Shoshin: A word from Zen Buddhism meaning “Beginner’s Mind”. It refers to having an attitude of openness, eagerness and lack of preconceptions when studying a subject, even when studying at an advanced level, just as a beginner would. I consider it to be the practice of seeing life with wonder, curiosity and humility. May we each remain open, willing and eager to learn, as a beginner. May our minds be open and Ready; for anything.
I am grateful to share my journey through the traditional Japanese practice of Karate-do. It is a journey I have been on since I first discovered this life-changing art form when I was 18 years old. My first, dear Sensei, has since passed on and I, along with my two boys, have been divinely led to our current Sensei. My sons innately connect with karate, in the same way I first did, so many years ago. I am so honored to share this experience with both of them. Each practice, we show up with an open mind, we work hard, we learn, we discover, grow and fight; from the deepest spirit within. This is a connection and understanding which isn’t easy to explain. It is something that is deeply felt, and these feelings, express and tell our story, through our practice. It is my intention to share, through words, many of the gifts and discoveries along the way. It is also a way for me to express my gratitude for the many blessings this practice bestows upon my boys and on me, daily. May you each remain open and maintain the mind of a beginner, in all you do. It is in that mindset, openness, and willingness, that, I believe, we truly discover the most.
Dear Sensei and fellow Karateka,
Yesterday, we went to the park, where many of us met for the very first time, one year ago. Although the park was filled with so many people, very different from the times we spent there training together, it felt as though it was just us. All of this love we have all grown to share and this family, we have all built together, joined in this sacred space, with so much gratitude and enthusiasm.
It was a very special day.
In a world at a time when fear was the most present emotion for most and “distancing” became the new and accepted normal, this group showed up, worked hard, opened their hearts, learned, thrived, shared, and grew together.
We have been LIVING at a time, when sadly, not only have people lost their lives or loved ones but have possibly allowed themselves to lose hope, as they believed and trusted the voices telling them to do so.
We held on and pushed through.
There are not enough words to express my gratitude. Seeing you show up to each class, no matter the ailments, no matter the excuses we each could make. Witnessing each of your dedicated, steadfast spirits in the park, parking lots, and our sacred dojo each day, gives me life.
Keep showing up and keep pushing through.
Here’s to another year filled with so many blessings and New Beginnings.
With Love and Gratitude,