In This Moment, A Great Battle is Being Fought.

At stake is human dignity and sovereignty, and responsibility – to oneself and to one another. It is easy to descend into wrath, disgust, or apathy – anything to alleviate the discomfort of these events. And in doing so, you would lose ground in this battle.

Graffiti in a city

Photo by Eric Ward on Unsplash

The battle is not new; it is ancient. Having grown up in a time of plenty, where burning cities are not the norm, I’m afraid many of us have neglected to train for it.

I do my best to share only those thoughts that will help you in your journey, so I will sum up the current situation like this: everyone will face conflict, pain, and loss. No one knows what form your challenges will take or when they will come, and yet you must prepare. Your response to conflict, whether constructive or destructive, ripples out to affect your relationships, your community, and the future that emerges from the conflict.

We Practice Takemusu Aikido.

Directly translated, this means “The Way of Harmony Born (or Created) from Conflict.” Our goal is to learn a response to conflict that is constructive, not destructive – regardless of the form the conflict takes. To do this, we train the mind as well as the body, and we cultivate a community of others who are doing the same. To create harmony from conflict, we need all of these tools: sound mind, capable body, and supportive community.

If you haven’t practiced clearing your mind of noise and clutter, you will struggle to respond constructively to assaults on the mind. Until you discipline your body to sleep enough, eat enough, relax unneeded tension, and move with control, you may not respond constructively to attacks on the body. And only when you habitually practice building your community, can you expect to draw on your community.

Planting Barry Sensei's Tree

Students rebuild, in a different time of crisis

You Are Part of Our Community!

Our response to the pandemic that disrupted our training routines was to construct an online training space! Our Digital Dojo is free – join the community where we can talk in depth about how to build harmony where there is conflict.

I don’t know what will come of this current conflict. I don’t imagine rebuilding will be easy. I don’t know how, but I know we are going to come out stronger. We have trained for this. This is our training.

“You can’t be brave if you’ve only had wonderful things happen to you.”
– Mary Tyler Moore