Tag Archives: yoga

Putting Myself Out There

Besides my training and education in Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) and study of nutrition, I’ve also practiced martial arts and yoga all my life.  I’ve been doing grappling of some kind since 1998, and yoga since 2000.

I started my grappling training in the japanese martial art Shootfighting, which is similar to professional wrestling but practiced as a real sport.  It is the original MMA.  It involves punching, kicking, throwing, and grappling.  In late 2004, I began practicing judo, which is also a japanese martial art.  I’ve been practicing ever since, all though in recent years, my attendance policy has been somewhat inconsistent I must say.

During the first six months of 2008, I trained freestyle, sport, and Combat SAMBO and that was the best experience I’ve had in the martial arts.  It was a lot of fun to learn new things and excel at something.

In all my martial arts experiences, I learned the importance of conditioning, flexibility, fighting spirit, the will to win, ethics, attitude, and sportsmanship.  By now, I am an exercise physiologist, I’m not a novice.

I feel I should be teaching martial art and yoga by now, although this by no means that I am all-knowing and invincible.  I feel belt rank is an erroneous concept and so is the concept of self defense without weapons.  All good martial arts are physical education, and I am qualified to teach sport education.

So what I am trying to say is, I am available to teach lessons in the long island/queens area, and I will share my email so anyone who has questions can contact me if they feel.

I have a lot to teach, including matwork, aikido, yoga and flexibility, and even nutrition counseling.  I’m only here to do a good job and to get paid doing it.  My rates are negotiable based on your economic situation, but please feel free to contact via email (I will add my phone number next post).

I prefer to work with the younger crowd, like young adults in their 20’s and 30’s, or those who already are grapplers who want some extra training to round out their game.  I hope someone out there sees my value and contacts me, even if it’s only for advice.  Thanks.

By the way, the photo above is for illustration purposes only, that is not me in the picture.  I’m male, 38 years old, and I live on long island, new york.  To contact me, my email address is lavni90@gmail.com…thanks again.

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My View on The Martial Arts

To begin with, I am just analyzing the relative merit of martial arts as physical education.  I’m not talking style vs style.

Right off the bat, I think karate is great for the youth.  It not only teaches them how to punch and kick really hard, but teaches them how to stand up for themselves, believe in themselves, and never quit.  These are all valuable qualities in life.

There is a lot of good karate out there but there is also a lot of fake karate out there.  Remember what Mas Oyama once said, ‘without sparring, karate is essentially a kind of gymnastics.’

I don’t think MMA is good for people, young people in general.  It teaches them all of the bad qualities of man and none of the good.  I would go further, but I won’t, because I know people who train and teach MMA.

Aikido is a special martial art.  It is ideally suited to physical education, and it teaches defensive principles.  Aikido is essentially a stylized version of weapons grappling, wrestling with weapons.  It is useful for police and military, and for people who aren’t fast and aggressive enough for karate, kickboxing, and MMA.

Also, weapons martial arts like Kali and Escrima are very good.  These are the best for military training.

Whether you do karate, MMA, aikido, judo, or weapons training doesn’t matter, as long as you learn the principle of self control and self restraint.  In the end, karate and hatha yoga has the same end, more mastery over the self.

But in the west, hatha yoga is seen as being for girls, since they are more flexible and peaceful to begin with.  Martial arts training is the un-learning of violence, not the fostering of more violence and aggression and ego.

Once you can do the technique with skill and grace and effortlessness, then you are the expert.  Sports are about winning and losing, but in objective reality, there is only the living and the dead.  And it’s always preferable to be alive than to be dead.

Martial Exercise and Physical Culture

My blog is a blog about fitness and Taoist nutrition.  I’m getting to the point where I am tired of talking about protein and vegetables and I must resume exercising in order to really be in condition.

Tai Chi, it’s relative Qi Gong, Aikido and Yoga are all great physical arts for improving fitness, health, flexibility, and longevity.  There are harder martial arts out there for you to do, but they involve sparring and competition and getting knocked down.  Soft martial arts and yoga is the way to increase the circulation of blood and qi (breath/energy).

Dieting is not enough.  If you ate a perfect diet but didn’t exercise at all, you would be normal bodyweight but wouldn’t be fit.  And that’s not the way to be.  If you are physically active, not only do you get other health benefits from working out, but your metabolism gets faster and you burn off impurities in your diet with more efficiency.  Exercising a lot makes up for not eating perfect all the time.

Don’t get me wrong, dieting is the best way to lose weight, but there comes a point where you must start incorporating exercise into your routine.  I read in a book on conditioning for judo that the best exercise equipment you can use is a partner.  Working out in groups is a lot more fun than working out by yourself, and hence the fitness industry is doing well for itself.

That’s all I got to say for now about exercise, besides I need to exercise also.  And I’m at the point where student has become the master and I should be a teacher of martial art and sport culture, but this means an investment of every evening and weekend for a long, long time.  And that is a big commitment.

What Can You Do?

The world is completely fallen and depraved.  Nothing is right with it.  It’s just an illusion.  What can you do, you who consider yourself a good person?  Let me throw my two cents in and make a few suggestions for improvement.

