Saturday, February 18

learning to miss

I have only a little time today. Forgive me if this seems a bit abrupt, but Gena’s tiny, delicate, beautiful kitty Lylune is really sick. This is stolen time right here, and there are priorities to attend to. And yet, I have to put some thoughts down. It's a precious responsibility - to catch the thoughts, the moments, before they pass.

I played hockey for the first time in a week yesterday. The rib is healing. Not healed, but healing. I give major props to my Yoga instructor, Julie. And Gena. They’re both a bit of magic. Not only am I healing faster than I would have hoped, but I moved better than I have in such a long time. It was fun to feel a difference, even if I can’t see any measurable improvement in flexibility. S’okay – performance is more important by far than appearance.

Tomorrow nightI grade for my fourth kyu (orange belt) in Ki-Aikido. I’ve said before that the levels leading up to first Dan are kind of (extremely) secondary to me. And yet, it’s fun. Having to perform – the test – is a nice reinforcement. My friend Sam will be grading for his fifth kyu (it goes in descending order towards first dan, then up from there), and I’ll get to give him my yellow belt, passing it on as it were. That part will be cool. ‘Course, I have to pass first.

On the yoga front, yeah – amazing. Surreal, actually. And, both predictable and cliché, the biggest bonuses aren’t even the physical. Like finding the fullest, best expression of a pose, I just feel more… grounded. In Aikido, we call it ‘the one point’, that place where you rest into the center and feel as solid as mountains, as flexible as the wind.

Both Aikido and yoga are helping me brush up to that place more often, more consistently. Not actually get there. Yet. But I can sorta feel an increasing proximity. I picture it as an event horizon that I’m being inevitably pulled towards. It’s a Rubicon that I hope to be in for the rest of my life, constantly crossing it, unable to turn back, but never too worried about getting anywhere beyond the act of committing. That place, between the act of jumping and the need to land, seems magical to me.

It was Douglas Adams that said the secret to flying is to throw your self at the ground as hard as you can, and then miss. I’m learning to, aspiring to, trying to miss.

Also, I found this. Not a music video, but if you have few minutes, it’s the most amazing Lion Dance I’ve ever seen, part martial arts, part Cirque de Soleil, part anti-gravity demonstration…

And, because we all need music: