Login
Username:

Password:

Remember me



Lost Password?

Register now!
Socialize
 

Recent Topics
Topic Replies Last Post
Certificates 0 5/8 4:34
schistkicker
Home Project: Shadowbox 3 4/25 21:44
roufus
Ichiba 0 2/21 1:18
Dpinga
Santa Rosa Bujinkan Dojo 6 2/10 9:38
Bumbling-budoka
Kyudo within the nine schools 47 1/3 22:40
Unsubscribed

Browsing this Thread:   1 Anonymous Users



« 1 (2)


Re: "us" and "them"
Cant Stay Offline
Joined:
2003/2/4 2:12
From Sacramento, CA (USA)
Group:
村民 :: Villager
村長 :: Admin
議長 :: Mod
Posts: 1024
Offline
I think it would be fitting here to bring up that value is only an illusion. So, if your struggle leads you to some victory, then the satisfaction of attaining it is but a human emotion or condition - something purely in the realm of personal definition of "applied value" to that victory. Because we each can control the value we perceive something to have, that makes it manufactured - thus, an illusion.

From a budo perspective, anything that is an illusion or simply a perception can be manipulated or otherwise used against us. In our lust for what we think is victory, we can be led into defeat like a lamb to the slaughter, oblivious of the trap we have created for ourselves.

The competition and hardships we endure may not be worth the fool's gold we "win" at the end.

I think this also plays into the 'gambatte' and 'fudoshin' aspects as I pointed out earlier. It also plays into the "No Mind" as discussed in the monk Takuan Soho's writings in "The Unfettered Mind".

If we continue to always live moving forward in the present, we are not really reaching for any goal (future/illusion). If we cling to a perceived value, are we not really experiencing the present tense, the instance of each moment? If we struggle, is the kuden or deep lessons on the other side of the struggle, or in the moment of struggle? If that's the case, then the value or prize is the struggle itself. Everything else is an illusion because only the struggle is the experience, the direct relationship with reality.

It's what I perceive as being Soke's uke. All the lessons happen in the moment of the experience of the struggle as his uke. That's the value. That's the reward. Yet, when it's over, the value is no longer the same as when it was happening because what is left is only an illusion of memory.

I apologize if I am not expressing my meaning clearly. This is a very difficult thing to explain.

Posted on: 2011/11/15 16:35
_________________
Darren Dumas

I never considered a difference of opinion in politics, in religion, or in philosophy, as cause for withdrawing from a friend. ~ Thomas Jefferson
Transfer the post to other applications Transfer


Re: "us" and "them"
Kutaki Postmaster
Joined:
2007/5/5 18:02
From South East UK
Group:
村民 :: Villager
Posts: 221
Offline
I suppose it depends what or whom we are competing against, and whether this particular discussion is just the sparring debate in a thinly veiled guise. One big difference in the way I see it is that when sparring you will have chosen a friendly 'known' face, whereas to enter some kind of tournament is to pit oneself against the unknown, and against individuals whose motives or raison de guerre (I just made that up!) is also unknown. Would studying their form be seen as cheating or strategy, I mean, we would not be afforded this luxury on the street. And basically what form should competition take? Something new within the Bujinkan such as Brian V suggested a while back, or entering more open competions in other or mixed arts. Is not entering a judo tournament merely isolating and testing an important skillset within our overall taijutsu, no different to isolating individual ryuha? Certainly it is within a defined set of rules but who is to say that we would have everything our way when it is for real?

Posted on: 2011/11/15 17:44
_________________
Stop, take a deep breath, and everybody say "Auuuuuuuuuuuuuummmmnnnnn".
Transfer the post to other applications Transfer


Re: "us" and "them"
Cant Stay Offline
Joined:
2003/6/13 23:29
From Pennsylvania, USA
Group:
村民 :: Villager
議長 :: Mod
師導士会 :: Shidoshikai
Posts: 1834
Offline
I think the reason I started this discussion is not intended to be a "thinly veiled" sparing debate, but only an exchange of ideas on what I consider a very important concept. There really is an important goal sought in all this, one of helping to clarify in our own minds what our individual philosophy is toward others. It is not easy to look at our own individual concepts and decide if this is really who we are but we do need to know what and who we, individually, are. If that result from the examination shows us areas in our thinking that hinders our growth ---- and the working with others for both our and their growth ---- then it is best that we understand that and work to change it. It is easy to simplify into the "greed is good" stated by our one former President and lived by many more that work in Washington DC for supposedly the common good. But really where does such a philosophy lead. I agree Darren that it is not easy to express these personal philosophies but still we should try because in the very "trying" we begin to clarify. I consider thoughts to be extremely important as it is those very thoughts that create our individual reality while impacting many others. I have already gleaned from this discussion that for me, I need to develop a clearer definition of the word 'competition'. Usually we do think of "competitions" involving 'rules' and in sport they must. But what about in life? In our competitions with other people are there 'rules', or not. If 'greed' is truly good then there will be no rules because the other person doesn't count. That philosophy is one I totally reject. That rejection is based on the understanding that we do need others to continue their contribution to society as a whole or we all lose. It then becomes very important HOW we interact with others. At what point do we say "this person" has violated the rules that allow us to cooperate and has so placed himself out of the protections that are connected to following those rules? At what point do we also say "this person has violated the rules I hold for relating with me"? Are "my" rules ones that aid or hinder cooperative relationships? If a person has violated your personal rules then you can either enforce your rules or change them. BTW the only reason for changing them would be your recognition that your 'rules' were flawed or incomplete.
OK, sorry, I'm getting too far afield here, time to stop and listen. I do hold to the proportion found on human heads, --- two eyes, two ears, but only ONE mouth. Engage brain before using mouth.

