Into the Yin

How do we react to change?

This is the focus of many “Far Eastern” arts/philosophies such as the I-Ching, Ba Gua Zhang, and Aikido, and I believe is most essential in order to understand the effectiveness of martial arts, and thus, life.

Focusing on the nature of change itself is a philosophy based on a very real, though maybe difficult to perceive plane. To view the world in a vaccuum, or in a still 2-D picture, or isolating it’s parts, is unrealistic, which is less than true in a sense. The world is in constant flux, be it the seasons, our bodies, our relationships, or anything and everything else. We ourselves are constantly reacting to change, and thus creating change. After we see this phenomenon outside of ourselves, the reality of constant change, how do we perceive it inside of ourselves? In our mind and body? Our brain waves firing, cells mingling, organs processing, blood flowing, fingernails and hair growing, the existence of our bones. Is our reaction to change, and changing, a form of subconscious habit? Or conscious directing? How much of each?

The only way I have found to see such small details within ourselves, is to be quiet, is to be less, and is to be in darkness. Without this type of journey into our own as well as the collective Abyss, how can we see beyond the still-flashes of action and seeming importance that flash before us? How can we reach our potential for martial ability? How can we react appropriately in our emotional relationships? How can we walk through the world considering our responsibility?

Into the Yin. Into the darkness, the solitary, the quiet, the nothing. Perhaps there we can find what something is.

Our thoughts are weak without our belief, and our belief is weak without experience.

We must cultivate our awareness with frequent trips into the Yin.


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