I was recently watching an interview with astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson (yes, I’m a nerd!) and he said as our knowledge of the universe grows, so does our realization of how much more there is about it that we don’t know. Naturally, that made me think about Jiu-Jitsu! He stated we currently have the ability to only measure about 4% of the known universe, and I think that’s probably about the same as the percentage of my Jiu-Jitsu knowledge!
BJJ isn’t nearly as vast and mysterious as the universe, but on a personal level, I sometimes feel overwhelmed when I realize how much more there still is for me to learn. Jiu-Jitsu is constantly expanding, like the universe, and the more I learn about it, the more I understand how shallow the depth of my knowledge truly is. Just as a person can feel very small when they think about themselves in relation to the enormity of the universe, I occasionally feel as though the extent of my BJJ knowledge is almost negligible compared to how far I still have to go.
In the interview, Neil deGrasse Tyson said knowing he is a part of such a wondrous thing as the universe makes him feel large not small, and the fact that we are more aware of how much we still don’t know means that our knowledge of the universe is actually growing. When I start to get discouraged in Jiu-Jitsu, and the things I have yet to learn seem insurmountable, I just think back to a few years ago, and I remember how much I’ve grown since then. Back then, I didn’t have a clue as to how much I didn’t know, and my growth is what has allowed me to see how much farther I still have to go.
Another thing The Universe and Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu have in common is that no matter how much we study them, we will never know everything, there will always be more to learn. We are strengthened by what we do know, and humbled by what we don’t. Though I will never be a Master of the BJJ Universe, it sure is a joy to explore, and I’m happy to be a small part of it.
“Out in the great wide open, a rebel without a clue.” -Tom Petty