Author Topic: Zenarchist Swordsmen  (Read 18177 times)

Telarus

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Zenarchist Swordsmen
« on: December 04, 2008, 06:59:08 pm »
I'm going to use this thread to store short Zen and Zenarchist written pieces. Feel free to contribute or comment.

Quote
If your mind is fixed on a certain spot,
it will be seized by that spot, and
no activities can be performed efficiently.
Not to fix your mind anywhere is essential.
Not fixed anywhere, the mind is everywhere.
The Original Mind is like water which flows freely,
whereas the deluded mind is like ice.
There is a passage in the Diamond Sutra that says:
“The mind should operate without abiding anywhere.”

- Takuan (1573-1645)

I have experienced the reality of this while swordfighting. If I focus on one thing (arc of opponents blade, or his center-of-gravity-wieght-shifting, or my stance) the mind starts to get hyperfixated on that 'point' and starts editing out sense data (my peripherial vision dims, my hearing edits out ambient sound, etc). this has a serious negative effect when you're trying to stop someone from cutting off a limb or killing you.

This is also the concept that makes television so insidiously addictive.
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Bebek Sincap Ratatosk

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Re: Zenarchist Swordsmen
« Reply #1 on: December 04, 2008, 07:15:49 pm »

I have experienced the reality of this while swordfighting. If I focus on one thing (arc of opponents blade, or his center-of-gravity-wieght-shifting, or my stance) the mind starts to get hyperfixated on that 'point' and starts editing out sense data (my peripherial vision dims, my hearing edits out ambient sound, etc). this has a serious negative effect when you're trying to stop someone from cutting off a limb or killing you.

Very true. I find that focus in swordfighting is very different from focus in circuit building. If' I'm soldering something I'm focused on the wire, the solder, the iron tip and nothing else... If I focus like that in fencing, I die. In fancing, the focus is more like an alertness... the former seems like a tight beam flashlight, while the other seems like a broader spotlight on my opponent, rather than just his sword tip, or my dagger, or if my pace is right, etc.

In practice, all of those are important to focus on, but in the fight, its almost as if I have to rely on the robot to run those things, while I'm alert to the opponent and what they're up to.

Nice quote Telarus.
- I don't see race. I just see cars going around in a circle.

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fomenter

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Re: Zenarchist Swordsmen
« Reply #2 on: December 04, 2008, 07:40:23 pm »
this reminds me of a sci-fi trilogy i read about sword fighting mind creatures on some planet colony, lots of mind of no mind poetry kones , i cant remember or find the books though and it is irritating me

i think the creature they fought were mushin (or a variation of the word)
« Last Edit: December 04, 2008, 07:46:21 pm by F.M.E »
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hmroogp

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Re: Zenarchist Swordsmen
« Reply #3 on: December 04, 2008, 07:55:06 pm »
Also: Example of failing to focus correctly:

http://www.principiadiscordia.com/forum/index.php?topic=18730.0

 :lulz:
- I don't see race. I just see cars going around in a circle.

"Back in my day, crazy meant something. Now everyone is crazy" - Charlie Manson

Telarus

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Re: Zenarchist Swordsmen
« Reply #4 on: December 09, 2008, 12:28:27 am »
Quote
In every human heart, there is a Book of Truth, bound with worn-out strings and torn bamboo-papers. In every human heart, there is also a Symphony of Nature, drowned out by sensual song and voluptuous dance. One must sweep away all externals and search inward in order to experience joy.

- Hung Ying-ming (1596)

The "strings and paper" refer to our overly reused abstract symbolic and linguistic languages, they are worn out so toss them away. Our Symphony is drowned out by sensual song and voluptuous dance. These are the rhythm of personal narrative and the sensuous but static dance of Karma. Sweep these away to rock out to your Original Beat.
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Cain

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Re: Zenarchist Swordsmen
« Reply #5 on: December 09, 2008, 10:55:59 am »
I have a collection of Zen/martial arts quotes.  Here are a few:

Quote
"To practice Zen or the Martial Arts, you must live intensely, wholeheartedly, without reserve — as if you might die in the next instant."

- Taisen Deshimaru


Quote
"The Way of the Sword and the Way of Zen are identical, for they have the same purpose — that of killing the ego."

- Yamada Jirokichi


Quote
"To confuse the indivisible nature of reality with the conceptual pigeonholes of language is the basic ignorance from which Zen seeks to free us. The ultimate answers to existence are not to be found in intellectual concepts and philosophies, however sophisticated, but rather in a level of direct nonconceptual experience."

- from Games Zen Masters Play, by Robert Sohl and Audrey Carr (p. 15)


Quote
"So, instead of telling us what the problem is, Zen insists that our whole trouble is just our failure to realize that there is no problem. And, of course, this means that there is no solution, either."

