Tuesday, February 07, 2012

Super Bowl and Spirit

This is the last video of me connected with the movie "Thrive". It was part of a one hour interview conducted by Foster Gamble.

I must say I took a rather casual approach to the Super Bowl. I watched bits and pieces of it and listened to the end of the game on radio. I was doing the books for 2011 for the dojo to submit to my accountant. So my focus was on something else. Being a niner fan I found myself rooting for the Patriots. So I guess we live in a Giants universe(football not baseball) for the next year. But the niners clearly have a new direction which I expect them to sustain. And with the addition of some receivers who can catch the ball and make plays I expect them to go further. So wait till next year.

AS much as sport offers so to speak the "Thrill of victory and the agony of defeat" it is the cultivation of something almost undefinable called spirit that is stressed in aikido. Let me give you an example of this is conjunction with the dojo and the Super Bowl.

I thought almost after the fact that I should have cancelled the Sunday evening 5pm class last Sunday. Things like that can creep up on you. The Sunday evenings are team taught with a rotating set of instructors. I was in the office working on the books as I said. Well, no one showed for the Sunday evening class. But the instructor(whom I will not name) did. This person came even though the turnout was probably going to be small and possibly non-existent. This person stayed 30 minutes and then I said " go watch the rest of the game".

Spirit is something that is developped when no one is watching. It is one's intentional actions which could be done even anonymously. So I did not mention this person's name. But how we behave when only we know what we choose to do and do it. It is the opposite of a great sporting event where there are heroes and goats. Where things are celebrated and hyped. It is silent. And acts done from spirit endure. On a night when no students came to class the dojo was the scene of a great act of spirit. And I do want to thank the instructors who donate their time and keep the Sunday evenings going. And for real acts of spirit there is only the silent applause from the universe itself.


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