Enjoy the Journey
Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance (ZAMM) is the autobiography of American writer and philosopher Robert Pirsig, wherein he chronicles his motorcycle journey across the country with his son. It is however much more than just an adventure tale.
Through his journey, Pirsig explains his philosophy on life, creating a manifesto through motorcycle maintenance.
There are many lessons to be learned from this book, but a handful of persist throughout the story that can help reshape your perspective.
Like, here is what Pirsig writes on how we lose so much time on unnecessary affairs that we move swiftly past what is really important –
“We’re in such a hurry most of the time we never get much chance to talk. The result is a kind of endless day-to-day shallowness, a monotony that leaves a person wondering years later where all the time went and sorry that it’s all gone.”
Then, here is Pirsig’s idea of how to fix the world –
“The place to improve the world is first in one’s own heart and head and hands, and then work outward from there. Other people can talk about how to expand the destiny of mankind. I just want to talk about how to fix a motorcycle.”
One of the most beautiful lessons I take from the books is the idea of enjoying the journey instead of just waiting for the destination. As Pirsig writes –
“Mountains should be climbed with as little effort as possible and without desire. The reality of your own nature should determine the speed.
To live only for some future goal is shallow. It’s the sides of the mountain that sustain life, not the top. Here’s where things grow.”
So, enjoy the journey and stay blessed forever.