SEISHINKAN’S 4 LEVELS

For decades, I resisted any and all attempts to define the Northern Karate system in simplistic terms. What martial art do you teach? Karate? Certainly. What style? We practice Shurite forms….and Nahate kata…and Hakutsuru and Nipai. Kobudo? Yes. What type? Matayoshi…and Ryukyu…and Yamani…and Mura. Some BJJ/MMA? Absolutely. What about Indonesian and Filipino combat systems?...

What’s your Ikigai?

Ikigai can be described as the food or fuel of life.  It is similar to what the French call raison d’être, a “reason to live”, and rather than merely surviving, making your earthly existence a work of art. The Greek philosopher Heraclitus (535 –475 BCE) used the word logos to illustrate principle, plan, formula...

SIX STEPS TO “MASTER” KARATE   

In his best-selling book Outliers: The Story of Success, Canadian author, journalist and motivational speaker, Malcolm Gladwell introduced the 10,000-hour rule. He analyzed the habits of extremely successful people and determined that it took 10,000 hours of dedicated, deliberate practice to become a phenom or expert. This translates to about twenty dojo hours a...

Hypnosis 催眠 in Martial Arts

Warning: no parlor-tricks or trance techniques in this article. Instead, this is a piece that clarifies the importance of attaining and maintaining a Zen-like mindset through martial arts training. In my opinion, achieving this objective requires an understanding of the three parts of the budo brain: Conscious Mind – interacts with the critical faculty...

Kyudo Mugen 究道無限 The Way of Learning Has No End

The great Mahatma Gandhi famously said, “Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever.” If there is no end to learning, the greatest investment you can make is in your personal enrichment. Does this equate to higher education?  Perhaps – particularly if formal schooling catalyzes growth. However, pursuing a degree is costly and requires a significant time commitment. Credits are earned through a fixed curriculum, and...

Mekata 目 形  Way of Looking

If you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change. (Wayne Dyer) Mount Fuji is affectionately referred to as Fuji-san.  Along with Mount Tate and Mount Haku, it is one of Japan’s “Three Sacred Mountains” (三霊山 -Sanreizan) and a place of scenic beauty, history, and even, superstition.  Prior to the Meiji era (1868-1912), general travel was reserved for samurai and the ruling class.  Most of the population, comprised of farmers and merchants, had to be satisfied...