“Meditation and related breathing exercises have been a vital part of Japanese martial tradition since the yogic practices of Buddhism and Taoism first entered Japan, and particularly since Zen Buddhism, with its emphasis on meditative training, came to be patronized by the ruling warrior class. Samurai during that warring stage were in daily contact with questions of life and death, of intention and concentration. They saw in the meditative discipline of monks a kind of dynamic calm and courage that they needed as soldiers. ”
Brian Kagen is an avid web researcher with a particular interest in martial arts. His training background includes both judo and aikido. He has contributed hundreds of article links over the years for AJ readers.