Re: One cut...
A very well known ideal or model came from Tesshu in his Muto ryu. The idea was expressed as "ichi ken / ichi kokoro"
"One sword"................... "One intent"
(or one cut ) ----------------- (one heart, or mind)
Which fits into your "one cut" idea
Tesshu's model has many multiple layers but for my tastes it is quite singular in expressing both purpose and intent.-the idea that everything is on the line in that one chance.
While some may overlook so severe a mindset and only lend it credence to a by-gone era- it remains a worthy approach to any martial endevour. As Lowry cites in one of his books there was a very recent undefeated Judo player who, prior to every shiai arranged his affairs and said his goodbyes to family and friends. In his mind he was about to fight to the death every time he competed.
Severe? Sure it is, but I'd argue there is a mindset to those that have been tested that is palpable-and not coincicdently usually is commensurate with unsual skill.
Tesshu spoke to it grandly...in a few words
His model ties in quite well with another expression worthy of note
"life is measured in the width of a sword."
The legend often used to to define it -is a duel that Jubei Yagyu had. He and his opponent faced off with bokken and every time they cut his opponent claimed it was a draw and Jubei replied "No, I just killed you" After coming to conclusions three times, the opponent had enough and wanted live blades used. Jubei capitulated and promptly addressed the doubts of his opponent-who was instantly killed in one stroke.
The difference between him living or dying was that Jubei's blade actually did arrive first-hence the phrase.
Last edited by DH : 03-17-2009 at 08:03 AM.