Eastern philosophy speaks of the unity of all things and of the dynamic nature of the unified whole. A unified whole that is perpetually changing – nothing remains the same – and yet there is stability to be found amidst all that change and it is the stability of the present, the eternal present, the perpetual present.
As human operating systems we are able to interface in such a way (parallel interface) as to connect to that eternal present, and in so doing, connect to the unified whole of our environment and, by extension, the unified whole of the universe. It’s how we connect to God.
What’s so intriguing about this process as it relates to tennis is how easily this connection can be made, but how difficult people make it simply because we are so operationally connected to the material dimension of the environment.
When you hear people talk about something missing in their game, they are not talking about some piece of their game like a missing top-spin backhand crosscourt passing shot. They are talking about the same thing that is often missing in their lives in general; that hole we all seem to have that can never be filled no matter how much we feed it from the material world.
The same is true in tennis. No matter how much you fill that hole with elements from the material dimensions, you will never be able to fill it up completely, only because that hole is not caused by any material dimension needs. It is a spiritual hole in your game and it can only by filled through connecting to the spiritual dimension of the tennis environment.
Try as much as you want to fill that hole from the material dimension, but you will always fail. Not for lack of trying, but rather for trying in the wrong dimension. You cannot find the missing piece of the puzzle if you’re looking at the wrong puzzle. The missing piece is the spiritual piece and you cannot find the missing spiritual piece in the material dimension. It simply is not there.
How that translates down to the tennis court is a bit mystifying at first. In order to find the missing spiritual piece of your game, you have to focus on and connect to the spiritual dimension of the game – which means you have to defocus from and disconnect from the material dimension of the game. In other words, you have to stop focusing on the ball and start focusing on your contact zone.
The ball represents the material dimension, while your contact zone represents the non-material/spiritual dimension that coexists with the material dimension in the tennis environment. Together, the material and spiritual dimensions exist simultaneously and equally to form the unified whole of the tennis environment.
Question: in a material/spiritual environment that exists as a unified whole, how do you as a VCM operating system connect to and maintain the unity of that whole? Especially when your normal operating mode is a serial mode in which you immediately separate that unified whole into its parts by focusing only on the material dimension.
Therein lies the big challenge we face as tennis players who want to feel complete when we play the game – no matter what our NTRP rating. How can we connect to the unified whole of the tennis environment when our natural tendency is to connect to the separate parts? Something obviously has to change at the core level of our operating system, and that change is a change from a serial mode to a parallel mode.
More questions: what if changing from a serial mode to a parallel mode connected you equally and simultaneously to both the material and spiritual dimension of the tennis environment? What would happen then? What would your overall game look like when you were connected to the unified whole of the tennis environment instead of just the parts? What would you feel like? What would the overall experience be like? And importantly, what would connecting to and interacting with the unified whole of the game do for your overall performance? Would you perform at a lower level than normal, the same as normal, or at a higher level than normal?