philosophic inquiry into life and meaning

...if truth were not for man the desire for truth would not be as a burning unrest in his heart...

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Roulette Wheel"Chance favors the prepared mind." I saw this quote in a book on martial arts (Warrior Mind by Dick Morgan) and it got me thinking. Luck improves with practice. It's the same kind of sentiment expressed in countless volumes of spiritual literature: do something!


When the mind becomes synchronous with it's activity, there is a certain kind of feeling which allows a 'flow' or a kind of 'hands off' moving into perfection. This happens to runners and everything is perfect and the act of running is like floating or flying through space (yet you are at the center, motionless). It happens in video games, you're clicking and moving your character around and somewhat surprised at what's going on, it was too good for what you could have done trying to think through it all. It can happen in the spiritual search as well. With countless spiritual practices, meditation, reading, prayer, fasting, watching awareness, to name a few, if you become adept at any one you can see a pattern in the mind and body as to what was once separate from it becomes no longer so distant, the object and the seeker fuse.


A certain amount of energy and effort is needed to peak at this 'high' point of practice and many seek out this state. But the nature of all states is to change and it is no different here. Practice even in the low states may actually lead to a high state. In fact, usually when there is great opposition, then is the time when progress is made and steps toward the goal are taken.


And this happens when we're caught off guard, not thinking about it. The practice is happening, forgotten is the method, but we're still acutely aware of what's going on. Take driving your car, for instance. You're not constantly thinking about checking mirrors, turning the wheel or if your foot is on the right pedal (or the left?). It just happens. Just like that. Yet this doesn't come without the effort that was put into learning how to drive. Doing something like driving enough and it will be automatic.


Yet the spiritual search is something different. Everything is already automatic, already and always. Yet we don't see that because that is not the natural pattern that we've lived with for so long. Our thinking and identification with doing presumes that what happened was because of us. In fact, it may be in spite of us or without regard to the one doing.


Enlightenment has been described (by Richard Rose and perhaps others) as 'becoming accident prone.' This is referring to enlightenment being like a lightening bolt and we practice to try to get hit by a seemingly random encounter with the infinite. Eddie Traversa in his blog termed practice as co-related but not a determinate of realization. Yet it all may increase one's odds of finding out something in the end. Something of Ultimate Value beyond the minds thinking and conceptualizing.


May we all be prepared.