After training many years in martial arts a certain sense of belonging and connection has grown in me with the art, its practitioners and its source, the Japanese hombu dojo. So it was with a heavy heart that I looked at the last two weeks when, having not been able to get a visa, I was forced to stay back home while the rest of my buyu left for Japan.
I went through many phases in my perception of things. At first there was a bit of disappointment, closer to the date of travel there was a sense of disconnection from the whole group. There was energy all around and I was drained, not part of it, left behind in the journey. All the built up expectations from the trip and the times I was looking forward to training in Japan were coming to a standstill.
After the group left, there was a sense of stillness for a while. I actually focused on the work that needed to be done and things that needed to be closed, knowing that some other time would be mine in Japan. Then I started seeing the pictures and conversations of the experiences of my group in Japan. I found myself desperately trying to live the trip through their communications. At the same time, I did not want to come across as being sad to the people in the group and so refrained from posting anything unless it was really necessary.
It eventually broke something and disappointment and calmness all disappeared into despair. Every word they wrote and every picture they put up was a reminder of what I was missing, of what I had screwed up on. I started thinking about what went wrong. Anger and rage overcame me with no target or source. I was just angry. Then It all turned back at me and I thought “This is my fault. I missed something. I did not plan properly. I lost my kamae”. Things were starting to fall apart in my head. Out of sheer sadness that was coming over me, I left the chat group where Japan conversations were happening.
One person noticed and called immediately. What he said made sense but not a difference at that time. I was too far gone to listen to reason. But after the call, things subsided. I was thinking clearly a little bit. I made up my mind to go on with other things that I could do here. Also not getting any more updates from Japan crowd on a minute-by-minute basis helped.
I caught up with some other buyu who were here and we went to a movie. I don’t know exactly when but sometime that evening, things cleared up in my head. I stopped thinking about what was happening in Japan as part of my world. It was something that was happening in a different universe where my buyu were. I was looking at it from the outside. It had nothing to make me sad about. It was THEIR training.
That’s when It became clear to me that the key was not in Japan, it was in training, be it Japan or anywhere else in the world. I had to continue training no matter what. Japan was but a point in the Journey. I would still miss it but It would not affect me beyond that.
I remembered Soke saying in his unarmed fighting techniques book, I think it was in the kukishin school section that he was teaching through radio waves (denpa) and not through physical senses. It had to be picked up by feeling the waves. As he was creating these waves through training in Japan, to pick it up anywhere, the right device would also be training. We just have to tune into the right channels to see things come to life.
As such Soke TV has many different channels and some of the popular international ones telecast regularly in India (When they visit us :):):) ).