“What makes an expert and expert?” It is the first result when searching “expert” in Google. It is the question on the mind of every child, teen, and adult in the search for perfection.
It is an unanswerable question. First, expertise seems to begin with mastery. As defined by Dictionary.com, mastery is “expert skill or knowledge.” Within one definition, we have come full circle.
Yet, one questions, is there ever enough experience, enough foresight to be considered a master? True, “master and apprentice” is an accurate description of learning at the hand of another, like teacher and pupil, but what about amongst masters? Is there a master of masters, an elite teacher of teachers? Is not the man who gives everything to his students the best of all teachers, achieving true mastery through the education of others? Yet it is the inescapable nature of humans to make mistakes and bad decisions, even while a “master” of craft or task. No two people are similar in talents, artistry, or skill to allow any to become a “master” of any part of human life, only a comparison to a person believed to be “better.” One can waste their life away in the desire of mastery, of expertise, of perfection, without the realization that it truly does not exist. Second, expertise is a process, not just a state of being. A result matters not without the process to achieve a goal.
Christopher Paolini once wrote, “When you can have anything you want by uttering a few words, the goal matters not, only the journey to it.” When any want, of the body, mind, or soul, can be achieved with no work, the result means nothing, becoming a curse to the purposeful life. If a goal is worth no effort to attain, than that goal never mattered in the first place. Achievement requires sacrifice; at the simplest, a sacrifice of time and at the most complex, life or love. Even while planning for the future, one must remember to live “in the journey” of life in the present, because time can never be reversed and mistakes cannot be undone, nor can a life of purpose be made without a journey, a goal, a sacrifice, once one discovers time will soon expire.
Once an action is made, one must live with the results of that decision, whether they are good short term and bad long term, or true in the opposite way. A man must know and understand this in his heart or risk losing purpose in the greatest goal of this world: living in the time given on this planet. Be wary of this: with no meaning, no purpose, lost in the want of expertise, all hope is lost.