Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Exercising Intelligence

I saw two two very thought-provoking videos on YouTube recently:  The first was a TED talk, in which the expert on aging, defined aging as the "accumulation of damage by the body" -- while suggesting there was a way (yet to be discovered).  That sounds a lot like the age-old wisdom of karma -- by which all one has done and will do in life -- determines one's experience of life.  That is to say, that  life is not random, but there is a reason why things happen -- and if one does not see that yet, one needs to look beyond one's habitual thought processes -- which is meditation, or thinking beyond one's conditioning.  In that way, one discovers how it is they think that way -- and think they thought of it themselves, rather than than that it is what another desires them to think -- as the truth of the matter.

The second video, was titled Kung Fu Genius -- in which the hero of the story reveals only at the end, in answering the question posed by the final climactic triumph -- as to where he had learned his invincible technique, that he in fact, learned it from his opponent in fighting him -- and thus figured out a way to defeat him, and that is why he was a kung fu genius -- as he learned while doing.  And of course one had to agree, that is the essence of genius -- and not how much one knows prior to the doing -- if they ever get around to doing anything at all.  Nist are just content to revel in their knowledge -- and presumed superiority -- even while knowing nothing worth knowing -- because they never manifest that knowledge in any action.

When one puts those two videos together, one arrives at a greater insight that either one alone possesses -- as one wondered why the first presenter, did not manifest and exhibit that robustness of vitality and vibrancy -- but instead, seemed to be old even before his time (age) -- as an "expert" on aging.  Similarly,  lot of people are experts on weight loss and diet -- because they've tried them all, and are definitive proof, that none of them work -- or the exercise instructor, who exhibits any muscle tone anybody can notice -- yet are proud of their resemblance to Gandhi, as the ideal of human understanding and achievement -- that we all ought to emulate.

It does not occur to such proponents, what the actuality of health might manifest, except to persist as long as possible, beyond the point which everyone marvels why they are not dead -- being in that condition of advanced decline and deterioration.  That is not a hopeful prospectus for anybody considering their own longevity, and many think it is not something worth striving for, and the condition in life they want to prolong for as long as medical science makes possible.

That is a mind not breaking out of its prison -- and thinking there is a life beyond -- just a little more light, and a little more food -- as their nirvana.  But for the mind that can break through all that -- they create the life they live, in living it.  That integration of thought and action -- is health, physically, mentally, emotionally, and in every way possible.  That is the work of man -- and not just making more money, and all the other obsessive behaviors that define many lives -- and so naturally, when they are "retired" to create their best lives without all those previous constraints -- many lose their way entirely -- into the various delusions that characterize people cut off from active engagement and participation in the larger society and social fabric, and decline in their own peculiar fashion -- because nobody tells them what to do anymore.

They are entirely on their own -- which is a great disaster for many people -- particularly for those who always relied on somebody else to tell them what to do.  And if nobody does, they don't care either -- and so just dissolve into an indistinguishable mass -- seen only by their social and health care workers, as those that still have to.  At that point, human beings have no idea what they should look like -- and the condition they should be in, that manifests (actualizes) the best that they can be.  They no longer fell that necessary -- or even to fake it anymore.  One is simply done -- and nobody, including themselves, expects anything more from (of) them.  Life then, for all practical purposes, is over.

So how do we not get that way? -- the intelligent mind inquires.  We should be learning as we are doing -- and not simply executing what we already know -- that doesn't work, and won't, no matter how long we persist at it.  Obviously, we have to do something different -- learning in the doing -- and not merely learning apart from doing, academically, intellectually -- but unintelligently.  That is what transforms and transcends the declining human being -- and not just simply, the denial of that reality. That is the most disastrous thing one can do -- becoming evermore detached from those actualities -- to live in their own world, their own personal fantasies and delusions of what they are doing, and how they are perceived by others -- doing their own thing, and encouraging everybody else to do their own thing also -- and so each retreats further into their own self-isolating activity, which has to result in a dead end, and not the wider ocean of life.


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