Mar 162012

There was a 20% discount ongoing at my favourite bookshop. Being a lover of knowledge and books, I dropped by yesterday to see if there were any new additions I could make to my library. I was not really expecting to find much since I had bought most of the books that interested me. Still, my mind hungered for new knowledge. I needed to read something I had not read before. I did not even want to read anything that I had some knowledge of since I had been moving in the same circles lately. Unexpectedly, something caught my eye.

The Korean Mind

When I saw “the Korean Mind,” I stopped in my tracks and picked it up. I have been a big fan of Korean Dramas for a few years. But I tend to avoid tragedies and stick to historical epics and romantic comedies. Korean tragedies are very heart wrenching and I am not keen on putting myself through such deep sorrow. Korean epics and romantic comedies are just right. They can still make me feel a range of emotions from sorrow to joy. But here the intensity is much more manageable. In any case, I was interested to learn more about the Korean mindset and this book on cultural studies was perfect.

It is not hard for me to appreciate K-dramas since I am Chinese and have an Asian background. Many of the things that happen in the shows make sense to me. But it was only by reading the book that I realized the things I had missed due to my Western mindset. Suddenly, I became aware of the bigger picture. I gained deeper insights and appreciation of what was happening in the shows. I now understand the reasons behind the actions and choices of the characters better.

At the same time, I also feel a deep sadness and respect for the Koreans. They have faced much hardship in their long history. Their unique geographical location between powerful neighbours makes them a tempting target.

Sadly, for much of their existence, they lacked the strength and unity needed to defend themselves. As such, they have endured brutal invasions and oppression. This in turn has affected society on many levels. But the most lasting influence on Korea today is the choices and actions of the various rulers as they sought to grapple with the challenges they faced. For better or for worse, all these factors have shaped Korea through the ages. But Korea is a resilient nation. After all, while many civilizations have come and gone, Korea still stands proudly today. It is also an economic powerhouse in Asia.

Reaching for New Heights by Tooley

The Benefits of Continuous Development

One of the joys of life is continuous development. Learning for its own sake is a pleasure especially if you enjoy what you are learning. What follows are some of the benefits you can gain from learning.

1. Continued Growth

Stagnation leads to routine and boredom. It can take the spark out of your life when you have no new ways of viewing things. This situation can leave you open to destructive habits if you are not careful. After all, the only way to manage boredom is through distraction. But not all distractions are beneficial.

By taking responsibility and control, you can steer your energies in the right direction. Instead of meaningless pursuits that do little to enrich your life in the end, you can focus on things that help you to grow. For instance, you could take the time to learn something new. This could be a skill, hobby or just knowledge. Doing so will bring back the spark and vitality to your life because you see things with fresh eyes. There is much joy and pleasure you can gain from enriching your life.

2. A Richer World

Continued development reshapes your world. It takes all that you know, blends it with the new and creates a richer world for you. The new insights and understanding you gain enriches your past knowledge. It gives you new angles to look at and ways to apply them. Not only does continued development widen your horizons, it adds greater depth and breadth to your life in ways you cannot imagine. The more I grow, the more I have to share with my loved ones, bringing enrichment to their lives in the process.

3. Creative Solutions

Life often gives us challenges that we have to resolve. But there may be times when we run out of ideas if we just rely solely on what we already know. Again, when we enrich our lives through continued development, we gain new insights and ideas. These insights and ideas may be just what we need to find a creative solution to a problem when we least expect it.

When it comes to problem solving, I draw from a variety of sources for inspiration. This helps me to come up with unique solutions to resolve the challenges I face.

Learning by Doing by Fozzman

Taking Action

Variety is the spice of life and it is vital to set aside some time for it. When it comes to continued development, the best thing to do is to follow your heart and interest. This makes whatever you read or learn easiest to absorb.

