Ancient of Days

Ancient of Days
When completed in 1976 I turned inside-out

Friday, November 30, 2012

Chuk is the Grandfather of Sports. Lessons from the Ball Court.

One of the four themes in‘Olympic Medicine’, found  in Cultural Anxiety, by Lopez Pedraza , is the consciousness of ‘fault’.  I have not read this book; although I am familiar with the gist of it  The consciousness of ‘fault’  makes me think of “the grandfather of sports CHUK (pronounced like a “chunk”of foam.)  This quasi-sport was a spiritual practice in disguise.  It started spontaneously; but,   It was my  second and third acid “trips” in late December,  in1973, with the High School “jocks” that I  laughed with,,  who were my friends.  I initiated the Chuk one night in the Fall, when everyone looked  burned out and lethargic, but I wanted action.  I was inspired by some vague notion of a Native American sport, I couldn’t rightly say what it was called.   Thus keeping a piece of foam rubber  in motion, without contaminating the practice with obtuse  rules, nor appointing  losers. I lobbied hard and long to maintain Chuk in its pure state, without rules.  People constantly tried to modify the Chuk with rules.  In fact, the leitmotif: “Become 1 with the Chuk ”was the only rule.  There were no rules, that was the first precept.   “Don’t say you’re sorry, because we aren’t doing anything”, was the second precept.   Keep it going, don’t interrupt the flow, was the third precept. Lastly, If ever the chuk, or somebody, appears to do something nearly impossible, or after a particularly rewarding round of chuking- applaud, in a gentlemanly fashion.

When you have swooped down,  spun around, swung  your blind  arm and caught the chuk, shooting it off the wall, where it makes a wide arc, rolls slowly through space, connects with a foot it, shoots  across the room, you dive across the room smack the Chuk sending it back, immediately its heading back to the last  corner, instantly you jump like a cat, battling gravity for control of the chuk,  and taking control you pass it it with a precise smack, slowing it down.  The Chuk moves  at lightning speed off the ceiling, off the floor, off of you.  The key is to concentrate on the chuk. Eventually the “state of Chuk” is entered into. The state of Chuk hasmany names.  It’s been  called the flow, the zone, runner’s high;  it is a higher state of awareness; but more than that, it is a higher state of being, probably closely related to the primordial condition of human beings, the instinctual animal humanWho was not a lout, more like a dancer. 

   There is a transformational state that occurs when your concentration becomes one with the chuk.  Conscious awareness  supersedes  the tyranny of the linguistic mode, and the anxieties attendant upon discourse.  Allowing the motor cortex to feed on energy exchanged in the hunt for the Chuk .  The state of Chuk reminds  me of  the movie Highlander, when the immortals undergo a rite of passage,  called “the quickening”, in which their powers increase amidst a storm of electro-magnetic sparks , and much wailing.  Chuk accelerates reflex time, and develops the motor cortex.  Very importantly, our attention is free from the winner-loser anxiety,  so awfully common among people.  Chuk was a collective Win-all-around.  The state of Chuk was the prize.   The evening of December 31 1973, Chuk was recovered from the breast of eternity.  That night myself and two others took 3 and 1/3 hits of mescaline and played Chuk in my basement long into the wee hours of the morn.  We entered an alternative universe, very close to our own, one in which we were both particle and wave.  We leapt and hurled and twirled ourselves after the Chuk and occassionaly when it would get stuck on the ceiling light, or jam itself into the corner of the ceiling, we froze, and spontaneously applauded politely. A wild man sport of uttermost integrity.  We put our hearts into that round after round.  We’d smoke the calabash, and resume.  While in the throes of Chuk,  verbalizations erupted like bird talk, or short grunts which raised our hilarity to a crescendo. The sense of freedom was indescribable.  The freedom from the anxiety attendant on winner-loser gamesmanship, gave Chukits well deserved title: “the grandfather of sports”.  Chuk is  a transcendental path that we discovered by chance.  When I “became one” with the Chuk, I re-organized  the hyperspherical dimensions of this universe that I am in, that I am.  Our bodies were still three dimensional, but the single pointed concentration was a one-dimensional paradox; one dimensional consciousness, absolutely pristine awareness.  I can still achieve this single pointed concentration simply by imagining the Chuk is about to be dropped into play. The mark of Chuk, you know you are getting close when people start spontaneously laughing, even though, theoretically we aren’t doing anything.   .    


  1. The reference to using entheogens is sincerely no endorsement of casual or recreational use of psychotropics. There's a reason civilized laws are in opposition to such behavior. Indeed, without a spiritual tradition to rely on, the body-mind can get into pickles. We would hope that a responsible ashram would be capable of sponsoring retreats for initiates to choose the left hand path, the inner journey.

    1. When I was young I was in pretty good shape and I had both common and an uncommon sense; I managed to complete two courses of study: a hero's journey; and a minor's in debauchery, um, vice versa. Which was all well and good, until I turned inside-out at 18.97 years old. Both courses are current to one degree or another, and I believe in something now. I believe in a spiritual living universe of which I am a fractal reflection. Someone recently wrote that altering our consciousness is a basic human drive. This cannot be endorsed without taking responsibility for the wave of activity that will ensue. Meuthos meant "Keep your mouth shut" and this admonition is true in the case of entheogens, because it is inherently dangerous. It can potentially cause the pole to come off its axis and the individual to dive into chaos. This descent is indicative of the diving god, and the nine hells that he endures. The shamanic initiation sometimes involves these nightmarish ordeals of our souls, in which the shaman is figuartively beaten up by circumstances. So you better be armed with real good when you chase shadows down that rabbit hole, because virtue is the foundation for a good time.