Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Aikido: Your Best Investment

I want to thank those members of Aikido of San Jose who participated in the October 4th Japantown demo. It struck me today that in this period of economic certainty, what better way to invest your time than aikido? The centering and grounding that we offer are priceless. Just to know that you are learning to be in the body, out of the realm of the minds control(fear), and to find your own harmony with the universe are very important matters these days.

In "The Secret Teachings of Aikido" Ueshiba Osensei states that economics are the basis of society. What we are encountering is the ecomonic structure of things is so off balance that we are facing a time of (some say severe) correction and rebalancing. This is what happens when the mind runs too far ahead of the body. Everything is based on credit. The real worth of everything becomes inflated. It can be scary. So this is a good time to remain centered and grounded through the body, to observe the mind and the stream of thoughts and to realize that we are not the mind and our thoughts. The body is a gateway to a much larger state of being. This can be a time of real transformation and not anxiety.

In the early '90's I was while in Tokyo privileged to have dinner with the current doshu(at that time he was chief instructor of Hombu dojo). I asked him how aikido would change in the future. He said simply"Irimi nage still irimi nage, shihonage still shihonage". Yet while the outer form of the practice may not alter significantly, it is important to realize that the tradition of aikido through the founder is "takemusu" or unlimited creativity. It is amazing that both perspectives can be true. Tradition can still be grounding and comforting and yet at the same time cutting edge transformative. That is why I feel the upcoming period can be truly a great time for aikido's real message. It is important to remain grounded in the core of one's being and at the same time open to the message the winds of change bring us.

I put together a video of the j-town video with the message that training in aikido can be your best investment during these times. Enjoy and hope to see you at the dojo.


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