The art of living is more like wrestling than dancing, because an artful life requires being prepared to meet and withstand sudden and unexpected attacks.”
Marcus Aurelius, Meditations, 7.61
These are all necessary, and useful skills to have when navigating life, as well as a dance.
However, in a dance (or a kata/hyung for that matter), there is either a pre-arranged set of expectations, and/or an implicit or explicit agreement to work together for the sake of “the dance”.
In other words, no one is trying to actually punch you in the face, or choke you unconscious, or break your bones on purpose, or intentionally send you to the hospital, or end your life.
Fighting (or sparring), like dancing, requires agility and flexibility, sensitivity (to know “beyond” the senses), and the ability to lead (make openings) as well as follow (take advantage of mistakes)... as does life.
Disciplining one’s mind with practices like Stoicism and other methods of ego-taming hones our character like a whetstone helps to create a sword’s cutting edge. It prepares us for a sparring match and not a dance.
Leave dancing to dancers.
Let’s get scrappy.
(See y’all tomorrow)