So, I’ve been thinking about concentration a lot today. Mostly, because I’ve noticed that when talking, we all have a tendency (sometimes) to only talk about what WE want to talk about at the moment.
For instance, imagine that you’re talking to someone about a video game. They’re telling you how good the game is, and you seem a little ambivalent about it. It’s not your cup of tea (either the specific game, or gaming itself). The person gets really animated about the game, discussing the good points.
You both end up moving on in conversation and part way through a sentence, the other person cuts you off, reverting back to the previous topic. They talk straight over you, not bothered about what your saying.
It can be said that this person lacked concentration. Instead of concentrating on what you where saying, or indeed the new topic of conversation, they ploughed ahead and continued to talk about what they wanted to talk about.
This can’t be good. You might find yourself wondering if they take the same, seemingly, flippant attitude to all aspects of life. If they do, they may end up getting lots of people upset with them, or they might start a job or project and give up a few steps into it.
I know many people like this. And while I reserve myself to thinking that I shall never attempt to change anyone (‘what business is it of mine?‘), I will relate this following story to you.
A warrior once talked with Ieyasu Tokugawa about avoiding injury in battle. Here is what Ieyasu Tokugawa said:
When facing the enemy, of course it is like being in the dark. But if at that time I tranquillise my mind, it becomes like a night being lit by a pale moon. If I begin my attack from that point, I feel as though I will not be wounded.
Although I’m using this quote allegorically, I think that it is a genuine piece of philosophical genius. Reading this, you can see why the Tokugawa ruled over Japan for as long as they did.
I figured that, since I’m trying to learn more and more Japanese vocabulary, that I’d include this word as well (‘it may even become a new feature of my posts‘).
Now then, the above three characters can be read:
集 – しゅう [Shu] “To gather”
中 – うちゅう [Uchu] “Inside”
力 – うりょく [Uryoku] “Power”
Transliterating these three characters, we can see that the Japanese meaning for the word “Concentration” means “To gather inner strength”
I don’t know about you, but I find that quite interesting, and rather telling.