Log 1 – philosophy and running

Setting a deadline for reading is not a good idea, especially when the book is on philosophy. I expected to have an easy read today, and of course, it went much slower; apart from reaching for the dictionary every now and then, I don’t consider reading just going over the text – I must understand what is being said. I want to, as often as necessary, push myself out of my comfort zone at least a bit, but going way beyond my capabilities (such as reading philosophy at high speed) isn’t gonna give me too much valuable experience.

The 100 pages or so I’ve read are very interesting so far. Early Indian philosophy was cool, but a little hard to go through because of the frequent use of lots of Indian terms  (even though I already knew some of the main ones, such as brahman, atman, moksha, karma, nirvana etc.).  I’ll have to go again through some parts, but I think I’m forming a general impression.

The chapter on early Chinese philosophy was much more inspiring. Although I thought I had a good grasp on the basics of Confucianism and Taoism and the way they are perceived in China, this book has showed me how little I know.

I like the way latter Confucians such as Tung Chung-Shu try to elegantly reconcile the very opposite views of two big Confucians, Mencius and Hsun Tzu; Hsun Tzu’s “man is evil” outlook; a deeper look at Confucius’ views made me think about the way we perceive historically important people in general. So many smart people have left so many thoughts for us to pick up, apply and incorporate into ourselves, and yet how many of us are listening to them? How many people know what Genghis Khan was really like and what is it about him which made him so extraordinary in the times and circumstances he lived in? Or Confucius? Or Miyamoto Musashi? Or Morihei Ueshiba? Or Churchill? Or Lincoln?

As for running, a strange thing happened. I don’t know if it’s the drop of temperature, my losing a few pounds, not eating anything 6 hours before the run or something else, but I ran the whole 5 km almost without breaking a sweat. There was practically no muscle pain during the run – at one point there was some discomfort in the upper part of my pecks, but that disappeared after a few minutes. Probably the most interesting thing is that my breading was constantly relaxed, through my nose, with around 6-7 inhales through the mouth during the whole run, at moments when I thought I was getting tired.

This is strange. Usually I run for 1 km and then slow down to a walking pace for one more lap, and then I run again. After some 3 km the usual sharp pain somewhere in the sides would prevent me from going further, but now that pain was mysteriously absent. The whole run went so easily, even though I haven’t ran for 2 weeks. After the last lap I did another one (250m), and I was confused by how relaxed I felt – as if I just started running.

Right now I’m still feeling relaxed. Tomorrow I’ll see what the muscles will be like and do some longer walks, and I’ll try the same intensive run on Monday.

That elated feeling after a tough physical activity is great; haven’t felt it in a while.

Today’s activities sparked some ideas, which I’ll elaborate on tomorrow:

The plan for tomorrow is:

– at least 200 pages of Scrivener’s Learning Teaching

– at least 100 pages of World philosophies

– at least 100 pages on healthy eating, learn and try out a recipe

good night

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