My mother's funeral was last Sunday. She had a full life, traveling around the world, meeting interesting people, and she was alert right up to the end of her 96-1/2 years. When she finally went, it was about as quickly and peacefully as possible, with a close friend at her side. I consider that a blessing, and just the flow of life.
So I'm ok, keeping busy with family affairs. I wouldn't find much time to train these days, except I tend to see everything as a chance to be aware. Whether sparring, driving a car or inhaling the smell of food before eating and taking time to savor each bite, I try to remember to check in to the moment. How am I doing emotionally? Are there physical manifestations I can adjust? I take a breath and let it go, and let my senses go out to the environment …
Last night I took my teenager out to dinner. Grandma's death has been a profound experience, and so this was a teachable moment. I got to talking about quantum physics, whether something is a particle or a wave (it's both) and the concept of the field. I was describing how at the quantum level, the presence of the observer in and of itself affects the experiment (the Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle), which means that thought are things (like the old sacred dudes taught, I said) and so with focus and intent, we can affect our surroundings. No accident I was steered to martial arts by some pretty attuned people.
I'm explaining how the ability to be centered creates a calmer environment around oneself to which people intuitively respond favorably. I used to be more high-strung, so the shifts in reactions at this stage of life are really cool. Anyway, we've just got our drinks (coke for her, Negro Modelo for me) and I'm saying fish don't notice the medium they swim in - and neither do we, which I can see has caught her attention. I stare into my beer and inhale its fragrance; I rhapsodize how perfect it is in that moment and she tries to hide a smile …
Suddenly a baby starts crying nearby. My kid is annoyed, and I just toss off a comment about no, don't just let things affect you, you affect it; send a cool vibe like your thought is a thing and it impacts the field accordingly. Then I stopped talking and just settled myself with a deep breath, and in a moment or two the room was quiet and peaceful! I love synchronicity, the idea that the universe supports one’s premise.
Would the room have settled so quickly if I had not been in that space? I choose to trust the Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle to validate the possibility. The lesson for me these days is how belief makes energy work. Belief is not thought, though thought can be a part of it. Belief is simply certainty, as real to the body as to the mind.
It seems basic, but even on the physical level we’re directing energy to do anything. You think you can, you can. You think you can't; you get that too. We make choices. Martial arts taught me focus and concentration. Meditation is awareness. It's something I try to apply to everything, in every moment. That is a gift I take from my mother’s death, a deepening realization that each moment is precious, and taking the time to acknowledge more of life. The more I practice remembering to do this, the easier it seems to become.
Here is an interesting blog on psychic phenomena and martial arts.