Temple Chronicle: Winter Training

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Our human lives are a process, a means whereby, but what is the result, the end-product? Our story began with the moment of birth and it will end with the moment of death. Or will it? Between these two points our physical form develops and matures, and then as its season draws to a close, it starts to shrink and slow.

We, our spirits, are temporarily housed in a flesh form to participate in the visual material world which is subject to varied and numerous conditions. It is logical then that the conditioned mind expects results from the progress through the years of our lifespan.

Religions use certain terms for this end-product, this resolution of the years and the effort – Heaven or Hell, Nirvana, Enlightenment, Paradise, Zion, Avalon, Swarga, Valhalla, and so on. But words and images die the moment they appear or are uttered or thought. ‘Birth’ and ‘Death’ are also only words, but we identify ourselves with them – ‘my birth,’ ‘his death,’ and so on, and once again they are dead, in the past, dropped like a heavy stone into a deep pool.

 

 

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Without using any special labels or grand proper nouns, we have always flowed in the vast wide river of all energy, and we always will. Energy is vibration and light which is subject to no conditions, not even human’s facile notions of ‘time’ or ‘space.’ It goes where it will dependent on nothing, consuming the darkness, flowing and flowing. There are no rewards or results in any dimension except the joy of being and loving with company in our human boats, and breathing in concert.

The conditions throw up obstacles in the way of our flow which create detours, sluggish pools, and rapids. The build up of the heat of negative emotions and violence acted out in the form world, the jarring of separations and limitations, the tattering and fraying of the fabric of the universe at our human hands, causes drought and the flow dwindles to a trickle, or floods which extinguish the divine flame of the flow.

 

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Can you desist from throwing obstacles into the flow now and here? Can you give up your addiction to collecting, to hoarding, to getting and spending, to violent acts of separation from your fellows? Can you say you will no longer depend on creating parallel worlds in your mind with words and images so that you can just flow and flow, laughing and loving?

Slap bang in the centre of this moment and in no place in particular, can you accept that there is nothing you have to do except be, and in your full being the flow flows without end?

 

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In Japan, this is the most intense season of spiritual training – Winter Training. Over the next few days I would like to share with you some insights as we consider our previous year of practice and awareness.

 

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images courtesy of Linden Thorp and megapixyl.com

Integrate into Life’s True Course

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(The following will be interspersed with the indigenous voice of an Australian tribal leader.)

Putting aside the man-made lenses of ‘time,’ ‘space,’ ‘race’, ‘gender,’ and ‘money,’ and so on, is the only way to integrate into life’s true course. This is how we can best begin to repair what we perceive as the damaged links of the broken chain of existence.

The human race has interfered persistently with what is natural, almost insisting on creating its own reality and then imposing it on others instead of listening to the truth and staying put. We have traditionally searched outside for our sensual satisfaction and the realization of dreams, when all the time the glories of our human existence lie inside, deep within our divine spirit.

We have therefore become ‘disintegrated’ beings because we block what is natural, always choosing to ‘live’ indirectly, vicariously, or ‘outside’ reality in our minds, our noses pressed up against the glass. We were given life 2.5 million years ago, but why do we still utilize so little of our cerebral potential(10% maximum) and fail to realize our divine potential. We claim that we are ‘civilized’ when we lie and cheat, abuse and kill, suffer and seek revenge so readily.

Given the passage of so much time since our birth, is it reasonable to assume that we are handing down the information and knowledge needed to improve and develop us? Or are we unable to access our immense resources because we have lost the skills and tools to do so? We mostly defer to one crude tool only, the intellect. Is this why we are presently swallowing our pride and seeking the help and ingenuity of indigenous people whom we once pronounced ‘savages’ in a last ditch attempt live in a way meaningful to the planet?

In our present state, it seems that we may never repair the conceptual ‘circles’ and ‘cycles’ and ‘phases’ of universal energy we have adopted in order to try to understand it. The irony is that we were never meant to understand it, just accept it, integrate with it, because our personal energy is already a component part of it. The leaves of a tree do not question their existence.

We are on the inside if only we looked directly but education in the developed world is designed to develop individual intellects, to produce leaders and hierarchies, in short, to control. In contrast, indigenous people in their traditional lives are always inside looking out; they are active participants in the centre of a universal reality. They stand in the eternal stream of energy, both visible and invisible, and in their natural, uncorrupted state, they are entirely accepting and consequently wise. Unlike ‘civilised’ people who rebel if there are insufficient options, there are no choices for them because they are finely tuned to something far greater than the human ego.

ninija, traditional landowner of thousands of miles of the Lands and spiritual leader, says:

White-fella they come before, talking on and on. They tell ninija what ‘best.’ We not understand ‘best.’ We not choose. We no choice. We just. White-fella choose, count, talk and point with long-long white finger.

By way of an example of this ‘disintegration’ mentioned above, we outsiders can visualize beautiful things in immense detail by virtue of our superb memories. Beautiful flowers have been immortalized by photographs and works of art which are also quickly recalled. In fact, thousands of images are stamped onto our memories so that there is no need to go to find the real thing. Even if we do encounter the real flower itself, it may be in a contrived garden and we may compare it with those in our mind collections.

We are addicted to recalling a flower’s name, both common and scientific, its country of origin, the soil and climate type it prefers, as well as its use as a motto or symbol, its rarity and health benefits, and so on. So, we are rarely experiencing the flower directly but instead through interpretations, knowledge or representations.

It seems that no stone is left unturned in the present world so that the drive to make everything common knowledge is at its height. Traveling to remote places to bring back mementoes is applauded and now the Internet is fully at our disposal to further accelerate these global trends. As a consequence we have become inveterate consumers with the means to go anywhere and everywhere to acquire whatever takes our fancy.

Indigenous peoples in their traditional state actually ‘own’ nothing except what they can custom-make from raw materials provided by the Earth. Here is a description of what the tribal members I helped to move from a state settlement back into their traditional lives were carrying as they departed. They were walking back into the Lands in the scorching center of Australia.

…they took only a few handmade possessions which they habitually carry or wear. Their dilly bags woven from Mangrove string, containing personal effects such aschuringas (totemic identity badges). Their Wood and Grass carrying bowls,coolamon, sported on heads, shoulders or against bellies. Their custom-madedigging sticks slung across shoulders with ornate Kangaroo straps. A range of beautifully crafted decorated boomerangs for hunting both for children and women. And perfectly cylindrical Hollow Log coffins containing Bones of their deceased. Churinga. Coolamon. Hollow Log Coffins. All hand-crafted and customized from Desert materials.

The party of shiny black skins with their blond and red topknots of wild hair was occasionally joined by competing Kangaroos. On one side, they were flanked by a massive flock of high Emus, great scratching Bird of the Lands, and on the other by a troop of wild Camels. Above the whole assembly, white Pelicans flapped their slow wings through an indigo Sky, muttering to full Moon.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     These desert people most probably will die if they leave their Lands for any length of time, especially if they move into synthetic, urban environments. Following is a description of the experience of Ninija and her granddaughter Gina going to ‘white-fella’s city’ to collect the body of dead Ginger-son. Lumaluma is the ghost of white-fella who comes to plague Ninija to be his concubine, all the time distracting her from her duties to officiate at her son’s Burial Ceremony. The Djang, or climax of the burial ceremony, is the greatest of all rites of passage for their people. (Notice the writing convention of all things belonging to Mother Nature are capitalised, and all those to humans are in lower case. ninija insists on this to show utter respect and gratitude)

When we bring ginger body back to Lands from city, lumaluma, he follow us. He bring him terrible sounds with him. Car. Truck. White-fella whirring engine. Many many people loud. i think i stop breathing because i not hear my own lungs crinkling shut then open again. i not hear lovely sweet flapping sound of just-knowing – lumaluma he call it “waiting.”

And smell? Smoke! They fill Sky so it like white night. i breathe fast because white night sting if it inside me. i pant like Dingo. i look out but only see white-fella wall, wall, and more wall. wall bigger than ninija Rock or Buga Mountains in Lands. wall and roof so I not see Sky. I cannot run without big hard concrete stop!

