KO-SHIN.......Ancient heart
Following the ancient "Ways" - 2
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Secret scrolls of the ways from the 17th century complain that modern (back then) students lacked moral fibre and training has to be softened accordingly.Both Sokaku Takeda and Morihei Ueshiba were referred to as the "last true Samurai" suggesting that amongst their contemporaries they were exceptional men.

If the heart is lost from the "Way" and the master no longer a "true" master then how are the Ways to be transmitted "from heart to heart" as they were in the past. The future of Budo looks quite dim, but at least we in Aikido are fortunate to have the example of O'Sensei, probably the greatest budo master of this century.However, how many aikido organisations can claim to be true to his teachings?

In my humble opinion it is perhaps the modern lifestyle that has caused the demise of true "Budo". It is universally acknowledged among the ancient Ryu (schools of the arts) that there is more to the martial arts than mastery of technique. There is a development of the inner person and of subtle energies which need guidance and cannot be presumed to materialise of their own accord.Even the ancient Samurai whose lives depended on their technical mastery of the sword recognised the need for training the spirit and the mind, and many adopted Zen training to enable them to face potential death with calmness.It is the Samurai and their exemplary way of life known as "Bushido" that I would propose as a suitable model for the practice of modern Budo.
Trevor Legget in his book ,"Zen and the ways" provides this apt description of a true way......

"....for those who would like to experience some inspiration, to be able to enter into harmony with the universe (Aiki), not simply on great occasions but at ordinary times,it is for those that the ways were developed. They are fragmentary manifestations of Zen which depend only minimally on circumstances, to practice them means to be able to experience a breath from beyond, to have freedom for a time from the drabness of life, and to become able to recognise.....the cosmic life and give it play.
The Ways have techniques, but it is not their purpose to imitate the action of cosmic life by technical means, like a pupil faithfully copying the style of his teacher without any inspiration of his own.The purpose of techniques is to master one field thoroughly so that the instruments of perception perceive very accurately.It is then that the cosmic life becomes clear."
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