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August 14, 2006

"Ki Breathing" by Koichi Tohei Sensei (28)

This article is translation of Koichi Tohei sensei's book, "Ki breathing (Ki no Kokyuho)". We will upload new article every Monday.

Shinichi Tohei


Chapter 5 Keep your health though a natural life

Wake up with plus mind in the morning

Just as a year has only one New Year's day, a day has only one moment when you wake up in the morning.
If you awaken with an unpleasant feeling, without your being conscious of it, that feeling will stick with you and call forth minus Ki. It tends to make the entire day unpleasant. You will think to yourself, “I woke up this morning feeling heavy, and nothing has gone well all day.
Ki development is a training to develop a constant outpouring of plus Ki. You must call forth plus Ki when you get up in the morning. You should get into the habit of waking quickly, kicking back the covers, and jumping up the minute you awaken.
Some people awaken and lie around refusing to get up. This is a habit that will cause you to become weak-willed.
First of all, at times like that, nothing distinct enters your mind. Your consciousness is vague and you are in a state of subservience to your instincts.
Sleep is the time when the Ki of the Universe flows into your body, therefore, you should sleep soundly. But lying in bed after you have once awakened will not rest your body. You must jump straight out of the bed resolutely, then you can call forth the plus Ki that gets your day off to a positive start.
Doing this alone can do a great deal to strengthen your conscious power.
Young people who intend to develop themselves, should be particularly careful to cultivate this habit.

When I was young, I was frail both in mind and in body.
Because I slept poorly at night, I was drowsy and tired in the morning and found it extremely difficult to get up.
Whatever I started, my perseverance would give out, and I would give up halfway. I thought it was all the fault of my physical weakness.
At sixteen, I got pleurisy and I spent a year in treatment but the illness got steadily worse. Now, when I think back on it, I realize that I gave in to the disease and with completely minus Ki retarded my own recovery.
I spent all my time worrying that maybe even if the sickness passed I would not recover completely. This caused me to not get any stronger.
In that one year of treatment, I had an opportunity to reflect on myself and see that I could not continue the way I had been going. I read a number of self-improvement books that that came my way. They made me realize that I had to do something to temper my own body. This was of tremendous benefit.
While I was reading one of the these books, I came to the full realization that my own will power was weak and that I had to discipline and strengthen it. “All right,” I said, “Let's work on the will power”. I resolved to work on it.
This at least is something that I could do. The doctor told me that I still could not exercise, so after a lot of thought, I decided on taking cold baths everyday.
It was summer then, and the cold water was pleasant. Every morning I would leap up as soon as I awakened, run to the bathroom, and dash twenty or thirty buckets of cold water over my head and body. Then I would dry off and rub my body thoroughly with a dry towel. After a while, I would come conscious in the morning with the immediate idea of cold water. My head would clear up immediately.
I would say to myself, “Lolling around in this warm bed will do you no good.” My bad habits completely changed, and I slept like a log at night.
Gradually, of course, autumn came. The temperatures dropped, the water got colder, but I never even thought of stopping my training. With no sign of suffering, I continued my cold baths all through the cold weather, and my body grew so much stronger that I could continue with my training.
Later, I trained and practiced Zen, misogi breathing and meditation while seated under a waterfall. I trained them and others diligently until I had mastered them.
The cold baths were the first opportunity. My Ki became positive, and plus called forth more plus. I was blessed with fine teachers, and I reached the level where I could explain plus Ki to other people all over the world.
The important thing for young people who plan to start now developing for the future is to awaken in the morning, face the day with a positive attitude that, “I'm going to do my best.”
The first step at departure leads to a thousand miles of progress.
Put this discipline into practice, starting right now.

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