The Value of Community

One of the ways we use Aikido is to work out the stresses that touch our lives, on the mat and outside the dojo.  We experience our training as more than exercise. We gather to partake in a shared experience of exploring O'Sensei's teachings.

We love training. On the mat we clash and blend, we lose our balance and then recover it. Our hearts race and sweat pours down our foreheads. We make countless decisions on how and where to move our bodies through space, and we endlessly tell ourselves to relax.  The physical experience of trying to ground and center over and over again requires devotion. We work to be as conscious as we can.  Ideally, our efforts carry over into the meetings we conduct, the groceries we buy, and the discussions we share with our children. We strive to operate in the world like we move on the mat. The more we link the two, the deeper our training becomes, developing a sense of spontaneity—a way of responding naturally to what arises in each moment. This freedom helps us learn to trust our hopes and manifest our dreams.

“Today’s problems rest on centuries of negligence, centuries of pain and unresolved interactions. We are ignoring spirituality. Forget organized religion if need be--just talk about ethics, about how the basic quest for human happiness cannot be achieved by people who don't understand karma, that all actions have consequences. Furthermore, as people see clearly their predicament, that our fates are inextricably tied together, that life is a mutually interdependent web of relations, then universal responsibility becomes the only sane choice for thinking people."--Dalai Lama