Brian Kagen pick: “The Flow of mind in Water and Aikido” by Chalres Badenhop

“Senta Yamada was born in Fukuoka Japan in 1924, and he is the founder of Kikusui Kai. He studied Judo with its founder, Dr. Jigaro Kano, who sent him to study Aikido with its founder. In 1961, he first published his book, The Ancient Secrets Of Aikido, which was revised and reprinted in 2004. Recently he has been involved in humanitarian aid, helping the government of Sri Lanka feed its people and grow its economy by providing information on new farming techniques designed to increase crop yields. Everyone who meets him comes away feeling blessed to have met such a great yet peaceful and humble, “gentle” man.

Recently I had the pleasure and honor of meeting Senta Yamada sensei for the first time. What follows is a loose translation of Yamada sensei’s words, embroidered by the larger picture I sensed he was pointing toward. Uncharacteristically for a Japanese person, he moved his hands as he spoke, to portray the movements he perceived as inherent in the mind of Aikido and the mind of water. You might try doing the same as you read the words that follow. Take your time, breathe freely and move your body so as to feel the movement and mind that the words suggest.”

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