Kazuyoshi Takayama-sensei from Meishikan Aikido Dojo in Chiba, Japan will be in Hilo and coming to teach aikido at our club. Takayama-sensei is a certified martial arts instructor in Japan where one must pass certification as an instructor to instruct martial arts. This means more than just having a black belt. It indicates knowledge of other things, including human anatomy and and an awareness of safety and well-being. Takayama-sensei’s sensei is Shigeo Saotome-sensei who heads the Meishikan Dojo in Chiba. He is a highly regarded and respected aikido practitioner and instructor.
Takayama-sensei’s wife, Cynthia, was born and grew up in Hilo. They come home to Hilo every year to visit with her parents. The past couple of years, we have been really fortunate to have Takayama-sensei come to our dojo and instruct some classes while he is here in Hilo. Those who were able to practice with him really enjoyed the classes that he taught. This year he will be instructing our Open and Advanced Aikido classes on Monday, September 16. He will also try to make it to our Youth Class on Wednesday, September 18. He is a talented, knowledgeable, and entertaining instructor. We really look forward to practicing with him. Please make every effort to attend the classes taught by him. We are sure you will enjoy him and learn some good stuff.
OKAGE SAMA DE!!
“Okage Sama De” was the theme of the 41st Annual Lantern Parade held recently in Hilo. The term itself implies a feeling of gratitude to our ancestors and predecessors for the good life that we are now enjoying. This is something that is good to remember and keep in mind. We are fortunate and we owe it to our ancestors. We are what we are, what we know, and what we can do, because of our ancestors. We owe everything to all those who went before us and helped to create and fashion our lives. The parade helped us to express this feeling, and we were very happy and proud to participate.
This year’s parade was held on Saturday, August 3. The parade started from the new County Building, and passed through downtown Hilo. There were many people who came out and enjoyed the parade, watching it pass by from different locations in downtown Hilo.
The Hilo Seishikan Aikido group was headed by instructors Sadami Yamamoto-sensei, Ruth Walker-sensei, Dennis Marshall-sensei, Robert Kamau-sensei, and Carrie Yonemori-sensei. They received assistance from several others. The beautiful banners that were carried by our marching unit were made by Valerie and Jessica Galacgac, Janie Nagakura, Etsuko Tulman, and Marshall-sensei. Pictures of our marching unit and the parade were taken and produced by Debbie Fujimoto.
We would like to express our thanks to each one of these people and to all those of you who took the time and made the effort to march in and participate in the parade on behalf of Hilo Seishikan Aikido. We truly appreciate all of your efforts. MAHALO!!
We look forward to participating in next year’s parade. We see this as a good opportunity to participate in a community-wide activity. We also feel this is a very good group activity for our club.
AIKIDO RANK TESTINGt
Hilo Seishikan Aikido will be holding its annual Fall Rank Testing in November. The dates of the testing have not been set yet due to the November General Elections coming up this year. The dates will be announced as soon as they are set by the instructors. At any rate, the testing is coming up and we should all be preparing ourselves for the testing.
The instructors will be going over the basic arts and concepts of Seishikan Aikido to help prepare each one of you who will be testing in November. The arts themselves are important in regards to what they indicate about the individual’s development in training with Hilo Seishikan Aikido. While the time and number of classes one has practiced are important, the performances of the various arts required in the testing are indications of other important considerations in ranking. One thing that a student’s performance shows is the level of understanding of the basic concepts of aikido. Does he understand the goals of our aikido? Does he have a concept of the correct performance of the arts? Does he show awareness of possible dangers, signs of relaxation, of power, and self-control? Performance of arts go a long way in showing discipline, efforts in learning and training, and knowledge and acceptance of basic teachings and procedures.
Also playing a part in determining an individual’s rank is his/her overall development and improvement. The individual’s personal development in terms of traits and habits are considered. Things stressed in our classes and lessons are looked at. Does he/she pay attention and make strong efforts to try what is taught in order to learn? Is the person aware of and appreciative of others in the class? Is the individual learning and acquiring traits that we are stressing ? Promptness - Is he/she on time in coming to class and turning things in? Compassion - Is he/she aware of and concerned for others in class? Politeness - Is he/she bowing and thanking the sensei and fellow class members? Honesty and Truthfulness - Is he/she honest and truthful with him or her self and others? Cooperative - Is he/she abiding by club rules? Helping by sweeping the mat and participating in club activities?
These are all important aspects of one’s total personal development. We feel that one needs to be aware of and appreciative of all of these things in order to be totally able to defend and promote oneself in all situations. These developments can go a long way toward helping one in his/her every day life. Please keep this in mind and it will show in your overall development.
For many of us, the month of September always represented the month in which the new school year started, and our summer vacation ended. Yes, in the years past, summer vacation started in June and ended at the ending of August. So the month of September always brought to mind the starting of the new school year. In recent years things have changed. More than a few schools have adopted modified schedules, and now some of them start up their new school years at the ending of July or beginning of August. At any rate, the summer vacation has ended, and the new school year has begun with the coming of September.
This year, September also brings the Primary Election for our election year, 2002. The Primary Election Day is Saturday, September 21. We have been asked to cancel our classes on the Primary Election Day, the day before (Friday the 22nd) and the Monday following (the 23rd). All of this is to accommodate the election, its preparation, and cleaning up and putting things away. So, please note and mark the dates of class cancelations. The following Friday and Saturday, another organization has reserved the Waiakea Recreation Center for its use and we have also been asked to cancel our classes on those days - Youth and Open Classes on Friday, September 27, and the morning Open Class on Saturday, the 28th.
September also marks the classes taught by Takayama-sensei of Chiba, Japan. He will be instructing the Open and Advanced Classes on Monday, September 16. He will probably also be instructing our Youth Class on Wednesday, September 18. Be sure to mark those days on your calendars.
One last thought about the month of September - If you have any friends, siblings, parents, uncles, aunts, grandparents or whatever who are interested in practicing aikido, this is a really good time to get started. Encourage them to do so. We like to think of our aikido as being great for the whole family. We have several families all involved in practicing aikido with our club. This is great. Friends practicing together is another great thing. It gives you something to share and do together.
“Aiki is the expression of Truth itself. It is the way of calling people together and reconciling them with love. Whenever they angrily attack, smilingly reconcile them. That is the true way of Aiki.”
HILO SEISHIKAN AIKIDO
Questions, comments, etc.