Tag Archive: interplay


It is the stuff in between things that is important.
It is not the things themselves that truly matter.
Like the intangibility of love, hate, or other emotions that holds people together, or pushes them apart.
Like the substance that Dark Matter is made of; the stuff that strings the galaxies of the universe together, that the scientists are searching for.
Like the walls of a building define and contain useful space. The walls themselves, having less useful properties.
Like the lines on a football field, and the rules of the game, they are in themselves useless, but it is what they describe that matters.
Like the timing between the notes of a piece of music, rather than the notes themselves.

It is the understanding of the relationship between things that holds more value than the things themselves.
It is the supporting framework that places things and events in the right places to create the illusion of importance of material things. But it is our relationship to those things that we really need see and perceive.

To become truly wise, seek this understanding as all things are linked by the space between them, not the things themselves.
This is what is meant by ‘all things are one’.

It is the stuff in between things that is important; the stuff that truly matters.
Not the things in the middle, bounded and described by the space around them.
Like the substance that Dark Matter is made of; the stuff that strings the galaxies of the universe together, and keeps the stars circling forever,
…the essence of which the scientists are searching for.
Like the way that the walls of a building define and contain useful space. The walls themselves, having less useful properties.
Like the lines on a football field, and the rules of the game, they are in themselves useless, but it is what they describe that matters.
Like the timing between the notes in a piece of music, rather than the notes themselves.
Like the intangibility of love, and hate, and the other emotions; the stuff that holds people together, or pushes them apart.

It is the understanding of the relationship between things that holds more value than the things themselves.
It is here that the supporting framework is found; the framework that places things and events in the right places, and creates the illusion of the importance of material things.
But it is our relationship to those things that we really need see and perceive… the gap between us and it.

To become truly wise, one should seek this understanding, as all things are linked by the space between them, not the things themselves.
This is what is meant by ‘all things are one’.

A long time ago (at least a decade) I learned of the idea of listening to your intuition in order to let it guide you in times of stress.
Ever since then I have tried; first to find this ‘voice’, then to learn how to hear it when it is so much quieter than the voice of the mind, then to learn how to trust it.
This is the stage that I am currently at… and I think the next, and possibly last stage, is to follow it as a primary source of internal guidence.

Yesterday morning I was doing some circuit training with my fellow Karate nutters, and whilst my body was getting tired, but there was still hard work to do, and my body-mind was shouting loudly at me to STOP, I became aware that in the background this little voice that I’ve learned to trust, but am still learning to hear, was saying ‘You can still do more. You can ignore that other voice. It’ll be alright.
What I realised yesterday morning, is that the voice of intuition cannot lie!
It cannot tell you something that is not true, as it relays information from the body-mind to the conscious mind that is a true indication of your reality. It is only your conscious mind that screws things up by putting some wierd perception or spin on the facts presented.
In other words, if it says that you can do more, then you can! Obviously, this also means that if it says ‘It’s time to stop!’, then you should especially listen then! (How many of us have continued working hard and got injured when we know in hindsight that we should have stopped…? I have… too often…)
It doesn’t matter what anything else says, whether that be your own internal dialogue, or another person saying ‘You’ve done enough, you can stop now.

Your reality can ONLY be experienced by you. But your reality can be SO MUCH MORE if you learn to trust in your voice of intuition.

I was lucky enough on Saturday to take part in a Karate course that actually formed the final part of our most senior student, Sempei Goran Powell’s, 5th Dan grading… so he’s already pretty good…!
The course was entitled ‘Yin’… i.e. the complementary part of ‘Yang’ in the Yin Yang duality that most have heard of.
For those who are not familiar with it, or perhaps with what it means; the idea of Yin Yang is to describe the interrelationship of dualities that can be found in nature; where one only exists because of the existence of the other (this is not the same as opposites).
Examples are:
Light and Dark, Hot and Cold, Male and Female, Up and Down, Hard and Soft, Pull and Push…etc.

From this weekend’s course I gained a new perspective on the practical applications of Yin Yang, or dualities.
The emphasis of the course was to draw attention to the other side of training, i.e. within our Karate system we work hard on the tough physical side of things, but what many individuals are missing is the softer, gentler side that includes the aspects between training sessions.
In order to train hard often (the Yang), one must also pay attention to the soft, less obvious side of training (the Yin) such as rest and recovery, diet, technique (incidentally, I just read on Twitter today “Good technique fatigues you before you could cause an injury or a breakdown.” @ChrisRowat… but I guess that also means that you need to learn when it’s time to stop!).
In terms of Karate training in Kata, one should look to training the parts of the movements in-between the strikes, block, kicks, holds, etc. The transitions between one technique and another are just as important as the end result of the technique itself!

Similarly, the aspects of movement where the opposing parts of say, a punch, where the non-striking arm is pulling back, adds to the rotational power driven down the striking arm and into the punch. We all know this, but how many of us practice these opposing aspects of the same movement…?

To extend this idea further, all aspects of life have an end point. If a person is focussed towards a particular goal, then they must undergo the journey to that goal.
However, if only the goal is in focus, then the method of reaching it may not be all that it could be, and in reaching the goal, it may be found to be less fulfilling than it might otherwise have been.

