Santharian Development

Santharian World Development => The Santharian Library => Topic started by: Coren FrozenZephyr on 03 August 2012, 06:37:39

Title: Child of Spring: Chapter 2
Post by: Coren FrozenZephyr on 03 August 2012, 06:37:39

This is the story of [Winter] and the Way of Wind and Water. He is one of the Gifted, those rare individuals born with natural magical ability. He has lived the life of a Krean monk since he entered the monastery at age six, but his heart is in Nybelmarasa, the last place in the world where the magic of the Ancient Krean still lives. In a year he will leave [White Mountain], a place which has been home for seventeen years, and make the long journey to the Academy. Here he will learn the ways of magic from the mages of Nybelmarasa as they have been passed from the legendary emperor Dearan Asaen himself. Or so he hopes. It is said that our gifts define us, make us who we are. What would you do if you lost yours and how far would you go to get it back?


Chapter 1: (,15322.msg196193.html#msg196193) The Songs of Wind
In which we meet Winter. Into the peace of the mountain, a new song has come on the Wind.

Chapter 2: (,15323.msg196203.html#msg196203) Meditating on the Breath
On his way to the monastery, Winter runs into a friend. Why is Orange out of breath and what is he searching for?

Chapter 3: (,15325.msg196223.html#msg196223) Song of the Family
In which Winter remembers. The two monks discuss the change that looms over White Mountain.

Chapter 4: (,15326.msg196225.html#msg196225) War and Peace
Winter and Orange disagree about the coming war. Winter is troubled by the change that has come over his friend.

Title: Re: Child of Spring: Chapter 2
Post by: Coren FrozenZephyr on 03 August 2012, 06:38:58
Meditating on the Breath

We came upon one another three dashes or so from the monastery. I had taken the long route and was walking down the forest path. He ran up the final bend in the road before the monastery (final for me, I suppose - first from his perspective), and came into view. I never hear his footsteps. Judging from the slight precipitation on the valley between his nose and upper lip, he had run most of the way from the lower practice grounds. The smell of resin was strong in the air, and a vague scent of dust and sunshine hung to the earth road.

"I can't find Master Kao!" he said. He did not quite have to shout, although there was a good dash between us. You can't imagine how his voice carries. It's not that he is a loud person - he is very soft spoken actually - just a man whose vocal chords have been designed for the open air.

"He has gone herb-picking," I said.

He reflected on this for a moment and then ran the rest of the distance between us. "The signal pyre above the Port of Nor is lit," he said, soft spoken again, although a nearby squirrel did look up from the much nibbled-at pine cone between its paws. "All the ones along the northern coast actually. A fleet has been spotted off Cape Cloud."

I nodded.

"You knew?"

I nodded again.

"Oh." He lifted his head, eyes scanning the cloud covered peaks. "He will be back soon, I suppose?"

"He will be back when he is back," I said. And we both laughed. Master Kao.

His eyes went to the peaks again, then we walked to the monastery. He matched his steps to mine and I matched my breath to his. I noticed that it came in quick sighs. Quick for a monk, I guess. I counted six pulses on the in-breath. But then again my pulse is slower than his. I chose a measured pace to give him time to recover. We walked the rest of the way in silence.

I could tell that he was meditating on the breath. His breaths had lengthened and now came in a steady pattern: twelve pulses in; six pulses retained; twelves pulses out; six pulses between each breath. I could also tell that his mind was not at peace, that he had to continually guide his attention back to the breath: a long cycle of twelve-pulse breaths; several quicker breaths, growing hurried; he realises our breathing has parted ways; then another cycle of twelve-pulse breaths until the rhythm is broken again.

We came to a few peds of the gate, but his breath had still not settled.

"Come, sit with me for a moment," I said.

He eyed the gate briefly, but did not move towards it. We sat on a jutting of rain-rounded rock, not quite facing the monastery.

Title: Re: Child of Spring: Chapter 2
Post by: Shabakuk Zeborius Anfang on 11 August 2012, 22:24:08
I could tell that he was mediating on the breath.
... meditating ...

Otherwise, I can see nothing wrong, and will read swiftly on.

You're not a stranger to Buddhist meditation yourself, I surmise?

Title: Re: Child of Spring: Chapter 2
Post by: Coren FrozenZephyr on 12 August 2012, 00:01:02
That would be Aos. I borrowed the above from pranayama and yogic rhythmic breathing. ;)

I understand the principles are similar?

Title: Re: Child of Spring: Chapter 2
Post by: Shabakuk Zeborius Anfang on 13 August 2012, 04:16:27
Ah, I should have known. It's a case of not seeing what's closest to me, as I practice pranayama a few times every week.

As far as I understand, in Buddhist "mindfulness" meditation the idea is to observe the breath, without actively trying to create a certain rhythm or quality; whereas pranayama exercises are designed to create a variety of effects through conscious control of the breath.

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