Thursday, March 8, 2018

Surprise discovery of a treasure trove

When I was studying with JR Worsley all those years ago, I would make notes of what he was teaching us during the years of my LicAc, BAc and MAc studies with him at Leamington.  For some time afterwards I kept these handwritten notes in a rather unordered collection in an A4 file, and rather forgot about them.  To my surprise and delight I discovered a few days ago that at some point I must have decided it was time to sort them out and store them in a forgotten computer folder, which I just happened to come across.  Reading through these notes again after all this time I realised that I had discovered a veritable treasure trove.  They contain much that inspired me then, and still inspires me, but also things that puzzle me and which even now I don’t really understand. 

This reminds me of something JR replied when asked a question in class, “If you have to ask that question, you won’t understand the answer”, a profound comment which I took to heart.   I understood this as being his way of telling us that we had to do the hard work of finding our own answers, and not rely on him to spell those answers out.  So there are still things here and there in the notes which I must ponder.  These notes represent my own personal legacy, a handing down of a tradition from a master to one of his most devoted pupils.

I am now reading through them carefully to see how much it will be useful to pass on to others, particularly also to my students in China. 

This has been a most unexpected and welcome discovery which coincides very neatly with the imminent publication of my seventh book, called appropriately My Five Element Legacy.  This will be available in mid-April from Singing Dragon Press:  You can get a 10% discount on this book and all my other books when you quote discount code Y18.

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