as mentioned in my latest post I wanted to write about an interesting phenomenon that seems to affect how we experience and more important how we perform iaido.
Now, up front I would like to make some sort of disclaimer by saying that this might not be recognized by everyone. So keep in mind that this is from a personal perspective 🙂
As we progress in our training we for sure will indulge ourselves in some leisure time to watch videos, movies and YouTube channels about people performing iaido to see how other people translate that what we are trying to make our own.
I remember watching a video on YouTube where Ide Tomota Sensei was performing an embu.
I was rather thrilled by his performance and immediately started to try to copy his way of performing as to feel and understand this different way. For me it is a great way to experiment and to experience different ways of performing and to see where certain improvements can be made.
But I took the liberty to ask Aad van der Wijngaart Sensei what he thought of this embu by Edi Tomota Sensei and to my surprise he told me that it wasn’t as great as I thought it was.
Next to the fact that I started to look very different at this video from that moment (or any other iaido video for that matter) I also was urged to ask myself why he thought that this performance wasn’t as great as I thought it was?
And the thing that came to my mind was that how we look at others performing iaido on video or even during competition is influencing our own performance.
And I don’t mean that you, because you like this particular person’s iai or that particular video on YouTube. No, I mean that it is an actual vicious circle that keeps itself in balance.
To some point you are aware of your own performance and your progress in iai. whenever you look at someone else’s performance you will automatically, consciously and unconsciously look for all the aspects of that particular performance that you can identify with and make your own, so to speak. And on the other hand, while your iai, your performance is slightly (or not slightly but major) influenced by what you saw, you will start looking at other people’s performances just a little more different then before. Although you can’t be aware of that because you didn’t know that you would be in this state of growth before the moment that it actual is happening….
Isn’t that a glorious and wonderful thing? And did you know that this doesn’t only happen in your solitude moments of practicing iaido but with everything you undertake in your life!
It is one of the beautiful ways of how life works for us.
(if you’re interested in more metaphysical articles and inspiration I would like to invite you to visit my other blog: inspire – encouraged )