As far as movies go, I am not a huge Tom Cruise fan. That’s why this next line is surprising even to me. The Last Samurai is and will remain one of my favorite movies of all time.
Now being a martial artist over four decades, a child of the Bruce Lee generation you could say, I have always been fascinated with the Samurai. Words like honor, duty, code, loyalty, discipline and respect barely begin to scratch the surface of these elite warriors.
Their skill in all aspects of combat and warfare was superior. Hand to hand, weaponry, strategy and tactics were all part of the daily regimen. In addition to being skilled at the art of war, many of these men were artists and poets. Talk about balancing your life.
In as much as the movie provided an historical perspective, there were also powerful messages seeded throughout.
For example, the Art of Intimidation. When the new Japanese Army marched out to find the last remaining Samurai, they were already intimidated. Their fear led them to be on the wrong end of a serious ass whooping by the severely out numbered Samurai. Ever let fear scare you away from a desired goal? Hmmmm…maybe not you, but maybe someone you know. Moving right along.
To me, the most powerful scene in the entire movie was when Cruise’s character, Nathan Algren, had been a “prisoner” in the village for an extended period and had graduated to actually training alongside his captors.
In this scene, Algren continues to attack his opponent in a variety of ways and each time is soundly thrashed. After the countless time he’s tossed to the ground, the son of the Samurai Master comes to Algren and says, “Too many mind. Mind sword, mind battle, mind life. Too many mind.”
Later in the movie, the point made by the young man becomes clear. Algren is locked into a training battle with Ujio, the lieutenant that serves the master, Katsumoto. Algren (Cruise) is thumped several times about the head and shoulders during the first few rounds of “practice” with Ujio while the onlookers place bets on how many techniques it will take before Ujio thumps Algren again.
In a moment, Algren closes his eyes and clears his mind. By relaxing and letting go of all the clutter he begins to see in the moment. He has small glimpses of the upcoming sequences that eventually find him in a draw with Ujio. This brings him a tremendous level of respect among his former enemies.
If you’re walking around with “too many mind”, my suggestion is to first RELAX. You will have a difficult time clearing the clutter if you’re uptight and constipated. Start with several deep breaths. Inhale through your nose, hold for a count or two, then exhale slowly from your mouth. Continue this for at least a count of ten. (more detailed breathing exercises are taught at seminars and via one on one coaching.)
Next, create a picture of one of your three “Definite Major Purposes.” Just for a minute see yours as being accomplished. Notice the feelings of clarity and power. Hold the image of your definite major purpose (or goal) in your mind and let those feelings of clarity and power take root.
This simple exercise, if done daily, will aid you in maintaining your focus on what you want and keep the clutter out of your head.
Sometimes “too much” is not a good thing.
Copyright © 2005 David Martin and Answer Concepts, S.A. All rights reserved. Used with permission.