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Ueshiba Aikido e-Reflections
ISSN 1712-2341
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Feb 13, 2009

"The Way of a Warrior is based on humanity, love, and sincerity..."

Morihei Ueshiba O Sensei

Have you ever used a "Singing Bowl"?  This bowl produces the most calming sound when activated.  It is sometimes used in prayer or meditation by raising the vibrations of the person or in "space cleansing".  The "hum" is produced by rubbing the rim of the bowl with a wooden mallet.  Every bowl resonates differently.  If you want to purchase one for yourself, it would be best to find one that resonates with yourself.

I think one of the most important discoveries of the twentieth century is that Matter is vibrating energy and not solid: that we all exist in a soup of boundless, pulsating energy.  It certainly redefined what solids are, though our senses tell us that a brick wall is a brick wall.  So when you think something does not feel right, you are probably picking up vibrations, rippling through the air just like water ripples when you throw a pebble in a pond.  Amusingly, especially during Valentine's Day, male teens coming on too strong repel the girls they hope would be their valentine.  You don't have to see desperation in their faces to feel it.  Similarly, I am sure you have felt the atmosphere of a room change just by someone walking into it.

In some ways, then, the ancients did have insight when sound was used to uplift during prayer, using music during church services, or the drums, during festivals like Chinese New Year.  It is a vibrational experience.

Through repeated practice in the Dojo, work at refining this feeling by using the prescribed techniques as a means to blend with your partner's attacks.  The best way to experience this is to practice in silence, and reach out with your feelings; moving when you have to move, turning when you have to turn, and completing the technique when the opportunity arises.  Just like the "singing bowl", there will be a resonance, a "zing" in you, like hitting the "sweet spot" on a tennis racket, when a technique is performed smoothly and without hesitation.  It goes beyond words.

Humanity, love, and sincerity are also experienced.  And while there are many paths to that end, as Aikido students during this Valentine's Day and beyond, may you feel this resonance in your life too, so you may radiate it and share it with others.

Have a most joyous and radiant Valentine's Day.

In peace and harmony,
Rafael Oei Sensei.
(© Copyright February 2009: Rafael Oei)

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