Keith Larman wrote:
But... I think of other things. Chanting in church. How that chanting can be shown to calm the nerves, changes physiologic properties, alter things that are said to be autonomic. Is the chanting bringing you closer to God? Or is it a practice that allows one to calm and achieve a different type of consciousness? And through that different type of perception do we not see things differently and possibly find things we were incapable of seeing before?
I understand that you can calm the nerves and get in a different type of consciousness by chanting.
But you can chant non-religious songs outside the church aswel, they can get you in the same type of consciousness.
What I'm trying to say is that you can do the same exercise without the spiritual thought like God or being in a church.
I can play guitar at home in my room, getting me into a special state of being, but I don't have to be on stage to feel that same magic.
As Koichi Tohei said: "you can do breathing exercises sitting in seiza in a dojo before a white wall, but you can practice the same breathing exercises sitting elsewhere for example when seated in your car on a parking."
Keith Larman wrote:
I remember one day feeling a sort of "pulling" along the outside of my arm, up into my shoulders, then down into my center. If I didn't curl the fingers down the sensation went away. I remember thinking "ah, I wonder if that's the feeling sensei is talking about when he says you need to feel your ki flow and feel connected".
That's because some movements bring you in a special state of being after repeatedly doing the same movement. Like runners who get runners high after running a long time. Endorphines.
Like getting an orgasm after repeatedly touching the special spot on your body,... etc.
Of course, things can happen in your body when your thought is there too. If for a long time, you think of getting a headache, finally you'll achieve a headache. If you concentrate long enough on something imaginary, you can get it in your head. It's all in your head.
Like I can generate a pain in my feet just by using my mind. It has nothing to do with a spiritual thing.
Like people can get cured from a pain by taking fake-meds like placebo. It is all in your head.
If you concentrate long enough hoping to feel that ki flow through your body, finally it will happen, together with the techniques you need for it. But it has nothing to do with universal power or supernatural things they assume in Shinto, Oomoto Kyo,...
I'm just trying to approach the same Aikido techniques as martial art, but without the belief.
Like some basketball player says you only can obtain a slamdunk when you belief in paradygm X, until someone can approach a technique to obtain a slamdunk without believing paradygm X. (by training, breathing, or claiming a basketball contains Ki)
C. David Henderson wrote:
I think you're oversimplifying what has been said about the dual nature of the exercises. If, however, the "spiritual" is a turn off for you, maybe you just politely shake your hands while mentally going through your shopping list.
Perhaps I'm oversimplifying, but I think I rather politely shake hands and go mental furthermore