I was in Aikido class, this was back about 1975, and the Sensei, a 4th degree black belt who had studied under Morihei Uyeshiba made an interesting remark.
The Perfect art cannot be felt.
Huh? What? Huh? What the heck does that mean? And I was caught. I would spend decades tearing apart this little gem.
On the surface, it sounds like mystical philosophy, right?
But you can translate it into physics.
The Perfect Art cannot be felt
The perfect art can’t be heard.
Sound is feeling vibrations, so if you hear it, you felt it, right?
So when you do your karate form, or your kung fu pattern, or even a simple technique, are your feet making noise?
If they are, your art isn’t perfect.
Noise is vibrations, is energy, is thought itself, that isn’t going into the technique.
When you punch, the energy should go from the tan tien through the frame and out the fist. If there is noise from the foot, then you didn’t get all the energy you could; energy went down to the feet, instead of out to the fist.
There are exceptions to this. There is stomping the ground at the time of technique so as to increase power. There is the kai (spirit shout) itself.
But even the exceptions have a hand in this concept.
For instance, can you shout purely, without wasting energy? Not putting energy into your throat, not putting energy into anyplace except your shout?
At any rate, the fact of the perfect art can’t be felt/heard, or whatever, can be distilled into a rather amazing philosophy.
If you don’t waste energy you cultivate awareness.
And awareness is what it is all about.
You can study the martial arts until you can beat everybody, and then you die, and you have no more art, no more awareness.
Or you can cultivate your awareness, and when you die you will still be aware.
So what is it going to be? A loud art that frightens people, and ends when you die?
Or a soft, silent art that cultivates awareness, and which you can take into the next lifetime.
Oddly, there is one more thing I should tell you.
Awareness will, eventually, enable you to beat those who are unaware. Doesn’t matter if they have muscles, if they have not awareness, even if they are tournament champions, octagon fighters, whatever, they will eventually fall to your fists…your wit…your wisdom.
Okay, if you want to examine the body in detail, and find out the seven secrets that make up a perfect art, simply go here…