The Home of Steven Barnes
Author, Teacher, Screenwriter

Monday, August 01, 2005

Musashi"s #6: Develop intuitive judgement and understanding for everything

Intuition, the kinesthetic flash that is deeper than thought, that goes byond calculation or conscious reckoning.  I had that flash when I met Tananarive--within three days we knew we wanted to spend our lives together.  How in the hell could we know?  I had that flash the last time someone tried to mug me.  I felt a "touch" at my Third Eye walking down the street with Toni at two in the morning.   I engage intuition every day when I write.  first drafts are pure intuition--I write too quickly for conscious fear and hesitation to stop me.  Subsequent drafts and polishing are a matter of figuring out what the hell my instincts were up to.  by the way--this is the reason why I like a "plot" structure that mimics life itself (The Hero's Journey) and a characterization structure that applies to me and everyone I encounter (the Chakras).  You see, in that way literally everything I do in life applies to everything else that matters to me.  Every interaction with my daughter, my wife, or my own psyche teaches me more about writing. and everythign I write teaches me about life.
The concept of Instinctive Designation of Energy and Attention is, simply, to arrange your life so that you devise simpler and simpler ways of addressing complex and complicated issues.  By admitting that body, mind, and spirit are ALL important (Do Not think Dishonestly), and committing to working on each of them  daily (The Way is in Training) you begin to search for the principles that will allow you to balance them with minimal effort.  The best way to do that is to look for the ideas that apply in all three arenas.  Day after day after day, you work to improve just 1% in the three arenas.  As you do, you will begin to see that lessons learned in one arena apply to the otthers. And even more, that there are lessons that can't quite be put into words that are useful in more than one place in your life.  As the subconscious learns more and more about the tasks, you penetrate deeper and deeper to the core, and there you will find something fascinating...
Take ANY  life activity deep enough, and the exact same rules apply.  Writing, martial arts, relationships, fitness, study, work, anything...excellence is created by the same application of daily effort, confronting fears and barriers, refining self-image.  BUT IT MUST BE ALL THREE AREAS to get this effect.  You can take on MORE, but not less.  And you must take responsibility for the results you have gotten up until this point in your life.  Do this, embrace this balance, and you will begin to "sense" things about people and events that will surprise the heck out of you.  It's not magic--it is the proper use of your mind.
Living in balance in this way is calibrating your brain.  Far too many intelligent people box themselves into corners, thinking that they have made their choices logically, when in actuality they made them emotionally, and cover up their fear and anger with logical B.S.  don't fall into that trap.  Admit it: you want a healthy, sexy body. You want a career that gives you descretionary income, doing something you enjoy.  And you want someone to love and hold.  Until you can speak the truth, you are lost, no matter how intelligent you are.  This is, I honestly believe, the road to Mastery--and it is available to everyone, no matter where they are in their journey up until this time.  Search your feelings--tell the truth. I think you'll see that, deep inside, damn near every human being on this planet wants these things.  Not 100%, but close enough, friends.  Close enough.

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