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Donnerstag, 27. Juni 2013

The whiplash line-what mountainbike riding has to do with art nouveau, martial arts and a fiddlehead

I am a mountainbiker who now rides hard for 27 years, and without a question, I started just like everyone else. I bought a bike, fiddled around with components, made my own and bought pink titanium goodies just like anyone else. But at some point I realized something. I realized that I could not agree with the "bigger is better" crowd. People had given me their time and knowledge, and I realized I had the responsibility to give something back. So, I started tutoring, giving workshops for kids from a poor social background, and the like. It was then that I realized I had to learn what I was actually doing, for you teach best when learning. So I started to analyze what I was actually doing on my bike. I had always experienced flow, and "transcendent experiences in forest environments" were not at all strangers to me, either. I realized, being a writer and trying to torment my guitar and my flute, that flow can be experienced in other situations as well. So I  studied as much as I could on that topic and made some very interesting discoveries. I realized analogies and shared characteristics in the concept of flow, satori, eucharist, kairos, metakairos especially, the awareness of Chí, and shamanic exstasy. I had always studied several martial arts, with no ambition and until very recently, without instruction, and my father had trained me in our family martial art since I was a child.

When analyzing the Motions involved in mountainbike riding and slavic martial arts, I discovered a strange application of force. Being accustomed to the yin yang concept, but no expert in that matter, I was irritated that the development of force application of many movements seemed to follow a whiplash-line motion. In slavic dances with the Shashka, this becomes very evident in how the force develops. Apart from the double-circle (eight) motion, the "eight" can be diversed in whiplash lines.

This at first seemed contradictory to the Yin Yang principle, until I learned that the commonly known type of Yin - Yang is not the end of it.

Here, I found a decent explanation on the concept.

Non-polar (wuji) and yet Supreme Polarity (taiji)! The Supreme Polarity in activity generates yang; yet at the limit of activity it is still. In stillness it generates yin; yet at the limit of stillness it is also active. Activity and stillness alternate; each is the basis of the other. In distinguishing yin and yang, the Two Modes are thereby established. The alternation and combination of yang and yin generate water, fire, wood, metal, and earth. With these five [phases of] qi harmoniously arranged, the Four Seasons proceed through them. The Five Phases are simply yin and yang; yin and yang are simply the Supreme Polarity; the Supreme Polarity is fundamentally Non-polar. [Yet] in the generation of the Five Phases, each one has its nature.[8]

 http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/e/ea/Taijitu_Lai_Zhide.png
picture source:http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/e/ea/Taijitu_Lai_Zhide.png

It is now a stunning "coincidence";-) that e.g. the motion of the hands on the handlebar when bunnyhopping an obstacle on a mountainbike follows exactly the same line, and that  the whole mess does not end there. Many everyday motions we do without thinking follow this principle in one way or the other.

It is then that I came across the Heraclitus spiral, 
the Fibonacci, or generally, the Golden Ratio spiral. The golden ratio was discovered by Adolf Zeising to reflect the growth and arrangement of plants and their limbs in nature. I cannot for the life of me figure out how to do maths properly, but I found this strangely appropriate.

For instance, if you look at a fiddlehead, you will realize a striking similarity, and, of course, this is only natural, not necessarily because nature follows the golden ratio, but also because we always are obliged to follow nature, and the golden ratio has always been a means to describe nature.

That said and done, I assume that this diagram of the whiplash line is found throughout nature, and, of course, the whiplash line follows the aesthetics of the golden ratio. I then assume that a movement following the whiplash / golden spiral is a natural movement. If we assume the concept of Ch ´i expresses itself in flow or satori and follow the thesis that movement in itself is an expression of the application of force, we can now state that:

1. The whiplash line is a natural phenomenon following the golden ratio
2. The application of any force follows the whiplash line diagram, as well as the dialectic movement in polarity pairs like Yin and Yang. A similar concept are the expanding gyres of W.B.Yeats.
3. Since the concept of Ch ´i is linked to Satori (Flow), and Satori is linked to a kind of activity of either body or mind, and since this activity at least for the most part follows the whiplash line diagram and thusly the golden ratio, the development of flow / satori must also follow the whiplash line / spiral form.

Therefore, the spiral form is crucial for the understanding of flow, satori, or the Awen / AOUEIn. Since I assume an identity of flow with the Awen, and the Awen is a principle, amongst other things, of inspiration, I must assume that the process of creativity and creation must also follow these lines. Therefore, I must assume, that creation is organized in a fractal manner.

Flow/Satori/Awen therefore follows fractal ratio.


...to be continued.



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Now go on, discuss and rant and push my ego;-). As long as it´s a respectful message, every comment is welcome!

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