Global Resilience Solutions > Category:haragei

Warriorship: Historical Archery

 

You may have seen this guy on Youtube. Lars has clearly spent years of dedicated practice developing a very particular set of historical archery skills- those used for rapid fire and at relatively close ranges. There is only one way to develop skills like this- correct practice and constant repetition. The “correct practice” part came from reading sources on combat archery to come up with something distinctly more realistic than the sport archery of today.

Historical archery is enjoying a revival, especially in places like Hungary, which have particularly distinguished archery traditions. Their method of practicing rapid-fire horse archery, also using a sheaf of arrows held in the hand, is particularly noteworthy. This practice takes them through a 180 degree arc, from virtually straight ahead to the so-called “Parthian shot” at a target behind them.

 

Where these practices focus on speed, Japanese Kyudo, or Zen archery, takes another approach. Rather than developing speed through practicing fast, they develop speed, power and accuracy by practicing slowly. This method is common to a number of Asian martial arts- the more slowly you practice, the more deeply whatever you are doing sinks into your muscle memory, and the faster you will be when speed is required. But more importantly, this method emphasises Hara, the complete single-pointed focus and total alignment of the body’s energy behind each shot. The objective of Zen archery is to hold the bow at the point of highest tension with an empty mind and absolute focus on oneness with the target. When it is time to shoot, it is not the volition of the archer that should loose the arrow. Even though this practice seems monotonous to Westerners, Japanese archers in feudal times were renowned for the power of their bows, the accuracy of their shots and their rapid rate of fire.

 

Correct practice, constant repetition and single-pointed focus are the skills that unite historical archery with the warrior approach to mastering ANY skill, whether in the ancient world or in the modern one. And you can use this same approach to master ANY aspect of life that you wish…

~ Dr. Symeon Rodger


Meditation and Mastering Your Life

After watching the amazing video below, one Youtube viewer appended this saying from Milarepa, perhaps Tibet’s most beloved sage:

If ones tries to vanquish foes in the outer world,
They increase in greater measure.
If one conquers his Self-mind within,
All his foes soon disappear.
~ Milarepa (A tibetan yogi)

So enjoy this beautiful and profound animated video and ask yourself afterward, “How does this apply to MY life?”

To Learn Meditation

…and to begin to taste the incredible experience of life that proficiency in meditation offers to every human being, including you, join me this coming Thursday night at 9pm Eastern / 6pm Pacific, for a special multi-media presentation on:

The Meditation Miracle
4 Steps to Transforming Every Moment into Rock Solid Inner Peace, Health and Happiness
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Thursday October 7 at 9pm Eastern / 6pm Pacific

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Watch your email for further information!
~Dr. Symeon Rodger


Resilience Tip: Now, Cultivate INNER Flexibility

In the previous Resilience Tip we talked about the vital importance of improving your flexibility.  And from what we said there, you may be assuming that “outer” flexibility is physical, while “inner” flexibility is mental.

Nope.  At least, that’s not what I have in mind here.  You see, both are physical and both will greatly improve your ability to adapt to any situation in life.

Outer flexibility consists largely of obvious stretching techniques, such as you see with calisthenics or even much of Yoga – at least the part of Yoga that’s most obvious to the untrained eye.


Inner flexibility uses more sophisticated and less obvious methods to massage your tissue, especially your core body tissue.  It works with qi much more effectively and unifies your mind and body.  And, in the end, it’s even more vital for long term health.


The other great thing about cultivating inner flexibility is that once you’ve learned its methods, you can incorporate them into all your movements all day long, so you don’t need to take time out of your busy schedule to “practice”.  


Now, you might think that outer flexibility is more concerned with limb stretching, while the inner methods target the body’s core.  There’s some truth in that although, strictly speaking, they both target the whole body to some extent.  And both are absolutely necessary for developing superb health, immunity and longevity; it’s just that the inner flexibility methods give you much more bang for the buck.  


The single best method I’ve ever found for building inner flexibility is here:


http://www.harapower.com/

Remember the bottom line: unless you take back control of your body, you have little hope of governing your mind, emotions and spirit, and so total well-being will continue to elude you.


~ Dr. Symeon Rodger


Making Your Life a "Work of Art"

You’re walking through your neighborhood, enjoying the sunshine, the crisp, clean air and the birds. Everything is peaceful and you’re very content…

…and then a diesel truck speeds by, spewing black smoke and leaving you coughing and sputtering for the next 60 seconds.

