Action, Progress, & Goal

"Do not confuse motion with progress. A rocking horse keeps moving but does not make any progress." ~ Alfred A. Montapert

Just because things are moving is not always a guarantee that there is progress being headed. That's true. But try putting the idea a bit deeper in context, and you will discover a deeper meaning.

Consider MOTION (action) in relation to goal: "For a goal to be achieved, it is necessary that right action be taken."

Likewise, consider PROGRESS in relation to goal: "Progress is a measure of how far a goal is from being achieved."

Context 1: If the goal is to transport a child to some place, how foolish it would be to use a rocking horse! Surely the rocking action will get the child nowhere and the goal is not achieved.

Context 2: If the goal is to make a child enjoy playing, it won't be wrong to use a rocking horse afterall. Surely the rocking motion will make the child enjoy the play a lot.

Here is a rejoinder: "It's not so much an issue of MOTION (action) and PROGRESS. It is about GOAL coupled with right action which is of prime importance."

We may look at someone riding on a rocking horse and quickly dismiss the person's action as foolish... but for all we know, all the person's objective may just be to enjoy a rocking horse ride. Or consider a man on a treadmill. Just because he is not "progressing" an inch from where he is jogging in place that we can simplistically say there is no progress taking place?

So I say, "Do not confuse progress with goal. A treadmill can't advance an athlete an inch from the gym, but surely it helps a lot in progressing him towards his goal."