Budo Mind and Body: Training Secrets of the Japanese Martial Arts

Budo Mind and Body: Training Secrets of the Japanese Martial Arts

by Nicklaus Suino
     
 

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Budo is about learning more than how to fight; true budo is a way of seeking and uncovering meaning in life. Here, Nicklaus Suino, one of the leading iaido teachers in North America, gives expert advice on how to get the most from training in traditional Japanese martial arts such as iaido, kendo, aikido, judo, kyudo, and karate-do. He reveals the essential

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Overview

Budo is about learning more than how to fight; true budo is a way of seeking and uncovering meaning in life. Here, Nicklaus Suino, one of the leading iaido teachers in North America, gives expert advice on how to get the most from training in traditional Japanese martial arts such as iaido, kendo, aikido, judo, kyudo, and karate-do. He reveals the essential components of budo training, including:

  • how to determine the principles behind techniques
  • how to develop physical strength, technical strength and strength of character
  • how to discipline your mind to really focus and be in the present moment

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"Suino writes balanced, thoughtful works on budo, and this latest work is no exception. . . . This book is a nice introduction to budo for individuals new to the world of the dojo. It is short on hyperbole and long on experience and common sense. I would recommend it as an appropriate work for novice students, although the clarity of Suino's prose and the sincerity of his convictions regarding the benefits of studying budo would recommend it to any reader who shares something of his experience and his beliefs."—Journal of Asian Martial Arts

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780834823532
Publisher:
Shambhala Publications, Inc.
Publication date:
03/12/2013
Sold by:
Barnes & Noble
Format:
NOOK Book
File size:
185 KB

Read an Excerpt


From the Introduction

The
real secret to becoming an expert in martial arts is realizing that
training is a process of self-discovery. Fur­ther, it is a means of
modifying your personality to make yourself healthier, more well
balanced, and more efficient. Outside of Japan,
this idea has for the most part been lost and the budo forms are
typically taught as nothing more than specialized fighting methods.
This approach is waste­ful, however, for in the short term, there are
much more efficient ways to teach fighting than the highly ritualized
practice of traditional martial arts. Only when an art is con­sidered
as a whole system, including its “internal” aspects, can all the
cultural content be justified. Ironically, taking this larger view, the
“excess baggage” of ritual and spiritual components in these arts makes
them better, more efficient tools for personal cultivation even while
complicating the process of learning how to fight.

This
apparent contradiction is not as troublesome a problem for serious
students of budo as it would seem, since there is not much real need
for most of us to learn how to fight. The study of budo forms, which
were codified during a time in Japan’s
history when there was an empha­sis on martial arts study for
self-cultivation, is ideally suited for people wanting to develop a
deep inner calm and confi­dence. Certainly in contemporary society, we
have a much greater need for calm wisdom than for efficient killing
skills. This doesn’t mean that everybody who reads this book and tries
to follow all the advice found in it is going to become a great master
or guru. To become really great at something requires luck and talent,
as well as the same long years of practice that everybody must put in
to become merely good. Following my suggestions for learning a martial
art should help you become better at it. You will become more efficient
at your chosen art, and hopefully get more enjoy­ment out of it. If you
keep at it long enough, you should find that other areas of your life
are improving, too.

If
you want to go further, however, if the spiritual and philosophical
accomplishments of the people I have de­scribed appeal to you, then you
will have to give serious thought to the deeper issues that are raised
here, and prob­ably do a lot of other research as well. As I advise in
later chapters, students who want to become great martial artists must
read everything they can get their hands on, train fanatically for an
extended period of time, and reflect deeply on the relationship between
budo training and their lives.

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Meet the Author

Nicklaus Suino is a sixth-degree black belt in Muso Jikiden Eishin Ryu iaido. He is codirector of the iaido division and director of the judo division of the Shudokan Martial Arts Association, and is a regional director of the North American branch of the International Martial Arts Federation. He lives in Traverse City, Michigan, and teaches iaido and other martial arts at seminars throughout North America. Information on his seminars can be found at www.artofjapaneseswordsmanship.com.

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