- Bruce Lee


Quote
"When the swordsman stands against his opponent, he is not to think of the opponent, nor of his enemy’s sword movements. He just stands there with his sword which, forgetful of all technique, is ready only to follow the dictates of the unconscious. The man has effaced himself as the wielder of the sword. When he strikes, it is not the man but the sword in the hand of the unconscious that strikes."

- Takuan

Telarus

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Re: Zenarchist Swordsmen
« Reply #6 on: December 10, 2008, 01:37:00 am »
Love the Takuan quote. The others are pretty damn good too, thanks!
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fomenter

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Re: Zenarchist Swordsmen
« Reply #7 on: December 10, 2008, 02:33:58 am »
this reminds me of a sci-fi trilogy i read about sword fighting mind creatures on some planet colony, lots of mind of no mind poetry kones , i cant remember or find the books though and it is irritating me

i think the creature they fought were mushin (or a variation of the word)

OK this is making me batty i can't remember this book's title or author, any one know it? or know how to search a book from vague recollections? i would recommend it based on what i remember but i read it as a teenager, my impression of its quality may be a bit iffy..i was going to look it up and quote some poetry kones from it here in this thread but  :argh!: brain fart
"So she says to me, do you wanna be a BAD boy? And I say YEAH baby YEAH! Surf's up space ponies! I'm makin' gravy... Without the lumps. HAAA-ha-ha-ha!"


hmroogp

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Re: Zenarchist Swordsmen
« Reply #8 on: December 10, 2008, 02:50:31 am »
pbthhhhheee fart released, the author is Dennis Schmidt the books are wayfarer, kensho, satori and wanderer

Back Cover:

According to every reading it was a paradise planet- a warm and fecund world far more desirable than the teeming, polluted warrens of the planet-city that Earth had become. Yet when the last of the one-way trans-ports had landed its cargo of Pilgrims, the men of Earth were to learn of a danger that no machine could detect, and against which no machine could defend them-the Mushin, mental entities that stimulate and amplify the dark streak of violence that lies near the core of every human being.

Seven generations would pass before a descendant of the scattered remnant of the original colonists would be ready to face the power of the Mushin. But first he would have to learn to wield the weapon that is no weapon-and that only where there is no Will, is there a Way...

His name is Jerome. This is his story. He is the WAYFARER

Dennis Schmidt has written a fast-paced, tightly plotted adventure novel that skillfully blends traditional science-fiction themes with martial arts and meditation. But Way-farer is more than that: it is a novel that may well change the way you view reality itself.
« Last Edit: December 10, 2008, 03:05:58 am by F.M.E »
"So she says to me, do you wanna be a BAD boy? And I say YEAH baby YEAH! Surf's up space ponies! I'm makin' gravy... Without the lumps. HAAA-ha-ha-ha!"


hmroogp

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Re: Zenarchist Swordsmen
« Reply #9 on: December 10, 2008, 03:25:45 am »
I have a collection of Zen/martial arts quotes.  Here are a few:

Quote
"To practice Zen or the Martial Arts, you must live intensely, wholeheartedly, without reserve — as if you might die in the next instant."

- Taisen Deshimaru


Quote
"The Way of the Sword and the Way of Zen are identical, for they have the same purpose — that of killing the ego."

- Yamada Jirokichi
Wow Bruce Lee's got some zen chops.


Quote
"To confuse the indivisible nature of reality with the conceptual pigeonholes of language is the basic ignorance from which Zen seeks to free us. The ultimate answers to existence are not to be found in intellectual concepts and philosophies, however sophisticated, but rather in a level of direct nonconceptual experience."

- from Games Zen Masters Play, by Robert Sohl and Audrey Carr (p. 15)


Quote
"So, instead of telling us what the problem is, Zen insists that our whole trouble is just our failure to realize that there is no problem. And, of course, this means that there is no solution, either."

- Bruce Lee


Quote
"When the swordsman stands against his opponent, he is not to think of the opponent, nor of his enemy’s sword movements. He just stands there with his sword which, forgetful of all technique, is ready only to follow the dictates of the unconscious. The man has effaced himself as the wielder of the sword. When he strikes, it is not the man but the sword in the hand of the unconscious that strikes."

- Takuan
▓▓▓▓▓▓▓▓▓▓▓▓▓▓▓   I\'ve subracted eight from tons of things.<br /><br />CANNA NUCCA GET A NAME CHANGE HURRR

Telarus

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Re: Zenarchist Swordsmen
« Reply #10 on: December 10, 2008, 06:02:08 am »
"When you cease trying to control and manipulate your experience, meditation spontaneously happens." -(The Impact of Awakening, pg 23)

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Adyashanti
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Richter

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Re: Zenarchist Swordsmen
« Reply #11 on: December 11, 2008, 04:55:59 pm »

I have experienced the reality of this while swordfighting. If I focus on one thing (arc of opponents blade, or his center-of-gravity-wieght-shifting, or my stance) the mind starts to get hyperfixated on that 'point' and starts editing out sense data (my peripherial vision dims, my hearing edits out ambient sound, etc). this has a serious negative effect when you're trying to stop someone from cutting off a limb or killing you.