Good people don’t take sides.  Good people are in the world but not of it.  Good people don’t care to watch TV news or read about what is going on in other parts of the world.  It’s all bad and it’s all depressing.  Good people have integrity, they have character, and scruples.

If you really are a good person, and not one of the 7 billion who just say they are but really are corrupt and fallen, here’s a few suggestions for you.  I’m only trying to help.

First of all, you vote with your dollar bill.  How you spend your money shapes how the economy and geopolitics moves.  If you continue buying cornfed beef and chicken from a factory farm than you are voting for more factory farms.  If you are too poor to afford quality beef and chicken, than that’s a different story.

Second of all, don’t believe in gurus.  That includes teachers, doctors, experts, and karate senseis.  They’re all fake.  They’re so fake, they fake it as they preach to you.  If you get a piece of knowledge from somewhere, test it out in the real world and see if it works for you.  Experience is the best teacher.  You learn by doing.

Next, find cheap entertainment.  That means, new movies in a theater, the latest hip hop album download, and the latest bestseller are all a monumental waste of time and money.  The Library is a treasure trove of accumulated knowledge.  The whole world is in the library, every subject of human endeavor imaginable.  And it’s all free to you.

Next, religion is a hoax.  We’ve been so brainwashed by our upbringing to believe in the mythology of mesopotamian semites that the real meaning of religion has been lost.  Judeochristian theology and sweet Jesus doesn’t have a lot to offer the modern man.  Of course, there are universal principles that every holy man of every tradition knows, the truth is universal.  The shortcut to wisdom, happiness, contentment, and peace is personal meditation, personal philosophy (obviously building on the established ancient masters), and a discipline called lovingkindness, which is even greater than the discipline of Brazilian Jiujitsu.  Everybody should meditate, and everybody should be acquainted with the wisdom of the masters, but above all, kindness and affection is the real cure.  Man cannot live without love.

Finally, to conclude this brief and incomplete list, don’t listen to the critics.  Get tough.  I’m sure you have criticized others based on distorted half truths, so don’t get angry when they use half-truths against you.  Nobody is 100% good or 100%evil.  Every human being is a mixture of good and bad, dark and light, male and female, etc…  People are very kind towards their blood relatives but shockingly cruel against people, animals, and other living beings that are not related to them.  If only we could see ourselves as one soul in a cosmic ocean of souls, how different the world would be!

As long as the world is fallen from grace, and suffering and evil the prevailing quality of life, the most you can do is find the cure to your own misery.  Help other people and you will help yourself.  A selfish person can’t be happy in this world.  This is the realm of the unhappy ones.  Like it says in the Gita, ‘nourishing one another, you will be nourished in turn…but he who takes from the Gods and gives nothing back, is a thief.’

Street-Corner Blues

I only know long island, because that is where I live and I don’t travel much.  But walk down any main road in new york, and you will see a 711, a dunkin donuts, and/or a starbucks.  Someone is selling cheap dairy, sugar, and grain, and someone is consuming it with glee and someone is profiting off of this exchange.

Don’t blame the Pakistani guy at the counter of the 711.  Don’t blame the truckdrivers for needing a cup of strong coffee to stay awake at the wheel.  And don’t blame the young men and women who work at Starbucks.  They’re not that rich, and they’re just facilitating you ruining your own health.  It’s a neutral act, not an evil act.

It’s really business, media, and politics to blame.  Some people are profiting off your ignorance and misery.  They want you to keep eating junk and keep getting sick and keep going to the medical doctor to get pharmaceuticals, which in turn makes you more hungry, tired, and obese.  This system is rigged.

In fact, all of this society is designed to defeat you, the good simple man.  It’s designed to drain you slow, to rob you, to beat you down.  And the only cure is to work hard every day, spend less than you earn, and not be so materialistic.  Less is more.  Money is the root of all evil.  If you are not content to be on a fixed income, get an education and find a line of work you enjoy.  Work isn’t work if you enjoy it.

Holy men and yogis leave the world of men because it is so evil and worthless.  But rather than being a monk on the mountain chanting ‘hare krishna’, it is better to be in the world but not of it.  I don’t want to be a celibate monk living off of alms.

I want to work and marry, because power and pleasure feels good.  And joy is the meaning of life.  It’s that simple.

Battlefield Earth

Violence is the worst part of life.  Any type of violence, be it warfare, self defense, or even killing animals for food.  But we can’t avoid some types of violence, like stepping on insects or killing pests.  Life is a battle, everything in life is a fight of some sort.

The essence of yoga and the spirit of the Gita is to be victorious in life.  To win.  There is nothing better than doing one’s duty with skill and enthusiasm.  If you are a soldier or a cop or a security guard, etc… then there is nothing better than the battle that duty entails.

The spirit of the Gita is to do one’s duty with power, skill, and mastery, and with no thought of results.  Indifferent to success or failure, act with passion and enthusiasm.  This is yoga.

