I met this man named Kenji Ushiro. He showed me another dimension. I want to walk his path but I am afraid. I am afraid that I will walk it wrong, that I won't reach where he has reached. I wonder - agonize, really - about how to get there. When I asked him, he responded with one word...
What Westerners saw, American servicemen saw, of the Okinawan "forms" of Karate, was just one dimension. Ushiro-Sensei says there is another. Another dimension to kata that the Western tradition of Karate knows next to nothing about. They know nothing about it and they don't believe in it. We see things in the West with our eyes and our minds.
Ushiro-Sensei says that you must see kata with your heart. Only then can you touch this hidden dimension.
I agonize because it is difficult for me to put faith in things that I can't see and don't understand. This has been my biggest problem in my Karate: putting faith in the unknown. In the expertise of people that can't prove their expertise. Faith, in my opinion, is something that is earned before it should be invested totally. When someone asks that you put faith in them, they should prove first that that faith is deserved.
Kata does not do this. Kata does not prove that it should be the Way. But Kenji Ushiro does. His skill is...Words diminish it. I would commit myself to his Way. But it is difficult. It would be less difficult if I could prove to myself that I am making progress. Then my faith would periodically be renewed. But how can I prove this to myself?
When I think that I will commit myself to this path for all my life, the thought that such commitment could be met with failure is paralyzing. I feel like I can't breath. I have to remind myself that I am not on the path only to reach the mountain's peak. I must be satisfied daily that I am climbing ever higher. This will bring me peace of mind. That thought will comfort me even if I do not meet Ushiro-Sensei at the summit.