(Tutorial still in beta)
How to Achieve the Beginners Mind
Why Yoga and Qigong
If You're Too Busy to Meditate (HBR)

"...During the course, Mr. Goenka was asked by a journalist why Vipassana [meditation] is good for prisoners. He responded: Vipassana is good for everyone! We are all prisoners of the negative habit patterns of our own minds. The practice of Vipassana liberates us from this bondage...Vipassana is a tool which can help all suffering people, those who are behind bars separated from their families, and those who are not.' He said: 'What is happening at Tihar is a message of hope which will benefit the whole world.'" http://www.prison.dhamma.org/tihar.htm
For inspiration, see books:
The Art of Learning -- Burntout chess prodigy becomes Tai chi master.
Religiousness in Yoga: Lectures on Theory and Practice (esp. ch 1-3)

How to Achieve the Beginner's Mind (Or How to Break the Imperius Curse from Harry Potter)

If you're going to try nothing else, just spend 5 minutes and try Embrace the Tree <http://www.taichido.com/chi/styles/embrace.htm>

external image morning-qigong.jpg

Get up off your computer, and get away from people and things that are distracting your small mind, Do some Qigong exercises, for about 10 to 20 minutes, be sure to include at least 10 minute of intense, static arms raised exercises (e.g. http://www.falundafa.org/eng/audiovideo.html
Exercise 1 - 4 (25 min) 9 MB mp3, especially Exercise 2, work. Videos for Exercises 1-4 are lower on the page.)
Note about Qigong terminology: the art of Qigong was developed over millennia by people who had incredible subjective understanding and awareness of their bodies but who, for the most part, had little modern medical knowledge. Therefore, they sometimes use fuzzy and metaphysical terminology to describe the feelings of different postures, actions, and mental exercises. My advice is to simply use their terms as guided imagery and see if you can get a sense of the feelings they are referring to; this is actually extremely important, as the most important part of the practice is mental -- you are simply using these physical actions as a tool to help your mind gain awareness of different areas of your body.

Also, be sure to have perfect but relaxed Qigong posture -- it is through this that you can physically feel yourself opening to the world, relaxing into, channeling, the sinuous line of fire that extends from the heavens into the top of your head, and which radiates both into the earth through the open soles of your feet

See these images:
external image feel_the_qi.jpg
external image morning-qigong.jpg
external image qigong.jpg
external image good_posture.jpg

Keep your toes expanded like in yoga, arches lifted, feet shoulder width apart and angled slightly outward, knees bent, inner thighs rotated outward, your pelvis tilted into vertical alignment (this will slightly engage your abs, but make sure to keep them elongated.) Continue to elongate your spine by extending your tailbone downward and the back of your lower rib cage upwards so that your rib cage also tilts into the vertical position. Now widen your upper chest and raise your collarbone while keeping the rib cage vertical, bring your hands across the front of your body, palms facing the body, and reach them up over your head while further rotating them outward and bring them to the sides of your body to form a horizontal line. Now, finally as you take a deep, three stage inhalation from the belly and sides of your body, up through your center abdomen, into and your upper chest, let your shoulder blades softly relax apart and let your upper shoulders drop, let the back of your neck elongate to tilt your chin down (this might stretch). Melt the tension in your body -- let your skin and muscles feel like they're melting into the ground -- then lower your arms and relax everything while remaining stable and balanced, and perfectly still in the rest of your body.

As you do all this, you should feel an active lightness, a play and spring in your joints that seems to buoy your body upwards without effort. Also, if you have tightness in your body, simply getting into perfect posture should cause feelings of stretching, probably in your lower back, the back of your neck, your chest (pectoralis minor), your upper back (trapezius and supraspinatis), and the middle of your back. Proper deep breathing will likely cause your body to stretch even further Now you can begin to practice Qigong. Do this for 10 to 20 minutes, ensuring you include a static standing exercise with your arms raised, preferably for five or more minutes (but be sure not to sacrifice proper sequencing, sequencing affects outcome). Also,

As you stand with your arms raised you will likely begin to feel fatigue and discomfort in your shoulders, and want to take your arms down. This is the precise moment when the practice of Zen can begin and you are empowered to release previously inaccessible tight muscles. As your small self screams at you louder every second: "take those arms down, I hurt!" Think to yourself: "how do all these old people do it? I'm certainly more physically fit than they. There must be some key to it." In fact there is. Focus precisely on the locations where there is pain -- which you are now hyperaware of because you have felt them building more and more fatigue for the last five minutes -- and relax precisely those areas while keeping your arms raised. Rotate your shoulder blades outward and let them move backwards and downwards, rotate your upper arms outward, and bring your shoulders in a circle up, back, down, then relaxed the tension drawing your shoulder blades together in your upper back. Let your whole body melt, slowly. There is a sea of infinite time around you, float in it. Even after you have relaxed, there'll still be pain however to some degree. But after a while meditating, you realize that there is more to you than your small mind.