Samadhi, or sartori, or kensho, or zen or whatever you call it is the ultimate attainment.  Once you’ve conquered the self, then you are the champ and no one is better than you.  To learn the folly of violence at a young age is called being precocious not being a coward.  But our society doesn’t understand motives, because they are primitive and ignorant.

So I say, live and let die.  You have a right to defend yourself, but violence is only justified in the preservation of human life.  That is my notion and I hope someone out there agrees with me.

 

Back in the Saddle

I changed my mind again and decided to renew the subscription to wordpress.  I can use this site as a portfolio to get volunteer and paid jobs, and I can still disseminate the knowledge of Traditional Chinese Medicine to the masses as I wish.

A lot has gone through my mind over the past few weeks, but really, everything is changing and yet remaining stable at the center at the same time.  That is the paradox.  The words of truth seem paradoxical.

I think sugar restriction is the only real diet and the only real way to lose weight.  There’s no way around it.  In the end, calories count, and to reduce calories, simply reduce carbohydrates such as sugar and starch.  Carbohydrates are the bulk of any sensible diet.  You can lose a lot of weight in very little time with low carb dieting, but the question is will you stick to this new way of eating.

A healthy weight maintenance is an ongoing battle, and discipline, moderation, and self control are the key virtues.  You will never be perfect, but it could always be a lot worse.

So it doesn’t matter if you call yourself an Atkins dieter or a Paleo enthusiast, or a Keto adapted athlete (which isn’t even healthy in the long run).  To lengthen thy life, lessen thy meals.  Or in other words, if you want to be healthy, eat less sugar and move more.

Parting Thoughts

My annual subscription to wordpress runs out in two weeks and I decided not to pay to extend the use of the domain name.  I’m sure my blog will still be on the internet, under a longer, more unwieldy handle.

I’ve learned a lot over the past year of publishing this blog.  It’s not all bad.  No matter who you are, high or low, it’s possible to change your situation.  Keep trying, and you will find a sympathetic audience.

It is no longer necessary for me to work for free.  I don’t want to blog away my ideas to the public for free.  I deserve better.  I am quitting facebook and blogging.  I don’t want to spend more time than necessary infront of the computer.  If i’m not working a volunteer job, internship, or work from home job, or even jotting down notes, there’s no point in sitting infront of a computer all day.

My suggestion to you, gentle reader, is to never quit no matter how bad it gets.  As long as you got the breath of life in you, you have a chance to improve your position and make a difference in somebody else’s life.  Don’t listen to the critics.

And whatever you do, don’t assimilate to mainstream society.  Be in the world but not of it.  There are people in this world who profit off your ignorance and misery.  What I tried to do with this blog was educate ordinary people about the way to get healthy so you don’t have to rely on the junk food industry and the medical establishment.  They mean you no good.  Life is a battle, and to be victorious in life, you must be in the camp of God. He grants victory.

 

The Whole Fitness Debacle

A lot of people are confused about how to get in shape and stay in shape.  They’re looking for answers, unless of course, they don’t care about fitness and longevity, in which case they’re dying slow.

So I’ll just tell you.  Of the whole fitness equation, diet is 80% of it, if not more.  This isn’t an exact science, but it is safe to say with a reasonable degree of medical certainty that nutrition is the cornerstone of good health.  You are what you eat.

The ideal diet is a balanced one with all four major groups represented, including protein, whole grains, fruit, and vegetables.  Of course, in the real world, it is not easy to eat a perfect diet.  That is where sugar restriction comes in.

Sugar restriction is the best way for a fat, out of shape, inactive person to drop a lot of pounds in the short term.  It’s the best.  Just eat lean protein from a fairly healthy animal and some low starch vegetables and you’re good.

When you’re weight returns to a normal balance, start adding fruit and whole grain and other good carbs to your diet in small increments until you find the threshold of carbs where you can eat sugar and not gain the weight back.

Exercise is very important, for things like muscle tone, energy, fitness, mood regulation, and feeling good about yourself.  But don’t fool yourself.  You can’t out-train a bad diet.

Karma, and how it applies to health.

Karma literally means action, but has deeper connotations.  Karma means every action you take accumulates somewhere and will come back to you.  This obviously applies to health and fitness as every rep counts in changing the way your body looks and feels, and everything you eat or drink has an effect on your longterm health.

Think of how you will be in ten or twenty years.  Your body will have replaced all it’s cells with the building blocks of life from the food you consume over the years.  Slowly, insidiously, you become what you have eaten, but also, what you have thought and said and done.  If you stop and think and become more mindful, you might consider taking different actions now that will have different consequences in the future.

One donut or coca cola wont kill you, but think of the gradual effect it has on your body after years of daily consumption.  Just like money, food comes and goes, and your body does its best to extract nutrition from what is in your intestines.  Put natural plant and animal foods there, and everything will run smoothly, and you will age gracefully.

But bombard your own digestive system with junk food, or empty carbs, or dull, rotten food, or even overly salty and spiced food, and you will be sowing the seeds of misery for the future.  Remember, the human body doesn’t come with an instruction manual, and most people treat themselves very poorly.

I know life is a free for all after high school, but really there is a reward for doing the right thing.  You suffer less in the end.