Lowry Sensei is an epic kind of guy. I see him as the a southern bohdisattva, a true good ole' buddha. He is a man of Zen taking the time to travel within, and to explore and master the external. He is the head of the Kaze Uta Budo Kai. I like the man and his work so much I will shamelessly steal his works and present them to my audience.
The piece he writes here rings true to my own explorations of late. I feel like so many people in the Aiki world are sticking to things, rather than finding freedom.
Zen mind Budo mind
Our Budo points us towards an intergrated free funtioning self that turns freely in all directions. A Mind that is awake and not stuck on anything. People mistake this for slackness, but this is not some loosey goosy hippy deal, but rather a consistant dedicated practice of letting go. No matter how important something seems, we cannot stay fixed on it. Putting it all down, returning to zero as the default, requires precise practice because we hold on in ways we dont even imagine. Holding on, getting stuck, reguardless of what we get stuck on, is the heart of the problem. Here is how an old sword saint expressed it:
It is a disease to be possessed by ideas of victory or of technique.
It is also a disease to be possessed by the idea of showing the results of your training.
It is a disease to be determined to attack first or, conversely, to wait for the opponent's move.
It is a disease even to be possessed by the idea of removing all such diseases.
The disease is a state of mind that is rigid and fixed, in whatever situation.
All such diseases stem from your state of mind.
It is important to control the mind.
From "Hei-Ho-Kaden-Sho" by Yagyu Tajimanokami Munenori