Author Topic: Zenarchist Swordsmen  (Read 18172 times)

Honey

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Re: Zenarchist Swordsmen
« Reply #15 on: December 14, 2008, 03:42:55 pm »
Zen of Sarcasm

1. Do not walk behind me, for I may not lead. Do not walk ahead of me, for I may not follow. Do not walk beside me either. Just pretty much leave me alone.

2. The journey of a thousand miles begins with a broken fan belt and leaky tire.

3. It's always darkest before dawn. So if you're going to steal your neighbor’s newspaper, that’s the time to do it.

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5. Always remember that you're unique. Just like everyone else.

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7. If you think nobody cares if you're alive, try missing a couple of car payments.

8. Before you criticize someone, you should walk a mile in their shoes. That way, when you criticize them, you're a mile away and you have their shoes.

9. If at first you don't succeed, skydiving is probably not for you.

10. Give a man a fish and he will eat for a day. Teach him how to fish, and he will sit in a boat and drink beer all day.

11. If you lend someone $20 and never see that person again, it was probably a wise investment.

12. If you tell the truth, you don't have to remember anything.

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(Dunno who said these)

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Telarus

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Re: Zenarchist Swordsmen
« Reply #16 on: December 15, 2008, 12:14:59 am »
 :lulz: Thanks for adding to the thread, Honey!

Quote
When the wind blows through the scattered bamboos, they do not hold its sound after it has gone. When the wild geese fly over a cold lake, it does not retain their shadows after they have passed. So the mind of the superior person begins to work only when an event occurs; and it becomes a void again when the matter ends.

- Hung Ying-ming 1596

Speaks for itself, really.
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ternechto

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Re: Zenarchist Swordsmen
« Reply #17 on: December 15, 2008, 01:46:29 am »
Quote
12. If you tell the truth, you don't have to remember anything.

This one seems kind of sage-ish.

Quote
8. Before you criticize someone, you should walk a mile in their shoes. That way, when you criticize them, you're a mile away and you have their shoes.

:lulz:

Richter

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Re: Zenarchist Swordsmen
« Reply #18 on: December 16, 2008, 05:21:57 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


Going beyond a technique of how to use your eyes, I should have also commented on the mental aspect of this.  It's more often described annecdotally, but first person accounts regard it as a state of "no mind" (mental processes only being receptive, not reflective, living in the moment).  One teacher of mine decribed an SCA match where he ceased caring how his opponent circled or approached him, there was only certainty that he would strike.

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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Re: Zenarchist Swordsmen
« Reply #19 on: December 16, 2008, 09:36:21 pm »
Exactly Ritchter,

"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

Have you read the "What is Chi?" thread, we went over some no-mind theory in there.
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Bebek Sincap Ratatosk

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Re: Zenarchist Swordsmen
« Reply #20 on: December 16, 2008, 09:54:08 pm »
So given this, it makes a couple old masters moves make even more sense... specifically I'm thinking of the "Slope" and the "Compass" steps in fencing.

These both take the person out of the general range of a straight forward stare as discussed above.

If we imagine two fencers facing each other, right foot slightly forward, if you were standing on top of a clock, the right foot would be at 1 and the left at about 10 or 10:30.

A slope pace moves the right foot forward and angled away from the opponent. This places the fencer under the normal thrust and most of the attack takes place far to the left of the defender, almost outside the peripheral vision.

A compass step begins from the same position, with one foot acting as the point of the compass. The fencer pivots on either the right foot (placing him forward and to the left of the opponent) or the left foot (placing the attack forward and to the right of the opponent).

