homage to <form|emptiness>
homage to <samsara|nibbana>
homage to <ignorance|wisdom>
homage to the continual birth of ai ki.
homage to vajradhara
homage to the creator gods of this realm,
homage to the prophets in service of them,
homage to the wisdom that rains on these lands.
they say a lotus grows from the mud,
and this earth is witness, for this is the fertile
ground where this has arisen.
homage to the masters of ancient ways;
homage to my <teacher|protector> in this life,
how fortunate we are to be traveling this way,
how fortunate we are to be accompanied by more than one.
homage to kunzig shamar rinpoche.
do not squander this life.
climb! not even buddha can save you.
shadows of probability,
traversing the kaleidoscope,
of what humans call “time”.
This is by no means a complete account, it is a fraction, as it would require the assemblage of another universe, a clone of this one. These are shadows of complexity super-positioned with simplicity; an interplay of Energy and Schrödinger Lenses (slit experiments, mandala, stereotypes) that generate a flow of interference patterns we call life, and for some, samsara, and for more the universe or cosmos.
Currently on sabbatical from a decade in secular life; meditating, gardening, calligraphy, study, poetry, and observing training from all aspects of budo and religious practice are the current topic of main concern.
Return to Aikido
A few years ago, Aikido called back, simultaneously from a powerful vision combined with having being asked by individuals to teach them and one in particular very sincerely over the course of many years. It did not feel appropriate to teach without first paying respects, so having booked a flight and permission to stay at the DC Dojo, it was time to return to the mat, having changed.
Tadaima; “you ordered a diamond…,” Saotome Sensei said profoundly; ten thousand bows would not be enough.
During this period, Gaelan and I met another significant part of our lives, a professor, Ian, whose grace and charm only served to continue to build what we have built together.
It started with a meditation, and a twenty six mile walk from Aikido Shobukan Dojo to Bodhi Path in Potomac Maryland to visit to Shamar Rinpoche.
“Rinpoche, I don’t think martial arts are the best way for me to benefit all sentient beings,” I asked one night after a twenty-six mile walk during a deep meditation on the crashing together of bu and do.
“Of course not,” Rinpoche replied, opening a dialogue.
Worked in secular life for a decade of which was leading technical efforts both engineering and analytics related in public, private, and not-for profit industries while simultaneously developing a home with domestic partners and a future property for a shrine, dojo, study, and retreat center. Prototyped, built, supported, and sold several software companies during the secular decade, and returned to Aikido much better for it.
It was here within a small little beach cottage in downtown Laguna Beach, Californa that Gaelan Lloyd walked into this life and continued where Sensei could not. He drove up to the beach cottage long ago for an animal, and it has been an adventure ever since. This is care and devotion to another of my masters, one with a strong heart of samurai. No doubt; confidence, beyond arrogance and with great gentleness and attention to detail.
Accounting for the decade post-military and pre-secular life.
Before the decade of secular life, lived as a deshi in Aikido Shobukan Dojo for nearly a decade in Washington, DC, the Headquarters Dojo of Aikido Schools of Ueshiba under the graces of the Saotome Sensei. lived, trained, and practiced aikido daily. practiced meditation, calligraphy, reading, writing, poetry, arts, and instructed between scheduled classes 1:1 and to small personal groups who requested instruction. Sensei’s regular visits allowed for significant time with sensei, driving, shopping, accompanying walks, museums, tending to VIP guests, and receiving lectures and instructions.
“You know [R]oy,” sensei pronounced the name with minimal aspiration on the ‘R’, and maximum emphasis on the ‘oy’, “people no understanding you… sensei knowing…,” followed by a pause that lasted a few steps, and without changing stride, he continued, “sensei knowing because people no understanding sensei. You understanding?”
There are no words for the appreciation for Sensei’s teaching. There are no gifts that can compensate for this gem, as all of its facets radiate from a dynamic line, limitless, yet perpendicular appearing as one point. It operates abstract time, abstract location. For all beings.
This is transmission.
While at Aikido Shobukan Dojo, increasing meditative practices and relationships with dojo members lead to meeting Kunzig Shamar Rinpoche and receiving instruction as root guru in Karma Kagyu school of Buddhism. committed to vows and empowerments, and teachings, which remain today, the name given by Shamar Rinpoche is Karma Semten Chophel.
Prior to living in the dojo, while training there, worked in private support of government, military, and intelligence communities in the DC metro area toward a career, that is, until an invitation to move in temporarily at the dojo was offered to care take, which was a narrow window to assist, which was taken at the expense of several career invitations as a “blue badger” in Central Intelligence Agency and a specialist career option at State Department, with invitation to training at Quantico.
Was in the United States Army in the field of electronics and communications for several years. Served in United States Army Alaska (USARAK), in support of United States Army Pacific Command (USARPAC) as a sole supporter of specialized equipment serving operational readiness. It was in the military that awareness of O’Sensei first appeared while crossing intense study in Buddhist Suttas during off hours, which lead to finding a small aikido school on base, lead by a soldier well skilled in martial arts, whom left, having qualified for Special Forces. It was this soldier that said, “you don’t need to go to Japan to learn Aikido, the best Aikido instructor is right here in the United States, Saotome Sensei.”
