Dan Harden Seminar
Dan Harden is in town teaching a seminar at Aikido of Palm Beach County, Randall Smith’s dojo. His seminars are always inspiring and informative.
Dan was teaching us exercises today to increase our awareness of that subtle and elusive internal otherness. That thing is there and not there. The exercises he was teaching revolved around the proper structure of your body.
This seminar differed from last years in that I remember Dan saying that the Dantien was centered somewhere in the area below your navel and above your pubic bone.
Today, I heard him say that the dantien is more the product of how your psoas attaches from your inner thighs up through your inner pelvis and to the lower vertebrae of your spine and your ability to access this and manipulate it. Or more succinctly, focusing your intent on this muscle and letting it move your body.
The difference between what I heard last year and today,is that the focus is deeper and more concentrated. Its more rooted in the physical. The concept of dantien seems less elusive.
Being able to visualize the physical elements that create the dantien takes it out of the ephemeral and brings it into reality. Knowing what muscles to work makes internal strength training doable.
All through the seminar I could not shake the quote “faith without works is dead.” I think this is because internal strength training is something that asks you to believe in it for it to happen.
Dan always talks about intent, but I think its more than that. I belie its an act of faith. Sure you can say that you need to focus your intent on your psoas muscles to create the proper structure to access the dantien, have if you have no idea what dantien feels like, then its an act of faith.
Anyway, the things I picked up from Dan today, bridged the gap for me. I spent all of last year doing solo exercises trying to live dantien. I had a few instances where I think I felt it. This year, I think it experience more instances of it. This year my solo practice will concentrate on my interior and more specifically on the psoas.
More Dan tomorrow. Can’t wait.