Sunday, December 7th 2008 - Hatsumi Sensei was late for his training, Nagato Sensei said: “let’s do something, Moti please teach”.
I did so, feeling honored to be Hatsuni’s replacement. Hatsumi, in his special way, was suddenly in the Dojo. I didn’t notice him and kept on teaching, until someone whispered to me that Hatsumi is standing there. I stopped, and Hatsumi called everyone for the bow. Then he told me to continue, until he decided to do something better with my technique – amazing!
At the break Hatsumi wrote for me two most significant calligraphies:
1. I Shiki – Self awareness or Super awareness, that avoids the need to fight.
On my visit I had a discussion with Hatsumi about my Dojo name. He used the expression Shiki – with many meanings according to the way of writing.
2. Sainou - Ability, Kokoro – Heart, Utsuwa - Capacity
Thanks to Mr. Mark Lithgow (Hatsumi’s translator) I could understand more about the meaning of those words:
Soke talked about the concepts of those three terms. That according to Hatsumi, They form a triangle that can be an expression of ‘Sanshin’.
While the first two are quite clear, the third one deserves a little attention and clarification.
The main meaning of the word ‘utsuwa’ is 'container / receptacle / vessel'. A secondary meaning, however, is concerning a person's capacity or potential.
Mark’s dictionary has the examples of: "Utsuwa no ookii" - A person of high caliber.
So utsuwa can mean 'caliber', to have 'potential'.
Hatsumi explains the meaning of ‘container’ in an interesting direction. Fish, plants etc. will only grow to the size of the container which they are in. Their growth is limited by the size of their container. Humans too have a 'limit' to their potential. If their utsuwa is small, they can never grow bigger than its limits. Having a large utsuwa/capacity is maybe what Soke is trying to say.
I can add to Hatsumi’s concept, a similar concept from the Feldenkrais Method; the goal of self awareness is to know our limitations and to go beyond the restrains for better use of our capacity/potential, so we can improve our ability to act. Another question that raise here is how we can increase our capacity.
So, ability, heart and a capacity for growth are important for a martial artist. Hatsumi said that he will talk more about this concept next year. Seems that this Sunshin is going to become a bit of a theme for next year.