 46 and 47, wallowing in my limitations, it was no big stretch to think I need a Teacher.”

Step 48 – True instruction is available to me – “Love myself to approach Knowledge, and I will love myself more.  I recalled Step 44 here, bootstrap loader.”  As my colleague said, “The information, the instinct, is in the genetic blueprint [unalterable read-only memory], but the bird still has to learn to fly.”  Knowledge contains certain qualities, but I still have to bring them forth to access them.

How do I attain Knowledge?  How do I get to Carnegie Hall?  “Practice, practice, practice”

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