Monday, November 27, 2006

A Moment of Meditation

The moments of sitting before and after a class is a link to the practice of Morihei Ueshiba the founder of aikido.

Kisshomaru Ueshiba the son of the founder shares this memory with us.

"The Founder's training was not merely limited to the dojo. It was in his daily life and, especially before and after entering the dojo that its true significance lay. This attitude that may be described as the purification of mind and body (misogi) should be deeply appreciated.

Before practice he would sit in front of the altar preparing himself psychologically by calming and controlling himself and seeing that his refreshed spirit was gushing forth like a fountain… then he would begin. Likewise, at the end of practice he would sit upright before the altar, settling and controlling his mind, once again absorbed in sustaining his "ki." "

Saturday, November 18, 2006

Zen & Aikido 1

our practice cannot be perfect, but without being discouraged by this, we should continuue it. this is the secret of practice.

shunru suzuki

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

The Five Principles, as Taught by the Founder #1

The Five Principles, as Taught by the Founder

1. Aikido is the path which joins all paths of the universe throughout eternity. It is the Universal mind which contains all things and unifies all things.

Isn't it interesting that when the founder lectured about Aikido he discussed philosophy rather than technique.

If you were to explore the relationship of aikido and your actions or attitudes in life as part of your shugyo, how would it change the way you "practice" aikido?

Good Training!!


These principles were passed down by Kisshomaru Ueshiba for our consideration.

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Quote of The Week

"The most perfect technique is that which is not noticed at all."
Pablo Casals

Friday, July 28, 2006

Sumikiri (Perfect Clarity)

Focus on stillness rather than motion
in order to master Aikido techniques.

For a heart instantaneously at one
with the clear and serene sky,
all existence appears in crystal clarity.
When the founder Morihei realized that state of mind, he felt bathed in golden light, and perceived the true mission of Aikido. The center of a spinning top appears to be completely still. That kind of stillness, rather than the rapid motion of the top, is where we should focus. It is where the secret of perfect clarity can be perceived. That stillness also lies at the heart of Aikido techniques. When speaking of the mysteries of centripetal and centrifugal forces, Morihei said “Large has no outside; small has no inside.”
This is a maxim we need to reflect deeply.
Kisshomaru Ueshiba

How can you apply this concept to your life?

When you are being stressed by the activities of your daily life what would happen if you stopped and did nothing for a moment?

Be Still.

Saturday, July 01, 2006

Quote July 1, 2006

"The purpose of today's training ...
is to defeat yesterday's understanding."
Miyamoto Mushashi
Happy July!!

Monday, June 12, 2006

Fudoshin # 3

Left & right avoid all cuts & parries.
Seize your opponents’ minds and scatter them all!
Morihei Ueshiba
Founder of Aikido
The immovable mind cannot be seized.
That is why we train the mind in Aikido.
"True Victory, Self Victory, Right Here, Right Now!"
(Masakatsu Agatsu Katsuhayabi)
John Zenkewich
Student of Aikido

Saturday, June 10, 2006

Fudoshin # 2

The key to good technique is to keep your hands, feet and hips straight and centered. If you are centered, you can move freely. The physical center is your belly; if your mind is set there as well, you are assured of victory in any endeavor.

The Art of Peace
Morihei Ueshiba
Translated by John Stevens

Monday, May 22, 2006

Fudoshin-Immovable Mind

Fudoshin- Immovable Mind

True FUDOSHIN is not a rigid, immobile state of mind, but the condition of stability which comes from the most rapid movement. In other words, like the steadiness of a spinning top, the state of perfect spiritual and physical stability arises from movement which continues infinitely and is so infinitely rapid that it is imperceptible.

This movement is condensed at the one point in the lower abdomen. By putting everything into the one point, we can experience FUDOSHIN and not lose our stability no matter what happens.
Koichi Tohei

I was first introduced to the concept of Fudoshin when I first began studying Aikido with Imaizumi Sensei. At the beginning of the “Ki Class” we would read from a small book the topic for the day.

Stay tuned for further discussion of the concept of Fudoshin.

Monday, April 24, 2006

Understanding the Essence of Aikido

In order to understand the essence of Aikido we must consider the state of mind of the Founder. Otherwise, the essence of Aikido cannot be understood. When we demonstrate techniques in the dojo we should explain that this is kotodoma... We must show ki in realistic terms as well as that this is not a budo for competition.
Rinjiro Shirata

Have you considered the state of mind of the founder today?
What is your state of mind?

The Search for The Essence of Aikido

In order to understand the essence of Aikido we must consider the state of mind of the Founder. Otherwise, the essence of Aikido cannot be understood. When we demonstrate techniques in the dojo we should explain that this is kotodoma... We have to show ki in realistic terms. We have to show that this is not a budo for competition.

Rinjiro Shirata
Have you considered the mind of the Founder today?

Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Keiko Shokon

Keiko Shokon
"Reflecting deeply on the past, illuminate the present.”

Friday, February 03, 2006

Aikido & the Path

Of the many martial arts aikido is the one which places the heaviest emphasis on a pursuit of the Path. Practice in the dojo, training in daily life and demonstrations where practitioners display the results of their training all form part of the art. We are dedicated to carrying forward O-Sensei's principles of training one's ki, mind and body through a search for truth based on aikido while enjoying a state of freedom wherein all things in nature and the flow of ki are combined into one. This, moreover, involves creation of a seed to protect Absolute Truth through achievement of a state of harmony with all living things.
Kisshomaru Ueshiba

Monday, January 23, 2006

Take Musu Aiki

“You and I and everything in this universe exist as a part of the endless flow of God’s love. Realizing this we recognize that all creation is bound together by the same benevolence.

To harmonize with life is to come into accord with that part of God
which flows through all things.

To Foster and protect all life is both our mission and our prayer, and we call our path
‘Take Musu Aiki’”.

Morihei Ueshiba
Founder of Aikido

Saturday, January 14, 2006

John Stevens Sensei Awarded 7th Dan

John Stevens Sensei was promoted to 7th Dan at the Kagami Biraki celebration held January 8th 2006.

I know I speak for all his students and friends in saying we are happy and proud of this well deserved recognition and honor.

Sensei Stevens continues to support the study of Aikido and its spiritual roots through his writings, seminars and workshops.

Congratulatiions and Happy New Year!!!

Saturday, January 07, 2006

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Aikido: Practice, Purpose, and Potential

At the beginning of the year it is natural for us to consider the purpose of our training.

Sensei Patrick Augé, Shihan of Yoseikan Aikido has written a thought provoking essay as a New Year's message. He discusses his relationship with his own teacher and the relationship of a student to other students in the dojo as well as a student's personal development during training. Check it out; I think it will give you something to think about. Click here to see the essay.

Monday, January 02, 2006