Zen-ryo's training log

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Jax replied the topic: Re: Zen-ryo's training log

I agree with you about the command to love. It is the most important and completely lost.  Thing is, Jesus's greatest act as savior was in providing the tools to save ourselves.  And that hasn't been utilized nearly enough in general. I can't make statements of your experiences, of course.  But Christians haven't done so well with the love others commandment.  I hope that changes though.  It would do a world of good, for them and others. 
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zen-ryo senshi replied the topic: Re: Zen-ryo's training log

Well, I can't agree with the idea of saving ourselves.  But certainly they are the best tools for pleasing God!

If I speak from a good motivation out of sincerity, respect, and love for others, my actions are good, virtuous. If I act from a motivation of pride, hatred, criticism, and so forth, then my verbal and physical actions become nonvirtuous.

- 14th Dalai Lama

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Jax replied the topic: Re: Zen-ryo's training log

If we love others, and love ourselves, many of the things that cause us suffering go away.  Many of the ills of the world are healed.  Conflicts prevented and resolved.  Beyond that, learning from the example of Jesus teaches us to not judge (definitely a problem in our world, myself included), to provide aid to others, and to not allow corruption in our leaders.  These are just some quick examples of how we save ourselves from living in hell while on this earth.  This is how we can save ourselves.
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zen-ryo senshi replied the topic: Re: Zen-ryo's training log

Sunday went well.  I did not make it out of church in time for sword class, which is good, because there was a seminar usurping the sword class that I had forgotten about.  However, they did finish in time for Aikido and we made it in time too.  Now every move I make causes some muscle to hurt.  I always have my worst soreness about 48 hours after the activity, so I may still get worse before I get better.  But it's that good kind of pain that reminds you that your body is remodeling into something better.

After seeing patients today I joined the board overseeing a local Japanese garden and now I'm tasked with finding some major donors and recruiting the local Jedi to help maintain the garden.

My Hawaiian language books came in today and so now I can start getting ready for my trip this summer.  Meanwhile I've also started studying Arabic with my son.

After my patients tomorrow I have a church board meeting.  But I haven't finished any of the assignments I was supposed to be working on.  Hopefully my last patients will come in early and I can rush out to try to finish something.

If I speak from a good motivation out of sincerity, respect, and love for others, my actions are good, virtuous. If I act from a motivation of pride, hatred, criticism, and so forth, then my verbal and physical actions become nonvirtuous.

- 14th Dalai Lama

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David (Phoenix) replied the topic: Re: Zen-ryo's training log

I got an email about that japanese garden thing from the Chicago group, I thought that sounded so cool! You'll have to upload some pictures so we can see what it looks like when you guys spruce it up =]
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Jax replied the topic: Re: Zen-ryo's training log

I agree. Though I wonder how you have time to get all of this done!
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zen-ryo senshi replied the topic: Re: Zen-ryo's training log

I am excited about the Japanese Garden event.  It'll be a good chance to connect to the earth.  It'll also be a cool place in the city for Chicago Jedi to do outdoor things.  My work for the board is very minimal since I only have a few hours worth of things to do before the next meeting in a month.  It's work and church that have so much work I have trouble keeping up.

Anyway, went to sword class and Aikido today.  Now I'm so sore and tired.  But I do get to sleep in a little in the morning.

If I speak from a good motivation out of sincerity, respect, and love for others, my actions are good, virtuous. If I act from a motivation of pride, hatred, criticism, and so forth, then my verbal and physical actions become nonvirtuous.

- 14th Dalai Lama

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zen-ryo senshi replied the topic: Re: Zen-ryo's training log

It's been a busy weekend.  Since last I wrote, I've had 3 days of work, 3 days of church, a Jedi meeting, and Easter Dinner.  Now back to a more normal schedule hopefully.  I'm supposed to do Aikido after work tonight, but it's going to take a strong will.  I'm still tired from the weekend and will not want to do anything after a full day of work.  However, my son is going out of town on Wednesday, so today and tomorrow will be the only days he can work out this week.  We'll see what happens.

If I speak from a good motivation out of sincerity, respect, and love for others, my actions are good, virtuous. If I act from a motivation of pride, hatred, criticism, and so forth, then my verbal and physical actions become nonvirtuous.

- 14th Dalai Lama

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zen-ryo senshi replied the topic: Re: Zen-ryo's training log

Well, we didn't do so well at making it to Aikido.  I was at work too late on Monday, and on Tuesday (when I'm scheduled to be at work late) my wife had a doctor's appointment and also ran too late.  My son did do some exercising at home, but I did not.  I do have sword class tonight.  Then I will join my wife and son to see him off on his trip.  I should go back to Aikido after that, but my wife has said she'd like to take the chance to have a simple dinner alone together.  We'll see how it goes.  If she's too tired or has too much work to catch up on, then I'll head back to Aikido.  This is a really good week to go to Aikido classes because it's a "test week".  Rank tests are on Saturday and so all week, rather than have an instructor teach classes we break out in to rank groups and practice only those techniques that we are currently learning.  While I always need more work on the basics, I find test weeks to be a good chance to explore new techniques and thus more intillectually satisfying.