Life’s a journey, not a destination.” – Aerosmith

If you’re interested, the course was given by Goran Powell, now 5th Dan of Goju Ryu within Daigaku Karate Kai that practices in the UK in London, Bristol, Torquay and Braunton – Devon.
He is also the author of the books Waking Dragons, A Sudden Dawn, and Chojun that can each be found on http://www.liondogbooks.com

Thrive!!!

For a thing to thrive, it must be stressed,
but stressed in a way that is appropriate to its nature.

I have written before about the Yin Yang duality and how for something to be ‘active’ and not ‘actively dead’ it has to have something to react against, i.e. it has to have an opposing force of an appropriate nature in order to exert its own nature.

We have all read of accounts where people have been close to death, not through illness, but through experiencing ‘a close shave’, and have said afterwards how alive they felt! Maybe you’ve been lucky enough to experience this?

Never have I felt so alive as when I was so close to death!‘ … a common statement.

The opposing forces here are the ‘forces’ of life and death. In order to feel most alive -to thrive- the opposing ‘force’ of death stresses one to do their absolute utmost to stay alive.

So, if you are comfortable in ‘the human zoo’ (Erwan Le Corre) and perfectly capable of coping with everything that your life throws at you, then you are not thriving… you’re not even close…
Get out of your comfort zone…
…go thrive!

It just recently occurred to me, as a result of the visual combination of a christmas card wishing peace for me, and a violent action film in front of my eyes, that within the human realm of experience, peace is not the opposite of war, but the product, or end result.
You see, if peace is desired, a conflict must first be tackled in order to produce peace.

As we live within a universe that is in constant flux, change occurs on many levels all around us at every moment of every day, therefore peace is not something that can be maintained. A change WILL occur in a supporting pillar of peace that will cause a conflict somewhere down the line.
Within modern society, we exist within an illusion of peace, but there are daily conflicts occurring all the time, and they are dealt with by the relevent authorities to maintain the illusion of peace – out of sight, out of mind.
Peace can only exist in a static universe, but a static universe cannot be experienced as it is change that is noticed and experienced. Therefore peace cannot exist in our universe!

Many times have we seen demonstrators outside of places like Parliment carrying boards that say, in various ways, ‘PEACE NOT WAR’, yet I would argue that they are, at that point in time, at war with the establishment. Their conflict, not yet violent, is demanding that a different action should be carried out to that which they are protesting about.
What these protestors are doing is to be warriors to a cause. They are fighting against actions that they do not agree with.
They are FIGHTING. (…do they realise…?)
They are creating a new ‘war’ which, paradoxically, is trying to put an end to a war.

Wars are the result of change.
Change is driven by another force, or forces. Politics, beliefs, basic survival needs.

Politics:
The forces within politics are driven by aspirations of power, and / or the accumuation of money, and the need to ensure the support of it’s public come the next election. (This is not to say that it isn’t done in the best interests of Joe Public… although history has shown that it can go out of control.)
To gain power (no government wants to lose power), money is required, therefore the accumulation of money must be the prime driver in all things political.
I don’t wish to get too political in this post, but by following this path of logic, it now becomes more obvious if there is any change in the world that means a reduction to the financial means of a government, then a further self-defensive change driven by the government is required.
Sometimes this means violence is needed.

Beliefs:
We all have beliefs in things, and at times these beliefs can be in direct conflict with the beliefs of another.
Depending upon the nature of the individual, one can either simply agree to disagree, be persuaded that this other belief is the correct one, or conversely, be determined to show the other person / group that they are wrong.
As we can see in today’s media, there is an apparent rise in terrorist acts around the world (although, any religious act that is extreme is a terrorist act, and this method of religious conversion has been around for a very long time – the Christian crusades anyone…?) and the wars that they create are justified as Holy Wars (Jihad) that are in the interest of their God.

So back to the point of this post; it seems to me that the idea of peace is not something that can be obtained within the modern world. It is merely an idea, an illusion that can be pursued… an invention of the human mind.

Perhaps the closest we could ever get to true peace is for mankind to work towards living in harmony with the natural world.
An analogy might be the balance of nature on the Serengeti. There is an illusion of peace. But you ask the mother Zebra who had just had her baby taken by lions if she thinks there is peace in the world… she may agree that there is balance… but peace?

It seems to me that war and conflict is in our nature… not humans’ nature, but the nature of life on Earth.
The struggle of life creates death. The struggle to avoid death generates the need to fight.

True peace cannot exist on Earth quite simply because life cannot exist in that way!

Relationships #2

In ‘Relationships #1’ I spoke of the way in which a relationship could be viewed  as a living creature between two people, one that needs feeding, attention and TLC by both parties, or it dies a death.
I have also realised that there is another type of relationship that we have with all other things in our universes – sometimes one sided, and at other times two sided and more like the other I’ve preivously described.

This other kind of relationship is one that  many of us, perhaps most, are unaware of, but to become aware of it is to become more intertwined in your local universe, and more in harmony with those things that you willingly, or unknowingly invite into your life.

