Monday, October 8, 2012

In search of a perfect body and mind

My internet friend Rick at his Cook Ding's Kitchen quoted an interesting passage on Monet.  For those who are not familiar with Chinese literature, Cook Ding came from the famous story by Zhuang Zi (莊子): Cow dissection according to Cook Ding (匏丁解牛).  And Rick's knowledge on Chinese culture surpasses many Chinese, his blog is therefore worth checking up.  Anyway, the following is his Monet quote:

"One of the most notable aspects of Monet’s work is that he devoted himself to his self-imposed problem for decades. He was consumed by getting it right. While he could have been resting peaceably on his estate in his later years, he continued his rigorous exploration of light and color. Once started, a journey of this magnitude is never entirely satisfactorily concluded. There is always more to do and to perfect."

Practitioners of mind-body exercises can be divided into two categories.  One focuses on learning more and more techniques, like doing complicated yoga stance, like finding more esoteric ways to do deep meditation seeking for more and more "profound experience", like doing inch-punch or better ways to do fa-jing (like swinging heavier and heavier poles), or simply like learning more and more forms (or katas).  On the other hand, there is one who chooses on a path that is suitable or unique to his mind-body conditions, and through his devotion to this path, he seeks his route of mind-body perfection, like a Taoist or Buddhist meditator mostly or solely doing seated meditation for his whole life, or for that matter a devoted Christian doing prayers all his life.

Monet certainly falls into the second category where he expressed his inner self through painting.  Where are you?

Monet's Waterlilies

2 comments:

  1. Thanks for the link!

    For myself, I choose the latter.

    ReplyDelete

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