I won't be making it to the test on Saturday, however.  The Japanese Sword Show is here and Saturday during the test is the only time I can go.  Japanese swords is one of my obsessions and this is an opportunity to get a close up look at some very old and amazing swords.  I won't have the money to buy any swords this weekend, but I will be very surprised if I don't come away with a book or video.

Sunday is our MS Walk.  The Chicago Jedi are joining in a community walk to reaise awareness and money for research to help those who suffer from MS.  I've been dissapointed with the response so far, both in those willing to walk and in those willing to donate.  Given the amount of suffering those with MS have and the claim that we are here to help others, I'm surprised more of our members aren't willing to wake up early for this one time or give up their morning coffee for one day and donate the money instead.  However, even small amounts of people and money add to the total to make a big difference and I am excited about those who have offered to participate in some way.  I just hope the weather holds up.  We will be dressing in Jedi outfits and after the walk we are going to a restaurant named Jedi's Garden (but it doesn't have anything to do with SW).

In my last post I mentioned that we had a Jedi meeting and it occurs to me that meetings like that are part of my training and it would be appropriate for me to note more about it here.  At this meeting we watched and discussed two videos that are available online.  The first was My Stroke of Insight: A Brain Scientist's Personal Journey.  In this video, the brain scientist in question explained to the audience at the TED conference that she had a stroke in the left side of her brain and as a brain scientist, had a unique opportunity to explore the experience from the inside with a scientific perspective.  Some of you may know that the left side of the brain is the more analytical side that likes to define and categorize things.  It is the "thinking" side of our brain and helps us to place things in historical perspective and plan for the future.  The right side of the brain is more involved in experiencing the senses fully and treats everything as if it is a new thing to be explored and brought into the whole.  It is the "feeling" side of our brain.  Lateralization (the differences between left and right) of our brain is actually not so well defined, but I think she simplified it because of time, because her audience was not all scientists, and because her experience during the stroke matched traditional lateralization.  As her left brain lost function, she began to drop the "self-talk" and the emotional baggage and began to experience the world as unified and beatiful in its own right.  She experienced euphoria, but also lost the ability to communicate and lost interest in preserving herself as a being.  I noticed that to some extent this is what empty mind meditation aims for.  We look to quite the mind, to experience only the moment, to feel one with the world, and to let go of our attachements to the things of the world.  Perhaps the reason why some of us get so much benefit from zen-style meditation is that we are too left-brained and shutting down the left brain for a while allows us to balance ourselves a little.  I asked the left-handers in attendance if they thought that perhaps meditation was different for them (easier, less beneficial, not that different from the rest of the day) and didn't get any definitive response.  Then again, 60% of left-handers and left-brainers, so maybe they still need more right brain time like the rest of us.  Anyway, the speaker's conclusion was that we would all enjoy life more and fight less if we spent more time moving further right in our brain.  The speaker has also written a book by the same name as the video which I plan to read as well.

The second video was called The Science of Healing and was a video about how much our state of mind effects our healing.  I don't think this surprises any of us here, but it was interesting to see a scientific exploration of how this works.  The video led to a heated discussion about the ethics and effectiveness of using placebos.  There was also a lot in the video about how colorful sights and pleasant scents can help and a comparison of how hospitals are usually just the opposite with their sterile white walls and the smells of medicine and disease.  The video also discussed how stress can depress our immune and healing systems and how relaxation and enjoyment can boost our immune system and help us heal.
Dr. Esther Sternberg has also written a couple of books about the relationship between healing and emotions/environment that I have also added to my reading list.

Zen-Ryo Senshi

If I speak from a good motivation out of sincerity, respect, and love for others, my actions are good, virtuous. If I act from a motivation of pride, hatred, criticism, and so forth, then my verbal and physical actions become nonvirtuous.

- 14th Dalai Lama

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zen-ryo senshi replied the topic: Re: Zen-ryo's training log

It's been 6 months, so I guess it's about time for me to post again. :P

I went jogging this morning.  Went two miles total alternating one block running and one block walking.  Of course,  probably ate twice as many calories at dinner as I ran off.  Other than running, cooking, and eating, it's been a pretty relaxed day.  Now I'm off to study Japanese and get to bed early.

If I speak from a good motivation out of sincerity, respect, and love for others, my actions are good, virtuous. If I act from a motivation of pride, hatred, criticism, and so forth, then my verbal and physical actions become nonvirtuous.

- 14th Dalai Lama

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