KO-SHIN.......Ancient heart
Following the ancient "Ways" - 3
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Not only does much modern Aikido clearly lack the spirit contained in Trevor Leggetts fine words but modern developments have brought about a deterioration of our art in a number of ways:-
  • a softening of the training process generally
  • a general reduction of techniques taught
  • constant changing of the way techniques are performed
  • over technicalising and rationalising the practice of Aikido (the scientific approach)
  • omitting the so called "spiritual" dimensions of Aikido

In the modern,civilised and technologically advanced society in which we live, where wars, if unfortunately they occur, are fought at a distance using machines, the notion of "martial valour" is no longer important.Our sedentary modern existence cocoons us from the harsher realities of real life and of course death too! Perhaps however we can regain some understanding of this spirit by studying the history of Budo to enrich our practical training- "Bun bu ryodo"-the twofold way of physical practice alongside academic learning. Budo is such a rich subject and deserves deeper study!

KOSHINDO-the Ancient Ways

The martial ryu at the time of the Samurai (from the 13th century Kamakura era to the Meiji restoration of the 19th century) taught "bugei-jutsu" or the skills of the art of war. These days the term " jutsu" suggests a study of the application of techniques for purely practical reasons as opposed to "Do" or Way which suggests a spiritual application of the art. The term Do was only applied to the martial arts from the late 19th century when Japan surrendered its old military regime.The old ryu , however, were more "Do" than most modern schools, incorporating spiritual disciplines, on the basis that, unless the heart is pure, and the mind empty of selfish notions, the real life or death combat situations could not be mastered.

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