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In the West, we have a saying, "One hand washes the other," implying that helpfulness is the way to go.
Not to imply that our Asian brothers cannot be just as helpful to one another, or as friendly and beneficial to us here in the West, but there is a similar sounding-yet decidedly different!-saying in the East:
"One hand watches the other!"
On first hearing this curious phrase, Westerners might think it a mistranslation, "Surely you mean "washes?"
No, "watches." One hand watches the other. In some ways this is closer to the Western warning, "Don't let the left hand know what the right hand is doing."
In the East, rather than there being a singular path to enlightenment, or to accomplishing any earthly task for that matter, there are always thought to be two paths from which to choose: a Right-handed Path and a Left-handed Path.
In general, the "Right-handed" path is the straighter, the more common, usually the less difficult path to follow.
Conversely, the "Left-handed" path is the more unconventional, controversial, difficult-perhaps even dangerous!-path in life to tempt.
Perhaps this is the same "road less traveled" that Frost first wondered over and then wandered down?
Choosing the Left-handed path, we all too often travel alone, shunned, perhaps scorned-perhaps even hated and hunted!-by our fellow man.
True, the trade-off and eventual payoff to treading this Left-handed path is often quicker-more ruthlessly-straight to the point. But always the price-the risk!-is thrice greater.
In the West, Left-handed-path poster children would include the impatient-or perhaps just imperious-Alexander the Great hacking his way through the Gordian Knot; Friedrich Nietzsche boldly declaring "God is dead!"-knowing full well he'd be celebrating the rest of his holidays alone; and Pablo Picasso, daring to draw outside the lines in order to see-and expose!-the naked universe in all her shame.
In many ways these Right-handed and Left-handed paths play at the extremes of the Asian concept of yin-yang, those seemingly contentious universal polar opposites that-despite their constant "conflict"-must nonetheless find balance-or at least tolerance-with one another lest this rudderless ship of the universe irretrievably list too far to starboard, spilling us all farther out into the unforgiving maelstrom of the Milky Way.
And so, for every patient and compassionate path to enlightenment we find in Asian teachers and texts, should we dare dig a little deeper, past those dusty scrolls and smiling souls, we'll discover as well a more expedient avenue-be it only a seldom-used shortcut down a narrow side street or sinister dark alley-that nonetheless gets us to the same goal in half the time-so long as we have only half the moral qualms.
Thus in the East, for those seeking knowledge, enlightenment-and yes, seduction and power!-it has never been their way to sophomorically demand that a serious seeker on the way confine his or her choices-their path in life-to merely right or wrong.
Instead, the East more magnanimously-realistically-gives us the choice between right ... or left. And, depending on time and teacher and the temperament of both, Asian etiquette and indulgence may even allow us to mix the two-taking a pinch from here, a tincture from there, until our own personal alchemy finds balance.
And so "one hand watches the other," not so much as a prison guard watches his charge, watching not so much in order to condemn, but instead to complement-one hand adding to the other whatever strength might be missing so that both arrive at the destination together-if not hand in hand, then at least with grasping fingers relatively intact!
On second thought, "One hand watches the other" is closer akin to "one hand washes the other" than we first suspected.
But does that then open the door to perhaps East and West also being more similar in mind and kind than we first suspected?
Perhaps all the various Asian arts of strategy, seduction, and skullduggery we've gathered here to study are indeed similar to, if not the same as, our tried-and-true coy Western ploys, plots, and self-serving proposals?
Yet somehow we still insist upon seeing the "mysterious" East as just that-impenetrable, oh-so-inscrutable.
And so we buy the books. And we concentrate and meditate upon the ancient mandalas until we go blind, all in the hopes we'll finally see.
And we sit at the feet of the mystic du jour, bending both our body and mind into impossible contortions, all in the hope that an errant drop of their beneficent sweat will drip down, washing away our woes, finally bathing us in enlightenment ...
But a true master never sweats. At least at the small stuff.
Still, down through the centuries, so many in the West have continued to look toward the mysterious East for wisdom and enlightenment. But, ironically, what is arguably the greatest story of personal quest and enlightenment to be found in Eastern lore, the tale of the Buddha (560-477 B.C.E.), begins with a grand deception.
Having been told by a seer that his young son Siddhartha would either grow up to be a great and wealthy king or else a wandering, penniless beggar, Siddhartha's father, an Indian king, staged an elaborate ruse by which he kept the boy from ever seeing anything negative about the world.
