Soulfood

Morihei Ueshiba, O'Sensei, Founder of Aikido

"A mind to serve for the peace of all human beings in the world is needed in Aikido, and not the mind of one who wishes to be strong or who practices only to fell an opponent."

"Your mind should be in harmony with the functioning of the Universe; your body should be in tune with the movement of the Universe; body and mind should be bound as one, unified with the activity of the Universe."

"The art of peace is the principle of nonresistance. Because it is nonresistant, it is victorious from the beginning. Those with evil intentions or contentious thoughts are instantly vanquished. The art of peace is invincible because it contends with nothing."

"Even though our path is completely different from the warrior arts of the past, it is not necessary to abandon totally the old ways. Absorb venerable traditions into this Art by clothing them with fresh garments, and build on the classic styles to create better forms."

"There is no form and no style in Aikido. The movement of Aikido is the movement of Nature - whose secret is profound and infinite."

"The secret of Aikido is to harmonize ourselves with the movement of the Universe and bring ourselves into accord with the Universe itself. He who has gained the secret of Aikido has the Universe in himself and can say "I am the Universe".

"Instructors can impart only a fraction of the teaching. It is through your own devoted practice that the mysteries of the Art of Peace are brought to life."

"We can say that Aikido is a way to sweep away devils with the sincerity of our BREATH instead of a sword. That is to say, to turn the devil minded world into the World of Spirit. This is the mission of Aikido. The devil-mind will go down in defeat and the Spirit rise up in victory. Then Aikido will bear fruit in this world."

"The techniques of the way of peace change constantly; every encounter is unique, and the appropriate response should emerge naturally. Today's technioques will be different tomorrow. Do not get caught up with the form and appearance of a challenge. The art of peace has no form - it is the study of the spirit."

"The secret of Aikido is to harmonize ourselves with the movement of the Universe and bring ourselves into accord with the Universe itself. He who has gained the secret of Aikido has the Universe in himself and can say "I am the Universe".

"The resonance of the body derives from the unity of mind and body which harmonizes with the resonance of the Universe. The mutual response and interchange produce the ki of ai-ki. The essence of Aikido is the mutual echoing of the resonance of the body with the resonance of the Universe."

"True budo is a work of love. It is a work of giving life to all beings and not killing or struggling with each other. Love is the guardian deity of everything. Nothing exists without it. Aikido is the realization of love."

"There is no form and no style in Aikido. The movement of Aikido is the movement of Nature - whose secret is profound and infinite."

"Aiki is not a technique to fight with or defeat the enemy. It is the way to reconcile the world and make human beings one family."

"The secret of Aikido is to harmonize ourselves with the movement of the universe and bring ourselves into accord with the universe itself. He who has gained the secret of Aikido has the universe in himself and can say, "I am the universe."

"I am never defeated, however fast the enemy may attack. It is not because my technique is faster than that of the enemy. It is not a question of speed. The fight is finished before it is begun."

"When an enemy tries to fight with me, the universe itself, he has to break the harmony of the universe. Hence at the moment he has the mind to fight with me, he is already defeated. There exists no measure of time - fast or slow."

"Aikido is non-resistance. As it is non-resistant, it is always victorious."

"Those who have a warped mind, a mind of discord, have been defeated from the beginning."

"Then, how can you straighten your warped mind, purify your heart, and be harmonized with the activities of all things in Nature? You should first make God's heart yours. It is a Great Love, Omnipresent in all quarters and in all times of the universe. "There is no discord in love. There is no enemy of love." A mind of discord, thinking of the existence of an enemy, is no longer consistent with the will of God."

"Those who do not agree with this cannot be in harmony with the universe. Their budo is that of destruction. It is not constructive budo.
Therefore to compete in techniques, winning and losing, is not true budo. True budo knows no defeat. "Never defeated" means "never fighting."
Winning means winning over the mind of discord in yourself. This is to accomplish your bestowed mission.
This is not mere theory. You practice it. Then you will accept the great power of oneness with Nature.

"Don't look at the opponent's eyes, or your mind will be drawn into his eyes. Don't look at his sword, or you will be slain with his sword. Don't look at him, or your spirit will be distracted. True budo is the cultivation of attraction with which to draw the whole opponent to you. All I have to do is to keep standing this way."

"Even standing with my back toward the opponent is enough. When he attacks, hitting, he will injure himself with his own intention to hit. I am one with the universe and I am nothing else. When I stand, he will be drawn to me. There is no time and space before Ueshiba of Aikido - only the universe as it is.
There is no enemy for Ueshiba of Aikido. You are mistaken if you think that budo means to have opponents and enemies and to be strong and fell them. There are neither opponents nor enemies for true budo. True budo is to be one with the universe; that is, to be united with the Center of the universe."

"A mind to serve for the peace of all human beings in the world is needed in Aikido, and not the mind of one who wishes to be strong or who practices only to fell an opponent. "

"When anybody asks if my Aiki budo principles are taken from religion, I say, "No." My true budo principles enlighten religions and lead them to completion."

"I am calm however and whenever I am attacked. I have no attachment to life or death. I leave everything as it is to God. Be apart from attachment to life and death and have a mind which leaves everything to Him, not only when you are being attacked but also in your daily lives."

"True budo is a work of love. It is a work of giving life to all beings, and not killing or struggling with each other. Love is the guardian deity of everything. Nothing can exist without it, Aikido is the realization of love."

"I do not make a companion of men. Whom, then, do I make a companion of? God. This world is not going well because people make companions of each other, saying and doing foolish things. Good and evil beings are all one united family in the world. Aikido leaves out any attachment; Aikido does not call relative affairs good or evil. Aikido keeps all beings in constant growth and development and serves for the completion of the universe."

"In Aikido we control the opponent's mind before we face him. That is we draw him into ourselves. We go forward in life with this attraction of our spirit, and attempt to command a whole view of the world.
We ceaselessly pray that fights should not occur. For this reason we strictly prohibit matches in Aikido. Aikido's spirit is that of loving attack and that of peaceful reconciliation. In this aim we bind and unite the opponents with the will power of l ove. By love we are able to purify others."

"Understand Aikido first as budo and then as a way of service to construct the World Family. Aikido is not for a single country or anyone in particular, Its only purpose is to perform the work of God."

"True budo is the loving protection of all beings with a spirit of reconciliation. Reconciliation means to allow the completion of everyone's mission."

"The "Way" means to be one with the Will of God and practice it. If we are even slightly apart from it, it is no longer the Way.
We can say that Aikido is a way to sweep away devils with the sincerity of our BREATH instead of a sword. That is to say, to turn the devil minded world into the World of Spirit. This is the mission of Aikido. The devil-mind will go down in defeat and the Spirit rise up in victory. Then Aikido will bear fruit in this world."

"Without budo a nation goes to ruin, because budo is the life of loving protection and the source of the activities of science."

"Those who seek to study Aikido should open their minds, Listen to the sincerity of God through Aiki, and practice it. You should understand the great ablution of Aiki, practice it and improve without hindrance. Willingly begin the cultivation of your spirit."

"I want considerate people to listen to the voice of Aikido. It is not for correcting others; it is for correcting your own mind. This is Aikido. This is the mission of Aikido and this should be your mission."

Even the most powerful human being
Has a limited sphere of strength.
Draw him outside of that sphere
And into your own, and his strength will dissipate.

- Morihei Ueshiba