Today some of you may hear peace on earth sung by Bing Crosby and David Bowie. Others may hear Luke 2:14 read to them at their church. Or maybe you received a holiday card wishing you peace on earth.
The definition of peace is:
We all want peace but it seems we’re lacking on how to get there. The ninja believed the path to peace started with the third definition. Peace between people and nations is only possible when we find peace in each of our minds.
They practiced something called Goshinbo which is a way of using awareness of your thoughts, words and actions to achieve peace of mind and ultimately happiness. We continue to teach and practice these techniques combined with modern neuroscience to make them more accessible. If you would like to find out more about achieving peace of mind click the link below.
This is a holiday and celebratory time of the year for almost everyone. This year for many of us it is very different. We are not getting together with as many family and friends as usual, or not getting together with anyone. For me Christmas day usually starts with sticky buns and family. This year is different. It will be zoom calls, favorite movies and popcorn yum! And yes a walk with Ms. Moxie, my dog.
However many are still traveling and getting together with family and friends. The important thing is to stay connected and informed about the travel conditions and ways to keep yourself and loved ones safe. To do what is best, safe and comfortable for you and those you gather with.
In other words as we say here at Shinobi Science what is appropriate for the moment to keep you safe and get you home to those you love and who love you.
If you would like to train and learn more about how to be safe during your journeys of any type, please click the link below.
Happy Holidays to all,...
I needed to get my snow tires put on my car and the only time the garage had for me was Wednesday the day before the storm and only if I dropped off the car at 7am so they could work it in at some point that day. The garage is about a mile down the road from the dojo so I scheduled it. Wednesday comes and it is 18 degrees outside and the wind is blowing. At seven in the morning I hand them my keys and start walking toward the dojo.
The dojo is on route 125 in Plaistow. Picture a divided stripmall street. So I’m walking along the side trying to keep warm as the “feels like 5 degrees” winds are blowing and cars are zipping past me. But I make it to the dojo, invigorated and all proud of myself.
At some point I decided to check the mail. Now for this part you have to go back to yesterday’s post to get the back story but to speed this story up I needed to call the IRS. First three calls the answering machine tells me they’re so busy I can’t even hold,...
On December 15th I got a letter from the IRS, never a good thing. I opened it up and it tells me they are charging me a late fee because my return was late, which I was sure it wasn’t. The date of this letter is November 9th and they say I have to November 30th to pay them $410 dollars.
Please remember I’m reading this in the day’s mail on December 15th.
I not only got a letter in the mailbox from the IRS but there is also a card from the post office that says I have another certified letter from the IRS that I have to sign for. Oh and by the way there is no postage mark on the letter from the IRS, remember this I’ll get back to it.
So I jump in my car drive down to the Plaistow post office and show them the notice for the certified mail. The nice man comes back and tells me I have two. I sign, start to walk out and realize he has given me certified mail for someone else in our building. I give him back one and take mine out to the car.
Rip this one open and...
Today is the winter solstice so the days will start lengthening. That said there is still a lot of winter to weather. I walk every day and the thing about this time of year that I notice the most is how quiet nature is. Quiet. Winter quiet. Everything that is not dormant is listening, is quietly paying attention to the environment. So focussed to surviving until spring when birth occurs.
As spring approaches nature starts to speak up until it is yelling. The snow and ice melt, streams start flowing. Birds migrate back. Animals that hibernate wake up and start moving again. Animals change their patterns and where they eat and roam.There’s new growth on trees and bushes. Dens and nests are created. There are new babies to nurture and raise. The foundations of future generations are laid.
The quiet I feel on my winter walks is the same I feel when training or when I have had to use our art. When I follow the Shinobi formula my body becomes calm and listens to the environment...
Today’s post is purely a scientific public service announcement.
The great conjunction of Jupiter and Saturn will occur on December 21, 2020. This year's great conjunction is the closest since 1623 and the closest observable since 1226.
If you would like to view the event you can find instructions here courtesy of NASA.
Enjoy the show and we look forward to training with you.
T and D
We just finished training in the parking lot outside the dojo. It’s a bright and sunny 20 degree day. We were working on more boxing strikes from Jack Dempsey’s book in Ninja Lab today.
While we were training a young man pulled into the parking lot to turn around and from his car far across the lot yelled to us, “you bunch of queers.” Of course our group being the New Englanders they are all starting inviting the young man to join us. He deferred the invitations as he drove away by giving us the finger.
The reason I wanted to thank the ignorant coward is first we kept laughing for the next hour as we trained quoting our young friend over and over. Second and most importantly is a reminder of ignorance being all around us and how it can turn to violence. This one was a coward but there are others out there who let ignorance determine their actions. This is why we train.
So while it saddens us that so much ignorance and anger is out there to deal with, being...
After teaching last night when I got home I sat down to relax a little and Die Hard was on again. Well it is considered a Christmas movie by some. I was trying to figure out the name of one of the actors in it so I hit the info button. When I did I noticed that the Die Hard was released in July of 1988, a month after I started training in ninpo taijutsu.
I started training so long ago Bruce Willis had hair…
Where did the time go?
Thirty-two years and counting. I’ve been asked by friends why I still train and is there anything left for me to learn? The answer to the second question is the answer to the first question. There is always more to learn. Every class we use science to experiment with the principles of ninpo taijutsu and each time we find something new.
So unlike what Hans said, "And when Alexander saw the breadth of his domain, he wept, for there were no more worlds to conquer." There is always more with Shinobi Science to explore and conquer.
If you would like...
“This adventure is made possible by generations of searchers strictly adhering to a simple set of rules. Test ideas by experiment and observation. Build on those ideas that pass the test. Reject the ones that fail. Follow the evidence wherever it leads and question everything.
Accept these terms and the Cosmos is yours.”
Neil deGrasse Tyson from ‘Standing Up In The Milkyway’ Episode 1 Cosmos
Our ninja adventure is made possible by generations of martial arts searchers strictly adhering to the same simple set of rules. The difference being that our martial ancestors put their lives on the line with every experiment. The ideas that passed the test were cleansed by the sword. The ones that failed died on the battlefield.
Our debt to these searchers is paid by continuing to follow the evidence wherever it leads and questioning everything. Shinobi Science is not a new way of doing our martial art. It is not our opinion on how the art should be done. It is our...
Last night in my Togakure Ryu class my teacher was talking about a group of students who had started a discussion about the proper way to do Hicho no kamae. One cited teacher X does it this way, teacher Y this way but then looking at a senior Japanese teacher he does it completely different. Mark's response to them was that’s so cool.
Yes that is what is so cool about this art. I have trained in other arts. Those arts taught me and everyone else to do the exact identical thing for every kata and situation. Those arts didn’t take into consideration that my hands were smaller and that to execute the exact moves to create a wrist lock didn’t work for me or were very difficult. It had to be done that exact way. It was all about what I should be doing, not taking into account the relationship between the two people. Not taking into account the other side of the equation, my opponent.
This art is the exact opposite. What happens to your opponent stays the same no matter...