In the world of internal martial arts we learn to eliminate the unconscious reflexive action from our responses. In simple form when something comes at us there is a three step response pattern; see,think, do. Each one of these is separated by a gap. In the athletic world you eliminate the think piece and replace it with reflexive action. You win if your reflexes are faster.
In the internal world we never revert to instinctive reactions. We keep all the pieces and learn to feel and interpret the actions of the opponent. We reduce the gaps between the pieces and strive to reduce the length of each of the pieces; especially the think piece. When you first start practicing against an athlete who uses reflexive action you lose all the time. You start feeling frustrated because you know that if you used your reflexes you could win. But you understand there is a greater lesson to learn.
Over time the think piece gets so short that it is hard for the reflex action to beat you. Suddenly when your opponent launches a fast reflexive action you see it and in the middle of it change the flow so he is beat. The weakness of reflexive action is that since there is no thought in it at all once launched it can’t be retroactively controlled. All of a sudden changing the angle of the contest and the person doing the reflexive action fails. The downside is that it takes a long, long, time to learn and perfect. Once you do you are in a unique place; perfectly comfortable in your skin and in the world; a thinking, non reactive person.
Clarity is a bit like this. We let the surge of emotions and lusts wash through us without responding. We lose over and over i.e. we get angry, we follow inappropriate lovers, we walk away from a wonderful setup because it wasn’t perfect.
Clarity slows down the process because shining always in the dark is the light of our own choice; our desired outcome.
Update note: I solved three problems today for Project 2 and did nothing on Project 1 today as I just got home. Sigh. Better tomorrow.