The Will to Arrive
Journal — January 9, 2017 — trust, lucidity
The flipside of the will to receive is the will to arrive. Today’s events cast a new light on this part of my year’s resolutions. I’ll try to define my terms, first.
What do I mean by “will to arrive”?
I’ve still never seen a better description of it than the one in The Book of Five Rings, written about 372 years ago by Miyamoto Musashi, even though it’s a book mainly concerned with how to kill people very effectively.
When art glorifies the farmer more than the warrior, you’ll know we’re winning. (source) I wouldn’t expect that to be a good source of advice, and yet:
The primary thing when you take a sword in your hands is your intention to cut the enemy, whatever the means. Whenever you parry, hit, spring, strike or touch the enemy’s cutting sword, you must cut the enemy in the same movement. It is essential to attain this. If you think only of hitting, springing, striking or touching the enemy, you will not be able actually to cut him. More than anything, you must be thinking of carrying your movement through to cutting him. You must thoroughly research this.I encountered this quote on LessWrong, originally, in my teenage years. You should thoroughly research it.
Translate “cut the enemy” to any other goal, and you start to get a picture. The will to arrive is the will to arrive in a certain world. Miyamoto Musashi had the will to arrive in a world where the enemy is cut. I’m cultivating the will to arrive in a world where the concept of “enemy” isn’t relevant, anymore.
This afternoon I accompanied a friend of mine, walking around a 160-hectare plot of land
A bit like this. (source) that he’s thinking of buying, with the intention to start a community there.
What kind of community? It isn’t completely clear. Like all unclear things, it offers a perfect surface on which to project one’s own fantasies. I spent a long time walking through beautiful terrain, haunted by images of the far more beautiful world I know could emerge, and the grand project I could undertake to guide those hundred-some hectares into it.
I had to ask myself – not for the first time – whether I really want to be in the hundred-some hectares of Tamera, and not somewhere else. And the only right answer I can give is, “that’s not important to me”.This answer is from Tre Ore, which unfortunately isn’t something you can read out of context and expect to make sense.
I really like being in Tamera. And yet: where and how I live, who I’m in contact with, whether I’m comfortable or happy or not, that’s all incidental. All that’s important is to carry the movement through. I made that commitment to myself before I ever knew Tamera existed, knowing that there is nothing, nothing at all, which I could allow myself to hold on to.
I would also like starting a huge, crazy project
No. Think bigger. And messier. (source) with my friend. This is also incidental.
I don’t know which way will make it easier to carry the movement through, and that’s important.
There are elements of the world I’m trying to arrive in that I can see very clearly, and some of those are very nearby. The reason I made this resolution is that I still hesitate, much longer than I should.
Even when I know the right way forward, sometimes months pass before I take the next step, despite the fact I see opportunity after opportunity to act immediately. I don’t fully understand why I hesitate at these moments, which makes me hesitate more.
But I’m getting quicker.