Cus D’Amato – from Mike Tyson, Undisputed Truth – Using the out of body experience in boxing
Type of Spiritual Experience
A description of the experience
Mike Tyson – Undisputed Truth
I could listen to Cus for hours. And I did. Cus talked to me about the importance of acting intuitively and impersonally and in a relaxed manner so as to keep all my emotions and feelings from blocking what I intuitively knew. He told me that he was talking about that once with the great writer Norman Mailer.
"Cus, you don't know it but you practice Zen," Mailer had told Cus, and then he gave him a book called Zen in the Art of Archery.
Cus used to read that book to me.
He told me that he had actually experienced the ultimate in emotional detachment in his first fight.
He was training in a gym in the city because he wanted to be a professional fighter. He had been hitting the heavy bag for a week or two when the manager asked him if he wanted to box with someone. He got in the ring and his heart was beating like a drum, and the bell rang and the other guy charged him and he got knocked around. His nose was swollen, his eye was shut, he was bleeding. The guy asked him if he wanted to go a second round and Cus said he’d try.
He went out there and suddenly his mind became detached from his body.
He was watching himself from afar.
The punches that hit him felt like they were coming from a distance. He was more aware of them than feeling them.
Cus told me that to be a great fighter you had to get out of your head.
He would have me sit down and he'd say, "Transcend. Focus. Relax until you see yourself looking at yourself. Tell me when you get there."
That was very important for me. I'm way too emotional in general. Later on I realized that if I didn't separate from my feelings inside the ring, I would be sunk. I might hit a guy with a hard punch and then get scared if he didn't go down.