Okay let’s assess, is it possible, really possible that a man’s spiritual core emerges full on when he is on the racing track, in the soccer field, kicking the ball and banging away at badminton. If yes, let us redefine the spiritual path to get a lid on the sports issue and how it leads a man to experience “the zone”.
The spiritual path often includes prayer, meditation and yoga, these practices are based on total concentration in the here and now, and what could be more in the here and now than football players running around a field, or a couple of guys hitting each other in a boxing ring. In such moments, a man is totally concentrated on the present moment. And that is when, spiritual seekers tell us, the zone can come in, and take over. And when the zone takes over we are into the experience beyond mind, we live in a different universe, far from our worries and fears, and at that point of consciousness all can happen, and all can come to pass.
Sport is also about a higher purpose, one that goes beyond social mores and divisions. Like the spiritual vision, it takes for granted that there is something more inspiring to this life. In sports there is also ultimate participation, a one hundred and one perception shift on reality even.
A chess player told the psychologist Csikszentmihalyi that when he plays the game, ‘I have a general sense of well-being, a feeling of complete control over my world.’ Similarly, a dancer told him that during her performances, ‘A strong relaxation and calmness comes over me”.
Zen is a Buddhist form of spiritual insight that leads to meditation and enlightenment. When in Zen meditation one totally focuses on the present, often in the face of physical discomfort, such as sitting for ten hours on a raffia mat. But when Zen refers to tennis, it is more about commitment to a high level game, and the confidence that one can stand up to whatever a match throws at one because one is utterly focussed in the here and now.
The first rule to Zen tennis is to quit worrying about winning Wimbledon, and just focus on the next ball. When the player thinks anxiety it just cramps the style. Change a mindset to win the point, in other words play tennis with joy, if you think only “win” you limit the point. Focus on the point only to make it last, and make it work. Focus on your positive traits too. Many who use Zen in sports events, see great results. In other words if you focus on the moment you win it, if you focus on the present and future rather than the past, you win. And if you dedicate yourself to the match because it just “is” you create momentum. Lose your memory for the negatives, gain it for the positives, in other words.
A spiritual high is momentum coupled with the intensity of the moment, a supreme form of intelligence, the same intelligence that flows through your body and makes your heart beat and your breath rise and fall. This “intelligence” can lead you to the spiritual zone, the golden element of a man’s inner world.
When a man is in the zone he accesses his personal flow. He might sense just the right steps to take on the soccer field to get the ball in the net, he might intuit that he is indeed capable of heroic deeds to save a failing match point, and yet if you think about it, all the aforementioned are also applicable to spiritual practice. Focussing on the discomfort of a mediation position is not the issue, focussing on the connection to God energy. One must take one’s pick.
David Icke, the paranormal journalist was once a BBC sports reporter and a professional goalkeeper and what happened when he had to deal with a close range ball broke through his limits and underlined the power of the zone.
“As the Barnet guy made contact everything went into slow motion for me. I moved across, watching the ball drifting slowly to my left and then I dived, lifting my right hand to turn it over the bar. All was like a slow-mo replay and everything was quiet, like some mystical dream, until my right hand made contact with the ball. Then everything zipped back into conscious time, I landed and bounced on the floor and the noise erupted, as if someone had turned off the mute button.”
Mountaineers have recounted how during a mountain storm or accident, they entered a different zone, a field of energy that was not available to them in a normal state of consciousness. Sometimes, a spirit guide would appear and lead them down a mountain to safety, or would heal their injury.
To an evolved sportsman there is something deep within him, that guides his mission on, he knows it, he feels it, he senses it, he sometimes even touches it. It is the zone, and he is standing within it as realistically as he stands in a football field, a tennis court, a swimming pool, a race track. When is in the zone on the field, he wins, he achieves, he lets go of expectations, and be becomes the aware man he was always meant to be!
(C)Copyright 2013, Psychic.Info 157 (1172)