Almost three decades ago, when I was competing on a couple of rifle teams, I picked up the book Zen and the Art of Archery, hoping I would pick up a little wisdom from it. Over the years I have forgotten pretty much everything I learned about shooting, including the "other" aspect of it---- the sub-mental awareness of "the shot".
Recently, I have started shooting handguns and I love it. I am relaxed, and stress free while at the range. However, my accuracy was atrocious.
Being somewhat competitive, even when there is no reason to be, I wanted to improve my ability to put shots where I wanted them. So I read a few articles by Masad Ayoob about handgun accuracy. He spoke of the "crush grip" and the push-pull of the right and left hand. Then he talked about the gentle trigger squeeze. I also re-read that old Zen book which I still have; yellowed and tattered. It didn't click until recently while shooting with my sister.
I bought her a Browning Buckmark for Christmas and we were at the range testing it out. All of a sudden I hear the voice in my head repeat a line from the Zen book....I paraphrase: Let the shot take itself. You should be startled when the shot releases....
BINGO!! I had the stance, the push/pull, the death grip, the sight picture, the breath,,,, but my trigger pull was the key. I was very subtly jerking the trigger.
From that moment on my trigger pull became very slow and I could feel the slight roughness in the trigger that I had not noticed before, and then BANG! the trigger released. My groups became one hole groups.
Now when shooting my mind becomes absorbed in three things, my grip, the sight picture and mostly, my trigger finger. Everything else ceases to exist, my consciousness is fixed on not knowing when the shot will take itself. It's almost like meditation.
Thanks Mr. Ayoob and thanks Zen Masters.