I began Judo with Yukio TANI, a Japanese teacher of the old school. To most students he taught Judo as a health-giving sport, but for a few really keen ones the training was on a different basis.
I was one of these, practising every evening till the training period ended. One day I felt rather off-colour, and prepared to leave early.
The teacher said: “Where are you going?”
I replied, “I am not feeling very well: I will come tomorrow”.
He said, ‘If a man comes up to you in the street with a hammer, wanting to kill you, can you say to him “I am not feeling very well; come back tomorrow”?’
I remained that evening till he sent me home.
This one remark, heard only that time but never forgotten, was a big help later on when facing very gruelling training programmes, and very gruelling life situations.
The balance in stillness is not the real balance:
it is the balance in intense activity that is the real balance.
Judo, at first mistaken for fighting, and with daunting training programmes, seems like a dragon or demon.
But this is only a mask.
Beyond the mask is something calm, effective and friendly. Yet that too is a mask.
There is something further: transcendence of the limited field of the Judo hall itself, to the spirit of the Way which has its application everywhere.
The book by a high-grade Judo expert who trained some international Judo stars, gives lively accounts of his own traditional-style training, and something of his own training methods to develop the inner side of Judo.
Close combat is a deep-seated instinct, and one aim of Judo is to refine and finally spiritualize it into an inner training for mutual benefit -making friends and not enemies.
Some of the pieces are very unusual – for instance how a boy who has lostan arm but is still madly keen on Judo, is trained in secret so that he can win a county championship.
There are reminiscences of the classical figures in Judo; Trevor Leggett at seventeen met Dr. Jigoro KANO and heard him describe the incident where one of his maids whom he had instructed in a particular way of doing the laundry, used the method to rout a Tokyo down-town tough who attacked her.
|Judo and the Ways||The Dragon Mask I|
|Introduction||The Dragon Mask II|
|Efficiency of the Heart||Onshi|
|Outer and Inner Balance||Tricks|
|Judo and Calligraphy||Manners|
|The Cherry Tree||The Killer Instinct|
|Question||A lovely style|
|Cutting off the bull’s horns||Specialization|
|Help||Tigers and Rabbits|
|Limits of Technique||Specialities|
|Humble||Predicting the Result|
|Dr. Kano’s washing||New Black Belt|
|Thetradition of Judo||Kangeiko|
|Beginners||The learning process|
|Hard and soft||Falling|