As ai (harmony) is common with ai (love), I decided to name my unique
budo Aikido, although the word "aiki" is an old one. The word which
was used by the warriors in the past is fundamentally different from
that of mine.
Aiki is not a technique to fight with or defeat the enemy. It is the
way to reconcile to world and make human beings one family.
The secret of Aikido is to harmonize ourselves with the movement of
the universe and bring ourselves into accord with the universe
itself. He who has gained the secret of Aikido has the universe in
himself and can say, "I am the universe." I am never defeated, however
fast the enemy may attack. It is not because my technique is faster
than that of the enemy. It is not a question of speed. The fight is
finished before it is begun.
When an enemy tries to fight with me, the universe itself, he has to
break the harmony of the universe. Hence at the moment he has the
mind to fight with me, he is already defeated. There exists no
measure of time -- fast or slow.
Aikido is non-resistance. As it is non-resistant, it is always
Those who have a warped mind, a mind of discord, have been defeated
from the beginning.
Then, how can you straighten your warped mind, purify your heart, and
be harmonized with the activities of all things in Nature? You should
first make the kami's heart yours. It is a Great love, Omnipresent in all
quarters and in all times of the universe.
There is no discord in love. There is no enemy of love. A mind of
discord, thinking of the existence of an enemy is no more consistent
with the will of the kami.
Those who do not agree with this cannot be in harmony with the
universe. Their budo is that of destruction. It is not constructive
Therefore to compete in techniques, winning and losing, is not true
budo. True budo knows no defeat. "Never defeated" means "never
Winning means winning over the mind of discord in yourself. It is to
accomplish your bestowed mission.
This is not mere theory. You practice it. Then you will accept the
great power of oneness with Nature.
Don't look at the opponent's eyes, or your mind will be drawn into his
eyes. Don't look at his sword, or you will be slain with his sword.
Don't look at him, or your spirit will be distracted. True budo is
the cultivation of attraction with which to draw the whole opponent
to you. All I have to do is keep standing this way.
Even standing with my back toward the opponent is enough. When he
attacks, hitting, he will injure himself with his own intention to
hit. I am one with the universe and I am nothing else. When I stand,
he will be drawn to me. There is no time and space before Ueshiba of
Aikido -- only the universe as it is.
There is no enemy for Ueshiba of Aikido. You are mistaken if you
think that budo means to have opponents and enemies and to be strong
and fell them. There are neither opponents nor enemies for true
budo. True budo is to be one with the universe; that is to be united
with the Center of the universe.
A mind to serve for the peace of all human beings in the world is
needed in Aikido, and not the mind of one who wishes to be strong or
who practices only to fell an opponent.
When anybody asks is my Aiki budo principles are taken from religion,
I say "No." My true budo principles enlighten religions and lead them
I am calm however and whenever I am attacked. I have no attachment to
life or death. I leave everything as it is to the kami. Be apart from
attachment to life and death and have a mind which leaves everything
to Him, not only when you are being attacked but also in your daily
True budo is a work of love. It is a work of giving life to all
beings, and not killing or struggling with each other. Love is the
guardian deity of everything. Nothing can exist without it. Aikido
is the realization of love.
I do not make a companion of men. Whom, then, do I make a companion
of? The kami. This world is not going well because people make companions
of each other, saying and doing foolish things. Good and evil beings
are all one united family in the world. Aikido leaves out any
attachment. Aikido does not call relative affairs good or evil.
Aikido keeps all beings in constant growth and development and serves
for the completion of the universe.
In Aikido we control the opponent's mind before we face him. That is
how we draw him into ourselves. We go forward in life with this
attraction of our spirit, and attempt to command a whole view of the
world. We ceaselessly pray that fights do not occur. For this reason
we strictly prohibit matches in Aikido. Aikido's spirit is that of
loving attack and that of peaceful reconciliation. In this aim we
bring and unite the opponents with the will power of love. By love we
are able to purify others.
Understand Aikido first as budo and then as the way of service to
construct the World Family. Aikido is not for a single country or
anyone in particular. Its only purpose is to perform the work of
True budo is the loving protection of all beings with a spirit of
reconciliation. Reconciliation means to allow the completion of
The "Way" means to be one with the will of the kami and practice it. If
we are even slightly apart from it, it is no longer the Way.
We can say that Aikido is a way to sweep away devils with the
sincerity of our breath instead of a sword. That is to say, to turn
the devil-minded world into the World of Spirit. This is the mission
The devil-mind will go down in defeat and the Spirit rise up in
victory. Then Aikido will bear fruit in this world.
Without budo a nation goes to ruin, because budo is the life of loving
protection and is the source of the activities of science.
Those who seek to study Aikido should open their minds, listen to the
sincerity of the kami through Aikido, and practice it. You should understand
the great ablution of Aiki, practice it and improve without
hinderance. Willingly begin the cultivation of your spirit.
I want considerate people to listen to the voice of Aikido. It is not
for correcting others; it is for correcting your own mind. This is
Aikido. This is the mission of Aikido and should be your mission.