In fact, knowledge of something is an indirect way of ‘knowing’ it. It stimulates our intellects and memories, but it is not reality. The phrase ‘snap-shot’ has become popular in recent years to describe how our minds are continually opening camera shutters, recording, archiving, attempting to make everything we encounter permanent. We are image consumers with very little need to turn away from our fantastic internal collections. But, this habitual activity always pulls us back to our minds where everything is convenient and controllable. How can this be reality?

This is how I felt before I went to the Desert and encountered ninija and the Dreaming, and before ninija became my spirit guide.

Before the Desert and ninija ‘back-then,’ i was a human camera. i was an archivist, and a repository for captions. “Say it. See it. Check it. Now prove it!’ After arriving here, i soon stopped looking and listened instead, and so slid into my rightful place. Now, if i cease listening to the Universe for an instant, ninija strides into to my mind and elbows me roughly in the ribs. she strictly guides me back from the needy eye, and from the very needy ‘i’ of my ego.

Another aspect of the integration/disintegration mentioned above involves the concept of time. Indigenous peoples use only the moon and sun to regulate their days and nights, so they never wait, recover/change gear, or smoke a cigarette or swig time concept alcohol to help them to overcome the ordeal of living. Rarely do they become stressed by external pressures as we do, counting the seconds ticking on.

They move smoothly from one instance of their life to the next, listening for their roles, so there are no concepts of work or leisure, etc. There is nothing else except seamless immersion in what the Earth and Great Mother Nature, their totem group, and their fellow tribesmen need. There is no media but instead the songs and stories of celebration and morality, which are handed on orally and need no interpretation because they are concrete.

The original energy source of modern urban humans is permanent and indestructible as it is for indigenous peoples, but we moderns have become compulsive archivists and rebuilders and therefore have damaged it. Surely, it is not possible to compartmentalize and analyze such sacred energy as we do: concepts and theories will never heal the diseased flora and fauna, rebalance the planet or prevent us from destroying each other.

These interferences and interruptions in what is natural, fueled by human hubris and synthetic, excessive emotions, have turned us into an invasive species, a common garden weed, aliens. Shockingly, we move around intently seeking pleasure, status and the fulfillment of our desires and wishes, almost exclusively to any other concerns.

We are also frantic to achieve something notable before our visible life ends and we become invisible and, as we see it, powerless. Whereas those who protect the natural environment and never ‘die’ have no white-fella status.They find contentment and pleasure exactly in the natural world and live in the moment. They never hanker after tangible signs of their existence or use filters to alter their perceptions, change their mood, forget or bury the things that are distasteful or brutally honest.

We are all animals and yet we humans diverged from animal species as our brains developed. We wanted to be different, standing on two legs instead of four, reaching for the best fruit at the top of the tree instead of groveling for grubs. In this divergence, we lost touch with our instincts and intuitions, refusing to fit in with the natural order and went all out to exploit the world’s resources for personal, religious or national gain.

In so doing, we needed to stamp out the traces of ancient and indigenous cultures as they presented an obstacle to our betterment. This was when we broke the virtuous circle, becoming determined to create something entirely new. And because we turned our backs wholesale on natural wisdom, we were forced, ironically, into ‘survival’ mode, using trial and error, making fatal or fortunate mistakes and supposedly learning from them.

It has frequently been pointed out by religious and spiritual wisdom that ‘there is nothing new under the sun,’ and yet we constantly think we can invent and innovate, throwing out what already exists. Our motivation is often power, recognition, money and worse, and while we are investing all of our precious life’s moments in this ‘progress’ pursuit, ancient peoples are absorbed in being the stalwart custodians and protectors of reality. They are single-mindedly devoted to preserving, blending in, and living in awe of what already exists. Without a doubt, radical change is needed inside each of our minds not in the natural world. Our leaders need more wisdom to be able to work in equal partnership with what is natural.

In hindsight, it is easy to see that it is unnecessary to make devastating often fatal mistakes, rushing blindly into situations and taking over officiously. We ‘developed’ people are constantly end-gaining, striving to reach goals which are often arbitrary in terms of the planet and the natural world, not to mention our spiritual well-being. As indigenous peoples and the enlightened will tell you, there actually are no ends as there are no beginnings. Existence is one eternal circle.

