There’s a saying that I really like, “When the student is ready, the teacher will appear.” I’m not really someone who buys into that kind of faux mysticism nonsense, but I think there’s actually something else going on with that phrase.
The origin of the line has been oddly enough attributed to Buddha. That’s actually not true at all, the Buddha never said that or anything like it. The saying started to appear in the 19th century in theosophist books and was attributed to the Buddha by those people. In the research I’ve done, it is now largely believed that the saying was reworked from a similar paragraph in the King James Bible.
Esoteric facts aside, the thing that resonates with me from my own experience is that people will always find what they are looking for out of life. If you are ready to take on a new challenge in life, something will open up for you or if you want a new relationship, chances are you will find one.
The point isn’t that the universe sits around listening to what you are ready for and then delivers it to your doorstep. Life isn’t a McDonald’s Drive-Thru.
What happens is that when you want something, you subconsciously start looking for it and you notice it more readily.
Now, before you get too excited, I’m not talking about “manifesting” stuff. That concept is utterly ridiculous and I said in this post a few months back what a bad idea this is.
What I’m talking about is really more along the lines of cognitive resonance and making yourself open to possibilities rather than wishing for things or making a vision board.
To sum up, when you are prepared for something and open to the possibility, the likelihood of finding what you seek is actually greater.
I could end this blog post right here and move along, bid you a good day or evening (depending on where you are or when you read this) and go to bed. Unfortunately, none of that was my actual point that I was trying to make, it was effectively long-winded preamble.
Let’s say you’ve found the teacher and you’ve learned from them. You’ve taken the lessons and progressed towards achieving your desired outcomes.
People struggle with this part all the time, especially in the online world. They find a business coach or someone that they respect and want to learn from, they learn everything that they can learn and then they never move on. They stay there under the tutelage of this person waiting for the next epiphany that never arrives.
Hundreds of years ago, people served apprenticeships under masters who were authorized by their local guild to teach someone their craft. The apprentice would serve under the master and learn the skill. After a period of time, usually 5-7 years the apprentice would move out into the world to begin practising this trade or skill – this is where the phrase journeyman comes from. Again, after another period of time, the journeyman could apply to a local guild to join and become a master by demonstrating his mastery of the skill. If that journeyman was accepted, he would become a master and was then expected to take on apprentices of his own so that he could train the next generation.
It’s a wonderful system and it is a pity we’ve lost it for the most part.
With that said, I’m drawing the parallel between the people you see today who “study under” their chosen business coach or guru and then never actually venture out into the world to become journeymen themselves. They seem unable to take the next step in their development.
The apprenticeship needs to end and you need to practice what you’ve learned. You don’t go from apprentice to master directly, you need to be a journeyman first – many people I see follow someone they look up to online, learn from them and when they do dip their toe in the water on their own, they expect to be able to swim in the 100m freestyle final at the Olympics.
That’s not the way it works.
Learning is important and studying under someone who has achieved a level of mastery and can effectively teach it is a great opportunity. Eventually, you’ve got to stop being the apprentice, get out there and make your own way in the world.