Recommended reading: “Interview with Ikkusai (Hajime) Iwata, Part 1” by Stanley Pranin

The article below has been selected from the extensive archives of the Online Aikido Journal. We believe that an informed readership with knowledge of the history, techniques and philosophy of aikido is essential to the growth of the art and its adherence to the principles espoused by Aikido Founder Morihei Ueshiba.

At that time I was staying in Tokyo in a place similar to present student dormitories, which was called Kojosha at the Shuyodan [a private school where the cultivation of mind and spirit is pursued]. The superintendent was Kenzo Futaki Sensei who was studying at Morihei Sensei’s dojo and was also known as a brown rice enthusiast. He also took on the role of father for all the students there. I did my own cooking for the first time in my life, using brown rice. Since it was a place for moral training, life was really strict. We got up at six in the morning and the person in charge cooked breakfast for everybody. We started our meals after we recited a pledge to pursue “Diligence, training and friendship.”

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