Posted on: 2011/11/15 21:11
_________________
Ed Martin aka Papa-san
Transfer the post to other applications Transfer


Re: "us" and "them"
Active Kutakian
Joined:
2009/3/18 12:31
From Redmond, Washington
Group:
村民 :: Villager
Posts: 108
Offline
We're in the midst of debating a competitive mindset around our table as my high school daughter is a very talented and competitive volleyball player. College recruiters are starting to sniff around. What we (parents and daughter) appear to be learning right now (the real lessons learnt are year away) is that many of the positions pro and con regarding a competitive approach to life don't hold a lot of water when you get to the thin air of top tier competition. Positively, her dedication, commitment to be excellent, desire to learn and respect certain coaches, PLUS the rigorous demands to manage time well have been enormous leaps forward. Simultaneously, there's also a healthy dollop of bitchiness, self-centered behavior, and emotional swings when it's tournament time.

I can't unequivocally declare either orientation 100% good or bad. It seems to come with the territory. At the same time, there are a few rules of thumb (at least in our house and for her younger brother) that are emerging from this experience:

1.) Choose very carefully what you intend to focus your competitive energy upon. Life is unfair (wouldn't want it any other way) and there are basic limiting factors in certain sports (body type), knowledge pursuits (all the heart in the world won't have you become a world class physicist if you haven't mastered mathematics) and so forth. If you intend to be the best in something, it should be something where you have an inkling of natural endowment.

2.) if you intend to be truly competitive in something, go all the way in terms of looking for and paying for quality. A half assed approach requires virtually the same time/effort commitment without the potential for the payoff of overcoming. There's something to be said about the bleating of budoka about being unable to attend seminars or go to Japan here.

3.) You'd do well to ensure that there's more than one activity or relationship in which you invest a lot of identity because there are going to be days in which luck goes against you regardless of the training and commitment you've invested. Likewise, it's important recognize when you've been just plain lucky (again life being unfair) and come out on top.

I really believe that there's no neat and clean answer to this issue about being competitive in life. You can retreat to your lotus petal and proclaim that you've dropped all sense of struggle and motion but you're still opposing the inertia toward struggle anyway.

In my mind, it's more about being in proportion to your stage of life when choosing what you compete in and how. Given that, I'm perfectly fine for my high school daughter to be consumed with her volleyball right now. If she's 35+ and still doing the same thing with the same attitude, that's a problem. Likewise, I don't compete in judo/BJJ tournaments anymore. But that doesn't mean I'm not rolling with people who do. Being a good sparring partner for someone wanting to compete keeps me sharp.

At the same time, I want to continue finding mountains to climb that are unique and appropriate to my stage of life. Winning tournaments used to be all I was about in my 20s. In my late 40s, I'm just as glad to be done and onto equally interesting things.

So call me biased. I think that if you tune your competitive drives in some sort of harmony with your journey through life, you'll live more positively on balance. At least that's how I'm wired.

Posted on: 2011/11/16 2:39
_________________
John du Pre Gauntt

Transfer the post to other applications Transfer


Re: "us" and "them"
Active Kutakian
Joined:
2004/1/11 8:45
Group:
村民 :: Villager
Posts: 131
Offline
competition and cooperation are two sides of the SAME coin.

inseparable.

from cells(cardiac hypertrophy, cancer, etc) to nations there will always be 'US' and 'THEM'

hell, even this thread is a competition: OP states opinion that will subtly influence readers, some reader post (like me) to influence readers to a different POV, others respond back, etc.

one cannot separate 'us' and 'them' as one cannot separate competition and cooperation. it is law. it is nature.

even if you cooperate with someone you still compete with someone or something, yourself included. you cannot compete with just yourself. as long as you're alive, you interact. as long as you interact you compete/cooperate.

the REAL question is HOW you deal with competition. do you shut down your competition totally because you are afraid/insecure of the permanency of your place in the competition? do you mope around badly if you lost the competition? do you face the competition with a "bring it on" attitude? do you do passive-aggressive stuff when you lose? do you smile, grit your teeth and regroup your resources and strengthen yourself to compete for another day? do you become a gracious winner/loser or do you crush the other side when you win(now or the next time around)? do you run away from competition and be in stiff denial when things aren't your way?

things to ponder.

Posted on: 2011/11/16 23:39
_________________
Griff Lockfield

"Don't ask me. I need time to practice rather than answering to it." - Harada Masanori

just playing the ONI's advocate!
Transfer the post to other applications Transfer


Re: "us" and "them"
Village Old Timer
Joined:
2004/8/3 11:03
Group:
村民 :: Villager
議長 :: Mod
Posts: 565
Offline
I don't think the 'us' versus 'them' way of thinking will ever go away. It's been prevalent since the beginning of recorded history.

Posted on: 2011/11/18 9:50
Transfer the post to other applications Transfer


Re: "us" and "them"
Frequent Visitor
Joined:
2014/3/11 14:31
From Australia
Group:
村民 :: Villager
Posts: 13
Offline
I think that the difference between healthy and positive competition and destructive and negative competition lies within the individuals ability to be unaffected by others, to be one within the self. If you are one within the self and unaffected by others own paths and perceptions, you can choose to compete for the practical positive benefits, without and negative energy entering your equation unintentionally.

Posted on: 2014/3/23 11:37
Transfer the post to other applications Transfer



« 1 (2)




[Advanced Search]


Today's Sponsor