Using each other

I posted yesterday on my Facebook “In order for us to be successful in life, we must, make use of people, and let people make use of us. In between this exchange of uses, lies the transaction of our success.”

I was thinking towards the connotation of people being ‘used’ as a negative value. Sometimes we hear people saying ‘He is using you!’ insinuating that ‘he’ is using ‘you’, in a  selfish manner, and also ‘you’ who is being used will end up shortchanged by ‘him’. Well, ‘you’ should also ask ‘yourself’ how have you become so useful to ‘him’ using ‘you’?

More importantly, we need to understand, in life, we are all using each other, one way or the other. And the returns might not be as expected, and someone being used, might end up feeling shortchanged. If you feel shortchanged, then you are missing the big picture.

There is a value in which we possess that can be useful to others, work towards being useful to more people and don’t worry about the returns. The returns will return, it is a matter of time. Invest on being useful, not invest on the intention of getting a return or a larger returns.  Look beyond the returns.

This very much applies in Aikido, when we are using the teacher to learn Aikido, and in doing so, the teacher is using us as students to better his skills, to pay rent for his dojo, or maybe even advance his grades. We as fellow practitioners are also using each other, taking turns being uke and nage, using each other to learn and better ourselves.  Be thankful! At the very least, you are useful! We cease to be humans, if we are no longer useful to other human being and to nature. Even in death, we continue to be useful to the organism that feeds on our decaying bodies.

Looking at Hollywood, where an actress played the rape victim or a prostitute, and subject herself to being filmed in a ‘deplorable’ and ‘exploited’ manner. She allowed her body to be used and images of her character being ravaged filled our screens. She could, stand up for her ‘dignity’ and say she will not strip or do rape scenes, sure, then she cease to be useful in the film. She is able to use her sexuality in a manner which allows us to feel for the character, and the better she gets at being used, the better paid she becomes.

So we need to step back a little when people are using us. and let us be the tool that aids others’ success, be the toes which people step on to get to the top, nevermind that because and some point in time, we too will be stepping on other people’s toes to get where we are going. We are all stepping on people’s toes, every single day. Humanity is built on stepped toes. Remember that, and who knows? He who stepped on your toes, might help you sometime in future, by lending you his toes to step on.


About Who is Randy Lim

This blog is about the journey and experiences in my life as an Aikidoka. With close to 20 years in the arts, I'll make comments and judgements based on 2 principles, E&E. Experimentation and Experiential reflection. please enjoy, and comment freely.
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