Responding harmoniously to aggression, whilst not impossible, requires the developing of a new paradigm of consciousness. Whilst this paradigm is already extant in the nature of the universe itself, it is not a common understanding in primitive minds.
Let me explain.
On the planet we find ourselves, evolution, call it slow creation if you want to, (there is no real argument between the two and a plenum of proofs,) began as a long struggle for existence.
This very struggle gave rise to consciousness because of pain, fear and the will to live.
As life forms evolve they tend to reflect the nature of the universe and its processes. Can this be so unusual?
No, not really. In the face of the fact that water tends to reflect what is there, so also does the microcosm, reflect the great vast macrocosm. When you consider that in the face of a creation which appears infinite, our galaxy is a but a spec of dust, this becomes obvious.
Now expand that spec to the size of a football field and select one grain of sand from inside that field. That is our Sun. Now expand that grain of sand to the size of that football field again and our Earth is about the size of a golf ball in that field. Expand the golf ball to the size of a football field yet again, then pluck a flea from the dog (equivalent to a small island on the Earth) walking across the field, then expand that flea to the size of ten football fields. (A good exercise is to zoom down using Google Earth – a free software available at: http://www.google.com/earth/index.html)
Now let’s see if you are fit enough to jog across the conjoined diameters of those ten football fields lined up, a distance of about a mile (or just over one and a half kilometers.)
Then measure your ego up against your success in doing so. Or your black belt.
Now we have some perspective. More so when you measure the length of a lifespan of even the most evil dictator. All the old ones are dead and the petty ones of now don’t have long to go.
How we fill a lifespan is really up to us as individuals. Those frightened of life and unwilling to face up to their exceedingly insignificant smallness in the face of Creation will generally become bullies.
They don’t mean to be bad, they can’t help themselves. As the Zulu song about apartheid overlords goes, “They are frightened, they are weak, they are cowards.”
But what makes a coward? What makes a coward into a bully if he can get away with it?
An area of the brain called the “Pons.” The Pons carries and delivers the primitive survival messages of millions of years ago, and was doing so long before the midbrain and frontal cortex had developed.
When the Pons fails in its duties or when the higher brain functions are not developed through lack of use, survival, or perceived survival falls back on the Reptilian system or R-complex.
“The ‘reptilian system’ is the oldest layer… the most ‘primitive’ of the three brain components and makes up the entire brain mass in reptiles. The reptilian system, also known as the primitive (reptilian) brain, or ‘basal brian’… ‘archipallium’, ‘root brain’ or ‘R-complex’. The R-complex consists largely of the structures… brain stem medulla, pons, cerebellum, mesencephalon, the oldest basal nuclei – the globus pallidus and the olfactory bulbs…the ‘basal ganglia’, the ‘reticular activating system’ and the ‘midbrain’. Functions of the R-complex are related to physical survival and body maintenance – digestion, reproduction, circulation, breathing, stress responses, territorial instincts, social dominance…. Functions related to the instinctive behaviour patterns of self-preservation include ‘primitive’ behaviours… responsible for automatic behaviours associated with territoriality, ritualism, social dominance, status maintenance, deception, tendency to follow precedent, awe for authority, social pecking order behaviour, compulsiveness, deception, prejudice and resistance to change… rigid, obsessive, compulsive, and paranoid. The functioning of the R-complex is activated when the organism perceives threat and the needs for survival and safety predominate. This part of the brain is active, even in deep sleep.”
In Latin, the word pons literally means bridge. The pons is a portion of the hindbrain that connects the cerebral cortex with the medulla oblongata. It also serves as a communications and coordination center between the two hemispheres of the brain. As a part of the brainstem, the pons helps in the transferring of messages between various parts of the brain and the spinal cord.
“As a product of human evolution through natural selection, the brain can best be understood as an organ of learning, adapted for the survival of the species”. (Gerald Fischbach, “Mind and Brain,” Scientific American, 267: 3, Sept 1992, 48.)
READ THIS: http://www.holisticeducator.com/triune.htm
“The characteristic functions of the human brain are the natural outcome of millions of years of evolutionary process through natural selection. The brain is three-layered or ‘triune’. The three major layers or ‘brains’ were established successively in human evolution… first the reptilian brain or ‘R-complex’, the second the mammmalian brain or ‘limbic system’, and the third the neo-mammalian brain or ‘neocortex’. Each has a separate function and depending on the circumstances each can become dominant but all three layers interact in the processing of information, i.e. cognition or learning. The triune brain paradigm has forced a rethink of brain functioning or ‘brain/mind’.”
This is why a higher response to a lower expression is not always easy. The lower expression has been around longer and is well established. Or has it?
This should explain the world around you. Why bullies exist. Why politicians tend to become corrupt. Why banks who you could once trust your money with, have become self-serving predators. And why the school bully is such a jackass who eventually finds his comeuppance, then sooner if not later shrivels into insignificance.
But wait, is that all? Surely there must be more!
Yes. There’s more.
Why is it that Aikido, real Aikido, not the faked variety, is not only possible, but enables. Why is it when Aikido’s creatively harmonising principles are deployed in social interactions it can and does successfully add value to society? Why is it that, “Aikido has the ability to lead all things to completion..” according to its founder Morihei Ueshiba and according to those who have in fact done so?
Because the Great Universe and its reconciling Creative force was there for a long, long time before a reptilian brain was ever thought of, let alone had the time to evolve this basic engine for the crude survival of a primitive species. The Great Harmony of the Universe, to a small, primitive and blinkered mind, looks like chaos, because it fails to understand.
But in the face of that immense, vast concordance of energies and potentials, the flea on the dog, in a football field on a spec of dust… on the outer arm of a spec of insignificance in immensely vast cosmic soup… pales into considerable insignificance don’t you think?
That immense power is yours. Not to predate with, or cheat, or cause harm or bully and dominate or any of the foolish actions of one imprisoned by their own reptilian vestige, none of these. These ultimately fail.
That unlimitable creative power is available to SERVE, CARE, NURTURE AND PROTECT LIFE! IT IS LOVE. THE AI IN THE KI!
The ultimate source of harmony is the universe itself. We can choose to channel this immensity as Hito Jinja, receiving and transmitting instruments of universal harmony by refining ourselves though the shugyo and misogi of regular practice as our Way or mediation.. Or we can remain self seeking lumps of meat chasing after the next feed, living in fear of ideas propagated by idiots with opinions and agendas.
That Morihei said, “When attacked I leave all things in the hands of the universe..” starts to make some measure of sense.
Try this exercise. You may not go in for misogi as he did. Nor in honouring the directions. Nor long meditation sessions each morning.
You may not even want to train daily.
But try this. Get into your car. Drive to a place of nature, preferably a high place and preferably on a day when the sky is clear.
Wait for night.
Then simply look up.
If you don’t have a car and won’t make the time then go here:
Here’s More (video links, best enjoyed in full screen) – I believe that I considerably understated the size, time and space comparison when writing the above piece.
Fun Stuff – Easier To comprehend, Perhaps
The Galaxy Song (Monty Python) Modern Remixes