There are certain difficulties that arise from walking a path alone. One of those has been very prevalent of late, and that is straying from the path because I no longer am in a class where we practice form. I am butt-deep in major life transition stuff (which is beyond the scope of this blog to go into), and it is taking up an incredible amount of my time and my energetic bandwidth, and that leaves little time for other things. I have barely practiced form in the past couple of weeks, and I haven’t made a blog post until today. Discipline and consistency are important on any sort of spiritual path, and those are the very things that are proving difficult at the moment.
Another difficulty in walking this path alone is that I don’t have anyone to bounce ideas off of or ask questions. The last two recorded classes that I have listened to have been not about Tai Chi, but about the I Ching. In fact, those were the two class days of the semester when no form was practiced at all, it was all lecture. And some pretty deep stuff, about what Ruby called “linear spiritual images”. I’m not going to go too much into it here, because I hope to devote an entire section of this blog to a deep dive into the I Ching, once I am done with the part about Tai Chi.
For now, what I want to talk about is a theme that Ruby kept returning to in these two lectures, and that was the idea that spiritual imagery is everywhere around us, if only we will open our eyes, look, and see. The imagery can be seen in the trees, in the sky, even in the buildings around us. To use a common Ruby turn of phrase, it is “everywhere, everywhere, everywhere”. It is possible, if a person has the eyes to truly see this, to be in a spiritual frame of mind at all times.
I’m not there yet. I’m nowhere near there. In fact, as I have gotten older and gotten further into the normal stuff of daily life, I have largely lost the ability to be in that spiritual frame of mind. I guess life got in the way, and has largely blinded me to the wonder of the world that is around me. I do mourn that loss, greatly. And I do have hope that perhaps one day I will be able to look with those eyes again. It will not be an easy road, and certainly made harder by not having a teacher. But my hope does remain.