Re: The Experience of Aikido
Obviously I don't mean what he meant specifically, but I think there may be a few options that could be interesting to explore:
- a few months back when I was spending a few weeks training with Nemoto Sensei in Iwama he often made the point that techniques should be carried out with full "intent", full "commitment", meaning that one should be totally concentrated on what one was doing and, for example when practicing sword-techniques, fully commit to "cutting", not only going through the motions.
- stepping back and being the observer of one's actions can be very satisfying, not in a sense that one actually distances oneself from what one is doing, but actually becoming even more aware of one's actions. While doing a technique one can actually simultaneoulsy be at a higher level, saying to oneself - "I am actually doing this and I will experience it with my full consciousness". I did this often in Iwama, kind off saying "gosh, I'm actually here, doing this, experiencing this". It's a wonderful form of full consciousness when one remembers to apply it.
- performing techniques while having one's eyes closed or in the dark can, I think, create a new "beginner's mind" out of techniques that one (often erroneously) feels one actually masters. One could try to close off both eyes and ears or just experience the novelty of training on uneven ground or in a heavy rainfall. It could possibly preclude "blazé-ness".
- sometimes I think this experience can come about quite spontaneously, at least sometimes during training feel quite elated just feeling, sensing, enjoying the training with the full flavour of "wow, I just love this aikido-thing"!!
All the best