“Who am I and why am I here?”
Man has asked these questions since he first became conscious. The connection between the Occult Sciences or Mysticism and Martial Arts varies depending on the country of origin and era in which we use as a reference. Western science is just now beginning to understand the realm of mind and matter because of the latest research into particle physics and advances in technology allowing us to explore the vast unseen world of what the universe, time space and reality is really comprised of, and how it all works. Underlying all mysticism is an elaborate symbolism used to illustrate and explain the cosmos.
If we look at ancient Hindu and Buddhist cosmography as explained by experts in the occult sciences of India and Tibet there are many manuscripts that talk of reality and can be summarized in the following fundamental teachings.
All conditions, or realms of existence such as worlds, heaven or hell are entirely dependent upon phenomena. This phenomenon is not only transitory but also illusionary and unreal except in the mind perceiving them.
In reality, there are no beings anywhere such as gods, demons, spirits, or even people, just phenomena dependent on a cause. This cause is the yearning after sensation by the unstable existence of a cosmic consciousness.
Only by overcoming the attachment to sensation, can we become enlightened and get off the wheel of birth and death.
Death itself is nothing more than a continuation under changed conditions of the phenomena born existence of the human world. The nature of existence that governs this cycle of death and rebirth even in the state between these two realms is Karma determined by the actions we take and perhaps even our thoughts.
After death, we enter a prolonged dream state filled with illusions that directly result from our mental content. Only by realizing that our existence is an illusion can we become enlightened and become emancipated from the cycle and enter Nirvana a state beyond existence.
We live in a modern world of phones and computers, the Internet and buildings of steel and glass. In some ways, it is much more difficult to achieve spiritual balance than in the old days of isolated villages.
Because of a yearning for sensation there is cause for phenomena, which psychologically speaking, is nothing more than a prolonged dream state filled with hallucinatory visions that result from our mental content and karma. Once we realize the unreality of existence then we are free to control our thinking process so we can concentrate the mind in an effort to reach right knowledge.
This book is structured like the inspiration masterpiece by Kahlil Gibran “The Prophet”. It is an imagined discussion between a master of Tantric Yoga and his disciple a young student of Ninjutsu.
One of the conflicts that arise in taking the martial path is that at some point there is realization and even an impulse to shrink from the violence we see in the human condition. Although we are trained to perform violence when required and confront death in order to transcend the limits of worldly existence there is a dramatic moral crisis that is central to developing the faith needed to preform our sacred duty.
A paradox interconnects disciplined action and freedom. We must explore within ourselves concepts such as duty, discipline, action, and knowledge to allow for our ultimate understanding of phenomenal existence. Our freedom lies in disciplined action that is both performed without attachment to the action itself while being dedicated with loving devotion to those we hold dear.
How can we continue to act in a world of pain without suffering and despair, and enable ourselves as warriors to control our passion and become men of discipline? The real battlefield is the human body, where within this material realm we struggle to know oneself.
The Samurai lived their life by a strict moral code called Bushido. In service to their lord, the Samurai had strict ethics which held them accountable for their conduct. In battle, they were able to kill and be killed because of their belief in this code. In order to perform this sacred duty, the individual or self was set aside for the clan mind.
The Shinobi or Ninja were peasant warriors which were trained to perform duties such as espionage and assassination among other battle duties. They had no such code of ethics which prevented them from providing these services. However, they still did need a way to perform without hesitation. To face a mission of possible death and to kill required a system of esoteric knowledge allowing the warrior to accept the consequences of their action.
Instruction in Tantric Buddhism as well as Shintoism were often taught to novices of Ninjutsu along with their martial arts training. This awareness of the true nature of our being is what enables the warrior to take the life of his opponent without hesitation. Only by understanding the spiritual teachings can we hope to become warriors and accept our own mortality in the face of death, unafraid, unflinching, and unwavering in our faith.
Chapter 1 – Nature of Self
Master what is the self. What happens to us after death. If I am to take life and perhaps lose mine in the taking, fear may cause hesitation in my actions. Is there a continuity of our consciousness when we die?
The Master explained; we must bear in mind that the understanding of the nature of continuity of consciousness and the understanding of the nature of the self are closely interlinked.
A person possesses many interrelated collections from separate parts. Among these collections are consciousness, which includes our physical body and senses, feeling which is the collection of discrimination, and the aggregate of motivational tendencies.
There is our body, the physical world and our five senses, and there are the various processes of mental activity, our motivational tendencies, our labelling of and discrimination between objects, our feelings, and the underlying awareness or consciousness.
Among the schools of thought, which accept the notion of continuity of consciousness, there is the belief that the essence or ‘soul’ of the person exists independently from the body and the mind of the person. However, our sense of self can upon examination be a complex flow of mental and physical events.
These patterns include our physical features, instincts, emotions and attitudes continuing through time. We look at this concepts as the temporary person that is as we exist at this moment, and at the same time, there is a subtle self which is independent of the body and mind. This subtle self-awareness can reflect the power of cognition.
There is a principle of dependent origination which asserts that nothing exists independent of other factors. Things and events come into being only in dependence on the aggregation of multiple causes and conditions. The process through which the external world and the sentient beings within it revolve in a cycle of existence propelled by karmic propensities and their interaction with misapprehension, attraction and aversion. This notion that there is a connection between this life and the events of both our previous existence and our future existence, follows understanding of the natural law of cause and effect.