An excerpt from BUDO (O'Sensei Aikido Manual) - Iwama Ryu Aikido

An excerpt from: 1938 Training Manual, "Budo"

Manual from the Founder of Aikido, M. Ueshiba.
Translated by Mark L. Larson

The following is a translation of the 6 writings excerpted from the 1938 Training Manual, Budo, by the Founder of Aikido, Morihei Ueshiba. As the second of only two published works of the Founder, I was introduced to this manual by Morihiro Saito Sensei back in 1993. Since this time, I have traveled with Master Saito on numerous occasions throughout Japan, as well as abroad, as his personal attendant (otomo) and translator. On every occasion he has brought a copy of the original Budo along with him. Whether it be at a seminar or during an everyday practice in the Iwama Dojo, Saito Sensei often refers to these 6 writings.

My goal of this project was to bring the Founder's words to those who are unable to understand the difficult Japanese writings. No attempt has been made to edit the original passages. Some words have been added and some left in Japanese ONLY to make the English more understandable keeping as accurate of a translation as possible. Keep in mind that anytime something has been translated from its original language content, words and meanings can be lost, so by all means I welcome other interpretations.

I would like to personally thank Morihiro Saito Sensei for his teachings and clarifications of these writings, my wife Yuko for reading and helping with the difficult Japanese text, and Mr. Stanley Pranin for his advice with the final translation.

Please feel free to use this for your home page or dojo. If even one person can benefit from this project, it was worth the time and effort put into it.

Best wishes with all your trainings,

Mark L. Larson Iwama, Japan March 19, 2001

On Aikido Training,

1. Aikido can determine life or death with a single blow; therefore, when training, observe the directions of the instructor and do not engage in contests of strength.

2. Aikido is a Way that makes one person the equivalent of thousands; therefore, when training, always be mindful not only of the space in front of you, but also what is happening in all directions.

3. Training should always be an enjoyable experience.

4. An instructor can only impart a portion of the teachings. To be able to use a technique, you must learn it through diligent and ceaseless training. Only then will you begin to remember with your body. It is pointless to desire to learn many techniques. To master a technique, you must make it your own.

5. Daily training begins with Tai no Henko. Gradually increase the intensity of your training. Make sure not to overexert your body. Even older persons should not injure themselves. Continue to train enjoyably and strive to realize the purpose of training.

6. Aikido is training of the mind and body. Its purpose is to produce sincere people. Since all techniques are entirely secret, you should not reveal them indiscriminately to the public. The improper use of any technique by ill-mannered persons is to be avoided.

An excerpt from the 1938 Training Manual, "Budo", by the Founder of Aikido, Morihei Ueshiba. Translated by Mark L. Larson.