For example, lets imagine a hot summer’s day. You’re at work in an office, but are yearning to get outside to enjoy the weather. At dinnertime you take a walk to a shady glade in a nearby park and sit down in the shade of a tree.
How many one-sided relationships are happening all at once?
1)   You have a relationship with a hot summer’s day – it makes you feel good, but asks for nothing in return except for appreciation.
2)   You have a relationship with park / glade  – you go there because on a day like this being within it brings a sense of peace, or holiday, or a return to nature.
3)   You have a relationship with a tree – the tree means nothing to you except on a day like this when you can enjoy it’s ability to shade you from the harshness of the sun’s rays, and only adds to the experience.
4)   Perhaps you also have a relationship with the comings and goings of the people in that park, but one that they are unaware of. You find it relaxing to sit and simply observe the mothers with their children in the play area, the dogs chasing the stick thrown by their owner, the lunchtime runners, etc.

Now, you could just sit there waiting for the time to go back to the office, or you could sit there and truely enjoy the experience of quiet observation of all those things above, or the Ladybird that lands on your arm, or the Sparrows that chirp at each other trying to get the bread that you’ve thrown.

At all times it is possible to become one with the moment, to allow yourself to forget yourself, to harmonise with the immediate world around you, and to refresh your spirit ready for the next onslaught of ‘civilisation’.

All things are one!

Following on from my observation of  ‘All things have their own oneness, but all things are one.’  on July 16th 2012, I had a recent experience and mini epiphany,  which led to a deeper understanding of this observation. Read on…

Every experience is based upon feedback from the ‘things’ related to the experience in question (and perhaps to experiences that occurred in the past through the connectiveness of memories to the present.)
For example:

  • A musician couldn’t make music sound right if he couldn’t hear it.
  • An artist couldn’t paint a good picture if he could not see.
  • A Olympic Javelin thrower couldn’t throw effectively if he could not feel the weight and balance of the Javelin.
  • A Formula One driver couldn’t drive fast if he could not feel the way the car responds to his steering and its reaction to the road surface.

If one thinks of themselves as an individual entity, separate to the world, reaching out to his surroundings in order to interact with them, then he is deluding himself, as he would not have reached out if those things were not there.

This belief in individuality is rife in the modern world, as our western culture leads us to believe that we are each a piece of the universe that is separate to all other pieces.

To awaken ourselves to this illusion, what is needed is to discover and learn that we are each a single cog in the infinite machine of the universal effect. Like a pebble dropped in a pond, we each cause ripples. Most of these ripples have little or no effect on other things as the properties of their own existence (what we generally think of as individuality when we apply this to us) has enough self-sustaining power to overcome the effect of your ripples (influence). But on occaision, the ripple can be like the beat of a butterfly’s wings; it can cause a hurricane on the other side of the world!

The existence of all things is inter-related, whether directly, or though a ‘knock-on’ effect.

All things are one!

Find that place inside of you

Find that place inside of you
that exists aside from words and facts,
that has no alliance with letters and numbers.
It sees only shapes and colours,
sounds and smells, rough and smooth, heat and cold, old and new.

When walking through the cities,
divert your eyes from the neon signs and the billboards,
all designed to take advantage of a life’s habit
of searching for information offered all around.

Look instead to the shapes of the clouds, and the paths of the flights of the pigeons,
the way that raindrops gather on the canopies of the burger vans,
and the rivulets that run downhill to the drains in the road’s gutters.
Look instead to the creeping ice crystals on the cold bus windows,
or to the spiders in the morning weaving a new web, or the mist rising from the river’s surface.

All these things and so much more,
point to an awareness that offers far more
than the ‘in your face’ information that is pushed in your way.
When your soul harmonises with the real world,
that place inside of you will blend seamlessly with the world.

Relationships #1

I’ve been pondering for some time on the nature of relationships and have come to the following conclusion:

A relationship can be thought of a as living breathing ‘thing’ that is brought into being at the germination of the bond between two people. It is like a child of the pair. In order to grow, both must feed it with love and compassion.
The growth will not happen if only one person is feeding it, for it takes acknowledgment of the joint responsibility for it to stay alive.
It can only live for so long if only fed by one, for it will eventually wither and die if it is not a conduit for mutual love.

The strongest relationships can be seen in those whose bond is strong. They both feed the relationship either knowingly, actively trying to help it grow, or simply feeding it instinctively.

When one talks, the other listens… intently.
When one tells a joke, the other laughs.
When one cries, the other offers their shoulder.
When one is feeling down, the other helps to lift them.
When one is flying high, the other lifts them higher still.
When one is lost, the other helps gently point the way.
When one is ill, the other tends to their every need.
When one needs comfort, the other is always there.
When one needs time alone, the other lets them go… but is always within reach.
When one glances over, the other smiles gently back.
Whatever one does, the other acts as the mirror of achivement, and of unconditional acceptance,
no matter how great the success, or how deep the failure.
The lovechild of any couple is their relationship.
The depth of their love, apparent through the health of their relationship… their bond.