Planetary Arts Series – Mars

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My teacher Elliott taught Xing-yi in the park. It was $10 a class or pay what you can. I think at least half the class took the second option. Most of us were 20 something new arrivals in Taos, New Mexico working in cafes or construction waiting for ski season.

This class was my first exposure to martial arts. Elliott was an awesome instructor. I remember he asked if I had any experience – ‘no’. He said that was usually better because I didn’t have any habits to overcome. I went for a few months that autumn and never returned.

However you could say I had been into martial arts most my life.

What is meant by that is illustrated in the following brief writing.

Martial Arts.

Bruce Lee was the man! He was the whole Hollywood package. Taking Kung fu to the people.

Martial Arts, if we break it down, could be said to be the Art of War at an individual level companioning the pursuit of peace at tribal level.

Fighting happens. We need to protect ourselves. Our community and at the same time each one of us. Because of the energies involved in the physical or strategic battles it can be very hard, coarse, adversarial, debilitating, draining. That does not mean it is artless. The very stress of the fight, battle and struggle calls for specific skills. If we can activate our skills of self management in war then we have the way to move beyond it. Fighting is a way to communicate what we value and is not a form of communication in itself. Meaning we are fighting for something. For safety or peace or integrity or dignity.

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Mars was the god of war from Ancient Rome which speaks to the tribal level of martial managment. The Chinese masters have brought forward with dedication through the ages the forms and sequences of self management of the energy of the red planet. Today we are equally tasked to manage what energy we attract, process and how we dispose of it. We dispose of energy in so many simple and natural ways: conversation, sleep, digestión and organ function in the body.

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Said in a conceptual sense, Martial Arts are the system of cleaning, garbage and recycling. So in reality we could say planetary/environmental stewardship is a martial art. At which by majority we have been failing as a group. The human arts of these natural systems are qualities like: forgiveness, making important things important, humour, elevating vision, curiosity plus humility.

On a development journey Martial cleansing activity (yoga, tai chi, aikido) combines very well with the planetary arts of Mercurial vision or earth perception (topics covered in this series).

The art is of thinking ahead. Of engraving mental and emotional pathways in conjunction with life sequences of movements to process life in the moment. Thus maintaining focus on the journey without being sidelined by one’s own reaction or intrusion by bullying. These are forces that cannot grasp the need to hold the apparent contradiction of something in them and not pass judgement.

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Think about these three levels of engagement of your natural Martial art:

Low – not letting yourself get damaged but not being the author of your own story.

Medium – using what comes at you for you – think aikido.

High – using what comes at you to elevate your art of perception that powers your red art.

——

This is a mental model for understanding what you seek with your language and actions, intentions and vision.

AI Versus the Juggler

Juggle.

AI cannot juggle.

Photo by Juan Pablo Rodriquez on Unsplash

The organization OpenAI has done really impressive work in the territory of robotic manual dexterity. But which robot has a reason to juggle? It has no reason to do so. On the other hand, we all juggle priorities like health, work, relationships and family, income and studying and maintenance of a home. AI is probably integrated into all of those aspects of

life but will never have an overarching need that goes into decisions that determine how the juggling of life is juggled.

So to keep control of our lives out if y the hands of robots we need lives that AI cannot touch. Yes robots and algorithms have their functions. Those functions are to get a result and use the result to get better at getting the next result. But there is no sense of elevating those functions to a transcendent goal.

So should we be scared about AI. You bet! A scan of the lifestyle of our global culture does not indicate that a higher purpose has been identified that influences education systems, youth and corporate, towards any sort of not for profit perception. Therefore we are in direct competition with robots for various functions.

Back to our juggler. She doesn’t look at each ball directly but looks forward to maintain all the balls in the air. Jugglers use a rhythm of letting go and grabbing so they can keep giving attention and direction to everything they have on the go. Whether that be 3 balls in the air or children, their own business, caring for aging parents, improving their education, finding a partner or possibly deepening their religious awareness.

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Developing this religious awareness, or soul life, can open other doors; individually to feel less threatened by a machine and, as a culture we can create an array of service industries based on the thriving soul lives within us that seek learning for self development as a human.

Your Tribe Man

I said yes right away.

My university roommate emailed me to see if I wanted a ticket to the Canada versus New Zealand rugby game in Toronto. We haven’t been in touch very much over the years but he knew I would be interested.

I was as much interested to see the Haka live as the game itself.

Watch this video:

The Haka is simple in message: unity in pursuit of peace. Since it is originally a Maori Dance of War, that pursuit included the possibility of death which tells me they are serious about their rugby.

The Haka is the full-on song and dance the national rugby team of New Zealand performs before every match. And is it effective in capturing their opponent’s attention? Well the All Blacks, as the team is called, from a 2 island nation of just 3 million people, dominate international rugby. I just checked the rankings and the Kiwis are #1 in the world as of September 30,2019. Awesome!

When another national rugby team plays against Australia or the Springboks of South Africa or Wales or France or Fiji – they are playing against a national team. But when you play the All Blacks you are facing a tribe. A tribe, as the song illustrates, who seem to unblinkingly accept the battle that may result in death.

