If an asteroid killing the dinosaurs was an apocalypse, are we living in a post-apocalyptic world right now?
I was told to focus. Let out all your frustrations as you breathe.
I was told to concentrate. The opponent was before me, threatening my family.
I was told to visualize. The kill-zone was designated into 9 sections of the human body.
I was told to strike. Imaging the blade passing through the body and onward into infinity.
I was told to parry. The enemy may counter attack if still conscious.
I was told to clean. The blood left on a blade will oxidize your steel.
I was told the arts of Japanese sword drawing would be violent, brutal, and turn me into a psychopath. You couldn’t any more wrong.
I remember the feel of the saya, tightened and knotted to my sash.
I remember the feel of a taught tsuka in my hand as I was about to draw the blade.
I remember the sound of the blade as it left my sheath. The sound of air split in two.
I remember the fatigue of my muscles, the weight of the sword, unforgiving.
I remember the principles, the tactics, the lessons.
I remember the arts of Japanese sword drawing as stabilizing, empowering, harmonizing. It taught me to find my center, clear my mind, and utilize my body/mind as a tool.
"Seek the stillness of your mind and capture it. The taming of ones self is far more powerful than the defeat of a thousand enemies".