Very true. I find that focus in swordfighting is very different from focus in circuit building. If' I'm soldering something I'm focused on the wire, the solder, the iron tip and nothing else... If I focus like that in fencing, I die. In fancing, the focus is more like an alertness... the former seems like a tight beam flashlight, while the other seems like a broader spotlight on my opponent, rather than just his sword tip, or my dagger, or if my pace is right, etc.

In practice, all of those are important to focus on, but in the fight, its almost as if I have to rely on the robot to run those things, while I'm alert to the opponent and what they're up to.

Nice quote Telarus.

I find it's helpful to cultivate a "Thousand Yard Stare" when I'm at the swordplay.  Look at EVERYTHING at once, evenly, without focusing on any one point.  It's kind of like setting your eyes to pick up any motion, but not focus in directly on it.
This is effective both for seeing motions that a single pointed awareness would miss, as well as keeping your opponent from seeing where you're staring. 
To them it looks like you've "glazed over" or "gone away", which some find unsettling.
You can choose to stare at a unique part of them, (ex: leg), and then strike somewhere different. 
Anyone ever think about how Richter inhabits the same reality as you and just scream and scream and scream, but in a good way?   :lulz:

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Cain

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Re: Zenarchist Swordsmen
« Reply #12 on: December 11, 2008, 04:58:54 pm »
I've always found that easy.  Since I'm somewhat short sighted anyway, I suspect my eyes and brain compensate for lack of definition and clarity at distance with focusing more on picking up movements.  Or I just practiced sparring too much.  Either way, it seems something I can very easily slip into.

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Re: Zenarchist Swordsmen
« Reply #13 on: December 11, 2008, 05:09:58 pm »
Same here, I'm pretty blind without the glasses, and they don't fit inside my helm.  (I've got contacts, but still not sure I like playing with them, I do OK as a "blindfighter")

I think I first noticed it working at the summer camp.  We'd take shift being supplementary lifegaurds at the pool, and I found myself scanning passively for panicked movement or sound. 
I did the same when watching groups of kids at the program I worked at, and the clinicians thought I had symptoms of PTSD :lulz:
Anyone ever think about how Richter inhabits the same reality as you and just scream and scream and scream, but in a good way?   :lulz:

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Telarus

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Re: Zenarchist Swordsmen
« Reply #14 on: December 11, 2008, 06:42:18 pm »
SNIP'D

Very true. I find that focus in swordfighting is very different from focus in circuit building. If' I'm soldering something I'm focused on the wire, the solder, the iron tip and nothing else... If I focus like that in fencing, I die. In fancing, the focus is more like an alertness... the former seems like a tight beam flashlight, while the other seems like a broader spotlight on my opponent, rather than just his sword tip, or my dagger, or if my pace is right, etc.

In practice, all of those are important to focus on, but in the fight, its almost as if I have to rely on the robot to run those things, while I'm alert to the opponent and what they're up to.

Nice quote Telarus.

I find it's helpful to cultivate a "Thousand Yard Stare" when I'm at the swordplay.  Look at EVERYTHING at once, evenly, without focusing on any one point.  It's kind of like setting your eyes to pick up any motion, but not focus in directly on it.
This is effective both for seeing motions that a single pointed awareness would miss, as well as keeping your opponent from seeing where you're staring. 
To them it looks like you've "glazed over" or "gone away", which some find unsettling.
You can choose to stare at a unique part of them, (ex: leg), and then strike somewhere different. 


The "Thousand Yard Stare" seems a good metaphor for the technique.

This reminds me of a Ninjutsu technique that I taught to JohnnyBrainwash on the way down to the last Kallisticon. Basically, to prevent you from going "nightblind" you have to change how you are physically using your eyes at night. Most of the time (esp. in daylight) it's more economical to make very small movements with the head and to make much 'larger' movements with the eyes, so that the object of focus is in the center of your field of vision.

This works well because the center of the retina (the fovea) contains only Cones (color sensitivity). At night, this usually means things in the center of the visual feild become 'lost' or 'blacked out'. As there are less Rods(brightness sensitivity) near the center of the eye, and as those Rods can become fatigued from overuse (straining to make out details in the dark), the normal daytime way of looking at things becomes useless (and a liability in combat/sneakery).

The solution that the Ninjutsu schools came up with (and this was before they had a good idea of how the eye was structured, mind you), was to lock the gaze forward in the head (the "Thousand Yard Stare"), and then swing the head left and right to allow the peripheral Rods a greater chance to capture the faint reflected light.

This explanation will be worthless unless you actually try it at night.

http://hyperphysics.phy-astr.gsu.edu/Hbase/vision/retina.html
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