George S. Ledyard
Anyway, it explains why so many of the folks we know about from recent history seem to have come from well off backgrounds... who else had the time and money to train like a fanatic once the samurai were abolished as a class and all those folks were unemployed. Even in arts like judo and kendo, look at how many top guys came out of police dojos... Even a number of koryu were kept alive within that context.
I don't know when it began to really sink in on me that I could not afford to be doing what I was doing for so long.
Oh, yeah. It was when I realized I was completely broke and the only thing I knew about was aikido.
Sun Tzu says something like "A country that is not economically strong cannot be a military power." Or was that Lao Tzu? Maybe it was both of them in similar statements. It's true.
Even rich, though, it takes a special person to really go deep into aiki. Even with no financial worries, most people won't live such an austere life.