As a white belt going through the ranks of Karate, I often disliked the warm-up and conditioning exercises. I found this preparation to kick, punch and throw people around a waste of time. Too boring, I often felt. I see this in many students as well. "When are we going to practice real Karate?", I am often asked. "We want to free-spar and wrestle on the mats," is also often heard.
What students, and myself, did not realize that this 'prep' time IS Karate. It is not preparation to do Karate, but it is Karate as well. The body and mind need to be warmed up and conditioned properly to take the vigorous activity.
In Zen, many students come to the temple to seek enlightenment through meditation. They see Zazen as prep-time for enlightenment...and it is amazing how many students quit cause they hate the prep time. Too boring is often the reason...just how I felt in Karate during warmups.
It is not till you realize that the warmups and Zazen is NOT prep time. The warmups are Karate and Zazen is enlightened activity. They are not preparations for anything. They are IT!
There is no preparation. It is an illusion and delusion of the mind.
When people ask me know how often do I practice Karate, I tell them 24/7. There is no prep time. Everything I do is Karate...just like everything I do is Zazen...enlightened activity. No prep time.
This is it!
Hands palm to palm,