Monthly Archives: June 2017

What we do here on Earth echos in heaven.

Tendo Chirei

The kanji in this kakejiku or scroll reads 天道地霊 which most typically translate as “Tendo Chirei.” Tendo Chirei typically translates to mean, “God in heaven, spirits on the ground.

When I looked up the kanjis, another translation came to mind. Another translation of 天道 is amaji or “Path in the heavens.”

So if we use this translation, the scroll means “The path in the heaven, the spirit on the ground” which we can then be interpreted to mean what we do here on Earth is a kin to walking the path in heaven.

O’Sensei’s once wrote, “One does not need buildings, money, power, or status to practice the Art of Peace. Heaven is right where you are standing, and that is the place to train.”

The Indian philosophy of ahimsa comes to mind. Ahimsa  dictates that one should strive to do no harm in action, speech or thought.

To train in Aikido is to polish the soul. The genius of O’Sensei is that he was able to put the ahimsa philosophy of non-violence into the techniques.

Every day when we train we are carving out those paths in heaven.

What we do here on Earth echos in heaven. Please train with this in mind.

A wise person…

A wise man does not lose his way, a brave man does not succumb to fear.

I read this quote by Kate Forsyth which I think succinctly sums up what a warrior strives for.

“Kind Heart
Fierce Mind
Brave Spirit”

A warrior only needs three things. This assertion is supported by the Japanese proverb above. If we are wise then we will have a kind heart. If we are resolute then we will have a fierce mind. If we are brave then we won’t succumb to fear.

Have courage, don’t give into fear, be determined and never give up. To live the life of a warrior is nothing more than this.




Don’t Give Up!

Ishi no ue ni mo sannen
“Perseverance will win in the end.”

Ishi no ue ni mo sannen is a Japanese proverb that most ascribe to mean “don’t give up.” The actual translation is, “Even the coldest rock will get warm if sat on for three years.”

The people who are often times the loudest or biggest aren’t always the one’s who are the strongest. True strength comes from inside. When fear or self-doubt over take us, it takes someone of true inner strength and character to not run or give up.

There is an old Samurai kuj-ji or mudra that Furuya Sensei put on his Art of Aikido video series that reads Rin Byo To Sha Kai Jin Retsu Zai Zen (臨兵闘者皆陣列在前) which translates as “The bravest warrior excels at the front of the battlefield.”

Brave or courageous people never quit in the face of adversity – They step up. If we persevere, eventually we will win.

Whatever you do, don’t give up!


Do your work.

Everything that we get in life comes from putting in the time. To be successful, we have to do the work.

Unless we are doing the thing we are supposed to be doing, we will not achieve the success we are chasing. It is so easy to become distracted with all of life’s modern technologies and conveniences.

It doesn’t matter what other people are doing…do your work.

It doesn’t matter what people are saying…do your work.

It doesn’t matter what other people are doing on Facebook or Instagram…do your work.

It doesn’t matter who thinks you can or can’t…do your work.

There is only one thing which will make us successful in this life and that is doing our work.

No one  can make us successful. People can help us, but ultimately we have to pen to paper. We have to go to the dojo. We have to do our suburi. We have to do our homework. We have to show up for class. We have to do the work.

Black belts aren’t made, they are forged out of one’s own blood, sweat and tears.

There is only one formula for success: hard work = success. Do your work.