homage to the masters of ancient ways;
homage to my teacher in this life,
how fortunate we are to be traveling this way,
how fortunate we are to be accompanied by more than one,
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.
“Aikido Schools of Ueshiba, not Aikido Schools of Saotome” – 五月女貢
Now it’s time to enter, now it’s time to enter.
Udvar-Hazy Center with Sensei, Kaiwa Sensei, and Mike Rosario
This is vajrasattva. This is real ai ki do. The observer and the observed are one family.
“You know [r]oy, people no understanding you… sensei knowing… 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 one point. It operates abstract time, abstract location. For all beings.
Tadaima; “you ordered a diamond…,” ten thousand bows would not be enough.
Magnolia, Seattle with Wheelhouse DMG, Aaron Burnett, Paul Weinstein, Casey Curtis and team.
This. Is. Impact.
Laguna Beach, CA; Orange, CA; Washington State with Gaelan Lloyd
He drove up to the beach cottage in Laguna Beach, CA long ago for an animal. Today, “I love wolves every day,” and we do, every day.
This is care and devotion to another of my masters, one with a strong heart of samurai. No doubt; confidence, beyond arrogance. Gentleness.
Virginia City, Nevada with Gaelan and Ian; Family
Ancient ways, re-emergent.
Palm Springs, CA with Gaelan, John, and Ken
This is rest.
Re-entering the World
Kirkland, Washington with the O’Farrells
This is growth.
Laguna Beach, California with Rob Loughan
“Do you drink?” Rob asked after arriving from Australia.
“You will,” was my introduction to Loughan.
The concepts here resonate and unlock insights everywhere, “your job is to compress time,” being the biggest key.
This is coming off the mountain.
Glover Park, Washington, DC with Sis and Mike Marriner
This is community.
San Antonio, TX with Samye
Not everyday you befriend a tulku who says, “‘get your head out of your ass’, and ‘share it [ IT ] in full.'”
This is effort.
Chevy Chase, Washington, DC with Ivan & Janet
This is grace.
Washington, DC with Pennye Jones-Napier and Julie Paez
Tolerance, welcoming, understanding, and space.
This is acceptance.
Bodhi Path, Potomac Maryland with Kunzig Shamar Rinpoche, Mary Akers, and Greg Mock
“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.”
This is lineage.
Receiving a Compass
Washington, DC with Aikido Shobukan Dojo
A decade at Aikido Shobukan Dojo, nine of which were as resident under the invitation of Ivan Menjivar and Janet Smith, received by Peter Trimmer, and under the graces of Mitsugi Saotome Sensei and Patty Saotome Sensei.
This is study.
Gleason Wisconsin with Ken Purdy, Peggy Kroder, and Beth Mizuno
Invited to meet Peggy’s family, invited to hunt (turned it down), learned that it seems like hunters have the most respect for life, and met a student of O’Sensei, Ken Purdy who lives ai ki do daily.
This is family.
Mt. Evans with Ikeda Shihan, Kevin Choate, and Kenji Ushiro
Invited with Ikeda Shihan, Kevin Choate, and Kenji Ushiro on a trip to Mt. Evans. These gentlemen have taught me much.
This is space.
Aikido Shobukan Dojo, with Kaiwa Sensei
Sensei’s invited guest Hideyuki Kaiwa of Ono-ha Ittô-ryu. Honored to train in the quiet dojo in the afternoons. I am in his debt, and Saotome Sensei’s too, it is here, that the bokken/sword came alive.
This is lightning.
New York City with Paul Kang
Invited to document Paul Kang’s teaching for a personal website; his gentle demeanor and perseverance was further professed.
This is gentleness.
ABHPM with Dale Lupu, Peter Trimmer, and Friends
I was privileged to help the executive team working to recognize Death & Dying in Western Medicine. The American Board of Hospice and Palliative Medicine’s (ABHPM) efforts to be recognized by the American Board of Medical Specialties (ABMS) was a success and now Hospice and Palliative Medicine is part of the American Board of Internal Medicine (ABIM). Our legacy will survive through as many generations as there are humans and their descendants from its inception by Dame Cicely Saunders.
This is impact.
Aikido Shobukan Dojo with Peggy “Mary Margaret” Kroder
Benefactor, friend, mentor, guide. Peggy and her family, diplomats. I learned what a functional family is from the Meyers.
This is friendship.
Old Lyme, CT with Jim Frazer
Fellowship, sharing, insight, understanding. There are some things you only master stonemason understand and share one to one. Jim knows earth and he knows gravity.
This is understanding.
Aikido Shobukan Dojo with Mike Rosario
A true brother, through difficult times, through beautiful times, and through neutral times. Without Mike, I would not be here today. I was and continue to be a pain in the ass, his friendship over nearly a decade is more powerful than the day we parted the dojo.
This is a brother; in syncopation friend.
Military & Government
Northern Virginia with Government
Liberty and Justice for All.
Cornwall, Ontario, Canada with Frank Doss (koinu) and John Willson, Bujinkan Budo Taijutsu
Remote friends on IRC, then visits to Cornwall and Frank at Shobukan. There are few words to describe the wisdom, knowledge, virtue, and friendship that Koinu and John Willson shared with me daily, however far or close. Thank you for sharing Ishizuka Dojo with me; the impression is timeless.
This is shugyo.
Undernet, #martial, #bujinkan, and #buddhism with Frank Doss (koinu), John Willson, and others in #buddhism
This is practice.
Ft. Wainwright, Fairbanks, Alaska with United States Army, Derek Pinkerton, and Gordon Reid, Aikido
Training in Aikido started at 19 in Alaska in a kids program as there was no other option on base. We trained often and Derek’s strong background in martial arts helped tremendously.
This is professorship.
Skyline Drive with Siblings, Gina Hodges and Linda Hodges
Family. Overcoming the obstacles of conventional life, together, and separate.
“Will you remember this pencil on the side of this desk in twenty years?”
“Yes,” Gina said.
And she did, and still does.
This is The Gesture.
Childhood & Exploration
Chancellorsville, VA with Rosalinda Hodges and Family at Thanksgiving
The mother who brought me into this life and whom I inherited something special from that could not be taught nor given. All beings have been our mothers.
Fredericksburg, VA with Master Seong and Gina, Tae Kwon Do
My mother signed me up for self-defense classes after being bullied. It worked in three months.
This is guarding space.
Fredericksburg, VA with the Joseph and Andy Keel
The only other family I really knew as a young boy; a deep kindred with Native American culture deepened further here.
This is childhood.