Photo Trevor Cole on Unsplash

Singing the song at midfield they are living their culture in a way that they feed it and it feeds them.  The Haka is an assertion of belief in their people, the validity of their past and its vitality in the now.

What’s your Haka?

What’s your song and dance to highlight your past and align your now? How do harmonize the support of your team towards a higher goal? Your team is your: body, blood and brains, mind and soul in conjunction with the intense emotion for satisfaction and purpose. This team in harmony with your DNA can provide a strong foundation for you to sing your song and dance your steps.

It is definitely a struggle to be at the vanguard of your own growth and development. That struggle can be rewarding or debilitating. It can be a confusion due to a lack of self love/understanding, disease, lack of guidance.

Photo Trevor Cole on Unsplash

So give your song and dance some direction in both your daily and soul lives. Admire your tribe of physical mechanisms and spiritual workings.  Reflect on the amazing human faculties and your finesse with them. Know that you are the chief of that tribe.

Your daily Haka is the song and dance of your refinement of today’s man. 

 

 

GO YAW!

Go Yaw.

George Gurdjieff the mystic and spiritual teacher spoke about universal forces and principles. One very simple yet powerful concept is that of pitch and yaw.  Pitch is the thrusting outward force and yaw the receptive energy.  Here it is easy for an overlay to be seen with the yin yang understandings. I like to think the word Yoga had a little hint or message right there in the short 4 letters of the word. It is asking us, maybe telling us to – go ya. In other words right there in the name is the essence of the discipline: go yaw. We are being asked to do the work of the poses and stretches in order to set us up to receive.

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Photo by Katee Lue on Unsplash

 

So in class we do the movements and breathing to get to a point where you can receive, as in yaw, after the pitching nature of your movements.

As in any Martial Art the original purpose of yoga is to create oneself as a a node of connection between higher and foundational energies.  Practice over time produces self knowledge. This in turn results in personal growth so one can better manage daily life to be able to participate in elevating self knowledge.

Yoga is amazing. After a class I feel my body on a subtle hum and my mind at peace (read I carry less internal friction based in the whims of the day).

The breathing, the stretching, the speeds all combine under the guidance of a teacher who lands us in shavasana (lying down ‘corpse pose’ that can be followed by seated meditation). This puts me in a place of readiness to offer high quality stillness to connect with higher realms of perception.

                                                                          So go ya(w)!

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Photo by Daniel Mingook Kim on Unsplash

When you are needed be ready with what they need.

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Photo by Josiah Ingels on Unsplash

 

1. When they need direction use your sense of purpose to make your life interesting.

2.  When they need to establish standards offer them ideas of where to put their energy.

3. When they need to prioritize show them how to measure the relevance of things.

4. When they lack self love show them a person who radiates self knowledge.

5 .When they have initiative show them how not to fill it – let it be filled.

6. When they are searching for connection help them handle success and failure.

7. When they are decisive find out their beliefs.

Busy Healing – Shaking at the side of my bed

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Photo by Vladislav Muslakov on Unsplash

I was shaking  – or rather I was being shaken.  I was shook like never before.

 

I was on my knees with my head on my bed in search of a position where my body didn’t seem to vibrate me out of sanity.  It was amazing!  Don’t get me wrong – I am  neither a hypochondriac nor a sadist.  I don’t look for ways to be sick.  The thing is it is increasingly amazing to me how the human body responds to illness, hostile bacteria and nasty viruses.

So I am so glad that my body fights back.  Yes the experience is anywhere from a hassle of a few days to weeks of cough/vomit sessions but that is very likely better than no response at all (i.e. probable demise to the death).   Thank you body for generating the energy and directing it with force against the flu, stopping a cold and damming the diarrhea.  Thanks for the healing.  After getting knocked out for a few days I am ready to rejoin the fight.

Healing brings our systems up to date.

Whatever part or function in us that needed healing is like an eddy in the river.  An eddy is where the water whirlpools on one side as the river flows by.  There are the swirls of bubbles that get caught in the elbow of a river until a new wave brings them back into the mainstream (pun intended) community.  The eddy is still part of the river, never not wet but spinning in a smaller world until it rejoins the flow.   Healing gets us back up to river speed.
Healing feels fabulous, refreshing, renewing.   Funny, some of us might even help ourselves to get unwell.  As in we damage/sabotage ourselves or relationships because the instantaneous natural healing response from our bodies and the earth can feel so good. It’s that adrenaline rush of injury or danger bringing us back into oneself by the beautifully efficient and loyal powers of healing. These powers return you to your best.  The healing force is true to your development direction and stage in life.

jeremy-bishop-1300015-unsplash                             Photo by Jeremy Bishop on Unsplash

I.D.E.A.

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Photo by Joshua Sortino on Unsplash
IDEA
Simple tool to get results when taking responsibility for ones emotions,
mental well being and development journey.
I for is Intention – Clarifying what you want to do (Daily) or to cause (Elevated)
D is for Daily– The impact you are aiming for that day in your economic and family life
E is for Elevated – What residue you want in your private/soul life as a result of applying the work towards your Higher self/Spiritual life.
A is for Action – The initiative that attracts positive energy whether you are asking for help, offering it or anything in between that keeps you true to your intention.