What new knowledge, skill or hobby are you pursuing? How do you feel about continued development? Is there any particular area that appeals to you? What impact has it had on your life? Do share your thoughts and comments below! :)

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  20 Responses to “The Vizier on Continuous Development”

  1. Hi Irving,

    I have no fewer than 12 books that I am reading right now, and that is not usual. Normally I read one at a time. However recently some issues have popped up in my life through family members and I found that I had a new subject I had to learn about, quickly. In addition it was my birthday last week and what did I want? Three new books on different subjects, of course!

    I would like to get out of my head and start a new sport…just trying to figure out what that might be. I feel the need to get out in the sunshine and exercise,
    Julie | A Clear Sign recently posted..Presentiment Or PremonitionMy Profile

    • Hi Julie,

      Happy belated birthday! :)

      Unlike you, I tend to read a few books at a time. This is the norm for me. Unless the book is truly captivating, then I will devote all my time and energy to finish it. Unfortunately, few books are that interesting so I turn to other books in between. Still, I intend to finish what I started and I have been focusing my efforts to finish one book at a time.

      As for the new sport you should take up, it would be a good idea to have a few choices, read up on them in-depth and then decide. I usually use wikipedia as an introduction before going on to more detailed books. But that is just me.

      Thank you for sharing your lovely comments! :)

  2. I am pursuing learning the harmonica – I have always found it as a beautiful sound and now I have the opportunity to pursue this instrument – goes great with a guitar.

    As for continued development – I live for this – I live to learn everyday – the key is having eyes wide open and ears to hear – self analyzing and tweaking what needs adjustment. It’s all good!

    Without my desire to want to learn and grow I would have not had the opportunity to touch lives with light and love.

    So here’s to growth,
    Great post!
    Nancy Shields recently posted..WHAT’S REAL???My Profile

    • Hi Nancy,

      That’s great! You can easily carry the harmonica around with you and practice often. :)

      Yeah we all learn everyday. If we only observe the world around us, there are so many things that we can learn from others. If there are good points to follow, we should. If there are bad points to avoid, we should as well.

      Only through continuous learning can be touch lives with light and love as you say.

      Thank you for sharing your lovely comments! :)

  3. That is a very insightful and creative reflection on Korea. I liked it a lot. As for learning something new, you can probably guess I’m going to say something about martial arts. In addition to my regular taekwondo classes, I’m learning nunchucks with a private teacher. Very fun!! Bruce Lee I’m not, but I am having a lot of fun. Nothing like a 60 year old grandmother swinging nunchucks around!
    Galen Pearl recently posted..She was Never Bored!My Profile

    • Hi Galen,

      Thank you for the compliment! I agonized for days over what to write because I was uninspired. I also did not want to churn out an article for the sake of it as well. In the end, after my trip to the bookstore, I knew I wanted to write something about Korea. And this is the result. I am glad to know you enjoyed it. :)

      Haha! Martial arts did not cross my mind. But since you said it, it goes to show the place that martial arts has in your life. Nunchucks eh? I certainly remember Bruce Lee with them. I wonder if your fun includes theatrics as well haha! If so that would really be a fearsome sight. ;)

      Thank you for sharing your lovely comments! :)

  4. I am forever expanding my horizons. My blog is on a slight hold, but it is not forgotten. I am practicing responsibility and control at the moment. Getting ready to make some changes. I have been looking at the canvas an mini oil painting set I bought a while back. Spring Break is here and I think I will be breaking that paint set out. I have an idea… it has been there for a while. Now to make it come to life!
    Barbara recently posted..Using acupressure and fingerholds for stress reliefMy Profile

    • Hi Barbara,

      I’m glad to see you are doing alright. :)

      Changes should be managed carefully since problems can arise if things are not handled well. I am sure that when your changes are complete, you will return to your normal routine and blogging.

      As the I-Ching says, “Returning to the regular order of life as soon as deliverance is achieved brings good fortune.”

      I look forward to see what you bring to life once your painting is done. :)

      Thank you for sharing your lovely comments! :)

  5. I’ve been reading non-fiction this year, which is a switch for me. I’m in a Book Club, so read the books for the group, but it is only part of the year, so the rest of the time, I find myself more interested in non-fiction, and have found that that very enjoyable as well as educational.