Sleep is important not because it is necessary in a perfectly balanced Zen mind, but because it helps your small self in the willpower to go big again

The biggest trick in Zen is being able to get out of your small self, so you should have (develop) a bunch of tricks for doing so, and perhaps even

One of the keys to Zen is to learn to get your obstreperous small self relinquish its death grip over your mind and body. This is difficult when you're in Within the small self, and this is the central challenge to developing the Zen mind. Therefore you must come with solid philosophy, powerful memory correlations, etc. if you are to succeed, especially if you have a particularly forceful small mind. Realized this -- it is just at that point when you're small mind wants to give it over and ceased attempting to enter the state that the true awareness expansion occurs. It's like walking for miles and miles in a tunnel to make it to the outside, and then turning around upon smelling your first trickling wisp of fresh air. Systems only deviate from homeostasis, real change only occurs, when there is a constant force pushing them or pulling them. This is an objective truth, as is all good philosophy, and it can succeed in changing people because of its non-subjectivity.

Being completely monastic is neglecting your small self, which is real, and the basis for the emergent big self

Specifically, the cause of actions that work to counteract computer/writing/reading related back/shoulder/neck tightness is You a given the opportunity to make a decision

neurolinguistic programming

experiment: does a Zen meditator perform better on tests on low sleep that are usually negatively impacted by sleep deprivation

part of the begin his mind as to have faith in things, to not write off potential solutions as impossible too quickly as does one who is resigned and inured to a cruel world as does one does resigned in the new red resume with one does faith -- tutorials, nice business

