Part 6 in a continuing series

       This is a leisurely chronicle of my teaching journey from January to March of 1999. I recorded hundreds of daily teaching events throughout this time period.

        As a sensei, I’ve assumed the task of tugging at the fabric of every student’s paradigm. I try not only to present the martial arts in a broad and meaningful way, but also to alter the way the students approach and practice their martial art. This includes helping them to flush out their darkness; ignorance, weakness, egoism, fear, anger. We want to mold our life essence into the sharpest blade our time and will avails. From the Buddhist’s view, we want to cut through any illusions that prevent us from inheriting the legacy of our authentic self. Any other long-term martial objective, in my opinion, is limited. No matter how many enemies you vanquish on the material plane, how many trophies you secure, there is a far greater potential in simply waking up to the present moment, even if you only manage to get your crusty third eyelid open a fraction of an inch.  

The inner way’s challenge — compost all the useless crap we carry in our heads, particularly the “enemy-negative” chatter, even if you are that enemy. Self-criticism can be debilitating.

The falcon is a totem creature shared by all sensei, for most of us must perch and chronicle our student’s movement as they make steady or unsteady advance into martial sel-fhood.

Bodhidharma told us that when you watch the wall long enough you can hear the ants scream! I can’t speak about an ant’s vocalizations, but I’ve been watching students long enough that I can often see the light and dark pulsing in them.

When you can see, with certainty, your own interior currents, you can steadily navigate the meaningful flows and patterns of your life.