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I've been thinking a lot about why I am addicted to aikido. Why does it draw me back again? Why am I willling to shake up my life, aquire an ever-changing collection of bruises, sore and strained muscles, and mystify/dismay my christian friends by investing my time in attempting to master this art?
I think what I am coming to, at least in part, is a realization that Aikido offers me a time of meditation that is physical and dynamic. On the mat, I am completely focused on the present. My mind is so much more focused, and I leave the dojo often with a clearer mental attitude.
Also, I live so much in my head, that I often treat my body as if it were not part of ME. This is also, I think, a consequence of being a cancer surivor. I still don't trust my body very much -- often it feels like its out to get me. Ok that sounds psychotic, but it's kind of true. Aikido brings me to a place of joy in my physical body; a kind of reconcilliation...
John 15:5 (The Message)
The Message (MSG)
5-8"I am the Vine, you are the branches. When you're joined with me and I with you, the relation intimate and organic, the harvest is sure to be abundant. Separated, you can't produce a thing. Anyone who separates from me is deadwood, gathered up and thrown on the bonfire. But if you make yourselves at home with me and my words are at home in you, you can be sure that whatever you ask will be listened to and acted upon. This is how my Father shows who he is—when you produce grapes, when you mature as my disciples.
And now, the Aikido version…
Jesus says, "I am the Center, you are the body. When you extend and move thru me, and I thru you, the relationship intimate and organic, the result is sure to be dynamic and powerful. Separated, you can't do a thing. Anyone who separates from me will lose balance and control, destroyed by the forces set against them. But if you cherish me as you center, and your thoughts sound in harmony with my words, you can be sure that whatever you ask will be listened to and acted upon. This is how my Father shows who he is -- when you are dynamically effective without resorting to your own strength, when you mature as my disciples."