How can I find something I don’t know?
In kyudo I’m searching for perfect technique. I watch those better than me, I listen to sensei’s advice, I have small goals, but I just don’t get it.
On the one hand I’m trying to achieve something I’m not, so that I can be better. If that happens, I become an advanced person.
On the other hand, it’s something inside of me that’s been there all along. All I have to do is realize that power inside of me and then I’m there. But I don’t know what it is. Is it not inside of me? Does it need to be placed there first so I can reveal it?
It’s like I’m mining for gold in this mountain. I think I know it’s there, and I’m trying to think about it intelligently so that I can better find it, but in all honesty I don’t know the gold is there until I see it, feel it, be it.
The weirdest thing about kyudo is that you’ll realize something and do it, and then completely forget it. It’s eternally frustrating. Last week I really had confidence in my tenouchi (left hand that holds the bow). I was realizing things I had been trying for so long, all of a sudden my hand was doing things I couldn’t before, then this week I can’t do it at all. It’s like I’ve been transported back in time to where I was really sucky. I realize this, and try to fix it, but I couldn’t do it today.
Somehow I’ve lost confidence in kyudo. I don’t have the confidence to hit the target like I have in the past. My eyes blink amid the shooting, and I know I’m not going to hit the target. It’s just a waste of time. Before I finish the arrow I already want to go on to the next, even though I know I won’t hit that one either.
It makes me want to just walk straight up to the target and stab it right in the center.
I’m mining for gold, but I really don’t know what it’s like.
After all this time, I still don’t know. Maybe everyone is like this.
I don’t know!
Hurrying doesn’t help, muscling it in doesn’t work … so I’ll be patient and humble, and trust that that gold is in fact below the pick and axe.