Recently I was called a hypocrite on another forum for having the audacity to speak about my desire for peace while being an active martial arts proponent.
I have my own martial school. Fact is I spend 6-9 hours a week on the mat working on martial problems and exercises. I teach 6 hours, and try to attend Judo and Aikido classes from other teachers at least once a week. I spent on average another 4 hours a week writing and having long conversations with other teachers around the country.
When I was living in Japan I also walked the Zen path. In zazen, the seated meditation of the Zen/Chan tradition, I found peace was easy to attain. It is a deep practice but one that I did not find as challenging. Peace is easy when you are sitting in a quiet temple.
My art of choice is Aiki and Ju. I search for ways to harmonize with energy and channel it softly in safe directions. I do not study pain. I study healing. I do not study how to hurt, instead we are always searching for safer ways. I do not study how to strike. I do not study how to break. I study how to diffuse situations and to restore order.
Like I said finding a peaceful mind is easy in a temple. It becomes more challenging when you are getting attacked by four people.
You see the trick is with my art, it only works if I am relaxed and calm. In that way it becomes an amazing biofeedback system. I can tell when I am frustrated because my art ceases to work. Returning to calm I regain my power.
It has been written that aiki is the art of bringing order to the chaos of conflict. I see it as a meditation in a hurricane of chaotic energy. Truth is, aiki is a problem solving system. It is a biofeedback system. It is the physical embodiment of a 'peace through non violent ACTION' philosophy.
So is peace through the study of budo really a paradox after all? No of course not. It is a logical and repeatable science of retooling our mind to live in harmony with the energies that flow around us.
That's the idea anyhow.
Walk In Peace