Sunday, December 26, 2010

News from Inside the Cave

Sword Mountain Aikido and Zen is admittedly a selfish pursuit: it absolutely reflects my current state and direction of practice. Since the objective is always an integrated practice and life, sometimes that means less practice in favor of more life.

New job responsibilities and changing family schedules since March have taken priority over the long-standing daytime homeschool classes, which in turn put formal Aikido practice on hold and have raised Zen practice into prominence. The Zen practice is public, it's true, but it just so happens that far more of the formal interaction occurs over the internet than in face-to-face encounters.

So, if you didn't know where to look, you may not have found me; and, if you've inquired about Aikido practice while things have been in flux, it's likely you've seen no response. My apologies to you if you are in that crew.

I'm hopeful that we'll be resuming formal Aikido and Zen practices locally (Columbia, MD 21045) and possibly with the Baltimore Zen Center (Severn, MD 21144). I feel my primary focus shifting toward working with experienced martial artists---not necessarily aikidoists exclusively---using Aikido as a vehicle to convey Zen principles into their own arts so that they can do the same. It is not a radical shift in perspective, but it is important: It's not looking to build a particular flavor of Aikido, but rather to work inclusively with interested martial artists to find the Zen principles within their own practice---just as I find them where I am within my Aikido practice.

I don't need to create an Aikidoka. I use Aikido to convey Zen. Does that make sense?

For the inexperienced and less experienced martial artists, I am interested in you too. If you study with me you will learn Aikido--at least one flavor of Aikido--and I will encourage you to explore the martial context with other teachers as well, finding your own way.

Nothing is set in stone, no times, no locations, no prices. If there's interest, though, we can begin. Let me know. Start with the new Contact Box in the right column.

Alternatively, watch for updates and catch up if you can.

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