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Re: Kamae

Subject: Re: Kamae
by johntah on 2010/9/20 17:13:24

The word Kamae can mean posture or attitude. Anyone with deeper understanding of the Japanese language could help us with conotations we might be missing out on. In Koto Ryu the Kamae are refered to as Kurai Dori os positioning (again help with the Japanese language would be apretiated). This implies the idea that we are always relating ourself to something.

From what has been said by the many posts this starts as posture and works its way up to all the subleties of the process of relating. In this process of relation we percieve as well as influence. Physical action proceeds from an internal decision or from reflex. Depending on the caracter of this decision our atitude will influence our enviornment and those in it even before we move physicaly. In the case of a reflex the effect accompanies the physical movement. This all encompassing field of interaction is implied in Soke's idea of Kukan (again the Jap. bit would help). However, this Kukan, and those in it also influence us. The study of all of this and particularly in the context of conflict could be taken as practice of Kamae or Kurai Dori, or Fu Sui.

There is a metaphysical experience known as mushin that is often associated with budo, as well as many other spiritual practices. This experience manifests a state of perception where all the conections and movement in this Kukan are percieved as one, that is, the perception of circunference, center and area are unified. This would leads us to things such as sponteneity and how rational thinking tends to hamper it. There is a whole lot involved. It could be compared to an onion with many layers. This stuff is hard work, why do you think Soke says it takes 40 years for the basic ura and omote. Of course you should start with the outer layer. But here is where I think people attach themselves to a confort zone. If Soke is constantly mentioning the inner layers it means he's pointing the way hoping some brave ones will explore it for themselves. This whole spiritual vrs. physical is realy stupid. It's nothing more than dense and subtle and if this stuff was secret Soke wouldn't be pointing to it all the time.

Practice is the only remedy, however this is where the danger lies. How you define practice will determine the depths you'll reach. A lot of people practice a martial art, that is not the same thing as being a budoka much less a ninja. If you "are" something it encompasses the totality of your existence. This would mean that eating, sleeping, even having sex would be a part of this being. The fist thing in studying something is percieving it. Learn to percieve, first how you function (how you think, feel about things, react to things, your bodies capabilities like lack of food, water, sleep, etc.). Extend this awareness to everything outside of you, learn how things are, not how people discribe it, and then learn to put yourself at the right place at the right time in everything you do. This would be efective study in Kurai Dori or Kamae. Please take this simply as a hint, read Soke Hatsumi's books for more on the "spiritual" side of our art and asume responsibility for your own training.

Gambate Kudosai!
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