Both of these make use of at least two principles. First, they move the body out of the way of a direct thrust or cut. Second  they place the attack coming from a position several degress left or right of the opponent, where defence is traditionally weaker (to the side and under the sword arm, to the side and under the dagger/buckler arm). Now I wonder if placing the attacker at the edge of peripheral vision might be useful against a broad stare...
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Re: Zenarchist Swordsmen
« Reply #21 on: December 16, 2008, 11:48:03 pm »

Quote
When the wind blows through the scattered bamboos, they do not hold its sound after it has gone. When the wild geese fly over a cold lake, it does not retain their shadows after they have passed. So the mind of the superior person begins to work only when an event occurs; and it becomes a void again when the matter ends.

- Hung Ying-ming 1596

Speaks for itself, really.

Because amnesiacs get along GREAT in life!

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Re: Zenarchist Swordsmen
« Reply #22 on: December 17, 2008, 12:34:14 am »
It is one kind of meditation to be focused on a single point until everything melts away, another to be alert but not focused on anything in particular.  The former is not so useful for swordplay, but both are worth exploring.

Richter

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Re: Zenarchist Swordsmen
« Reply #23 on: December 17, 2008, 01:57:05 pm »
Exactly Ritchter,

"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

Have you read the "What is Chi?" thread, we went over some no-mind theory in there.

I'll try to avoid prev. covered points then, but I am enthusiastic about discussing the Meditation / Martial / Ritual / Psychological / Medical areas of crossover. :)  (Since these SEEM like only different frames of reference for describing the same overall effects.)

So given this, it makes a couple old masters moves make even more sense... specifically I'm thinking of the "Slope" and the "Compass" steps in fencing.

These both take the person out of the general range of a straight forward stare as discussed above.

If we imagine two fencers facing each other, right foot slightly forward, if you were standing on top of a clock, the right foot would be at 1 and the left at about 10 or 10:30.

A slope pace moves the right foot forward and angled away from the opponent. This places the fencer under the normal thrust and most of the attack takes place far to the left of the defender, almost outside the peripheral vision.

A compass step begins from the same position, with one foot acting as the point of the compass. The fencer pivots on either the right foot (placing him forward and to the left of the opponent) or the left foot (placing the attack forward and to the right of the opponent).

Both of these make use of at least two principles. First, they move the body out of the way of a direct thrust or cut. Second  they place the attack coming from a position several degress left or right of the opponent, where defence is traditionally weaker (to the side and under the sword arm, to the side and under the dagger/buckler arm). Now I wonder if placing the attacker at the edge of peripheral vision might be useful against a broad stare...

I do something similar in the heavy fighting with sword blows that are done at odd angles to the body / vision (Still requiring proper range and footwork to set up :wink: )  Both using unusual angles of attack and setting them up when you aren't directly facing an opponent (necessary for some), can really throw people.  (I was once told I "made a sword come out of nowhere" :oops:)


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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Richter

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Re: Zenarchist Swordsmen
« Reply #24 on: December 17, 2008, 01:58:23 pm »
It is one kind of meditation to be focused on a single point until everything melts away, another to be alert but not focused on anything in particular.  The former is not so useful for swordplay, but both are worth exploring.

That all depends.  Your single point of awareness, does it have a size? 
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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Brotep

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Re: Zenarchist Swordsmen
« Reply #25 on: December 17, 2008, 04:18:30 pm »
No.

Richter

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Re: Zenarchist Swordsmen
« Reply #26 on: December 17, 2008, 04:35:38 pm »
Then that single point can be whatever you need it to, as encompassing or specific as you want the point to be.
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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Brotep

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Re: Zenarchist Swordsmen
« Reply #27 on: December 17, 2008, 10:05:25 pm »
I see your point

but am not talking about a spatial point

your senses are not sharper when they're obliterated

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Re: Zenarchist Swordsmen
« Reply #28 on: December 17, 2008, 11:27:44 pm »
Neither  am I. 
What you focus on can be as simple as a number, concept, sound, or a mote of dust, or as complex as an opponent, a whole field, or a nation, as complex as you want to can conceive.  It's all looking at it the same way. 
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 #29 on: December 18, 2008, 01:34:52 am »
The next person to reply had better quote some dead spag.  :argh!:
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