The Ecology of Stuff

I’m currently reading this book, The Secret Life of Stuff by Julie Hill.

Well it is a book predominantly about ‘Stuff’. Material items, how it has been produced over time and where these items goes, as in their biodegradability, recyclability.

Stuffs are basically a manifestation of our inner creation. Our imagination, fantasies and dreams, however we all know how dreams, imaginations, and fantasies are, blurred, incoherent and more often than not, without an ending.

This book brings to my attention the amount of energy taken to bring a product to existence and the amount of energy (or the lack of it, in most cases) to bring the product to a respectable ending. Some stuffs just don’t end, their life cycle is a continuum, and it carries on into another manifestation, irrespective of the benefits or woe to the environment.

Aikido is a martial discipline that brings to our awareness the ecology of the entire system. When we train with our partners, we need to become aware of their entire existence. They are not simply ‘attackers, uke, Tom, Dick or Harry’, per se. A tremendous amount of energy is expended to bring these folks into being. Doctors nurses, bus drivers, cleaners, pharmaceutical executives, Steve Jobs, school kids and other people all contributed to how they become the who. These are the past, the background that must come to our awareness when we train.

These mentions are made not to bog down the mind. The Long Tail of Cause and Effect comes into play as well, and the connection is so asymmetrical that it will be futile to try to become knowledgeable about it. There is no way we can know all we can about a person, hell we cannot even know all that is to know about us, much less others!

Bring to our awareness, that is all, it is knowledge or the desire of it, that slows us down. Awareness, consciousness, frees us.

Anyway, so when we ‘throw’ our uke, that is not the end, it is a continuum. Our uke gets up, becomes ‘recycled,’ and is biodegradable. They get up, become our uke once more, or get’s recycled to become a nage.

If we do not treat our uke with respect, and deals with them like how we deal with stuffs. then we are not looking at sustainability, we are not looking at the renewability of the people who train with us. We smash our uke’s face into the ground with a certain satisfaction that we can, then we’ve introduced something toxic into the system, and that will in years to come, return with a vengeance. by then we might have forgotten about it, and upon the receiving end, wonder to ourselves what have we done to deserve that?

Long before that is a green movement, there is already a green movement, every single on of us, must look into the sustainability of our relationships.


About Who is Randy Lim

This blog is about the journey and experiences in my life as an Aikidoka. With close to 20 years in the arts, I'll make comments and judgements based on 2 principles, E&E. Experimentation and Experiential reflection. please enjoy, and comment freely.
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