When we are new to any given discipline, it is easy to be a sponge. We eagerly soak up the information presented to us by teachers and books. As we become more knowledgable, we are more likely to become closed off. We are sometimes justified in our confidence and skill, and it can lead us to skepticism and rigidity.
It is admittedly difficult to stay open and humble as we learn more and our experience grows. There are times when you will know more than your teachers, and times when you will know your teachers to be wrong. The danger comes when we assume that we know more than others and entrench ourselves in our current level of knowledge and belief.
The way around this is (temporary) openness and acceptance. When you are in the position of the student (which is more often than you think), listen and process, accept the knowledge temporarily. Develop a short-term reservoir for new knowledge where all the teachings can go unedited. Afterward, take the time to research and confirm. Some of the teachings will hold up, others will not. The stuff that works will go into your long-term knowledge bank, the stuff that doesn't gets discarded.
The more skeptical we are, the less likely we are to learn. We will simply hold onto the status quo and reject any new information that does not confirm our current state. The art of being a student, the art of learning is putting aside skepticism for awhile, no matter how justified it may be. Put yourself in the presence of good teachers, and then trust them to give you good information.
Scott & Ida are Yoga Acharyas (Masters of Yoga). They are the head teachers of Ghosh Yoga. This blog is about their experience with yoga practice, study and teaching.
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