Chinese Inspired 國學啟發 #1



Imagine a bow stroke as if it were a brush stroke in Chinese calligraphy:
Both require calm, controlled breathing.
Both must be perfected first in the mind, before the body acts.
Both demand follow through once they have begun.
Both require graceful flow.
Neither can be corrected once finished.

Is your bow stroke like a brush stroke?





Chinese Inspired 國學啟發 #2


Laozi on nothingness

“Nothingness is emptiness.
Without an empty axlehole in the center, a wheel cannot turn.
If a vessel is not empty, it cannot be filled.
If doors and windows do not contain empty space, they cannot be entered.
If a house does not have empty space, no one can live there.”
Similarly, if you do not consciously maintain space within your left hand, the result will be poor action. If you do not consciously maintain space within your right hand, the result will be pressed sound and a rigid bow. If your mind is not open and receptive to learning and possessing new information, the result will be sadness and fear.



Chinese Inspired 國學啟發 #3


Kongzi (Confucius) on learning and knowledge:

Learning without thought is labor wasted. Thought without learning is dangerous.
Do you think through your lessons, and learn more through reflection? Do you make the effort to think further, to read, and to listen to what you do not yet know?



Running Inspired


Living in Manhattan means needing to find outlets for the sake of a balance between mind and soul.

One of my favorite jogging routes takes me to the 79th Street Boat Basin on the Upper West Side of Manhattan. As I walk onto the short pier, I’m stunned by the expansive view. The contrast of south to north overwhelms me: To the south, I see the Financial Center, busy Midtown, tall skyscrapers in competition with one another; to the north, I see the green that allows me to breathe, an ambiguity of all the “what if”, and the indistinguishable blur between river and sky.

While living in the middle of this busy town, do we choose to build within all the high-rise? Or take courage to carve something out of the unknown territory?

Could the same mindset perhaps be applied to phrasing, fingering, and everything in between? Be an explorer, be adventurous, be courageous and be yourself.