photo above by Anthony Rich, taken on Sensei's birthday (December 29th).
Thought you all might appreciate reading Sensei's New Year's Day address given at Ryuko Kyudojo in Boulder in 2007--as pertinent as ever!
HATSUYUME - The Dream of the New Year
At this time, of course, everyone hopes that the year ahead will be better than the last
year. But, this year, my hope is that we progress naturally. Power, strong power, comes from the
plan we make for the New Year. This year we can elevate our aspiration one step from the
previous year. We can have a high quality dream, not just for ourselves as individuals, but for
We have many dreams at the New Year. You will have many, many good dreams, I hope.
But the starting point for realizing our dreams is the cleaning of your inside ki. This is where the
New Year begins. Everyone understands having aspiration on the morning of New Year’s Day,
hatsuyume, the first dream of the New Year, and trying to pull a good dream. Many, many good
dreams arise, but these dreams are also too good! Too much hope, in this way, is not helpful. My
wish is that you will realize your dream in a more natural way and not just try to pull a dream
based on hope for yourself.
Everyone’s various desires for the year: to make good friends, to have a beautiful house,
a good car, money—many, many hope, hope, hope. Too much hope! This is all a rental from
Shakyamuni. Now, everything you have, your money, your car, your house, your friends, you
seem to have a lot, but the truth is, it’s zero. You have nothing. It’s all just help from
Kyudo is not a sport. It is Zen style meditation, standing meditation. Dojo, dojo, kyudojo.
What is that? The kyudojo is a Buddhist meditation hall. Kyudo is standing meditation.
Meditation, everyone understands, sitting, zazen, is first. Second, is standing meditation.
Standing meditation is kyudo. When you see kyudo, you look at the target and think, “shooting,
shooting”. But shooting the target is not the essential purpose of kyudo.
Today, outside, is an exceptionally blue sky. May everyone have blue sky on the inside,
as well, during this year 2007. From this new feeling we take one step, this year walking. Many
good wishes for the New Year to you all. Thank you very much. Please keep your bodies strong
and healthy, so that from the good help you are given, you are able to offer back!