Morihei Ueshiba


Japanese Martial Artist and Founder of Aikido

Author Quotes

Everything becomes a part of the union. Without this, true strength cannot be realized. And, without this all of your training would be for naught. It is here that Aikido serves as the Aiki of Heaven and Earth, that which unified Heaven and Earth before the time of Emperor Jimmu. Applying the voiceless voice, it is necessary to organize the Ki of the spirit. It is necessary to activate the Ki that operates in the realm of the Ame-no-Uki-Hashi (The floating Bridge of Heaven). The same is true of the movements of the Earth. It is here, in the cycles and movements of the heavens that we first find the core teaching.

If you face an enemy who is coming in to attack in this manner [tegatana shomenuchi] and always block with a broad or imposing frame of mind as if enveloping the enemy inside your kokoro, you will be able to tell your enemy's movement in advance [premonition].

It behooves us to develop our bodies, foster our ki, further our wisdom and virtue, and our common sense, as well; and, by austerely training ourselves in the Universal Principle, rebuild our own minds in order to create a genuine self. In other words, Aikido is a technique of purification (misogi). One uses this misogi technique to develop the great spirit of loving protection of all things by keeping the laws of existence and the laws of God, and so fulfill one's life mission. To do these things one must take up the stance of the true victory of self-mastery.

Non-resistance is one of the principles of Aikido. Because of that principle Aikido always wins. People whose minds are wicked or those who like fighting are defeated without fighting.

The "Bu" (martial element) of the spirit, by means of the "ah" and "an" (om) of the soul, brings forth a power that is purified, vigorously healthful, and clearly manifested. The reason for the existence of Aikido is to know the self, to absorb the subtle essences of all creation into that self, and to study the true image of the Great Universe. In complete mindfulness of the Origin of the Single Source (Ichi-gen no Moto), resolve the issue of Principle (RI) and know the Law of Nature. To create an exquisite skill that possesses light is the Way of Aiki.

Absorb everything as if holding it in our hands when meeting opponents. We have our own spirit and others have that of their own. When spirits on both sides are in harmony with each other and produce genuine movement of Aikido as a result, everything is integrated in a circle.

Aikido is the principle of non-resistance. Because it is non-resistant, it is victorious from the beginning. Those with evil intentions or contentious thoughts are instantly vanquished. Aikido is invincible because it contends with nothing.

Be ever-grateful for the gifts received from the universe, your family, Mother Nature, and your fellow human beings.

Everything that exists on the face of this earth represents the hallowed achievements of the love of the Great Universe. Therefore, the Spirit of the Universe blends the human and the divine, and is a Joint celebration of the one-body-ness of all that exists. This mission behooves all of you to make every effort within your powers to bring each thing to fruition. The holy works of the Universe may have many forms and aspects, but they are nothing more than manifestations, different faces of the same, single Universe. Just as there are any number of apparitions in the Universe, so there must be as many different ways that human beings can take part in this mission, each person striving in accordance with the various talents of this universal love that he or she has received. The root source of these operations of Universal Love is soul or spirit it is an expression of love. Aikido exists as one of the very purest manifested forms of this root source.

If you have life in you, you have access to the secrets of the ages. For the truth of the Universe resides in each and every human being.

It is a circle with spirit in it that helps man prosper in oneness of his body and mind. In the circle of Aikido spirit, there are countless techniques ready to come forth at any moment.

Once more, to grasp Aiki and to bring together the physical and the spiritual such that they form a design wherein both aspects live and flourish is the "Circle of the Soul". All the ki of the universe is pacified and well controlled by means of the Circle of the Soul. Because of this control technique, too, can be comprehended and brought forth in an unlimited fashion. But without this Circle of the Soul such flourishing, such diligent concentration, or again the accord between the physical soul, and the spiritual soul, can never be carried through. Without this, the entire 'restoration' of the physical body's five parts comes to naught. The All-Void of the Soul of the Circle comes to be the unity that is the entire universe. This is the root of the Bu of Aiki and is the secret principle revealed when the Circle of the Soul is mastered by the body. There, embraced within that ring, are the movements of mutual destiny, and all things are absorbed as if being grasped in the palm of the hand.

The authentic core of Japanese bujutsu must remain in its progressiveness. The Universe is continually advancing and in that same truth bujutsu must also move forward. Advancing is always a safe course but if you retreat you will be cut by the enemy. Therefore, we see that Japanese budo is performed through advancing and unifying all things into Goodness. Bujutsu must be in accordance with the rotation of the heavens and the earth. The human body is a miniature universe, a small version of the cosmos. If you want to train in bujutsu unify your spirit. The body is trained according to the "Way" exactly as the spirit thinks and so we are able to unify the body as well.

According to your inner light.

Aikido is the study of the spirit, the interactive breath of body and spirit. Aikido is the divine creation of the Universe, the manifestation of the great law that governs the activities of physical and spiritual realms. All things emanate from a single original source, but this gives birth to the original spirit and to the original material realms. This, in turn, creates a complex, yet particular, principle. This is what imparts life and physical form to all of what exists as a part of the great creation of the Universe. All of this progresses down the great way of life, creation and development. All things in the Universe are like one family, and are taught the development of life as a part of the continuum of past, present and future as the breath of life. The progress of all things in this world begins with the great oneness of the Universe, and develops in the direction of harmonious interaction through ourselves.

Become One with the Vastness of Nature to Fulfill Divine Command. Already it is essential that we make progress toward a great and global accord and work for a world of supreme love. It is we ourselves, all mankind, who are the major vehicle through which the governing of the Universe is to be carried out. Yet, despite the fact that we are constantly bathed in the compassionate light of what Buddhist people call the Charitable Being of Sambhoga Kaya, our hearts sleep on and have not yet awakened. The structure of the Universe of Heaven and Earth bestows, governs and preserves a Grand Path of Principle which creates and cultivates all that exists in this present time, and from whence blessings and happiness flow. For the sake of this world, we are obliged to unify ourselves with the Great Realm of Nature which polishes and perfects the Universal Soul, for in this way we will attune ourselves with our true mission in life.

Fight masses of the enemy as if they were one man, and deal with one enemy as if he were many; this is the way you must do battle. Move in such a way that without openings [suki] you make one principle fit the myriad of possibilities.

If your opponent tries to pull you, let him pull. Don't pull against him; pull in unison with him.

It is enough to simply manifest the Great Family of the Universe, in other words the Great Single Spirit of the World. Put another way, it is sufficient if the Spirit, Godly Form and Divine Movements manifest themselves within this world. Another way of describing this is to say that we should create a world with Spirit and Matter in harmony. It will not do to favor one over the other, as both Spirit and Matter are, in fact, one.

One should be prepared to receive ninety-nine percent of an enemy's attack and stare death right in the face in order to illumine the Path.

The beauty of this Great Earth Is the product of its maker And resides together under one roof.

After that, however, a conceited feeling was born inside of me, and while walking through a garden I thought that innumerable golden threads came down to me from the universe. Then, a golden light whelmed up from the earth and engulfed me. Eventually I attained a feeling that my body was turned into a body of gold that expanded to universal proportions. Here I felt that the God(s) were chastising me for my ever-growing conceit and I cried tears of gratitude.

Aikido is the truth taught by the universe and must be applied to our lives on this earth.

Bravery leads to the spirit of self-sacrifice.

Fill yourself with the power of wisdom and enlightenment.

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Japanese Martial Artist and Founder of Aikido