Flow State for Swordsmen

The priest Chung-feng said, “Maintain the mind that releases the mind.”

This saying has two levels of meaning.

The practice of the first is as follows: if you “release” the mind, do not allow it to become fixated when it reaches its destination, but unfailingly make it return. If you strike once with your sword, do not let your mind stop at that strike, but bring your mind back securely to yourself.

The deeper meaning is: in releasing the mind, you let it go where it wishes. “Releasing the mind” means letting it go and not letting it stop anywhere.

The Life-Giving Sword, by Yagyu Munenori

Yagyū Munenori was a 17th Century sword instructor and adviser to the Tokugawa shogunate.

His manual for the Yagyū Shinkage-ryu sword style includes numerous passages outlining the correct frame of mind to hold in combat, and the obstacles to this free-flowing state of focus.

The parallels to flow state are obvious. But we don’t need to be swordsmen fighting to the death to cultivate a flow state.

His book contains many admonitions to not obsess, not let the mind stop, not dwell on any particular thought – including the thought of not dwelling!

In everyday life it is the same. We can let go of obsessive focus on any subject and just relax and follow our impulses as they arise and fall seamlessly.

What Abraham-Hicks brings to this equation is that the whole point of flow is to feel good. It’s not meant to feel austere or ponderous. And if it doesn’t feel good to try to flow, then stop trying and just appreciate something in your right-now experience.

Abraham presents alignment as a state where things do flow, but it is nonetheless just a very pleasing point on the spectrum of emotional guidance.

But for some of us it is useful to emphasise the shift in consciousness, not just the improvement in emotion.

So go, feel good, and, if you can, enjoy the lightness and ease of your flow state.

13 thoughts on “Flow State for Swordsmen

  1. So this is the principle I have discovered: When I want to do good, evil is right there with me. For in my inner being I delight in God’s law. But I see another law at work in my body, warring against the law of my mind and holding me captive to the law of sin that dwells within me.

    So then, with my mind I serve the law of God, but with my flesh I serve the law of sin.

    From the Bible🙄

      • For what is bad? Good gone wrong, or something else? It is good
        MISAPPLIED, misconstrued, or used in a SELFISH manner – for the satisfying of a
        desire within self.

        From the Edgar Cayce material

          • Philippians 2:1-30 ESV / 6 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
            So if there is any encouragement in Christ, any comfort from love, any participation in the Spirit, any affection and sympathy, complete my joy by being of the same mind, having the same love, being in full accord and of one mind. Do nothing from rivalry or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves.

            Let each of you look not only to his own interests,
            ,***Do not be so carried away with your image of caring for others that you don’t do things that you are responsible for in terms of taking care of yourself

            but also to the interests of others. Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus

  2. The .author of Hebrews also makes reference to it: “For the word of God is living and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit, and of joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart. And there is no creature hidden from His sight, but all things are naked and open to the eyes of Him to whom we must give account” (Hebrews 4:12-13).

  3. An article in Wikipedia on Chung-feng tell us how he probably thought they could demonstrate his spirituality cut off his little finger on one hand

      • Alleged  self-castrationEdit

        Eusebius claims in his Ecclesiastical History that, as a young man, Origen secretly paid a physician to surgically castrate him, a claim which affected Origen’s reputation for centuries,[45] as demonstrated by these fifteenth-century depictions of Origen castrating himself.

        Eusebius claims that, as a young man, following a literal misreading of Matthew 19:12, in which Jesus is presented as saying “there are eunuchs who have made themselves eunuch for the sake of the kingdom of heaven”, Origen went to a physician and paid him to surgically remove his genitals in order to ensure his reputation as a respectable tutor to young men and women.[38][35][46][47] Eusebius further alleges that Origen privately told Demetrius, the bishop of Alexandria, about the castration and that Demetrius initially praised him for his devotion to God on account of it.[38] Origen, however, never mentions anything about having castrated himself in any of his surviving writings,[38][48] and in his exegesis of this verse in his Commentary on the Gospel of Matthew, written near the end of life, he strongly condemns any literal interpretation of Matthew 19:12,[38] asserting that only an idiot would interpret the passage as advocating literal castration.[38]

        Since the beginning of the twentieth century, some scholars have questioned the historicity of Origen’s self-castration, with many seeing it as a wholesale fabrication.[49][50] Trigg states that Eusebius’ account of Origen’s self-castration is certainly true, because Eusebius, who was an ardent admirer of Origen, yet clearly describes the castration as an act of pure folly, would have had no motive to pass on a piece of information that might tarnish Origen’s reputation unless it was “notorious and beyond question.”[35] Trigg sees Origen’s condemnation of the literal interpretation of Matthew 19:12 as him “tacitly repudiating the literalistic reading he had acted on in his youth.”[35]

        In sharp contrast, McGuckin dismisses Eusebius’s story of Origen’s self-castration as “hardly credible”, seeing it as a deliberate attempt by Eusebius to distract from more serious questions regarding the orthodoxy of Origen’s teachings.[38] McGuckin also states, “We have no indication that the motive of castration for respectability was ever regarded as standard by a teacher of mixed-gender classes.”[38] He adds that Origen’s female students (whom Eusebius lists by name) would have been accompanied by attendants at all times, meaning Origen would have had no good reason to think that anyone would suspect him of impropriety.[38] Henry Chadwick argues that, while Eusebius’s story may be true, it seems unlikely, given that Origen’s exposition of Matthew 19:12 “strongly deplored any literal interpretation of the words”.[51] Instead, Chadwick suggests, “Perhaps Eusebius was uncritically reporting malicious gossip retailed by Origen’s enemies, of whom there were many.”[51] However, many noted historians, such as Peter Brown and William Placher, continue to find no reason to conclude that the story is false.[52] Placher theorizes that, if it is true, it may have followed an episode in which Origen received some raised eyebrows while privately tutoring a woman.[52

  4. Some translations of the two te ching translate as if it says it doesn’t have a name but commenters say the Chinese more likely reads that it can’t be given a name and what I think this means is you can’t give a name to something that has always had a name and that would be the same name that God told Moses Yahweh I am that I am

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