And if you can, what happens?
This is called the blind spot. It is something that is well known but is rarely thought about or analysed.
The chemist, Linus Pauling, who was continuously creative over a number of years, said, ‘When I am confronted with a problem that defeats me, I concentrate on it for three weeks. Then I deliberately rely on my subconscious and throw away all thought of it. And then weeks, or months, and sometimes years later, the answer suddenly pops into my mind.’
Now, we have no explanation for these things. None. The great French mathematician Poincare tried to analyse it. He said, ‘ It means that there is something in my unconscious mind that is more intelligent than I am! It can solve problems which I can’t solve. I would hate to think that!’
We are given the chance in judo – there is a tradition – to practise emptying the mind. After the judo practise, when you are pouring with sweat and blood you practise sitting still.
We used to do this at the black belt classes which we held at The Budokwai. It is said to give energy, an inspiration and a freedom. It can even give freedom from the fear of death.
To be able to empty the mind, like a clear space. Not falling asleep. Like a clear space, empty of hopes, ambitions, fears, and worries.
This is the advantage of learning an art like judo. In a small field, you can practise this emptying the mind and you will receive inspiration. Something will happen which you don’t direct. The body will move of itself. It will come to life.