    My continued development would be in the area of living in the present moment. I’m doing much better with it now and have let go of spending too much time in the past or future. Thanks for sharing your inspiring post!
    Cathy | Treatment Talk recently posted..How to Help Yourself and Get Your Life BackMy Profile

    • Hi Cathy,

      I usually read more non-fiction than fiction. But lately, I have been reading more fiction, in particular science-fiction. I guess it is about balance and what strikes my mood. Non-fiction is indeed educational and enjoyable. But I have also learned a lot from fiction as well.

      I am glad to know that you are getting better at letting go and living in the present moment. This is not something that comes naturally to many people, so it is indeed a worthy achievement! :)

      Thank you for sharing your lovely comments! :)

  6. yeh i get so bored if i’m not learning something haha
    korean history is a topic i had not thought of learning
    i just bought a book of philosophy, which collates philosophy dating back to ancient greeks and explains in a clear, concise way :)
    Noch Noch
    Noch Noch | be me. be natural. recently posted..making life BEAR able: rejuvenated creativity from depressionMy Profile

    • Hi Noch Noch,

      Yeah, we are similar in many ways so I am not surprised that you would get bored if you are not learning something new. This is certainly how I feel.

      I never thought of learning Korean history myself. But since I love Korean Dramas, it is a natural progression for me. I like to know the history of everything I love. It deepens my understanding and appreciation.

      Cool! That book on philosophy will serve as a great introduction if you wish to explore the various philosophies in greater detail.

      Thank you for sharing your lovely comments! :)

  7. Hi Irving,

    Lately I’ve been reading a lot of personal growth and development books. I’ve also added to my book collection human behavior, public speaking, and biography books here and there as well.

    Over the last year or so, personal development has become such a huge part of my life. Through learning more about myself I’ve been able to better understand why I was never getting the results I wanted. It was because I wasn’t adding any new knowledge in my mind; and therefore would always go about doing things the only way I had learned to do them previously. Unfortunately, it was usually the wrong way to go about doing whatever I was practicing at the time.

    Since taking a different approach with my life, I’ve been able to introduce a brand new way of thinking to myself. That new way of thinking has allowed me to look outside of what I used to find joy in learning (which usually had nothing to do with improvement), and it has gotten me excited about learning new things and putting them into practice. Thanks for sharing the awesomeness, my friend. :)
    Deeone Higgs recently posted..My First Steps Towards Growing Forward: A Student of Life and an Extraordinary OpportunityMy Profile

    • Hi Deeone,

      Those are great books you are reading which will surely help you to unleash your full potential.

      I agree fully. If we are not getting the results we want, we are probably doing something wrong or our methods and knowledge may not be adequate. The solution would be to improve our methods or to acquire new knowledge and skills.

      Thank you for sharing your lovely comments! :)

  8. I am a big fan of Pricess Hours and we even have a version here in our place…The sountrack they have is really my favorite one…I keep watching this Korean drama and it makes me feel good…
    Ma.Dharess recently posted..The Cheapest Online 3d Tv Programming Dish NetworkMy Profile

    • Hi Ma.Dharess,

      I enjoyed Princess Hours myself even though it was a few years back since I watched it.

      Korean dramas are fun to watch once in awhile.

      Thank you for sharing your lovely comments! :)

  9. Thanks for sharing this informational and useful text! I really like your point on continuous growth, it’s really important, the most of the blogs are getting boring after a while.
    Julie recently dentistMy Profile

    • Hi Julie,

      I am glad you found my article useful.

      Continuous growth is indeed important if we hope to lead better lives.

      Thank you for sharing your lovely comments! :)

  10. This Korean drama I am watching years ago is this Princess Hours…I am hoping I can find a full version copy of this because I want to watch it over and over again…
    Jesslie recently posted..Welcome to the Ernest Becker SiteMy Profile

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