Monthly Archives: May 2011

SEIYOKU

A couple of days ago while I was having breakfast and reading part of the last book of Soke Masaaki Hatsumi, entitled “The escense of Budo” I was hanged on a fragment in which Soke spoke about Seiyoku. I’ve written “spoke” because I consider always that Soke’s writings are like a Kuden (oral transmission) intertwined to the denshô (written transmission).


When Sôke writes, and many times when he speaks, he tends to play with ideograms, looking for the same sounds but changing the Kanji (japanese words) brings diverse meanings to explain the complexity of life and Budô. Sôke tends to explain the complexity of life with the simpleness of being simple and natural.

On this ocasion, in one of the parragraphs of his last book, Sôke brings us to value the pure and sacred. Using the ideograms
“Sei” 聖 (sacred, saint, pure) and “Yoku” 欲 (greediness, desire, wanting something).

Reflecting on his text, I feel that it’s important to be able to value the sacred things and spiritual things of life, not necessarily in big temples or complex philosofis, but in simple things. While reading this text from Sôke, I consider that it encourages us to go beyond a life of desires just for the fact of keeping us alive, but in the supreme sense of being able to live connected to what’s sacred and pure in life.

To interlink us with people, from our state of pureness, holyness and sacred, is without a doubt a challenge on daily bases, mostly because of the high social competitivity and summed to the daily violence in some of our countries, makes flourish the highest posture of defense and survivorship, keeping us appart from the capacity of harmony that allows us to appreciate what’s pure and sacred. To be able to appreciate the pure and sacred in others that are not related to our belives or tastes, requires knowledge and tolerance.

Sôke adds in his text that ancient warriors valued the sense of self sacrifice the most, instead of the willing to live. This brings us to the Seppuku (Hara Kiri Ritual), Showing us that the ancient valued the ethnic and honorable senses of the warrior as a first instance state. Their lives didn’t have the sacred and high significance if not considered in honor and respect. Maybe that’s what Bushido means in “the warrior’s path is death”.

I think that surviving refers more to the state of Seiyoku, which Sôke describes as “desires or greediness of living”. Instead, the sense of living with respect and honor connected to the sutil and spiritual, we could see it as Seiyoku which Soke describes as “desires of what’s sacred and pure”.

To live towards the pureness, brings to my memory the idea of simplicity, and make’s me imagine a neutral state in which the antagonic dissapears just for the fact of accepting them. To accept is marvelous, because it puts us in a cero level, and allows us the adaptability between days and nights, joys and sorrows, it’s the purest and sacred point in where everything flows in harmony. Maybe this same point is the entropy of various events.

However, the pure and sacred has also it’s antagonic, in which we could call profane. To break with human life or asimetric harmony of nature, is also to invade a sacred space.

I leave you a text from Sôke, so you can be able to get to your own point of view and understanding.

By Sôke Masaaki Hatsumi – Book “The essence of Budo”

“Traditionally, human beings have acted under their spirit control and for that there are desires, joys and sorrows, pleasure and suffering. I you were a person in whom their normal state is not to think in anything else, then you would be dominated by your desires and feelings of being important.”

“Your heart and mind is what your are, you are your heart/mind (kokoro). No need to separate from your heart/mind and neither the heart/mind should separate from you. That is why the heart/mind of the soldiers in battles was considerated self-sacrifice on the desire to live, and where capable of finding a unit between mind and body. We could call this as the pure or sacred desires, instead of the desires or greed of living.”

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Hinko Hosei

On the last week of april in Japan, Soke was asking me to show a couple of techniques, so he would start working on them as I’ve shown. It’s quite common that Soke asks some of the present instructors to share techniques. It happens many times that our techniques in front of Soke seem not to come out well, and that our moves are very clumsy, But the wonderful thing is how Soke will transform our techniques into wonderful art forms.

The body intelligence and enlightened spirit of Soke allows him to preform the alchemy of Budo among anything.

During april, Soke gave emphasys that the theme of the year was also iai jutsu from Shinden Fudo Ryu, so by showing Taijutsu techniques of sword many clases were given.

A striking teaching from Soke was that he more than one time emphasized that 15dans were supposed to be gentlemen inside and outside of the dojo. Also during one of the meals that we had, he encouriaged us to flow around the world and achieve an economic foundation that would allow us to live well, because this would also permit the Bujinkan Schools so stay alive.

Soke always shows an extraordinary behaviour as a teacher, inside and outside of the Dojo, and it’s striking how his life flows naturally as a true human being, with the correct justice on the right path. Correct Justice and Right Path are also expressed as “Hinko Hosei”.

However, while he is a true master, there are many who want to be copies of the master. We understand that everything that is a copy ceases to be original and true. In Japan there is a saying: “Don’t follow the steps of the masters, but follow what they where after”. I would recommend many to try to be a copy first, just to abandon their bad habits and then cultivate their own path.
To follow the precepts of a great human being is fundamental, and in this case the guidance of participation of Bujinkan, from Masaaki Hatsumi, reminds us that connection with Hinko Hosei.

“The secret principle of Taijutsu is to recognize the origins of peace. To study is the way of the inmutable heart (fudoshin)”

Dojo Code:

1) Know that patience is primordial.
2) Know that the way of man procedes from justice.
3) Resign greed, indolence and obstination.
4) Recognize sadness and consern as something natural, and observe the inmutable heart.
5) Follow the path of loyalty and fraternal love, and go deep in the heart of Budo.

Soke lives a simple life, though loaded of wonderful and various activities. One can see him arrive at the Dojo with his mimi golden sandals and change in front of everyone. It’s also common to greet the newly comers and thank for their letters, faxes or phonecalls. A smiley spirit in every moment envolves his atmosphere and spreads to everyone around his space. Soke maintains the spirit of chivalry within his acts, and with a high rank of patience keeps on after all these years, showing the path to devotees and fools as equal.

He has a high level of tolerance on the impermanence of his students, though keeps on going with an inmutable heart, the sharing of his life and inheritance. Provides his inheritance and the magnitude of his wizdom to those who come to the Honbu Dojo, and as the same time indirectly to thousand students all around the globe.

I observe Soke’s patience a lot, and try to really reach a high mastership in Nin.

Maintain respect and patience when you’re alright and with people who care is easy, being the chivalry attitude in a life line with exemplary conducts. But it’s a difficult task, when the situations are complex and people around you are indeed hostile.

To achieve the Fudo Shin (Inmutable heart) and to make a body invisible so it won’t affect the ego, is a wonderful opportunity to experience the substantiality of the soul. I feel that this is to follow the path of loyalty and fraternal love, and go deep in the heart of Budo.
I celebrate today, as yesterday and tomorrow, the blessing that it is that we can find examples of life as Soke.

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