FREE COMMUNITY CALL – Aikido & The Absolute Perspective w/ Dan Messisco (6th dan) & Miles Kessler (6th dan)
The biggest trend in personal development these days is “mindfulness.” The popularity of Mindfulness today is especially interesting because even though it is adopted as a post-modern practice, it has been the core transformative practice of spiritual awakening traditions for millennia. Mindfulness also happens to be the primary awareness training that lies at the heart of Aikido practice. We call it “Zanshin” – the mindfulness of aikido.
The below “Dharma Bite” is an excerpt from a longer dialogue I did with Teja “Fudo Myoo” Bell Roshi for our “Meditation For Aikidoka” online course members. We had such a wonderful dialogue that I decided to share this excerpt here with my blog readers on “From Emptiness To Spontaneity”.
I recently had an “Aiki-Discussion” with Aikido Sensei and Zen Roshi Eran “Junryu” Vardi for my “Meditation For Aikidoka” online course. We had a wide-ranging conversation on Aikido, Meditation, and enlightenment and I was left with the feeling that we had only scratched the surface. I have taken an excerpt from our discussion to share with you here called “Self, Identity, & Flow”.
How intentional are you about your practice and what do you ultimately hope to gain? Do you even consider your desired outcome? In this “Dharma Bite” with Zen teacher and author Diane Musho Hamilton, we discuss how meditation gradually brings you into a greater sense of simplicity in your life. But part of gaining this simplicity is understanding what it means to have few desires, but have great ones.
Do you see defeat as a good or bad? If you’re like most, defeat is something you would probably rather avoid. In fact, in some cases, the thought of defeat can be so unacceptable that you’d rather not participate. But even though defeat may feel completely undesirable, what are the possible upsides to defeat? What did the mystic poet Rainer Maria Rilke mean when he said: “the purpose of life is to be defeated by greater and greater things.”
What is your relationship to conflict? Is it something you prefer to avoid? Or do you like to lean into a good fight? Recently, Diane Musho Hamilton and I held our 3rd Community Call in our “Dharma & The Evolution Of Conflict” 3-part series. In this call, together with the global sangha, Diane & I dove into this very topic as we explored “Embracing Conflict As Path.”
There are no two ways about it; from time to time, life can be tough. Creating the skill to work with life’s arising challenges is essential. Meditation, for example, is a sort of “superpower” that gradually increases your capacity to hold and be with life’s challenges. It will help you to weather the storm. But you also need to develop competencies to skillfully work with, and discover the inherent potential in difficult moments.
On May 1st, 2018, Diane Musho Hamilton and I held our 2nd of 3 Community Calls on “Dharma & The Evolution Of Conflict.” In this call with the global sangha Diane & I explored the topic of “Our Evolutionary Potential.”
The main focus on this blog is the exploration of what it means to “Walk A Higher Path Of Practice.” All “higher paths” are teachings, practices, or methodologies that progressively lead you, in one way or another, to the awakening of spirit absolute. Aikido, meditation, yoga, and the many other disciplines that come out of the spiritual traditions are all examples of higher path practices towards awakening. All such practices for awakening will progressively lead you forward through a process called “the 3 shifts in awakening.”