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Thread: Zen from Dandelions, Pigeons, and a Six-year-old

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    Hunter's Avatar
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    Default Zen from Dandelions, Pigeons, and a Six-year-old

    Thought I would share......
    Zen from Dandelions, Pigeons, and a Six-year-old

    Sometimes things happen in life that make you stop and think deeper then you intended to for the moment. I had one of these moments awhile back with my youngest daughter, who at the staggering age of six years old gave me a great moment of wisdom in her simplistic approach to life. Having had what I would consider a moment of “Zen” stemming from the statements and practices of a little girl six years wise, I felt it necessary to memorialize the event in text.
    How often in our lives have things become so complicated that we loose sight of some of the simple objects of beauty right under our noses? When do our tastes become so “enlightened” that the basics no longer have the attraction or beauty that they once held to uninformed eyes? How many times have you heard “stop and smell the roses”? I believe it is enough to simply “stop and pluck a dandelion”. This being one of the simplest of life’s lesson was taught to me by my youngest daughter, Alexa.
    Have you ever watched a little girl plucking “weeds”? Such careful time and consideration is taken to pluck and arrange something that many would discard or physically attempt to eliminate from their yard all together. Yet in the eyes of a young girl the most amazing floral assembly wadded up in a tiny hand holds even more beauty then a ninety-nine dollar arraignment at the local floral shop. Ask a mother which holds more beauty in their eyes. Yet flowers on valentine’s and mother’s day are a frenzy of commercial faire and money spent every year.
    Have I done the same thing with my view of the martial arts? Have I gone from seeing the beauty in a handful of hand picked weeds to only seeing the goodness of sight in an expensive arrangement? I have probably done this to some extent. Sophistication and refinement in taste is what continues to force many of us to train and strive for greater things. Yet, how is it so many of us loose the beauty of a hand picked arrangement of weeds and dandelions in such a short time?
    The second time this happened was on a simple walk to the park. My family occasionally caravans to the neighborhood park, for my children this is to play on the equipment, while my wife and I continue our laps of the park at a snails pace. Like every other day, everyone had their iPods on en route. Separating ourselves with music from our environment around us, while I being not as agile with small equipment as my wife had not yet tuned out the noises of cars, horns, and trains. In being late I was extremely lucky and able to hear my six-year old serve up another moment of “Zen”.
    “Look at the pretty colors! I want one of those!” Alexa screamed with glee. I turn to look in the direction she is pointing and I see she is looking at a pigeon. Yes, a pigeon.
    I thought to myself, “you are crazy kid, those things are nasty!” yet she continued to marvel at the colors and talk about the rings around the bird’s neck being “shiny”. Something made me feel bad about my reaction however, I continued to look at the flying rat and sure enough, it DID have pretty colors, shades of green, white, blue, including brilliant tones of grey. I thought back to the care and compassion that this same little girl used to pick her priceless arrangements from the un-cut grass in the yard, again she was able to see the beauty and value in something that I had lost through sophistication.
    Again, I thought back to my martial arts and Kenpo karate path and wondered when some of the basic things I learned as a beginner lost their attractiveness to me and how I could see them through the unsophisticated eyes of someone unbiased again? Maybe I should simply realize that pigeons can have pretty colors and dandelions do make beautiful flower arrangements given the right point of view and objectivity.

    Yours in Kenpo,
    Brian Hunter
    Last edited by Hunter; 05-25-2006 at 07:56 PM.

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