Simplify It

In my shakuhachi (Japanese bamboo flute) lesson today I was reminded about the importance of simplicity. I am working on the song Honshirabe. In line three in the first breath there is a sequence that is posing a challenge. So my teacher broke it down into its simplest components and then we drilled until they it began to become familiar. Then little by little added another simple layer on top of the now comfortable one. That is what robuki is about, blowing the note Ro to start a practice session, I guess. To me it was amazing how three weeks of struggle was resolved in a matter of minutes!

Now relating that to neigong (internal practice/skill). Practicing zhan zhuang or sitting/standing meditation is the same principle, breaking down martial art(s) to the simplest component. In doing so and then building on it, what others consider to be the more complex parts, are really simple in nature and become effortless to the practitioner. As Wang Xiangzhai would state repeatedly, “The extraordinary is really ordinary.” Isn’t life great in how it shows us the same lesson in many different ways and manifestations.