Aikido training in Japan · Budo/Martial Arts

Stupid Gaijin: You Do What You Want

I usually make a point not to swear when writing on the blog, but it may come out tonight.

I had my aikido test tonight. It went well. Yet feelings are greatly unsettled. Maybe it’s the feelings of a birthday as well mixed in. Definitely it is, but it’s not just that, it’s so many things; too many things.

I have some very Japanese goals, but I’m American. This can complicate things.

I feel like I’m eating some of the words I wrote two posts ago about seeing my budo goals in Toyama through to the end, that me with the blazing optimistic side that chooses a path and pours forth all energy to its means in the moment. Tonight I asked about future tests, and the answers were less than I desired. But what do I desire? My black belt as soon as possible. That’s not a good place to start from. Specifically … actually, I don’t have the time to talk about specifics. I want the belt as soon as possible and it may not come as quickly as I imagined, that’s it. According to conversations I had tonight according to papers, it looks like it may take until next next March. That pisses me off. If I wanted just the black belt, and I enjoyed it all, then it would be easy. But I don’t. I want to do a lot more: so much more listing that as well just annoys the shit out of me.

Thinking about doing budo annoys the shit out of me right now. Thinking about all the other things I want to do annoy the shit out of me. It’s the thoughts, the schedules, those that I’ve built around the thoughts I think; this intricate world I’ve created; a world where only things I have created exist; trust me, it’s really boring.

Back to aikido for a second before I digress for a while: it pisses me off about testing times, and that’s not good because we’re not supposed to focus solely on that. So one ideal version is a me that just continues to practice naturally and the ranks follow … but I’m not progressing much, at least not as much as I want. So even if I get the belt, it will be the product of time instead of the ability I want. Anybody can get the belt according to the time. This nullifies its special nature I believe it has. This is fucked. So I leave, and see what happens. But that burns the castle I’ve built. If I really want to be good at aikido, this is not the place for me now. But if my thoughts mean anything, then I must stay.

The path of budo is freedom. It is without limitations. And yet it is in this world of limitations. This is the puzzle we live in. It’s not supposed to make sense. We aren’t supposed to understand aikido, and yet we are. This is so much more than words. So much that the words disgust me a bit at the moment.

Budo is about a feeling, an intuition. But isn’t it also about success? Isn’t success the goal: the target we shoot at? I feel a lot, a lot of different things. So which do I follow? I don’t know. That’s not really all that much of a problem, except there’s a lot of things claiming they do know, and they’re all dictating different information. I listen to a lot of them intently. I believe none of them know and tired of being led on. I guess this is the reality of existentialism. There is no god, there is nothing. Budo is bigger than I thought. It says this, it says that, then it says it’s nothing.

The problem is we follow our instincts into these holes that aren’t exactly where we want to be. So what do we do there in the middle of the dark tunnel? We walk? I guess it’s more like a dark forest. Or maybe just dark space, where walking doesn’t do anything, and we just float.

I’ve been in dark forests before, and what feels good is just running. Then you wake up and you’re not running anymore, that doesn’t feel good.

I don’t want to be boring. If I could settle on one thing maybe that’s it. Fuck budo. Fuck the castle I’ve built. Just because I want it to be good, and have invested so much fear into it doesn’t mean it’s great.

The Apocalypse doesn’t amaze me. It makes perfect sense. I’ve said this before. Especially concerning young adult males, the violent mass destruction makes perfect sense. No wonder history is filled with wars. For what? Who cares. Most people don’t think that far. We just crave the feeling of the Ultimate … something. Preparing everything for death. Living everything for life. It goes both ways. But each time you invest in one you discount the other, limiting yourself: wrong. So you need to balance the impossibility of both. People bash Christianity for its emphasis on faith, and yet that’s exactly what any other holistic belief system relies upon (budo, buddhism, what have you). Not even religions, what does science show us? There is an answer to everything, but we cannot know all the answers. What do I know, I always sucked at science anyway.

It amazes me how much we need each other as the human species, because we are who mislead each other. Again, this terrible knot.

Sometimes it makes sense. Sometimes it doesn’t. Sometimes I feel like I can understand without understanding. I keep making the cycle, and it looks like I won’t be getting out anytime soon.

Maybe that’s what pisses me off so much: I keep learning lessons, but they get forgotten so fast. If my purpose is anything in particular, it renders life sterile.

Art comes in many forms. Does that include taking my laundry down? Because I really don’t want to fucking do that right now.

Sleep. Clean the tiny apartment (I dreamed it grew bigger last night, it was awesome). Go out to dinner with the girl to my favorite restaurant. See what happens. Ladeeda.

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4 thoughts on “Stupid Gaijin: You Do What You Want

  1. I loved this post. Many things about it are resonating with me right now… which means I also don't have an answer for you. But it's comforting to share in identical struggles.

  2. Wow, I wrote a comment about a day ago but nothing showed up. Damn, anyway … for the jist of it:

    Rick: I can just enjoy the practice. Thank you for the reminder.
    I think I was experiencing the art taking the center of life instead of supporting it like it should.

    Already feeling optimistic again, and I don't like the downs … but they do have Truth, and because I went there I know I like it somehow. Strange stuff.

    Thank you for the comments and your time!

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