So, why can’t we use our higher minds to innovate and extemporize to enhance what already exists, rather than sweep it under the carpet? We could effortlessly stay in the universal circle in harmony, integrated and eager to gather wise beings around us. After all, rash acts spring from rash thoughtsproduced from our lower minds; whereas wise and considerate thoughts emanating from our higher minds, our true and divine origins, produce wise and balanced acts. Thoughts are actually acts in rehearsal.

In contrast, in their traditional lives Australian aboriginals are fully integrated. They flow with the tide of reality not against it and so are absolutely ready to catch any ball that may be thrown to them. For them, there is no meta-reality, no perceived reality, no personal interpretation, because they are reality itself. They absolutely embody their Dreaming Lands. They are their feelings not simulacra as we are. But above all they are love and respect and awe for each other, and for the forces of nature and the Universe, which they consider to be their loving parents.

They just embody what is – never thinking or speculating, selecting or deciding, always submissive to and fully aware of their divine origins and mission. That is why they easily die or succumb to outside influences if they are removed from their Lands.

They are part of the Dreaming reality at all times, fully integrated, and not at all separate. They are immersed in what is known as the seamless ‘here-and-now.’ The arrogance of ‘civilized’ people tears them out of their own origins, their own ‘Lands,’ leading them to pursue life for gain and power, always at a distance from reality, and often from sincerity. They are rarely submissive and if they are, they are negatively judged by the mediocre majority and feel a sense of shame or loss of pride.

http://youtu.be/8Tc7XuC U38k

You can read ninija’s story in ‘Easy-Happy-Sexy: on the Twelfth Day,’ Strategic Books, 2013 PB, 2015 epub., to get a taste of desert integration and wisdom: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00UUSPLYM

I wrote this article ‘Integration into Life’s True Course’ in response to David Suzuki’s article in the Vancouver Sun, ‘Aboriginal People not environmentalists, are our best bet for protecting the planet.’ June 8th, 2015, link: http://www.vancouversun.com/technology/David Suzuki Aboriginal people environmentalists best protecting planet/11112668/story.html

article images courtesy of Megapixyl.com: Aboriginal woman-Rosedarc.com; Didjeridoo3-Fotandy.com; Part of a native Aboriginal wall painting-Ingehogenbijl/com; Man Hunting-Bushman’s primitive art-Wilad.com; Quantas Beoing 737-800-Amlindley.com; Devils Marbles-Teedee.com; Indigenous Australian Art-Lucidwaters.com; Didgeridoo-Lucidwaters.com

VISIONARIES Article 2: The Average Man (Feldenkrais follow-up)

(Visionaries is a work in progress, so if you would like to read the articles so far please go to the page ‘Visionaries’ in the menu at the top of the page)

 

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In this series, to repeat the main theme, I will write about three charismatic innovators who have strongly influenced my spiritual growth despite the fact that they were not spiritual masters. Feldenkrais, the movement specialist, the focus of Article 1 (ref:http://wp.me/p3O6mn-iG) will again be the focus of this second article as so much came up from the writing and the reflection afterwards. I would like to unzip some of the denser parts of the last article to give a wider perspective.

Feldenkrais, like Alexander and Krishnamurti, were able to see the bigger picture of human life. It is common for the human body to be alluded to as a microcosm of the universe. Indeed, Feldenkrais was interested not in the gross detail of the mechanics of the body per se, though that was his speciality, but more in the overall affect of the human organism, and how that organism fitted into the ecology of the universe and societies, how it could be balanced naturally. Mainstream medicine treats local symptoms with drugs or surgery often without taking the whole organism into account; this is reminiscent of the blind man trying to describe an elephant, which he is touching, to get an impression – how can he ever know the whole entity? In the same way, if we each create a universe in our minds and immerse ourselves in it, asserting the self and the ego, how can we ever know the actual natural universe.

