January 21, 2009

No small amount of practice

Mishima and bodybuilding

The reviews of the Murakami book were mixed, but I enjoyed it, and am not a runner. I liked it for the same reasons that I keep going back to Mishima's Sun & Steel - the idea of coupling mental and physical discipline to reach a state of purity and blankness. This idea is with me a lot.

I have this new life wherein I get to set my own hours and do what I want, so long as the amount of work that I choose to accept gets done. I know that many people need to commute and work in offices, or - closer to home - stand up in front of classes of demanding students and perform. I need to be careful that I don't lose this life, which means I need to wake up and reflect on my luck as I make coffee in the morning, because it would be easy enough to lose this, either by performing badly and losing clients, or some greater misbehavior that would jeopardize my permanent visa, with the probability balanced fairly evenly between the two, propped up on either side by whatever discipline I can cultivate and then maintain.

My natural discipline is not so good, but I form habits very easily, and try and focus on good ones rather than bad ones. The last 10 days or so have been a refreshing proof of concept. I wake up early and start work by 07:30, and work until I lose concentration in the early afternoon.

The modafinil was both efficient and effective, with no obvious changes in perception or physical reaction, just clarity and focus. I want to use it to train myself into better habits. The interesting thing will be to see if I can use chemical scaffolding to build something new, and then have it as a free-standing structure, rather than rely on the drug. The values of psychedelics can be internalized and integrated with no small amount of practice, but is this true for other substances?

And on that note, here's two clips of Terence McKenna and Sasha Shulgin walking and talking together:



Related links:
My most popular post: Mishima's head on a plate [with picture]
All posts tagged Mishima
An interesting site that has other people's daily routines

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