hi Graham, some interesting thoughts, could you please explain what you mean by the natural location of the spirit is centre? Is this your physical centre, i.e. your hara or tanden? Or is this about being psychologically centred or being calm and maintaining perspective in different situations if the home of spirit is non-resistance?
Secondly you speak of a long journey home - where is "home"? Is it the mastering of Aikido? Enlightenment? Heaven? Nirvana?
I have my own beliefs on the heart, mind and spirit so I just want to understand whether we are using the same conceptual frame of reference.
Regarding centre, well yes your physical centre and let's say in terms of more esoteric viewpoints ie: the buddhist 'true self' then it is also the centre of true self. In terms of physical objects then their centre is a point of non-resistance as is the centre of even an atom.
So in terms of religious statements and such things as yoga etc. where the terms spirit, heart, soul, etc. are used I see them as all part of self. Hence MY soul, MY spirit, MY body etc.
As Ueshiba also put emphasis on such things and indeed most martial arts Masters too then it led me to find it all fascinating ultimately understandable.
When you say psychologically then yes and no. Yes as spirit is part of self. No if we say that is all there is to it. Yes if you take the basic meanining, the root and original meaning of psyche, which is spirit. No if you take the meaning to mean mind.
Mind however is another aspect of self and thus different to spirit. They are all of course interdependent. The home of mind would thus be different. I would say the home of mind is stillness.
I use the word home also in relation to the 'do' of Aikido, the path, the journey. A journey back to your true self, your true nature etc. A journey home.
Where is home? indeed. Aikido to me comes from home. A person reaching an ultimate enlightenment ie: satori would be home. Heaven is the home of the heart and universal love and thus leads to understanding kokyu is also what I say.
Such are some of my conceptual frames of reference. Thanks for asking.