All of the young prince's servants were kept young and healthy. If illness or age began to overtake one of them, they were immediately replaced by younger, healthier servants.
Likewise, when Siddhartha traveled from palace to palace, he was always secluded inside an enclosed sedan chair, the curtains kept tightly drawn to prevent the prince from inadvertently seeing old, ill, crippled, or poor people along the way.
As the boy grew older, and correspondingly more curious, this deception became more elaborate, with whole "perfect" towns being set up along his travel routes, where there existed no ill, old, malformed, or poor people to trouble the boy's mind.
Eventually, this intricate illusion of earthly perfection was exposed and, upon realizing that there was suffering in the world, adult Prince Siddhartha abandoned his family and his kingdom to indeed become that foretold penniless, wandering beggar ... the same penniless, wandering holy man who would one day find enlightenment and world acclaim as the Buddha.
While Buddhists worldwide take this 2,500-year-old tale as "gospel," others, especially Westerners, are more inclined to view it as a metaphor; a young, naïve prince caught up in an illusion from which he must eventually free himself is a timeless metaphor for all our lives.
Times change. Latitudes change. Attitudes seldom do.
Farther west, closer to our own time, comes a similar story of deception out of Russia-that land forever precariously balanced, one foot treading West, the other foot firmly mired in the East.
It seems eighteenth century Russian rogue Gregory Potemkin used a similar ploy to fool his mistress Catherine the Great, then empress of Russia.
In 1783, Catherine decided to test her boy toy Potemkin's sincerity and ingenuity by putting him in charge of building up a blighted area in her newly annexed Crimea region.
Thereafter, each time Potemkin returned to Moscow's royal court, he brought glowing reports of how he was indeed improving the area, of how the peasants were all happy and productive.
Delighted with her beau's reports, in 1787 Catherine decided to visit the area personally.
Traveling by ship down the Dnieper, as Catherine gazed at either shore she saw only brightly colored houses and farms sporting lush, bountiful gardens and healthy-looking cattle. Everywhere she looked new buildings were being built by smiling workmen, fields tended by smiling peasants.
Catherine was overjoyed and rewarded Potemkin lavishly.
Not until much later was it discovered that it had all been an elaborately staged play directed by Potemkin!
The brightly painted houses lining the shore were all false fronts, shells hiding decrepit hovels. The healthy cattle had been shipped in from far away, replacing the area's own diseased livestock. Even the well-fed and smiling peasants were professional entertainers paid by Potemkin to perform in one village along Catherine's route, before quickly changing costumes to hurry along to the next "village."
Still closer to our own time, during World War II the allies built entire fake military bases replete with wooden planes and even inflatable tanks and cannon that successfully fooled Axis spies.
Consider: If it's possible for such determined masters of deception to successfully deceive professionally trained observers by faking whole towns and military bases, how much easier would it be for a con man or cult leader to stage mini-dramas from behind a pulpit, a political podium, or even on our own front porch, that would successfully catch us up in confusion and illusion-confusion and illusion we would gladly pay-be it in cash or in flesh-to escape from?
We need not journey to the East to find such scoundrels. When it comes to rascals, rogues, and ruthless mind-manipulators, shameless seducers, charlatans, and "sure things," neither East nor West can dare claim monopoly.
There is no single land, no solitary people no matter how poor, that cannot still boast a plentitude of home-grown pirates and opportunists willing to peddle promises and prosperity phantasms to their hungry fellows.
In this respect, Asia can indeed boast of riches!
Thus, the Westerners hand would do well to watch what the Eastern hand does!
Watch and learn.
We study to grow strong. We study to stay strong. We study to discover the source of our enemy's strength ... and to take that strength from him. -Joshua Only
Seduction is, of course, the act of seducing.
Both the definition-and the mission!-of seduction is to be found in its root, the verb "to seduce," from the Old French, by way of the medieval Latin word "seducere," meaning "to lead astray."
Thumbing through the American Heritage College Dictionary (third edition) we find several definitions for "seduce":
To win over
To entice or beguile into a desired state or position
To lead away from accepted principles, or proper conduct
To induce to engage in sex
Your goal in mastering the art of seduction may be one or all of these-that's your business.
Our business is teaching you how to do it better!
