My favorite quote from the original Highlander movie is when the Spaniard Ramirez, while rowing a boat in the middle of a loch while poor Connor, afraid of water, is tentatively not trying to fall into the water, sings aloud, “B-A-L-A-N-C-E… balance!” and then rocks the boat until Connor falls overboard.
Besides showing just what a charismatic asshole Ramirez can be as a martial arts teacher (Sean Connory — gotta love him), this also shows that sometimes, in order to maintain balance, one must learn how to give up balance and then regain balance when that balance is gone. In regards to the martial arts, as I’ve learned the hard way, this concept is damn important. The martial artform that I’m currently learning (read: thrashing about, trying not to make my teacher resort to drink) is savate, and I’m having a dickens of a time making my body learn this concept.
But besides the martial arts, that concept of balance says a lot about how one lives ones life, I think.
A couple of nights ago, my hubby and I talked about balance between the mental, the spiritual, and the physical and how it is rare to have a person with perfect balance between all three. A person tends to one or two — my hubby says he’s more towards mental and spiritual while I’m more towards mental and physical. But a person can achieve some tentative balance towards the missing third or two parts through the one part they do favour. My hubby touches the physical when he engages in the physical act of making music — playing on his guitar, practicing on his fiddle. I touch the spiritual when I listen to music. I suppose, then, he and I complement each other.
But to bring this rambling back to Ramirez: What’s interesting is that he *sang* as he taught Connor about balance. Music holds sway in our lives that is hard to describe but is seen as very powerful. Plato’s Socrates recognized the power of music in forming the soul, Aristotle talked about the music of the celestial spheres, and Thomas More, in his _Utopia_ saw music as the bridge between mental and physical pleasure.
Music and balance, balance and music…