Sunday, January 12, 2014


        When any of these top eight players gets
"IN THE ZONE",; any one of these
guys can beat any of the others.        

        Getting "in the zone" is what this blog
is all about.
          There are specific ways to do it, ways
to get there... But we are really entering
into the area of meditative techniques.
          There is such a thing as meditation
in action. That's part of what the dervishes
are all about.
          There are also yogic techniques
that apply.
           It's not a method you can use just
anywhere - I try not to get into too
deep a meditative state on my bicycle, 
for example.
           But tennis is a game well-suited
for meditation in action. I'll have to
get a better phrase for this discipline -
the "Art of Ecstasy" comes to mind, but this
is not a phrase that I have invented.
           Getting "in the zone" is a good
phrase. You know you're 'there', when
there are no thoughts in your mind,
just a intense, burning attention to
every movement you see across the net.

          Runners know  about "the zone".
In fact, a combination of the feeling
that you have when the endorphins start
to click  in - plus that sense of utter
concentration that comes with hard
breathing and strong exercise -
this is why many distance runners run.
Also, more casual runners who run
just for  exercise and  health,
who are not necessarily racing a stopwatch,
they know about "the zone" also.
           Let's face it, this moment of the
intense concentration of a mind
that is fully aware is a delight!
The game is to find the joy at
the core of things, without being
burdened with an endless train of 
           Full concentrated awareness
without content, while in the midst
of focused activity - this is the joy
of sports! But I must say, tennis
is particularly relevant  to this
kind of awareness, this joy of the
           There is a lot of empty
space in tennis. The situation
you are facing is more cosmic
than cluttered.
            Across the area in which
you play is a net full of holes - more
empty space! And an opponent some
distance away... firing balls in your
direction at high rates of speed.
             And you are running and reacting
in a court that is exactly big enough
to challenge even the best athelete.
The area and size of the tennis court
is a work of art, almost a work of genius.
          Any larger, and nobody would be able to
make it to the lines. Any smaller area
between the lines, and the challenge would
start to disappear - the elegance of the
strokes would become constricted.
          Tennis is the enemy of the enslaved,
monkey-like mind.

          Like in the martial arts, the player
is in a situation where any thought at all
impedes reaction times.
           Intense concentrated awaresness
without content, aided by pain-killing endorphins
fed with the energy of a fully functioning 
cardiovascular system - this is the joy of 
the game! And tennis is the game of life!
       Yes, and so is hockey!

       The Martial Arts, Tennis and Hockey - it's all about
clearing reaction time.

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