Lately I have been working with my bow staff. That is a long piece of bamboo that I twirl and work with in terms of martial arts. I got back into it after some 25 years or more back in (I think) May. At first it was quite difficult. I felt like I remembered NOTHING. “What are you doing?” I would ask myself, “You look like a fool.” Then, a couple of days in, I began having muscle memory kick in and was doing stuff with it that I didn’t even remember I could do or that I had ever been taught to do. Past life memory? Perhaps. But I think that it is more that I relaxed into it and VOILA!
In the last 2 weeks, to augment this, I started watching Youtube videos on twirling the staff. I am beginning with the very remedial stuff so that I can help my body remember more. I am amazed at how easily it is kicking in. I think I may also be having muscle memory of some abilities with this twirling stuff as well….and that definitely feels more like past life memory kicking in because this is stuff I know I was never taught this life.
So why am I doing this? It is meditative. I believe in having meditations that incorporate motion. That way your mechanics on a physical level start to match the mechanics on a mental level. I find that, although it is thrilling to be able to hone my skills on a physical level, I am able to achieve a deep state of peace and calm while working with the staff. I am left with a kind of zen consciousness of the oneness of all. It is great!
My partner, Rod, tells me that, as he watches me “play with my staff” (insert chuckles there) he notices that my eyes never blink. A long time ago I was taught a form of consciousness raising whereby one simply relaxes and therefore does not need to blink. At the same time one becomes completely aware of one’s surroundings. That is where I go when I am using the staff. And to top it off, that consciousness raising thing really kicks in. Never having met her, I could tell that my step-son’s friend, Stephanie, had pulled up in front of our house before he ducked his head out the back door to let us know that he was leaving. I said, “Stephanie is here” and he thought I was asking him. He said, “Yes she is…wait…that wasn’t a question.” I smiled and nodded and continued with my bow staff work.
Now, my neighbours (the ones who might see me) seem to have a different view on this. They are a bit intimidated by my practice. I can just see them phoning the City and complaining about me practicing some weird cult stuff simply because I am practicing a martial art. That sort of thing has actually been reported to the police in the past when my Tai Chi group was practicing in the public park! Oh well…let them come. They will most likely stop to learn a few techniques.