6.3.15

Prayers and tears: two natural responses to a world that demands I open up, let down my defenses, and touch the real. A corollary being that a life without prayers and tears is not real – has had otherness erased.
"Death is only a thing of terror for those unable to live in the present."
It would be difficult to exaggerate the importance of exercising the core, not just for the body but for the energy and mind too. Mind in dantien should be just this: corework. Without it gains will tend to dissipate. The Plank is a good place to start, and will help bring awareness naturally to the lower abdomen.

Sammon – Main Entrance
Viewing Infinite Space
Inside Tea-House
Peaceful – Close To Cherry Trees
Procession Passing
Evening Call
Breathing
Beauty Of Bamboos
Tsukubai – Washbasin
Planting Trees Creating Beauty
"Stones Should Never Be Placed Carelessly"
White Gravel
Shrine
Paths Around The Pond
Children In My Garden

Track listing for the album Sakuteiki by Arve Henriksen.
A tenacious commitment to yielding: holding on by letting go. Gravitating to some unimaginable mythic source in surrendering life to the true heart.
touching upon the untouchable
Learn from mistakes by first admitting them as such and then facing them as such. This develops humility, and is the path to wisdom.
"it is needful for you to have friends who are beneficial for, and likeminded with, your way of life"

5.3.15

The most valuable thing in the world for the student of spirit, next to great teaching, is feedback. The mediocre student – he who blows hot then cold – needs positive feedback: encouragement, reinforcement. The good student – he who can't cool down – needs negative feedback: reining in, careful direction. If their ego can't take it then they are not really a good student – they're on their own trip, destined to shine brightly, maybe, but never to become part of a living tradition.
"Now while I have you here before my platform, what words shall I whip forth painted in red letters ten feet tall?
WORK.
That's the first one.
RELAXATION.
That's the second. Followed by two final ones:
DON'T THINK! "
up from the bones of earth
The touch of reality.
Relaxation always invites.

4.3.15

"Heaven is this world as it appears to the awakened imagination, and those who try to approach it by way of restraint, caution, good behavior, fear, self-satisfaction, assent to uncomprehended doctrines, or voluntary drabness, will find themselves traveling toward hell … hell being similarly this world as it appears to the repressed imagination."

Before Earth can usefully develop my energy I must possess a well-defined centre of gravity. This is the dantien (belly) about which my physicality gathers. Mind in dantien – the first instruction in Taiji – aims to develop this centre, not just as an abstract point some distance from the head, but as a real physical entity: a heavy stone in the belly that the Earth pulls strongly when I manage to relax the muscles that surround it. The pull of gravity on my dantien keeps me grounded, and stimulates the higher centres to open up and operate:
  • solar plexus (power and creativity) 
  • heart (affection and love) 
  • thymus (passion, desire and fighting spirit) 
  • throat (expression and joy) 
  • eyes (vision and foresight) 
  • crown (higher energies). 
Without an athletic body, firmly bound to the Earth, I can never be full and free.
Front toes point in slightly (so that middle toe points straight ahead) to protect the knee.
When close enough to touch, the mind stops. This is because the mind not only thinks at the expense of sensitivity, the mind thinks in order to stop feeling.
the internal fold of an overrun border