First, start by realizing that seduction and strategy go hand in hand. Some noted authorities on the subject argue they're even one and the same.
So, from now on, when you see the word "seduction" think "strategy."
Likewise, when reading respected treatises by Sun Tzu, Musashi, Machiavelli, and others on military and political strategy, ask yourself "How can I apply these tactics and techniques to improving my own arts of seduction?"
Here at the Black Science Institute* we're all about graduating with a dual (or is that "duel"?) major in both "Appreciation" and "Application."
It's not enough for we would-be Mind-wizards to only read and intellectually "appreciate" Sun Tzu, Musashi, and Machiavelli.
The key is learning the application of that appreciation.
In other words, we need to learn how to take the great seduction lessons in history, classic acts of seduction, and find practical-and profitable!-uses for them in our own lives. Thus, while an abstract appreciation is a good place to start, concrete application is the goal.
For example, if you already have what you consider to be adequate one-on-one "seduction skills" (somewhere between successfully picking up that half-drunk barfly and successfully selling that "pre-owned" SUV), odds are you're still literally "selling yourself short" if you fail to realize how your one-on-one skills of seduction (strategy) can be applied on a grander scale-from the barroom to the bedroom to the boardroom to the battlefield.
Don't sell yourself short, because, in the end, that's exactly what seduction and strategy are all about-selling yourself, getting your lover, customer, opponent, or blood enemy to buy into what you're selling.
Here's the secret: those same seduction skills you use to get into that barfly's pants are the same seduction skills that will land you the job of your dreams-the higher position and recognition in life you deserve.
The ancient Hindus understood this; that's why they wrote the Kama Sutra. At first glance, most Westerners see the Kama Sutra as only a titillating "sex manual" (primarily because most Western translations of the book concentrate on filling their pages with voyeuristic photos of naked couples cavorting and contorting into "yogic" postures "guaranteed to stimulate your sex life!").
What most Westerners fail to realize is this Kama Sutra book of seduction was/is first and foremost a book of strategy designed to help ambitious young Hindu men claw their way up India's strict socioeconomic ladder by marrying into a well-to-do family, if not into royalty. Thus, the overall lesson of the Kama Sutra is learning to use the principles of one-on-one seduction to achieve so much more than an orgasm. (For more on "Kama Sutra Karma," see India section.)
In case your pesky moral qualms have decided to kick in about this point (What took you so long?), assuage any misgivings and/or guilt (and temptation!) you might have now (There'll be more later!) about seeking out this kind of "forbidden" knowledge by assuring yourself that, just because you learn a dangerous skill-like how to totally seduce and dominate another's mind!-that doesn't necessarily mean you have to become the next Lex Luthor ... Heh-heh-heh.
Miyamoto Musashi (1584-1645), universally acknowledged as the greatest swordsman who ever lived in Japan, author of A Book of Five Rings taught his students that the same principles that work for defeating one man can easily be applied to defeating a thousand men:
The way of war is the same if the situation is one against one or ten thousand against ten thousand. This should be examined well, making the mind now large, now small.
Musashi not only meant his students could apply this principle in a thousand one-on-one singular sword duels (Musashi himself fought more than sixty to-the-death duels during his life), he also meant that the same strategy could be applied for maneuvering (seducing) a single opponent into position for delivering the coup de grâce, pulling the enemy this way, pushing the enemy that way-the same principle that can be applied by generals for skillfully maneuvering armies of thousands.
Musashi's philosophical basis for this principle is very familiar in the East: That by mastering the underlying principles (the essence) of a small skill, we can then apply those same principles on ever-larger playing fields.
In Japan, the process involved in learning such principles, as well as the application of that principle-is called "Do" (pronounced "dough").
Do means "the way" and is sometimes used as a synonym for the Japanese "michi" (path). When written do, it refers to the "small do, any skill, or experience which causes us to see, and/or can be applied to the "big" Do on a universal scale. In this respect the "big Do" is identical with the Chinese Taoist concept of "Tao." (More on "The Tao of Seduction" in Chapter 4: China.).
In Western metaphysics, this same principle is summed up as
As Above, So Below. As Within, So Without. (Continues...)
Excerpted from MENTAL DOMINANCE by HAHA LUNG CHRISTOPHER B. PROWANT Copyright © 2009 by Haha Lung. Excerpted by permission.
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