Moshe Feldenkrais

Moshe Feldenkrais

Feldenkrais, through his tireless work with human microcosms, which were out of balance, pointed out the importance of self-image as a key factor in dis-ease if that self-image was not acceptable to others or to the self. But then, as he went on to explain, the self-image was often appropriately masked for different social situations in order to fit in, or out of fear, or even lust. The habitual wearing of such masks would inevitably affect the anatomy of the whole organism, and thus the links with the true self, the natural self, would gradually be damaged, and then finally break. At this point, the mask or masks would be impossible to remove, so that the natural self was lost forever. It is easy to see that this notion has huge implications in spiritual terms.

Living in societies and communities in general, because there are hierarchies and a variety of contrasted self-images at work, Feldenkrais suggested that we are likely to become very passive. The analogy here is with sitting using a chair with a back. If we always lean against the back of the chair, then the muscles supporting our spine are made gradually redundant, so we cannot any longer sit comfortably in a chair without a back. In daily life, if we listen to our ‘superiors,’ our so-called leaders, saturating our minds with reports from the media and the enormous output of the work of mediocre writers at large today, then we never use our own voice, our own ideas, and it leaning in a chairis never expected of us to speak out because everyone worships the literati and broadcasting agencies in power. Those who do step forward and offer innovative ideas and notions stand to be either embraced in the pantheon or rejected out of hand.

This passiveness is observable in religious and spiritual circles too. Especially in organized groups, the majority part of such training is to dislodge the self-serving ego, cultivate modesty and humility, assuage sensual craving, and so on. However, because we are already wearing social masks, once the self-serving ego is dissolved, we may become numb, dull, afraid to express our true nature, afraid to make our unique contribution. Of course, thankfully there are the few giants of the religious/spiritual spheres who stepped forward to innovate, following their mystical directives. I believe Feldenkrais had an insight into letting go of all the synthetic selves the intellectual mind is capable of creating to become One with the universe and with our original and divine nature. In less grand terms, perhaps we need to ask how we can be really honest with ourselves and follow our instincts to find our unique human mission. How can we step forward when people’s expectations of us are non-existent, and in all probability misguided? How can our true nature thrive if we are entirely dependent on the approval of others, controlled by the dictates and wisdom of the few, expected to just merge into the masses, put on our masks, and stay quiet?self

Feldenkrais was important, and continues to be important to me exactly because he did not rely on other people’s expectations or views, and had the courage to step forward without masks and use his own voice. He was not afraid of criticism or competition because he knew without equivocation that we are each completely unique, so there is no danger of being a carbon copy of someone else. I believe he was motivated to do this from a position of equality with all beings, not tolerating any superior or inferior labels. After all, his passion was self-education leading to re-education, so he therefore had no doubt in his mind that everyone was capable of teaching themselves and changing themselves without leaning on specialists and following others to the letter. It is as if his body-work system could ignite a dampened divine spark and make it burn hot in the unconscious mind.

As mentioned in article 1 (see ref. above) it is curious to reflect on why certain things/people/ideas appeal directly to us, and others do not. As Feldenkrais pointed out, our ancestry, our inheritance down through our lineage, is the part of us we cannot change except by surgical means or brainwashing. It is our DNA on the physical level, which creates a version of the imprints 3original template of our line, and is complete with ‘imprints,’ as they are called by some. Cueing into such imprints is important because they may enable us to pick up on part of our mission and go forward with it, which probably will be of benefit to civilization if we have tested our self-sincerity.

Each individual consciousness fits perfectly into the greater entity like a piece of a giant mosaic: it therefore goes without saying that the whole will be balanced if every part is placed in position. To make your own piece fit is a question of listening to your own heart and following that instead of the expectations of others; of going out in the storm and experiencing it, rather than sitting inside and watching mosaic 3it from a closed room.

