Essays From The Master

Archive for November, 2013

The Heart of All Things is a dragon; the dragon has a heart

The ideogram for Nin is made of the symbols for the blade over the heart, in Japanese it means stealth and in Chinese it means to endure making the whole mean “to endure through stealth with the blade or will guarding the heart or spirit.” The heart ideogram is Kokoro which is also the Komuso Ryu term for the union of the Ku or mind-body continuum and the Wu or power-image continuum. Kokoro is also the collective energies of all possible outcomes and those that could be and yet are not, the forces of the 8 types of Chi and the Ki that Chi can produce when it is refined within an individual. The Kokoro is symbolized by a type of dragon known as a ryu; ryu is also the term for a school such as a school or ryu of the martial arts. The individual is a microcosm thus the heart of the individual is symbolic of the spirit of the individual, the inner manifestation of the Kokoro of which the Ki or personal power and the Wa or personal harmony are overt expressions. Ki is in a sense the bell that produces the personal harmony or Wa and the harmony is thus an expression of the spirit or heart that produces it. If the spirit of the individual is a microcosm of the Kokoro then the spirit or heart of the individual is a dragon as well and said dragon reflects the school or training that revealed it within the individual.

The spirit is the hand the wields the blade of the will, it is the ring of the inner steel upon the stone of reality that produces the vibration or personal harmony that is felt by those that are sensitive or are trained in disciplines like Haragei. Each member of a school is reflection of that school, the closer to the ideals of the school one is the clearer that reflection will be and the best of that school comes to embody it. In an ideal world each member of a school is a manifestation of the school and acts as a channel for the truth of that school. It is not the leader or teacher of the school that is the holder of the flame of truth for that school rather it is the warrior whose example in life best expresses the truth of that school. It is a trap for many leaders that they come to see the school is reflection of them rather than the leader or teacher reflecting the virtues of the school they lead. I was recently awarded with the award for having “the heart of the dragon” by my brothers in the martial arts. This award has only given to one other who was the head of the brotherhood until his death and he was the master of one of the greatest techniques in all of the martial arts. I take being honored with this award as a goad to live up to the example of the great man that was given it before me and strive now to truly embody the heart of the dragon that I am a part of in all areas of my life.

Part of being a dragon, of having the heart of the dragon is having a heart and being of service to others without a mind to reward. In my life I have been able to do for others but I have always had trouble being recognized for what I do. I see now that part of having heart is being open to honest praise and genuine gratitude because to not embrace it is to rob others of some vital element of who and what they are. It is equally important for me to forgo flattery and be sure that I am worthy of what good is said about me and ensure that the bad said about me is clearly not true. Getting the recognition I have has shown me how far I have come and how much farther I have to go. I have some things to fix in my life in order to better embody the virtues those I respect see in me and this is hard work I am eager to do. This will mean changes, some hard, but nothing that lasts comes easy and I have set my will on this goal: I will live up to the heart that others see in me and make my life a shining example of the discipline that has given me so much in every area of my life. Growth is often painful but that sort of pain means you are alive and I am very much alive. Time to build up what has so built me and give back as I have been given, time for this dragon to live in full.