#2 The Beginner’s Mind Is a State of Being

Greetings and Welcome to the next installment of
“Martial Arts for Everyone”

I was thinking about someone beginning the martial arts – karate, kungfu, jujitsu, taichi, qigong, etc. and asked myself where to start? I realized that there is only one place to start and that is in you own mind. That there is only one place to start and that is at the BEGINNING.

In Japan they have the phrase “SO SHIN” which means “Beginner’s Mind.” It was Shunryo Suzuki that said, “In the beginner’s mind there are many possibilities. In the expert’s mind, there are very few.”

When you decide to start a martial art it is key to think that you are a beginner, that your beginner’s mind is open to new experience and trusting that you will be learning skills, both mental and physical, that can be key to you living an awesome life.

With an open and receiving mind you will be able to absorb this new information into your consciousness and allow it to become part of your own understanding forming new habits and paradigms within your subconscious mind.

But your mind is tricky, whenever you learn something new about someone or something, your mind reaches into your subconscious and accesses your old comfortable habits and paradigms and creates your perception through the formation of opinions, preconceptions and judgements that inhibit the true knowledge that you are learning.

During your practice your goal should be that of maintaining the “beginner’s mind” because it is in this state that you have limitless possibilities and meaning through your original mind. The “beginner’s mind” is also something you hope to meet along your journey. It is not something that you consider as an object of your search.

It is a state of being (a state of mind) that includes everything within itself. It is a self-sufficient state of being – It is an empty mind that is ready and willing to receive, it is open to everything.

If you consciously rationalize and think too much, discriminate too much, then you limit yourself through ingrained paradigms, perceptions and behavior. In the beginner’s mind there is no thought of attainment. Remember, all self-centered thought limits the vastness of your mind and your limitless potential.

The most difficult thing is to always keep and be in the state of beginner’s mind. It is always necessary for you to be in the state of your original mind and the best way to do that is with a deep and sincere expression of gratitude for all that you have, all that you can be, and all that you are.

You live in the limitless abundance of the Universe!

In Gratitude!
Hanshi Hufford
Your Martial Arts Mentor
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