A long time ago, everybody played music…

 – – – Mitsugi Saotome Shihan

At one point in history, everyone was a warrior; everyone, a hunter; everyone, a musician; everyone, a carpenter. There was no separation of functions. People were just striving to survive. Later, civilization introduced classes…. Today we need to return to the old ways. Each of us needs to learn how to be a protector, a farmer, a cook, a musician, and so on.

A long time ago, everybody played music, everybody partied, everybody prayed…and everybody went to war. Compared to life in those days, our lives seem very isolated… People today tend not to be players or actors, but observers. Observers watch life without living it or studying it. The modern life-style is very poor in quality.

* – * – *

People who are not hard-working will never discover a peaceful society. Laziness, dishonor, escaping responsibility – these are not good. Budo requires constant work – very intense, hard work to develop and complete projects. If we neglect hard work of this kind, society will suffer. This is more than just living.

That is why I built a dojo – my contribution.

* – * – *

Getting our food from many places creates a great danger of control. How can we create self-governance under these conditions? Self-governance implies independence. It is best if a nations’s food is grown on its own land….

The basic problem is that the industrial concept of food production is based on the concept of bigness. In my opinion, however, real strength lies in the family farmer. Budo consciousness has to do with how to live well – how to make yourself and your family healthy. These are issues of management, which does not just have to do with counting money.

from Aikido – Living by Design,  pp. 59, 84, 92, 96

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