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Old 02-01-2008, 09:41 AM   #8
Location: Massachusetts
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 3,052
Re: Practice Aikido Spiritually ?

Russ Rohling wrote: View Post
"Drop the question , Train."

I can't let you off that easy....c'mon.
Dude, you want a magic bullet!

I think the point Lynn and Anthony and Clark are making is that you can't throw the "spiritual" switch as you step on the mat. If there's a spiritual element in how you're living your life, it will be present in your practice as well -- but having that spiritual element in your life isn't a rabbit that you can chase with any great deal of success, IME. It comes to you, when you are ready, in a way that's different for everyone, and you can't really pursue it -- all you can do is make yourself open to it.

So, how do you do that? Well...I think reading can help some, because sometimes you read something that describes a feeling or experience you've had, and gives a name to it. That helps me to identify the feeling when it happens again and be more aware of it. I'm also a big fan of what I call "lizard-mind" activities, those where you're doing something repetitive for a long time, in an environment without tons of stimulus for the "monkey mind" -- like, for example, taking a long walk on a quiet country road where there are no billboards, little traffic, nothing much but cornfield after hayfield after cornfield. After a while, the "monkey mind" shuts up its chatter, and your mind is very active, but on a non-verbal level. It's a form of meditation, one that I find more accessible than seated meditation, although I will do that too. With practice, that meditative thinking becomes more easily accessible in daily life, including on the mat.

When you can train with your mind in this state, it opens you up to stuff, and that is when the rabbit sneaks up on you.
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