Hatsu geiko: The first training of the year

We are now almost one week into the new year of training, and I just wanted to state my appreciation for everyone who participated in Keiko Hajime this year. As always, it was an enormous amount of fun to share some of the disciplines with folk who do not usually train in them. And for me personally, I must admit that I did smile as my suburi bokken was passed around as we finished up the Itakura sensei inspired warm up.

As I mentioned on the night, one of the gifts that the first training of the year provides is the opportunity to reflect on the opportunity in each and every training session to have a fresh start and fresh eyes. Much of what we practice at the Club is founded in the Zen principle of mindfulness and presence. What has gone before is irrelevant — previous success and failure are simply shadows. Instead, what you are faced with, the only thing you are ever faced with, is the moment of action you are currently engaged in.

In that spirit, I wish you all the best in your training year ahead. Do maintain your brightness of mind that you had during your first training for the year, even though family, professional and academic life will inevitably press in over the next twelve months. Be generous, be joyous, and be kind to yourself and others. Gambatte!