Dream share attempt this Sat night, hope to see some of you and who knows, we might even connect…Meanwhile, here is my new vid – Infinity
Archive for the ‘Martial Arts Discussion’ Category
People talk about the laws of nature as they are fact but, in truth, there is nothing fixed about nature because there are no laws only perceptions of a single principle.
Nature is versed in the interplay of opposites becoming equal and opposite again. Take a circle, left and right move opposite from any point on the circle but eventually find themselves becoming a mutual point once more. This is the notion of YinYang, not as it is often described “Yin and Yang” as this implies two separate events.
You see the separation between opposites is illusory. Take left and right – outwardly speaking they are mutually exlusive but inwardly speaking, one implies the other because you can’t have left without right and vice versa, so neither can come into being without the presence of the other, they are mutually interdependent like all aspects of matter.
What we observe in nature, therefore is transient, constantly changing form but what underlies this eternal movement is pure stillness…This is the wisdom of martial arts. When studied correctly, it yields a journey into the primary principle of existence – energy or the interplay of opposites. Please watch and share out this video I have crafted to share this simple but powerful truth, thank you
Picasso said that the meaning of life was to find your talent and that the purpose of life was to share it, he might have just said that everyone should find their kung fu…!”
You see kung fu, contrary to popular belief, does not imply some kind of martial combat, in fact it means “life work!” It just so happens that many people, including myself, choose martial arts as our life work but one needs to look beyond the veil to see the true dimensions of what it is we mean when we say kung fu or martial arts for that matter…
Bruce Lee once said “Before I learned the art, a punch was just a punch, and a kick, just a kick. After I learned the art, a punch was no longer a punch, a kick, no longer a kick. Now that I understand the art, a punch is just a punch and a kick is just a kick.”
This is true mastery of one’s kung fu – the transcendence of mind in operation to be able to perform without the intrusion of thinking because it is thinking that causes hesitation and it is hesitation that leads to failure…
Nature has a simple design purpose and that is “To do…”
In Chinese philosophy we talk of reaching the state of “Mushin” or “No Mind” This is the fundamental state of the deepest forces in nature – The wind blows, the river flows and the bee makes the honey and all without the concerns for past or future, cause or consequence, they are simply being…
When we are simply being, we are flowing in the current of nature, the timeless eternal moment, the Tao as we martial artists say. The Tao is the essence of who you are, the emptiness that reflects the world as you know it, into existence. It is the mountain, the sea, you and me and yet it is still, silent and unassuming. It is the peace within, the source of all being, it can not be named or intellectualized nor can it be reduced to any single concept. It is the void from which emanates and all eventually will return, the mystery within and when we touch it, we become it, this is Tai Chi..!o said that the meaning of life was to find your talent and that the purpose of life was to share it, he might have best said “Everybody shoul
Try this little experiment – Breathe in… Now breathe out… Just follow this cycle passively and as you do so, ask yourself “Am I the in-breath or am I the out-breath?”
The fact is that neither can exist without the presence of the other. Left only comes to exist through right, hot only by virtue of cold, light emerges from darkness and so forth, polarity is a fundamental truth of our world, so what should we regard as real?
No state in the Universe is constant, the in-breath becomes the out-breath, night becomes day, hot becomes cold, the only thing that can prevail is change…
In meditation we learn to focus our attention on the the gentle flowing of the breath and in doing so, we learn to become the change. Where change prevails, there is no place for the mind to attach and label, here we can start to dissolve the dualism in our consciousness…
The deeper truth we are being exposed to here is not always apparent at first, what in fact we are contemplating, in truth, is the essential nature of paradox. Between future and past, between waking and slepping lies the infinite now, the eternal dream, where time and space conduct themsleves in a controled chaos, this is the true essence of our being.
The quest we must follow, however, leads us not just to recognise this place, but ultimately to accept and fully embrace this constant state of flux. Only then can we come to live as, and not just inside of the Universe, but the cost is not cheap, we must come to embrace death, for otherwise, life would simply cease to exist.
So the next time you feel pain, know that it is why one has pleasure, loss preceeds gain and terror will some day give way to awe, this is the Dao, or to put it in the words of the briliant Mr Miyagi “Wax on…Wax off…Breathe in…Breate out”
In combat, there are moments as there are in life, when we are at offered the opportunity to achieve what it is, we desire the most, what stands in our way is hesitation…
I recently had the pleasure of listening to somebody I admire greatly, the inventor of “free running” Sebastian Foucan. A philosopher and an athlete with the spirit of Bruce Lee running through his veins, I really resonated with what he spoke about. The essence of free running is commitment to the moment, following the course of your process with relentless forward motion.
There is a certain Zen motif to this kind of flowing action, something I am very much an advocate of, not just in combat but in life in general. When we flow like water, we eventually become a river rushing to the sea, the place where all streams connect, the source of ultimate power!
Although we may try to grasp the feeling of flow, we must approach with trepidation the use of our minds as they are made up of concepts, discrete objectives which easily allude to the illusion of independent orchestration…
Although a river may be made of many particles, it is the relationship of all of these perfect parts that forges the flow of unbroken continuity.
The mind ordinarily does not exhibit such clarity in its process, often it becomes tangled up in the meandering undercurrents of our critical thinking. Unresolved conflict and insecurity parade the streets of the mind and it is these obstacles that ultimately surface as decisions we have to face in our lives, they are the birth place of indecision.
