Anvil

Kendo is a combative discipline where you fight with a sword, and it as such it may be thought of as a brutal and bloodthirsty art by some, but thats definitely not what it is: it is method of physical education that includes educational, moral, and spiritual training. The kendojo is a place where this cultivation occurs.

If you practise seriously and diligently on a single path, at some point you will naturally develop and become a man of morals.

Kendo is essentially grounded on loyalty to ones country, with crushing evil and revealing truth being central tenants. Because the major intent of kendo is disciplining your body and mind it follows naturally that we should be able to say that this type of austerity helps us develop our morality.

In kendo we aim to explain life and death; seek to remove all sense of surprise, fear, doubt and emotion; try to remove ourselves from worldly emotions (無念無想); do our best not to be perturbed by any unrest or anxiety; and always try to remain calm. A lucid and calm spirit is essential to achieve these goals.

However, aiming to do all this only when you are standing in the dojo is not enough, you should be seeking to act like this in everyday life, continually seeking to boldly drive away Injustice and evil, and always acting just and upright. If even a small part of your concentration becomes unstable, or if you feel a bit of weakness spiritually, your calm spirit and confidence will be crushed.

If you have faith that you are living correctly then thats the beginning of genuine confidence. People that choose the discipline of kendo must follow the path morally and seriously.

One of the main pillars of our national character is Bushido, and today it has become a major source for our national morality. Kendo was created out of part of this, and can be thought of as the anvil on which the Bushido-hammer is struck with the goal of creating a moral man. This is one of the major missions of the discipline of kendo.

Takano Sasaburo


Source
高野佐三郎剣道遺稿集 (剣道日本プレミアム) [単行本]. 堂本 昭彦. 2007年発行.

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George

I'm the founder and chief editor of kenshi247.net. Amongst other things I am a high school kendo club coach, an avid practitioner of classical swordsmanship, a history student, and a vegetarian.

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