Imprints? Propensities? Proclivities? Call them what you may. They exist in all of us, passed down through the spirit of our ancestors and related spirits. Spirit is pure and indestructible energy; aspirations, passions, shortcomings, mistakes, etc., all of these human lessons, are plugged into our DNA blueprint, our karma as Buddhists refer to it. By way of an example, my maternal grandmother was the kindest, most loving of all people I had ever met as a child. I aspired to having the grace and integrity that she had, and to be able one day to have her magical presence. She was a devout Catholic all her life, but she revealed to me before she died that there were some aspects of the Catholic religion she was not in agreement with. This disturbed me, a concern given my closeness to her which imprinted itself on my unconscious mind.heresy

 

Thirty years later I had the incredible opportunity to go to live in the Eastern Pyrenees, high in the mountains between France and Spain, in western Europe. As I settled into my new life in a deserted medieval village there, I could sense a deep and fascinating energy. The Cathars, (ref:https://lindenthorp.wordpress.com/category/interfaith/the-cathars-the-church-of-love/)  a medieval sect of authentic Christians, had lived in the mountain fortresses all around built originally as wartime refuges; They were being hotly persecuted by the Roman Catholic Church of Rome, my grandmother’s religion, as heretics, and were eventually eradicated by being burned at the stake en mass.

Although very little is known about them in detail, I could feel such pure strong energy in the region, and so I spent a lot of time visiting the famous sites so that I could absorb more of it. I lived there for about 6 years on and off and then returned to my country of birth. Then, I had a series of haunting dreams about my beloved grandmother and the Cathars, and realised there was a connection. During this period, I was involved in the Buddhist teachings having moved on from Christianity, my birth religion. But I could never forget the Cathars and went on researching them, while continuing to have the same kind of troubling dreams.

Montsegur

Montsegur

Some years later, I received various communications about the Cathars by email, which was rather unexpected. One of them really startled me because it announced the dates of the Cathar revival predicted before the remaining Cathars were destroyed, 700 years in the future. New Cathars would be born on certain dates in the mid 20th century, and to my amazement, my birthdate fell within the predictions. Again many dreams and visions in meditation made it clear to me that my grandmother had been a Cathar, not a Catholic, and that I connected with that essence in her. The creed of the Cathars, the Church of Love, (ref) is something I have always dreamed of being reinstated as the single world creed, as I believe it once was when we were truly sacred beings. This was an imprint, which I was determined to examine, to test, beyond all logic, so I can carry my legacy forwards while spreading the Cathar mission and bringing hope to our troubled world.

Feldenkrais was passionate about education, and in particular self-education. As I mentioned, the unconscious mind, the vast mass of the iceberg below the water, is what we need to touch if we are to learn deeply. Again, I find an analogy with spiritual practice here; we may read many exalted texts, attend lectures, fill our minds with as much information as we can about the unconscious mindcreed or master we have been drawn to, but until we are touched, moved in our depths in some inexplicable way, way beyond logic or reason, then we cannot assimilate those theories and knowledge and apply them in our every day lives. They remain in the domain of the mind, not of the heart.

Another way of putting this is that the map we may look at of a region or country is not the actual territory. It is a representation, merely an interpretation of that physical location. Until we experience the place first-hand, until we interact with its energies, we cannot say we ‘know’ it. This experiential aspect of learning is so important, and largely not taken into account in mainstream education. If we are motivated to feel what we are learning directly instead of at the side, in a meta way, then there is a great chance it will genuinely touch us and rearrange something in our unconsciousness. The unconscious mind is a vast storehouse of all our experiences, our conditionings governed by culture, gender, age, social rank, etc. We cannot change it directly except by hypnosis, brainwashing, lobotomy, and other radical means, but through subtle and indirect means as through meditation, appealing to the higher self, body-work, art and artistic expression, etc., it is definitely possible.

architects of our worldFeldenkrais through the notion of re-education, along with Alexander and Krishnamurti, believed that by putting aside our attachment to conditioning, going beyond all barriers imposed on us by societies, organized groups, and consortiums, we could strip away the multiple layers until we uncovered our true nature, and allowed our divine spark to burst into flame once more. Feldenkrais termed this ‘organic nature.

When describing the general education system’s dual function of suppressing non-conformist tendencies and the discarding of spontaneous desires, he says:

‘Every aspiration and spontaneous desire is subjected to stringent internal criticism lest they reveal the individual’s organic nature.’ (P6,Awareness Through Movement, Penguin,1972)

An example, which is close to my heart as a teacher, concerns the methods employed of teaching/learning English in Japan where I live and work. Traditionally, English has been taught here using the translation method, ie. words, phrases and sentences are translated doggedly into Japanese, the emphasis being on meaning through the medium of Japanese. But how can we ever expect to learn a foreign language if we translate everything into our mother tongue? Once we are no longer beginners and we have a basic vocabulary and rudimentary grammar, translationwe have to experience the language we are trying to learn, for and of itself, directly, avoiding translation but employing synonyms, of which English has a huge number.

