A short while ago I attended a sales conference at Scotland at the magnificient Gleneagles Hotel .The settings where fabulous and so where the arrangements .All in all it was a wonderful event and an experience one will remember for long . I got to take quite a lot of photos of the scenic country side around Gleneagles and did capture the beauty of the surroundings. I’ll post a few on this blog .
Besides the Conference sessions we had a few interesting out door activities which included off road driving in a Range Rover .Amazing car this is , with features such as high and low gearing ratios for the auto transmition system and an option to switch to manual when on hilly off road driving . The car had the facility to raise the chasis to increase clearance from the ground and an auto mode when driving down hill where the cars computer system takes over and initiates repeated breaking action as the car rolls down hill .The driver doesn’t need to operate the break or accelerator .All in all it was a terrific experience.
Then there was a shooting experience at a clay pigeon range .We used a shot gun commonly used in hunting and had our ears protected with ear plugs !! Each shooting bay had a different moving target .One had a clay pigeon shooting off the floor into the sky ; in another the targets came from a distant point in front and flew over head and another where a clay disc shot out from the left and rolled and bounced along the path in front of us at a fair distance .Each had varing degrees of difficulty as I could gauge from my own ability to hit the target and also from the performance of a couple of Finns who where part of my group. I use the Finns as the reference point as both had military service experience and both regularly use the same type of shot gun in hunting expeditions !!
At the first bay I missed all six shot!!??? At the next I managed two out of six ; that was a relieve as I almost felt I would never get to hit the target .At the next bay I hit the target as many as three times making me feel real good before I ended at the last bay with a miss for all six shots ! Considering this was the first time I was trying my hand at this type of shooting and handling guns of this calibre I did feel good about my effort .
But what where the learnings from the shooting range . To start with I was unduely concerned about what others would thing of my shooting When I established I was a novice, I didnt seem to show enough application to learn quickly and improve . I was happy to be a novice ,more so as the others seemed to think it was ok to be off target for a first timer in this sport. I am sure with some application I could easily have done better with more hits on the target. In hind sight, small but significant corrections to the proceedures I was adopting while aiming and shooting at the moving targets ,could have made sizeable improvements in my on target score.
So why did I not do all this when it mattered most i.e. while shooting at the range ?? Herein I think lies the subtle differnce between what Buddhist call the pursuit of absolute happiness vs the pursuit of transient happiness. We are so concerned about what others think of us and in securing the applause of others and so concerned at the lack of visible signs of appreceation that we lose the ability or foresight to do the real ,albiet little things that make for true success . The true way would be to enjoy the experience , immerse oneself into doing the best one can ,irrespective of what impact it is making on others. The sheer joying of achieving results through proper application would bring a more lasting sense of fulfillment.
I guess in the pursuit of absolute happiness we must line up our sights on the grander / bigger picture , seek joy in every thing we do , seek to add value in every possible way
and live each day to the very best of our ability seeking at all times to fulfill our obligation to every one we serve and to bring joy and peace of mind to every one we interact with .Such is the Buddhist way .
I was pleasantly surprised at the Conference dinner when I received a prize , a bottle of the finest Scottish whiskey, for being the most improved novice shooter at the event !!!
I was quite thrilled to be so applauded at the dinner party but must really only be appreceative of the gracious gesture on the part of the Host .And yes when I get to shoot at a similar range in future, to show the necessary application to hit many more of the moving targets and to enjoy the experience to the fullest .