If we are to seek perfection in our practice then we must not become prisoners of patience but instead must seek to be ever present in every moment. This is only possible by sweeping aside the internal dialogue that needs to placate our every move. By doing this we no longer think the thought, we become the thought, a single continuous flowing action…
This is something we experience when we dream, a matrix of pure experience where we free run through our desires, uninhibited by the intrusion of asking whether or what, why or when. In the words of Master Yoda, “Do or do not, there is no try”
Dreaming teaches us that every moment can be a perfect evolution of the last, a synchronous harmony that beats with the heart of nature but this beat has no predictable rhythm or rhyme, it is not foretold nor can it be predicted as some concept of mind for it is chaos.
Trying to approach this conceptually is like asking to know infinity from a distance, it is simply impossible; instead one must learn to become the moment. When we deeply awaken, we learn to be aware within the flow of the dreaming mind and it is here we come to know the place where thought becomes action, where we become the event.
In time we learn to direct the action from our inner selves, the place of knowing, the very essence of our nature, this is how great power can be achieved and wondrous accomplishments can be realized. Our greatest creativity flows from this source and when we come from this source with our intentions, we become one with the Universe.
Let your spirit become the tide of your experience, let go and flow, then you will realize all that you are capable of….
If you want to understand something in true essence, where would you propose to start?At the beginning, surely…?
Stands to reason, yet here we are, a hyper evolved species with the intellectual insight to question the meaning of our own selves and much to our dismay we seek answers in our mind, a latent event on the ladder of our time.
Our ancestors were in no doubt about our origins, they worshiped the Sun and how ironic it seems that we regard such practices today as the act of a primitive mind. Apparently we know better than these savage pagans, we worship a God that refuses to reveal himself outside of the conjecture of those who chose to endorse blind faith as a motif.
Let’s try our ancestral view on for a moment, what would life be on this planet without the Sun? Surely I don’t need to answer that question so let’s try this – would our planet even exist, were it not for a star going several times super nova, are we not, in fact, the children of the stars? It seems preposterous to adopt our own contrived notion, born out of our own latent anthropomorphic psychology over the facts as they are.
We are not incidental in the Universe, we are no more of a cosmic accident than the Cosmos itself, much as some neo-Darwinist might have it said otherwise. Look around you at the wonder of nature, nothing so intrinsically complex could have been seeded by pure random chance, I know this for a fact because I have been back to the beginning…
No, this is not idle arm chair speculation about the Big Bang, I am talking about the journey we are all capable of making, back to the deepest part your your self, something that can only ever be approached intellectually but never reached in mind because this is not a concept, it cannot be known as such.
Take a look at your hands, follow them to your feet, now feel your gaze sink into the ground beneath you, notice how you may sometimes feel separate from the ground but the truth is that you grew from the ground, just like every other organic being on this planet. Being human does not exclude you from the biosphere, much as some rather naive speculations might suggest. We are the children of the planet, the planet is the child of the stars and the stars of the Cosmos itself, everything is connected, you just have to feel it.
So where do I sign up, I hear you shout? The answer is simple, it’s already in you, in the matrix of yourself, your body is your heritage. Follow the blood cells in your veins and they will take you right back through time, to the place of your birth, don’t buy into the cheap thrills of your mind and all the pseudo-psychic nonsense being pedaled as a solution in today’s spiritual mess. The answer is in you, this is physical, this is the code in your DNA, the very language of space and time itself, follow your body, it will take you home….
The way I look at things is that we are in a constant state of reflection, taking information in during day time and reflecting on it at night, this is what dreaming acts as, a place of reflection.
25 years of martial arts training and I ask myself what is the lesson I have learned, what is the great teaching that years of mindful practice can offer you?
In a word…nothing!
Emptiness is a word that many of us feel uncomfortable with, why would we strive to be empty? To be empty is to become a well of potential, one that may be filled when needed with whatever it is we seek to know.
I am speaking of a state that is so profound that it is only ever experienced and cannot be truly grasped in intellectual concept. When we talk of emptiness, it is hard to conceive of how anything could be truly empty, physics won’t allow a space to be truly empty, there would still be ground zero oscillations, so what is empty, when I say that “I” am empty?
It is something deeper than matter, deeper than mind that I hold up to you, my essence, my being, my spirit if you will. To be empty of attachment and intent is to be truly aware and it is this state that I strive to achieve when I balance my posture against my opponent’s will, it is here that I find the true intention of his actions, not biased by the delusions of my own prejudices.
Meditation is the key to holding this space and this can be a hard task for us Western minded folk, but fear not, help is at hand. I discovered my inner place of rest in a float tank some years ago and I want to share this secret with those of you lucky enough to have access to such technology.
Flotation is the royal road to relaxation and I have the privilege of being a member of the UK’s largest center, www.floatworks.co.uk .They have an incredible set up and I am glad to see them making such progress in bringing this practice to public awareness, in the way that they have for the last few years, my own interest being prompted by them.
Meditation comes in many forms and is the key to any kind of self development and anything that helps you center your awareness is welcome at my table. There is an old Eastern sentiment that “the center of everything is nothing” Perhaps but of of nothing comes everything, the choice we make is how to bring the events into our awareness, start empty and learn to know things as they are, not as you want them to be…