Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Right Effort

We’re almost at the end of the path….
The 6th step of the Noble Eightfold Path is “Right Effort”.  Are we giving our tasks the effort they deserve?  Are we giving our life the effort it deserves?  Everything in life does not need to be done intensely but some things do require more effort than other things.  Most of my marriage I have felt like nothing I do is ever quite up to my wife’s standards.  If I cleaned the kitchen it was never clean enough.  I thought I had given it the effort it deserved but she thought my effort was unacceptable.  Whatever.  I tend to base my effort on how important I think a task is.  I generally think the kitchen is clean enough most of the time.  However, if we were doing open heart surgeries in the kitchen it would require a deeper cleaning.  When I am at work I try to do everything the best I can.  However, even at work some things are more important than other things and so the amount of effort I put into daily tasks is not equally distributed.  One of the challenges of “Right Effort” is that the importance of a thing is often in the eye of the beholder.  My wife’s idea of a clean kitchen is different than mine.  My bosses idea of which tasks are most important may be different than mine.  We need to look at what we do, why we are doing it, and perhaps who we are doing it for.  “Right Effort” is a judgment call in many cases.  As we acquire wisdom we learn the value of things and as we understand what has true value we learn the amount of effort it deserves.                  

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