As I have mentioned in my profile, I ponder a lot. My mind is jumping around all over the place, but my body stays put most of the time. I have been this way since I was little. And to much regret, I never learned to put my body to good use, like playing sports.
So, I think it is almost natural for me to be intrigued by athletes. I am curious as to how the mind works in them.
Maybe it rids all thoughts except one – the thought of winning?
Maybe it has clear direction – concentrating on the competition and nothing else?
Maybe it is even shut off during the game so that the body can run free.
But I think not. Just like my chain of thoughts is forcefully interrupted by bodily needs like hunger and sleep, the body cannot help but be interrupted by needs of the mind, like feeling joy and excitement of winning or fear and anger in losing. So how can a balance be struck between the mind and the body?
Since needs continue to exist until they are met, there is no use trying to deny them. If I try to keep thinking despite feeling hungry or sleepy, worst case scenario, there will be no “me” to keep thinking. And simply satisfying these needs can only get me so far. I could eat anything and lie down anywhere, but that will not bring additional fruits to my thoughts.
Then maybe, attending carefully to bodily needs is the key to the mind. In preparing a tasty meal and searching for ways to get a good night’s sleep, I can know more about my preferences and tendencies, not to mention the intrinsically positive effects of quality food and sleep. Similarly, becoming acquainted with all the emotions rumbling in the mind instead of suppressing or succumbing to them may be the breakthrough factor for the body.
Today a tournament begins Down Under, and a young countryman of mine is in the spotlight. But in recent months, shadow seems to have cast in his mind. A bogeyman attracted to the shadow seems to have nested. Can he befriend the bedeviling? He will have to, because it will not be going away as long as he stays a top-tier athlete – the brighter the light, the darker the shadow, and the cozier for the bogeyman.