Jonathan and Michael setting up a basketball hoop -- ~ Jimmy with games

bringing the fun, making sanctuary

The no-religion religion

the Tao Te Ching

another book on the blackboard in 3rd Walker

Why Yoga and Qigong

Motivation in general

college apps motivate us to do things we wouldn't otherwise do
the decision to actually do something is based on several layers of motivation to do it:
negative stimuli: things you are running away from
positive stimuli: things you're running towards
low-level drive: id, basic, animal, immediate feelings. When things are desperate and all else begins to fail, these drives become most powerful. This is why it's important to construct a system in a way that makes it difficult on a low-level to back out or stop trying, and that makes it rewarding on that low-level to keep it working
high-level drive: willpower, long-term goals and strategy, morality, memories that let you tap into distant though deep emotions from the past. "Will power centers" in your brain buff up as you use them. At 1st field impossible to do many painful things like yoga pose for a long time or climb a difficult portion of a wall or lift a heavy weight
you can't become accepting of mediocrity -- this is the biggest reason not to fail: you live in that even when things are mediocre, you can survive. But then you have to realize that if you accept mediocrity, things have no chance of being incredible, and that is something to be feared and something worthy of fighting.
to most easily get in shape you have to ask yourself why you want to get in shape at all. To do a certain task/play a sport? Your motivation is built right in, and you should practice as close to that sport/goal as possible, because then you can taste your goal even before you reach it in be motivated by its savor. To be healthy? This is a negative drive, and accordingly, powerful but potentially dangerous. Is health is your only goal, when you're healthy are you going to stop exercising except that minimal amount necessary to maintain your health? Is exercise something like machine maintenance to optimize and minimize so as to spend as little time as possible doing it? This is only a small part of the picture -- find a positive drive to go along with it. To look good? This is a powerful auxiliary motivation, but not as strong as an intrinsic one that brings you to actually love the activity. Again, employ this motivation in conjunction with a direct positive drive that causes you to love the activities you are performing themselves. If it's yoga, tai chi, swimming, running, etc. it's the state of mind it puts you in. If it's surfing, snowboarding, skateboarding, it's the rush of skill. If it's a team sport, the feeling of camaraderie and drive that performing in front of others brings. If it's like rock climbing or nature hiking, it's the awe of the surroundings and the joy of exploration. All these reasons overlap between every sport, but these are the primary thoughts that predominantly drive people to the pursuits.
If you have a problem with how much food you consume, start eating smaller amounts of food. A dessert 2 times the size of another is no more satisfying. Get mindful and really appreciate every mouthful. Fill your stomach to pleasant satiation, and no more. If you feel driven to, look for the cause of this drive -- is a different need that is substituting itself? Is it sleep (you feel less hungry after you sleep because the hormone leptin is released)? Is it exercise? Is it Intellectual stimulation? Is a positive social interaction?
deterministic, piece by piece, Western mentality makes many things more difficult than necessary.
Doing "exercise for the sake of exercise" should be a last resort when there are absolutely no other options. You want to get more than just burn off of non-usage "dust" out of your exercise or it is difficult to sustain
Pain/gain linearity AUNT
now I realize that when I was younger and saw the schooling system did a lot of things that are silly, boring, and ineffective, I was right. It's like week training for the brain in absence of an application. I feel that complaints about lack of creativity often result from this., However, I feel that many Asian countries' schooling systems do this even worse. Space instead, leading should be fascinating, project-based, and hundred percent motivated by desire to do real things. In those cases when it is not, it has to be explicitly explained that they are for long-term future games exclusively.`Additionally, one of the worst misconceptions that the educational system reinforces is that you can't do anything but boring problems when you are at a low-level. This is not true -- in fact many high-level techniques have only specialized applications. And moreover, with the current system, when people get to high-level they often don't have any drive to work on their own project because it wasn't cultivated during the learning process
one of the most important unsung effects of endurance/strength/painful exercise is that it forces you to get your reasons for living straight. Swimming, running, yoga, qi gong, weightlifting
While standing in the arms above the head stance of the 2nd Falun Dafa exercise, I got my reasons straight for doing the exercise.
The image of the surfer[] Transworld surf, and remembering surfing
the image of someone you love or are trying to impress. For them
chill -- for someone you're trying to impress or a team that you are on that you're trying to live up to, or bros that you're trying to fit in with
the tingling feeling in my outer thumb as I held my hands low, in front of me
the electric feeling of qi rushing through the circle over my head, the electric feeling of making eye contact with the actress playing Kate Nickleby, the tilt of the head of Ralph Nickleby
the feeling of surprising strength, looseness, willpower, and lasting peace that follows me through the day with my outward repeated upper arms and relaxed fingers
in the lowdown position getting the sudden realization of tension present and feeling the flow of life back into my overstrained fingertips
fear of mediocrity and adult life
my dad did it
I think that one of the main reasons that the children of successful people are successful is because they don't foolishly give up when something great is in their grasp because they tell themselves that their parents did it, so so can they. Relatedly, one of the biggest realizations that going to a top college gave me is that most people are actually pretty confused about life and that profound realizations (at least the day-to-day sort that you frequently read from well-known columnists) aren't all that difficult and that there is virtually nothing that's utterly incomprehensible if you think about it and that everything is actually fairly easy. Also, Working on big projects also made me realize that only easy things get done
as is the case with many things, there is an important mental game component as well as a practical component. Related principle: if you just do things that are really interesting and cool, everything seems to work itself out.
You don't need to know everything about something to become good at it -- for learning something/getting into new field, begin with the naïvness and exploratory quality of a playing child. As long as you are working on stuff and becoming continually fascinated, you are being extremely productive. Prabhav with programming this approach does not necessarily get you the greatest breadth and savoir-faire in the field but it certainly makes you skilled. Just adhering to simple principles and going will get you 80% of the core knowledge necessary. Then you need to expand it and become more knowledgeable in parallel as you grow
To learn everything about something -- to gain the deep end nuanced understanding that an experienced person has most quickly, begin with a slightly different mindset. The unfounded self-assuredness of a child trying to seem an expert: just choose a starting point and start running. You're going to have to do the running at some point anyway and as long as you know it's pretty much in the right direction it's not going to really make a difference which way you take. Children who try to act like they're experts at something eventually become the self that they envision. Eric Marin with surfing. We become the visions we create for ourselves; just because we are not something is not ipso facto a good reason to act under the assumption that we are (of course we have to modulate our behavior in public to avoid being laughed out of the community and losing respect, but we can still hold the belief and vision internally. Side note: this is one reason that online gaming is interesting -- our usernames don't have to follow us forever; thus we can learn in the best mindset for learning, which is one of no-risk-of-long-term-consequences freedom, and try wild things on a regular basis. Then when we have knowledge of the field, we can either create a new account or simply move to different grouping of people to play with who don't know us. We can create another character. To actually experience how other people would react to different versions of ourselves is an extremely powerful experience; this is too large extent the beauty of anonymity. However, I believe that this idea, this focus on the appeal factor for these games of "who do I want to be" was largely put in my head by Jeffery Deaver's book The Blue Nowhere, though I completely agree with it and hence discuss it much. I think much more motivates me though, such as the thrill of building empires as a child and making a life for myself according to the parameters of this virtual world). That is how we become something.
learning often eventually become experts at that thing control under stress
it gets harder before it gets easier.
"I could live with this sensation for the rest of my life if I had to" is what you have to tell yourself when you're at the brink of giving up due to fatigue. Ask yourself how bad it would be. This gets you focused.
Yoga brings the day into my body
thoughts surrounding the feeling of tightness, differential contraction and relaxation in my upper left shoulder that clicks subtly whenever I moved my shoulder back and forward. I thought to myself "I know how to learn a subtle skill, of dexterity, coordination, or balance. It seems impossible at 1st, but you make it into an obsession, a mind virus, hitting on it and withdrawing, hitting on it and withdrawing, and each time it's a little easier, and the next morning it's a whole new world of nuanced understanding and you're at the next level and you are inspired to go further. suddenly the task is easy." [Expand this later; I think a lot of fully grown people still haven't figured this out. write equivalent section for endurance/strength sports]
Related thoughts: I don't like the word study
I don't like its vagueness, its blandness, its sledgehammer approach to nuanced concept. Relatedly, I don't like the concept "I am" [link]


Exercise 1 - 4 (25 min)
9 MB work; learn

mp3Exercise 1 - 4 (25 min)external image qigong.jpghttp://blogs.hbr.org/bregman/2012/10/if-youre-too-busy-to-meditate.htmlhttp://books.google.com/books?id=SZxCpDG7Mp4C&printsec=frontcover&dq=religiousness+in+yoga&hl=en&sa=X&ei=eIC0UPydHLK20QGI1oHgAw&ved=0CC0Q6AEwAA