Yup – I do it. I experiment on myself all the time – still here, all limbs working and not visiting the ER often, so for me, it works.
I’ve referred before to the lunacy of how many professions we allow to “Practice” and which ones we expect to “Masterfully Do”. No one wants a “Practicing Engineer” to build their house, the freeway overpass they drive on or the stadium they watch their favorite team in.
Everyone sort of expects the mechanic, computer technician, accountant, airplane pilot, plumber and waitress to know what the heck they are doing.
Law and Medicine, we’re okay with the best of the best just ‘practicing’. I think we should add Politicians to the practicing career list too. At least then, we’d all know what to expect…
Me, I’m a practicing gardener, writer, crocheter, quilter, chef, embroiderer, database builder, historian, website coder, parent, healer, beer brewer and yogurt maker. I’m hoping soon I can be a practicing spinner, wool dyer, organic cosmetic maker, grain farmer and kvass maker.
I can practice at all of these because I don’t earn my living from any of them. I experiment, try and share with those who have no issues with me practicing. They share in the risks and the triumphs. I enjoy my successes and cry the blues over the failures, but in the end, not too big of a deal whether my practicing nets a useful, needed product or not.
The moment I choose one of these items as a way to earn a living, a funny thing happens. I can still be ‘practicing’ but I’m much more of a danger to the public now. See, if I’m doing these things to make money, chances are I won’t be as careful as I should be in my ‘practicing’, since my survival depends on me selling you what I’m practicing at.
Therefore, lots of rules and regulations should be put in place to protect my potential customers from my practicing. If I’m successful enough, I will be able to side-step these regulations by throwing lots of money at the people I hurt and the offices that were supposed to protect the victims from people like me…
What, exactly, did we think the threat of fines was going to accomplish?
Someone asked me the other day why I blog – I said because I love writing and sharing what information I’ve learned. They wanted to know if I was making any money from it. Nope. Then they wanted to know if I was interested in making money from it – my answer?
“Well, if you know of a way for me to make money from blogging without shamelessly advertising, reviewing or selling crap that people don’t really need, don’t really want but will give in and buy if I convince them they Should want/need it – then I’ll listen – I do not do email campaigns, buy into current marketing industry standards (hey, if it takes someone 7 contacts to talk them into buying, they didn’t really want the durn thing in first place). I refuse to sell hope, miracles or items that require the slave labor or cheap resources of those countries not as afluent as ours, or to ask for donations for organizations that spend 80% of their donated funds on ‘administrative costs, advertising costs and affiliate fees’. “
Turns out, the questioner was a seeker like me – he was looking for information rather than wanting to recruit me into some multi-level marketing scheme. (yes, when I was 17, I did send the SASE to learn how I could earn money stuffing envelopes. The wording/tasks change, but that old con-game is still alive and kicking….)
I’m lucky that I can practice a lot without actually having to depend on my various practices to support me and my son. Not everyone has that luxury. I also get pretty fired up over any legislation that starts regulating my practicing when I’m not subject to being lured to the Dark Side of the Force by dreams of increasing my profits by betraying people.
I think a re-evaluation of who gets to practice and who doesn’t needs to happen. A redefining of what positions are ‘no pay, civic duty’ and what careers are for earning a living would probably help too. Designing a standard of living that is supportable by 30 hours or less a week of money earning labor and plenty of time to practice at the harebrained ideas each of us get at times would probably aide the whole process.
But then, I’m sort of a nut.
I’ve been practicing at that for a long time too…