Sound familiar? We all seek harmony and beauty in our surrounding, but those surroundings are anything but harmonious and beautiful much of the time. All too often, we’re engulfed by noise, air pollution and visual “pollution”. Then it dawns on us that maybe harmony and beauty have never been high on our society’s priority list.

That’s changing, of course, as I outlined in my Special Report called “Gong-Fu” last year. (You can find a copy here: http://bit.ly/4pyuw6).

In Monday’s post we talked about health. In Wednesday’s about spiritual life. In the end, we all realize that it’s harmony and beauty that are the key to both. What does that mean?

It means that we need emotional harmony within ourselves, otherwise both physical health and spiritual life will elude us.

We need tranquility of thought – to bring our thinking processes under our control.

We need a lifestyle that cultivates and builds harmony deliberately on every level.

Now what if there were a way to access the fundamental harmony and beauty of the universe already build into us? What if it was a matter of simply accessing what we’ve buried inside rather than “inventing” anything? That would be much easier, wouldn’t it?

The good news is… that’s the case. Not only do we have a built-in way to access the harmony and beauty of the universe, but that harmony and beauty is already inside, just waiting to be rediscovered.

With the ancient Taoist art of HARA, that’s what students most frequently report – that a whole new universe of profound peace, great beauty and wonderful harmony has just opened up to them.

There’s a Calvin and Hobbs cartoon we loved so much we had it framed. Calvin asks his dad why old pictures are always in black and white. His dad mischievously replies that the world only turned color a few decades ago.

That experience of feeling your world turn from black and white to color describes the feeling of practicing HARA. It also explains why HARA is the very foundation of both Tai Chi and Qi Gong. Must have been pretty successful 😉

You can learn more about HARA here:

http://www.warriorcoachinginternational.com/hara.html

For anyone who grabs a copy of this unique course before Sunday at midnight, I’ll toss in a free copy of The 5 Pillars of Life as well.

~ Dr. Symeon Rodger


Becoming a "Hollow Bone"

Hi all,

Just a couple of days ago I was teaching a University class on Native American Spirituality. We were talking about the famous Sioux medicine man, Frank Fools Crow, and how he approached his spiritual path and his healing of others.

Fools Crow said that since the power that healed himself and others wasn’t his own power but just came through him, he first had to make himself like a “hollow bone” (i.e. a tube), so that the Power from on high wasn’t obstructed or blocked.

To do this, Fools Crow used some Sioux rituals for expelling unwanted thoughts, energies and emotional content, and for refocusing himself on his relationship to this Power that comes from “Wakan Tanka” (the Sioux name for God).

This way, he noted, the medicine men and holy men of the Sioux typically lived longer and happier lives than most of the people around them. And, true to form, Fools Crow passed away in 1989 in his 100th year of life.

How to Become a “Hollow Bone”:

Obviously, learning Sioux rituals is highly impractical for anyone outside that culture. Fortunately there are alternatives.

We all know that if we make our happiness dependent on our circumstances, life will always seem like a struggle. And we can pretty easily understand that if our minds are full of negative emotional states, we’re the opposite of a “hollow bone”. Instead we’re a blocked pipe, and the energy of God can’t penetrate.

That’s the essence of the teachings of the “Authentic Ancient Traditions” I described in The 5 Pillars of Life. They all teach methods for becoming a “hollow bone” – that is, for emptying your self-concern and entering into inner silence – because human happiness depends on that.

So exactly HOW do you do it?? Yes, the intention to do so is vital, but how do you defeat your habits that create the opposite result?

Centuries ago, Taoist masters came up with their own method, one that’s simple, direct and can be used by anyone. When they took it to Japan, the Japanese eventually named it “Hara-gei”, the “art of the belly”.

By doing a makeover of your breathing, posture and movement, and then combining them with your mental attention, the ancient masters came up with a fool-proof way to return your entire mind-body organism to its natural state – a state of positive emotion, where no thoughts arise to disturb you… unless you decide to think about something.

This method was so powerful that the famous Chinese physician Sun Simiao – who himself lived over a hundred years in good health, wrote: “Tranquility then attains to concentration, and the body continues to live for years eternal.”

To learn more about this amazing method, you can go here:

http://www.warriorcoachinginternational.com/hara.html

This course is, so far as I know, the ONLY one in the entire English speaking world that actually shows you how to master HARA step-by-step.

And for anyone who grabs a copy this week, I’ll throw in a free copy of The 5 Pillars of Life.

~ Dr. Symeon Rodger




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