While on base, assisted with a children’s program for the remaining years in the service. as a light unit, we received training fit for units that would meet opposing forces, and trained regularly, this training was helpful for future living in the dojo, and this training is highly effective after decades of research and mistakes through many wars and police actions around the world. Turned down re-enlistment options which had significant support from Warrant Officers for Warrant Officer Candidate School, and instead committed to training at Aikido Shobukan Dojo to learn from Mitsugi Saotome Shihan.
Lineage & Influence
This is a consolidated list, non-exhaustive, of major influencers in this life.
Morihei Ueshiba, O-Sensei
It’s ok to go beyond, even when self-view and we-view have no capacity to grasp it.
Mitsugi Saotome Shihan
Japan & USA
Realized the hidden, manifest, and divine.
Realized the value and skill in the arts of contrast, love, generosity, and clarified intention.
Kunzig Shamar Rinpoche
The moon radiates bright! Realized, doubt is truly a hindrance.
Tampa Bay, FL
Realized, there are others.
Tampa Bay, FL
Realized it’s ok to share insights.
Realized, it’s ok to go past the edge, and don’t hurt ’em.
Love, just love. Really.
Incline Village, NV
A long series of mentoring maxims with Rob; the primary is “your job is to compress time.”
Realized that it’s ok to tell a CEO what is really being observed; it’s ok to be disliked.
Realized “… take care of the team, because…”.
Realized “not but” and the importance of not compromising values.
Realized, the value of friendship after initial clashes and that perfect truly is, the enemy, of, the good.
Realized genuine care and service leadership.
Realized “marketing vs. reality”, the value of marketecture, and the truth of the valuation race.
Realized that being objective is a middle way, and realized the complexity of SQL.
San Antonio, TX
First attempt at a relation, realized not have the head up one’s posterior.
Laguna Beach, CA
Took a chance on software products produced to help small businesses. Realized that nobody really knows what they are doing.
Realized quite a bit, and provided the tough love to continue growth.
Janet W. Smith
Realized that combining academics, compassion, and love, and introduced to real bonafide Chinese Five Element Theory.
Realized that it’s safe to be out.
Realized that it’s ok to transcend spiritually liminality and be out while doing it.
Realized what a functional family is.
Realized that it’s ok to practice ku no jutsu with shihan.
Realized functional country living.
Realized Hospice & Palliative Medicine for the World, together.
Realized dojo cho work is public relations work, and that nice isn’t always compassionate or loving.
New York, NY
Realized sincerity and Japanese spirit in community mission.
Realized sincerity, syncopation, rhythm, harmony, and the tension of trust in family.
Old Lyme, CT
Realized the hidden mastery of moving matter with possibility.
Realized lessons about training contrast and range.
Realized the value of humor.
Hideyuki Kaiwa Sensei
Realized lightning cut and the value of sincere keiko, transmission, and the grace of sharing teachings of deshi with other masters; this one Ono-ha Ittô-ryu.
Realized the value of martial-spiritual friendship and the endless depth of matsukaze, getsumei no michi, and the world of Bujinkan Budo Taijutsu.
Prince Edward Island, Canada
Realized [redacted], martial skill, intelligence, and courage from the Ishizuka Dojo.
Realized steadfast survival against all odds.
“Will you remember this pencil on the side of this desk in twenty years?”
“Yes,” Gina said.
And she did, and still does.
#buddhism, #martial, #bujinkan
Realized the practice together that is writing and reading. This is where I had met Frank Doss (koinu), John Willson, PlagueRat, jnana, not2, and others in #buddhism
U.S. Army, AK
Realized ukemi and atemi. First aikido instructor and set forth the ground work for keiko and travelling to see Mitsugi Saotome, Shihan. “You don’t need to go to Japan to learn Aikido, we have the best instructor here, and his name is Saotome Sensei.”
U.S. Army, AK
Realized empowerment optimization.
Realized brother from another mother. He’s now one of the most decorated officers of the Bureau of Indian Affairs.
Realized crazy, whacky, and zany ain’t all that bad.
Smoke Jumper, AK
Realized the uniqueness that is the Smoke Jumper’s life and reflections of sincerity.
U.S. Army, AK
Realized genuine spiritual grace.
A mom; the mom with the Kool-Aid just before we would go out and play soldier or cowboys and indians, then split weeping willow and lick the bark (little did we know, yes we knew…).
The first lawyer I’ve ever met, and a real genuine individual trying to make a difference in tribal-government affairs.
John & Ken
Palm Springs, CA
Realized family and business within the LGBTQ space.
Realized the family gift, that keeps on giving. Realized that going to public school rather than the gifted school, might have just saved this life.
Linda & Regina Hodges
Realized our bond is strong regardless of the #@$! we went through growing up.
I realized that my blindness to stereotype is a gift for non-radical inclusion.
A Tae Kwon Do master, who asks which is better? Power or speed? He asked baring a gold tooth. It worked to stop bullying in less than a few months.