Whether from the Dao de Ding, I Ching, Sufi, Dao, Dhyan, Chen or Zen method of enquiry, meditation prompts stillness of mind or the no-mind state.
Many methods are used to first energise the body in preparation for stillness, at oneness, the experience of wholeness and emptiness, and not-knowing.
All techniques deriving from either a martial arts system, or a mystical approach such as the Kabbalah, the Upanishads, the Vedas, the Bible or the Koran, draw their inspiration from Eastern mysticism.
Later Western modalities such as Feldenkraus, Alexander and Bowen techniques and Rolfing, all seek to strengthen the bones, align the joints, stretch the muscles, sinews and tendons and so prepare the body for a deeply relaxed and meditative state.
.Taiji is a method of moving in meditation analogous to the Sufi dervishes’ method of twirling.
Most martial arts styles also use breathing and meditation for enhancing physical skill and calming the mind in preparation for battle or death.
There are interesting methods designed to create a meditative and quiet approach to 'mind' and a control of one's emotions - A state of 'no mind' or emptiness which allows deep internal processes to occur. Inner listening is a vital aspect to this method of training.
While in "theory" practicing martial arts of whatever 'style' is meant to:
- path the way to a heightened state of awareness
- produce a calm approach to life, a philosophical and spiritual introspection
- a reduction of ego related distractions
- a way free of body/mind earthly appetites
This is not always the case and many side affects may occur if incorrectly instructed- distress, (unbalanced emotions, ego, feeling of misguided power may result).
Nothing is guaranteed without patience, persistence and constant practice of meditation, a pure heart and struggle with ego related distractions.
A state of remembering is important - what the sufis refer to as Zikr.
The effect of lifetime training especially where guided by an experienced teacher can open the doors of perception to an inner reality.
Listening to subtle body, muscle, pressure, joint and pain sensations, the student is guided constantly within to a point where mind stops and oneness with existence is deeply experienced.
To experience stillness during activity is a heightened state of awareness which trains us to be still even in the most extreme situations.