He who strives to unleash his true warrior-self will soon on his journey recognize, that his path will not begin with a 100 push-up challenge but rather starts, where every great ambition in this universe ascends from; the centre right inside us.
I want to offer you one of the best tools existing I ever came across on my very personal path on becoming a samurai.
We’ve all heard before of meditation.
Now if you’re like me you’re probably sceptical about practices that stem from ancient-old religions and that are mainly depicted by monastery-life and esoteric gurus.
Let me tell you that deep and routined meditation enabled the fierceful members of the Samurai caste to behead an enemy in the second of an eyelash.
Impulsive yet disciplined.
This does not (only) come from drinking green matcha tea before the battle.
This comes from mastering ones mind first.
It has become a trend in western society, under the influence of the current green mindset shift, to visit yoga courses and embrace spiritual practices like meditation on a regular base. Everybody talks about it now. But very few know how to apply it in the right way.
As meditation is the only practice I strictly do every day, I came across two approaches of meditation, that to my very amazement work best if they get combined. It’s like their latent smoldering power gets unleashed in a potenced way once they are married with each other.
Those two are nirvikalpa and savikalpa.
Formless meditation and the focus on a form.
I know that most spiritual teachers, although aware of may different kinds of practices, prefer to focus on only a handful of it, teaching just a specific direction of the spiritual consciousness.
Either you concentrate on something and lay all your focus-power on it…
…Or you learn to let go, dissolve your ego.
Whatever way you prefere, you are likely to need years to become a master of it, because the mind is something to be forged, your focus has to be trained in a long and effortful way.
Well this is complete bullcrap.
This is like you would tell a tree to concentrate only on growing more and more branches and not to think about the depth of the roots. It would take a heck of a lot of years for the tree to flourish his fruits and leaves when planted on rocky ground.
Or you tell the tree to put all his effort into developing roots as strong as possible to widen the access to his life resources. While not untrue, at the end of his life, the tree will regret that he never took care of his crown, now a mere cluster of brown wilting plant mass.
Now imagine growing roots and crown branches at the same time. Could there be anything more efficient and beautiful at the same time?
This is why I prefer both in combination, nirvikalpa and savikalpa.
Let’s have a look at how to apply this in your daily Samurai-life.
Nirvikalpa means „free from differences“ and holds the potential to bring deep peace into your mind. Basically it’s pictured by a profound mental state of letting go.
The physical aspect is nothing complicated to do; just make sure you stay in complete rest and keep you eyes closed. I like to sit cross-legged, sometimes I lay down on the floor.
More important is what you let happen in your mind. In nirvikalpa, you relax mentally. You allow your thougths to dissolve and watch the intellectual structures slowly fading away. Thoughts and pictures of everything that occupied your head get the chance to leave your mind. Let it happen, don’t stick to it, this is a complete natural process and basically what happens (or should happen) unconsciously while sleeping.
With time, nirvikalpa will get along with sentiments of healing and peace as mental boundaries slowly dissolve. You may enter a consciousness of timelessness, as the illusion of yesterday and tomorrow fades away, making you feel unified with everything that exists.
So said, nirvikalpa will give you a small free trial of death.
When you feel you’ve been deep enough (and surely before you fall asleep), you change the type of meditation and enter the state of projecting energy out, the savikalpa.
Savikalpa is completely different. I can’t tell you how to do it because now it’s all about your impulses and creative energy emerging from the depths of your soul.
But those things I can tell you: Open your eyes, focus on something and relax your body.
The awareness of savikalpa begins with the body-presence in the very moment. As you’re leaving the universal, unpersonal realm of the nirvikalpa-consciousness, you suddenly find yourself defined by the physical boundaries between your body and the environment.
You get self-aware.
What happens with your empty mind, refreshed from the dissolving of energy-occupying thoughts is, that it now wants to go forward.
Allow it to do so.
Allow your inner impulses to ascend from the profoundest depths like bubbles in boiling water. This is your creative spirit and with time it can get along with inner pictures and archetypal visions that strive for manifestation.
But instead of uncontrolled bubbles bursting on the surface, you steer this force into a canalized path, directed forward to a single point of awareness.
Like the head of a spear, your focus narrows to concentrate all the attention on a small, specific thing. It may be an inner picture or the flame of a candle.
Whatever it is, make sure you direct your focus back to it once your attention begins to stray around in random thoughts. Imagine being a shepherd, lovely guiding your mental sheep back to their predestined path again and again.
The point where you no longer can hold the concentration is the moment you shift again into the other type of meditation, the nirvikalpa, to get free again of the mental structures that have been built up in the foregoing process.
What you experience, if you practice both kinds of meditation, will feel like the back and forth of waves on a tropical beach. The powerful wave of movement and manifestation, crashing at the shore and the peaceful retreat back into the all-embracing maternal ocean again.
Savikalpa with its body-presence and bundling of attention brings you in a state of action-readiness, preparing yourself for jumping up at any moment and behead your enemy with a single strike of your katana, whereas nirvikalpa lets you look beyond boundaries and limitations like an experienced, wise monk.
The power of action combined with the wisdom of seeing. Could you imagine something more efficient for mastering your life?
Have a nice week