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The Monastery Essay

I am a currently trained in Military Free-Fall, so it would be safe to say that I have knowledge by observation and participation. I have enjoyed watching skydiving competitions on television and in the military. As a kid I can remember wanting to do that when I grew up. When I joined the Special Forces in 1989 I knew my chances were greatly increasing for me to participate in skydiving operations, but it wasn’t until 1995 when that final moment would arrive. I enjoy the excitement of participation in a skydiving operation that consists in small numbers of personnel to a mass group.

There are several stages a beginner will go though until their first jump without an instructor. First let me tell you about the training that I went though in my quest to fulfill my childhood dreams. Since I had been trained in basic airborne operations (static line jumps) this made an easier to transition into skydiving operations for the instructors. The initial training begins with what we call tabletop drills. An instructor places everyone on a tabletop and talks you though the basic movements techniques that you will perform in the air. This is where you learn basic turns, flips, formations, rolls and other various drills. The next step you learn is how to pack and inspect your parachute in less than five minutes.

The vertical wind tunnel is the second phase of training you go though in order to practice you tabletop drills before you actually perform a real jump. Once you have demonstrated your skill to an instructor that you can perform the entire basic task only then will you be allowed to move onto the last phase of training. The last phase of training is jumping out of an aircraft up to 12,500 feet above sea level. Your first jump an instructor hangs on to you while you exit the aircraft to ensure you stabilize yourself in the air. One you have done this he lets go and instructs you to perform the basic task you learned earlier, while grading you on your performance. Wow what a rush of adrenalin you get on your first jump at that height. Now it’s up to you to complete the rest of the training that you learned earlier during the course.

Time management is a very hard concept for me to get a grasp on. This is one subject that everyone has knowledge of by both participation and observation. I have attended lecture from top-level executives on this subject down to basic level training by correspondence with limited success.

My daily experiences with time management are quite different from that of a person who has a routine job. With my job changes are made at the last minute. For example, I could be in the process of gathering research for a project to deploying the next day (unannounced) to a remote country to train foreign troops in unconventional warfare all due to shortage of personnel on operational teams. Our job (Special Forced Intelligence Sergeants) has been referred to as the jack-of-all-trades, master of nothing. This stems from out extensive knowledge of all military type operations and training, but not given the time to focus on one specific skill. At times this can be very frustrating job with the constant change that effect a daily scheduled, but rewarding in other aspects due to the various activities that you may encounter along the way.

The President of the United States is a subject that I have only knowledge by observation. I have learned a great deal just by watching the man and the office. I learned a small portion about politics in school because it was not a particular interest to me at the time. Now it has a great impact on my job and my future it has become more interesting to me.

I listen to each candidate when they run for office to determine which one is the best suited for the job. I have learned a lot about the candidates just by watching them interact with the media during their debates. In the past the Presidency has been a very respectable and well sought out title to hold as a politician. In today’s society the Presidency has lost some prestige due to men that held that position and allowed their selves to fall to corruptions and scandals.

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