Officially AGA Again

I just renewed my AGA membership!  Life has gotten in the way of being able to focus on actually learning Go in a meaningful way, that I’d about given up hope.  I finally decided, now that I’ve officially *passed* 40, it’s either think about it and regret it, or just do it!

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Hot dog!

This is just a quick post to do my happy dance.  I just got my 9.2mm glass go stones from Yellow Mountain Imports! The folks there are great with top-notch merchandise, great service, and quick shipping.  I can’t wait to get them on a board!

Starting Slowly…

…but surely.  I have begun re-reading Go: More than a Game by Peter Shotwell.  True, it’s not a hardcore Go treatise, but I think allowing myself to start again at the beginning is a good thing.  Who was it that, when asked “Where do I start?” answered “At the beginning is always a good place.”  Oh well, it’s true.

I plan to take a little time to go back through the book before moving on.  I also plan to start getting the Level Up! books, as I have heard good things about them.  My Go buddy, Ben, has done reviews of these (and lots of others) here.

 

Trying to get going

After another long stint, I’m trying to get back to learning this wonderful game.  Recently I’ve been dealing with some health issues and realize that part of my problems have been stress and being bogged down in too much thought, not enough spiritual growth.  I decided that along with prayer, I think meditation is a great thing.  I’m working toward a more mindful life, and Go is a great way to focus on the moment, life, and spirit.  It seems to me, to be an infinite meditation.

Life is Still Crazy

My last post was in August and, honestly, not a lot has changed.  I am trying to live better, and have succeeded in small areas, but still have a lot to do.  I have yet to resume my Go playing with the rare exception of playing 9×9 against the computer and trying to work a few tsumego.  I’m trying to work things around so that I can actually begin playing actively again.  It’s sad that I took up the learning and whatnot of the game over 2 years ago, and still have yet to be able to play a 19×19 game.  

My schedule doesn’t appear to be slowing, though, as we just finished my sons’ basketball games, but my daughter is in volleyball and my youngest son is about to start soccer.  My daughter decided karate wasn’t for her, but my sons are still moving forward.  The eldest is working on his brown belt, the youngest is working on his blue.  Both are studying Tang Soo Do and Jiujitsu.  Both are looking forward to the year’s competitions to begin (and I am, too).

Ah, well, enough boring personal information.  Hopefully I can soon sit down with a steaming cup of green tea and enjoy a game with someone – and learn a lot in the process!

God Bless.

Resuming the Journey…Finally!

After much too long a hiatus, I’m finally resuming my journey.  Life with a wife in grad school, three elementary school-aged children, a father and mother in poor health (and passing of my father), and a hectic job leads to little time to enjoy life.  Don’t get me wrong, I love them all and thank God for them, I just sometimes wish for time to slow down and enjoy something completely unrelated to the requirements of life.

Thankfully, my mom’s health has improved and I have gotten her moved from the old house (my great-grandparents’ home) and into an apartment in town.  She loves it and is more like herself than she’s been in years.  My dear wife has finished graduate school (for now), having received her Master’s – and with a perfect 4.0 GPA!  My children are a little older now, beginning school in two weeks in grades 7, 4 and 2.  Time definitely flies by in a hurry!

Work is still hectic, but I’m not about to complain.  I thank God everyday that I’m employed when so many are searching without success, to find a job.

I’ve realized recently, that I’m just running too fast and am too stressed.  It’s time that I focus on what’s important and not only what seems important.  I’ve promised myself to 1) Eat better, 2) Get more sleep, 3) Be truly mindful of the moment, 4) Express my creativity whether in my writing, cooking, artwork, or (after over 20 years) doing bonsai again, 5) Exercise more.  Along with the DOs are the DON’Ts: 1) Don’t stress out over little things, 2) Don’t let myself fall back into bad habits, 3) Don’t allow small annoyances to cause me to be irritable or angry, 4) Don’t forget to be thankful for every moment, 5) Don’t take anyone or anything for granted.

That being said, I hope that through these things, life can become enjoyable again.  As part of my physical, mental and spiritual well-being, I’m looking forward to once again practicing meditation, exercising, and playing Go!  I feel that when I can let go of preconceptions and just allow myself to focus on the game, the very act of playing Go is a moving meditation as well as a mental workout.

Watching through twitter and such as the Go Congress has been going on this week makes me wish I could have taken a vacation and headed to North Carolina; after all, what better way to resume my journey than to be thrown into the bowl of stones? 🙂

Peace and Blessings

Welcome!

Welcome to A Journey in Stones!  This blog is a replacement for my old Blogger one, and hopefully will get more use (since WordPress has an awesome app for my Droid to make it easier).  This blog chronicles my path to learning the world’s most ancient board game: Weiqi, Baduk, Igo, or simply Go. Follow along as I learn the strategies that apply to life as much as the board.  Join with me as the lessons of centuries, applicable to play, body, mind and spirit become a part of who I am.  Walk with me as I settle into the meditation in motion that is every move, every placement.  The road ahead is that of the 361 points of the goban – a Journey in Stones.