(Art found at http://www.hdwallpapers.in/eclipse_warrior-wallpapers.html)
I don’t trust anything that I can’t fully feel.
I’m now 28 and bursting with energy, begging for somebody to give me a goal I believe in to run at as fast as I can.
I’ve always felt this most with physical activities. In grade school it was sports, since then it’s been martial arts. Through the arts I’ve spent time in, I’m now living in Nakatsu where I practice Kyudo. It’s a wonderful art, but I can’t expend the energy like I fully desire. On top of that, my hand keeps me from practicing full-on everyday. I know Kyudo is teaching me patience and intelligence, but it doesn’t satiate my hunger. I think I need something to physically beat me down until I’m too tired to care.
And so my mind wanders …
I’ve found another dojo that teaches two arts I’ve been foaming at the mouth to get a chance to practice: iaido and jodo (joudo – short staff). Here is there website if you want to check it out: http://www.kenwa-kai.com/index.html .
I’ve been idealizing about formally only practicing one art for the time being … but now that I’m here, I feel that I want more. Perhaps it’s just because my hand keeps me from practicing kyudo as much as I want, and when it heals one art will suffice, but I don’t want to wait. I have all the materials sitting right in front of me and I want it so bad. Why would I hold back?
1.) Being able to focus on one art, which more specifically means physically focusing all of my available effort into one skill, letting myself subconsciously adjust to that one art in the downtime, and learning about the art through reading and writing.
2.) Allowing myself opportunities to fully participate in extra activities related the one dojo I practice at like weekend tests, competitions, or parties. This is a big one I never expected before I started. The core of the practice is the routine practice itself, but without being able to participate in all the extra stuff robs one of the most exciting and experience-altering facets of the art. Also, dojo fees start pulling you in two directions.
3.) One big one that I’m not to sure about is the feelings of the other teachers and practitioners. Japan really likes focusing on one thing at a time … or actually more like your whole life. If I were to focus on only Kyudo, I would receive uninhibited attention and care. If it were to be known that I had a second budo lover, that attention might become limited. As for keeping it a secret, that would definitely not work. If I were to practice two arts and then have it figured out later that I was when everything thought I was only doing one, it would be awkward … like finding out you were not the only one. In a lot of ways, Japanese are against this kind of divided love for a lot of deep reasons I don’t think anyone really understands.
So there are lots of reasons to keep me limited to only one art for the present time, but there’s also a lot to make me want to branch out again:
1.) I want to practice martial arts, and many different kinds until I’m gone from the world. I suppose taking one at a time is one way to do it in which I can focus on only one at a time, but that kind of putting-off of plans and desires doesn’t seem realistic to me. Plus, I want to feel the mix of the different arts while growing in each at the same time, not just getting good at one and then forgetting … though that’s not so bad either.
2.) I don’t trust one art. By only focusing on one you forget the others and isolate yourself away from the rest of the world. I don’t trust that this one art will give me all that I need. I don’t trust that I’m getting everything I want. One can say that we can experience everything in one simple act, and by progressing in Kyudo I can experience everything I could in another art … but I don’t trust it, and that doubt gives me a strength I can feel.
3.) I’M WILD CURIOUS ABOUT IT. I’ve wanted to practice iaido and kenjutsu for so long but have never had the chance. Also, I heard jodo was famous in Kyushu and in coming here I thought I might get a chance. This curiousity and enthusiasm is one of the greatest ingredients to success in budo. When I’ve progressed the most is when I’m too interested and having too much fun to worry about anything that could hold me back.
Sitting here with a bum hand and extra time, my mind has already taking this idea and begun to form a new future. That is incredibly exciting. Perhaps I get too far ahead of myself, I do that often. But what a waste of such enthusiasm isn’t it? I can be perfect when I die, for now, I want to experiment and explore.
The reality is I have come this far in kyudo and have found an excellent dojo and will continue no matter what, naming it my main for now. Also, my time will change considerably once the wife gets here next month. Furthermore, I’ve been wanting to spend more time writing, and if I adopt another budo, that might take away all of the time I’ve been wanting to give to the blog and other projects.
I suppose I’ll think about it a bit more to see if I’m really interested and really can’t wait, contact the dojo, and go from there. Until that time, I know nothing. The dojo could be a bunch of punks practicing a bunk art. They could only want students who will devote all of their time to it. Or maybe it’s exactly what I want …
It could be the greatest opportunity ever just waiting for me to contact. Maybe it would be perfectly fine to practice 2 or 3 mornings a week, taking it slow, allowing me to live me life in all it’s faculties while still being able to do all else that I want.
Why wouldn’t it be?
Because I need to sacrifice everything for one thing?
Because it’s being to greedy on my part?
Because I expect the world to be given to me just how I want?
All there is is a feeling: I want. From that my mind and body begins to move: achieve. If I mis-step I’ll know it and readjust. We become humble on the path of budo, but you don’t get anywhere unless you’re ready to step.