Saturday, March 13, 2010

Homeschool Aikido Classes Shifting to Evenings

Monday starts a new day job for me. Until I'm familiar with the new environment, needs, and ultimately constraints, we're going to have to put our daytime Aikido classes on hold.

Anticipating this possibility, we've allowed the daytime class attendance to decrease through natural attrition and through holding off on any recruiting activities until we knew more.  The result is that not many will be impacted.

That said, now is the time to get a new cohort together.  If you are in the Columbia, MD 21045 area or alternatively in the Severn, MD 21144 area (Baltimore Zen Center) and you are interested in Aikido, Zen, or especially the fusion of the two, contact me via email to evenings@SwordMountain.org with your preferences or constraints so that we can get rolling---figuratively and literally!

Then watch our Facebook Fan Page and our Twitter stream for timely updates between postings here.

Monday, March 1, 2010

Between the Rock and the Hard Place

At a speed of 24 hours per day, a tsunami approaches with immanence, appearing larger and larger every day.  At the speed of 60 seconds in every minute, the land behind you crumbles away into an encroaching abyss. The paths to the left and to the right appear the same, stretching outward toward the horizon...

The pounding of your pulse: tick, tock, tick, tock, ...

The space shrinks, and the details ahead and behind become more frighteningly clear...

The roar of the ocean, no break in the wave to be seen...

The rumbling of the ground breaking away behind your heels...

Hurry, tell me now! What will you do?

Would your answer change if your family and friends were beside you, counting on you?

In the time it takes for the Zen student to derive a clever response, he is crushed between the rock and the hard place. In the time it takes for the Aikido student to consider his technique, he is cut in two.

But what of you, sitting comfortably reading this?  There is no Zen master ready to scold you, nor is there a villain ready to run you through; yet, one heartbeat--passed, one breath--expelled.  You sit with a screen in front of you and chair beneath you, but like a meteor hurdling through the atmosphere toward the ground with a flaming trail behind it: Every moment is like this---until you stop.  Then this is where it begins.