I just came across a video on the martial art form Aikido by Richard Moon.  While it’s on Aikido, it’s really on much more:  a philosophy of life and how to be in the world–in business, in relationships, and in personal development.  His philosophies closely reflect my own and the themes I emphasize in my writing, teaching, and speaking.  As a longtime student of Aikido myself, I relate strongly to the creative aspects of Aikido and other martial arts and movement disciplines.

Sensei Moon identifies three core principles, of “presence”, “harmony”, and “creativity”.  “Presence” means being in the moment, being aware of your environment and of your current experience, whatever that may be.  Moon calls this “feel where you are”.

Once you are aware and present, this leads to Harmony with outer circumstances: harmony with others, with situations, with the apparent stresses that we encounter.  Sensei Moon calls this “harmonious relationship”.  We often tend to resist these outer situations when they appear to be in conflict with what we think we want.  But when we choose instead to harmonize with them, it gives us more power to influence than when we resist.  As I’ve noted before, resistance causes persistence, and it tends to empower that which we resist and weaken ourselves in turn.

Through this harmony with the situations in which we find ourselves, we can then add something of ourselves, which is where creativity comes into play.  When we harmonize with the pressures of life, we can then work with them to find creative solutions to the situations at hand.  Moon refers to this as “share who you are”.  Once we harmonize, we can then bring something of our own unique perspective and individuality to bear on the situation at hand.

In a nutshell, this is the formula which I often identify as allowing us to create our lives as a “magical work of art”.  It is by paying attention, being aware and present on a moment to moment basis, then harmonizing with whatever presents itself, and finally responding accordingly in creative, intuitive ways that allows for this higher creativity to work through us.

To use the language I employ in my book, A Call to Magic, this is the fundamental difference between reacting from the false ego perspective and responding to life from the vantage-point of the Authentic Self.  This is also the ideal solution to any problem or situation that demands our attention: pay attention and be present, harmonize with the situation, and use intuitive insight to act creatively.

If you’re willing to experiment with this simple approach, I think you’ll find is has a profound and truly magical power.  Try it and see!

Here’s Richard Moon’s video, in case you’d like to check it out:

The Creative Philosophy of Aikido