The translated language is theoretical, like the map mentioned above: it is not the actual territory of that language. So, until students of English can experience success in communicating or reading or writing in English without a Japanese map, there will be no true experience of that language. Direct experience of a language, its culture, its context, the way it feels, is the only way that language will truly be integrated into the unconscious mind. And this is why studying in English-speaking countries is the most effective way for total immersion in English.

It is the feelings about and awareness of what we are leaning that truly touch us, not the subject matter itself. With body work, the technicalities of anatomy and physiology do not matter as much as the more invisible aspects of the experience of that learning.

In terms of learning, it is also important that we immerse ourselves in the process of learning, or acquiring whatever we are trying to acquire, rather than craning our necks to see the process 1results or the proofs of success. The process is akin to focused listening, whereas the results are more visual in quality. Process is becoming absorbed deeply in the moment as we are when we are truly listening, no matter how long it takes. When we are totally absorbed in the process, there is nothing else. We become that whichdialogue we are learning, not separate from it, not a consumer. This lack of separation means we are empty of ego, empty of the self. What we actually absorb in this way can be wide, can be true wisdom, not simply subject matter. Such an absorption is like meditation, a dipping into the vast invisible dimensions; in fact, the mystical.

A human body carrying out a series of carefully worked-out exercises in a totally absorbed state, empty of meaning or logic, not conscious of results or outcomes, it surely a mystical episode. We can touch the invisible, the magical, we can take our places in the universe, we can envision ourselves moving freely without effort on the face of the Earth, under the infinite sky, becoming the human link between the planet and the Universe. Humans, endowed with divine love and divine missions, surely fill this role so perfectly if we have not lost touch with our true, our original, our ‘organic’ nature. This is the way of ‘no mind,’ which forms the foundation of oriental martial arts and philosophies, and with the disengagement of the intellectual mind, which creates its own reality continually, we return to our state of pure energy motivated by the essence of unconditional love.

healing 4Although never referred to as such because of his scientific orientation, Feldenkrais’s body-work system and his theories about man and movement, bring about healing. This is an indirect benefit of his guided processes, which are logically reasoned and substantiated to be palatable to the scientific community and to entrenched mask wearers. But in terms of deep change and attention, a healing definitely takes place. Incidentally, the word ‘healing’ comes from an ancient German/Dutch origin and means ‘whole.’ In other words, Feldenkrais was addressing the whole person, beyond any restrictions imposed by society or nationality, and beyond any limited intellectual concepts such as time or space. He was devoted to easing people’s physical condition, but part of that easing, given the oppressive and controlling societies we are forced to inhabit for economic and survival purposes, is the realization of our potential beyond what is required by society. In other words, to make our original nature shine so that we can live with joy and have the courage to be completely sincere with ourselves first and then with others.

Many urbanists have become so materialistic, so attached to everything that we believe makes us who we are, status, gender, wealth, etc., that we regard nature and those who live in harmony with nature as uncivilized, backward, or handicapped in some way. We have reinvented ourselves as a species apart because we have succeeded in taming nature and harnessing it for our specific purposes. In the act of taming nature, we have not only damaged the organism of the Earth and its ecosystems, but destroyed the ancient wisdom of indigenous peoples. In this severing with the inheritance of the Earth, the average person has reduced their range of human skills, focusing only on gross intellectual and ‘success’ skills, and ignoring as scary or voodoo those utilizing the subtle energies, such as prayer and meditation, telepathy, healing, alternative medical practices, shamanism, etc.

In fact, Feldenkrais himself, in the introduction to his major work, Awareness Through Movement (1972), admits that his opus is addressed to the average man, adding,

…..that is, to the man who thinks none of it concerns him.’(p9)

indifferentArticle 3:  F.M.Alexander:  Master of Stillness