Golf Spirituality.

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CZ gave me a kudo for a golf related remark, and Luna posted this to another thread:
BTW, I played golf today, only about the fourth or fifth time in eight years (since we first adopted Grace). One of the most humorous things (besides my swing of course) was how odd my clubs look compared to what seems popular on the course now...all these big-birthas and hybrids...while I scraped it around with my 17-year-old John Jacobs teaching set. :D

Well, it was an executive course with not too much trouble on it and I got away with just a 48. I was pretty happy!

I'm shooting about 90. I live in Phoenix, AZ, golf capital of the universe. We're going into heatstroke golf season. You can play a sweet championship length course for $15 if you're willing to play at 113 degrees. That's with a cart.

Golf isn't a religion, but there are interesting analogies. Has anyone read Golf In The Kingdom, by Micheal Murphy?

Chris
 
Has anyone read Golf In The Kingdom, by Micheal Murphy?

I have, years ago.

$15 per round with cart? My chintzy little muni charges $24. I had the misfortune of moving to a region completely lacking in quality courses, but at least I don't have to deal with 100+ degree days. It's a rare day that the temperature breaks 75º... perfect for a pale redhead like me. I guess I can't complain. Still, a nice links course would be perfect winding through the dunes.
 
Somewhere, buried in the archives of the Philosophy desert, I mean Board, is a short segment where I was talking about the practical use of superstition as regards the pursuit of golf. I think I related it to the belief process. Anyway, I was thinking about that today as I was smashing balls on the range. I said somewhere else that I think we have two bodies: a physical one and a symbolic one. Golf is an exercise in combining these two things. I suppose other sports are too.

What's your handicap CZ?
 
I definitely think there is a large spiritual element to golf. My husband has Golf in the Kingdom and so I'll have to borrow it from him soon. My hub is in a golf-related business and is in Phoenix all the time. He believes it about playing for $15 in the summer, but he questions the sanity of anyone taking the deal.

:D

The things I like about golf are 1) you are outside, walking around getting at least some mild exercise (I don't like taking a golf cart...breaks up the rythym and reduces the exercise), 2) it's meditative, esp. when you get in the groove, 3) you can play it with people of either gender and any age and it will still be fun and 4) a chance to take in some beautiful places.

My mom jokes that she retired to "the three Gs," gardening, golf and God. I'm quite a ways from retirement but that seems like a pretty good sets of goals.
 
The usual for people who play maybe once a year... very high.

Had life gone a little differently I may have been a decent weekend golfer... maybe in my next life.
Yeah once a year or so for me to. I've got a handicap of 13. You do develop a handicap number by the number of balls that are lost during a round don't you?

My motto is straight or long but never both.

I also hit Phoenix occasionally din't know you were there, we'll have to visit.
 
Want to hear something maybe a tad contentious?

Do golf-playing types realise how this is viewed by those that refrain from it? :eek:

I wonder if it's like owning a caravan. Owners are blissfully oblivious...or don't care :rolleyes::p

s.
 
Want to hear something maybe a tad contentious?

Do golf-playing types realise how this is viewed by those that refrain from it? :eek:

I wonder if it's like owning a caravan. Owners are blissfully oblivious...or don't care :rolleyes::p

s.

Yeah, I guess it looks silly from the outside.

I got into golf in my early thirties. I thought it was stupid and boring until I started to play video golf on the old Sega-Genesis. I really liked it, and got very good at it. I like that it's a game of compensations. Compensate for the wind by hitting a longer club, or by putting spin on the ball, compensate for your ball laying on the side of a hill by changing direction slightly, compensate for the contours of the green when putting. Figure all of that out plus the ratio of distance left to the pin versus the length each club will hit, add or deduct to compensate for being uphill or downhill...well, you get the idea. It's a game you can walk away from, fix a sandwich, come back at any time, make your shot, sit and think about forever if you want, then play a little more.

Real golf is a vastly different kind of challenge. Sure, the pros may be thinking "OK, I'll add a club and put topspin on it to hold the wind, fade it left to right to get around that tree, and let it roll up to the pin," but it's taken me fifteen years to figure out how to load the club and hit down on the ball. That probably doesn't mean anything to you, but it's not that unlike spending fifteen years contemplating a koan or some other sort of enigmatic thing. Golfers work to develop "swing thoughts." It's a little totem of a thought that's suppose to help you get into a repeatable groove. Something like "club under, waggle,waggle, hit." The funny thing is that the swing thought doesn't necessarily correspond to any of the actual physical action of the swing, Trying to hook mind and body together is tricky like that. What you're really looking for is something symbolic that results in a "feel."

There is also and emotional aspect to the game. Controlling one's anger becomes key. Also, golf is a game which is very much about trading risk for reward. But golf is also a treat for the senses. Imagine the contrast between carefully manicured emerald green grass, pale tan sand, and the red rocks of the surrounding mountains. We play in these glorious verdant parks surrounded by desert, cactus, mountains... it's absolutely splendid!

Chris
 
anyone but me concerned about the amount of pesticides and herbicides used to keep those things green?

Seems I read somewhere the life expectancy of a greens keeper was in his 50's...
 
wil said:
anyone but me concerned about the amount of pesticides and herbicides used to keep those things green?
Snoopy said:
and the land use...

and the water use...

The industry has been moving toward more ecologically sustainable practices, but, like other industries where pollution and resource use are at issue, public relations and deniability sometimes seem to drastically outpace real progress. There is much discussion about making golf course management less of a threat to the environment, there's a lot of window dressing toward that end, but the real changes that will have to made come slowly. For one thing, the public demands that the course condition be such that practices like seasonal overseeding continue to be the norm. Nobody wants to play on brown grass. So there's the element of public education which has to occur concurrently with better resource use and a move away from chemical herbicides and pesticides.

Chris
 
NO!!! It is still Scotland, according to Golf Digest, with 1 golf course for every 9000 population!!

The only time I ever enjoyed being on a golf course was when as a kid we used to steal the balls to get a chase :D

Was that during one of your three days of sunshine per year?

Chris
 
I have only played once but I believe in playing. Maybe this year I'll give it another go.
 
I have only played once but I believe in playing. Maybe this year I'll give it another go.

Somebody told me that the fastest way to improve your golf game is to go back in time and start younger. I bought myself my first set of clubs for my thirtieth birthday. I wish I had started much earlier, but it's better than these retired guys I see who are just picking up the game as they approach seventy. That's got to be tough.

Chris
 
NO!!! It is still Scotland, according to Golf Digest, with 1 golf course for every 9000 population!!

The only time I ever enjoyed being on a golf course was when as a kid we used to steal the balls to get a chase :D

I think I have to agree that Scotland is still mecca for golfers. My husband played there once when he was 17. His Godparents were both from Scottland and took him there for his graduation present. He was in heaven, esp since the drinking age once he got into international air space was 17. :D
 
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Yeah once a year or so for me to. I've got a handicap of 13. You do develop a handicap number by the number of balls that are lost during a round don't you?

My motto is straight or long but never both.

I also hit Phoenix occasionally din't know you were there, we'll have to visit.

:)

I would love to meet you, wil. You're welcome at my house anytime. Same goes for most here. Most.

Chris
 
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