“All over the world we are ready and willing to contribute for a full size statue of Morihiro Saito Shihan in Iwama…”
The powers-that-be have decided that Morihiro Saito, 9th dan, did not exist in Iwama. It would appear that no mention of the name of Morihiro Saito is to be found on the current Iwama Dojo websiteoperated by the Aikikai Hombu Dojo. This is a rather misleading omission and attempt at reshaping aikido history. Perhaps a project such as this will help rectify matters insofar as concerns historical accuracy.
[A reader has pointed out–see the comment below by Miguel Serra–that there is a mention of the name of Morihiro Saito on the English Aikikai website. The comment contains a strong criticism of the Saito family and is very difficult to navigate to in the Japanese version, it being necessary to click about 10 pages to arrive there. Please see my comment below for more information. Apologies for the misunderstanding.]
Since our teacher’s passing, we having been thinking about a statue for the person responsible for the spreading of O’Sensei’s Aikido to the world. Morihiro Saito Shihan formed thousands of teachers in Japan and abroad. He turned Iwama into an internationally known village and because of him even today thousands of practitioners and supporters of Aikido travel to this city. For this reason and many others it is only fare that we all direct and indirect students of Saito Sensei, get together and honor him with a full size statue in Iwama. Please join us and invite all your friends to join us in this venture!
Morihiro Sensei on the Aikijinja grounds wearing a casual nobakama, haori and geta. This photo was taken by Mark Larson and then Sensei had it distributed to many of his deshi present at the time in Iwama.
To access the Facebook page proposing this laudable project and to see many wonderful photos of Morihiro Saito Sensei, please click here