Dropping the Ego

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					      Dropping the Ego

   The meaning of “one shot, one life“
in Kyûdô and in relation to Morita therapy
Dropping the Ego

 Morita Therapy and Kyûdô –
  what have they to do with Zen?
                    Dropping the Ego

Kyûdô - a meditative discipline

 Morita Therapy
 aspects of experience of bedrest in isolation
  (zettai gajoku; zettai ansei)
 comparison of both with some characteristics of Zen
Dropping the Ego: Kyûdô
   “one shot, one life”
 Kyûdô – as a martial art.
    Kyûdô – as a sport
  Kyûdô – as meditation
       Dropping the Ego: Kyûdô “one shot, one life”
                   View on history

 Shooting with bow and arrow originally has been a
  martial technique. The arrow was sent out to kill the
  enemy. In this context „one arrow, one life“ must be
  understood literally.
 After the upcoming of firearms the bow became
  worthless as a martial weapon. For some times the
  japanese bow became a sort of toy for games at the
  feudal courts
 In the nineteenth and twentieth century Yumi and Ya
  were used as sports instruments, but also for
      Dropping the Ego: Kyûdô “one shot, one life”
                  View on history

 After WW II the japanese art of shooting with bow
  and arrow became forbidden as the authorities
  suspected all Bûdô as a hatchery of militarism. But
  soon Kyûdô became allowed again in a simplified
  and unified form as a sports discipline of the
  Alljapanese Kyûdô Federation.
 Kyûdô masters who claimed kyûdô to be a
  meditative discipline now were considered as
          Dropping the Ego: Kyûdô “one shot, one life”
                       View on history

 Yamada Shoji, an active kyûdôka, wrote an article (and
  later expanded it to a book) with the message, that
  Herrigel had misunderstood his kyûdômaster Awa sensei
  by wishful thinking, Kyûdô would be a Zen discipline
  (Yamada S, 2001, Japanese Journal of Religious Studies 28/1–2)
 Yamada does not consider that shooting with bow and
  arrow had been a meditative discipline already in
  prebuddhistic India. Meditative archery is mentioned in
  the Dhanur-Veda (pali=„knowledge of the bow“) since
  more than 9 centuries ago.
         Dropping the Ego: Kyûdô “one shot, one life”
                     View on history

 Meditative archery is neither a misunderstanding nor an
  invention of Herrigel or of the kyûdô masters Awa,
  Anzawa, Urakami, Onuma and others.
 Zen-monks like Yamada Momon, Suhara Koun, Umeji
  Kenran, Jyoji Taikan and others practice and teach
  Kyûdô als a meditation
Awa sensei, teacher of Herrigel and Duerckheim
Urakami sensei   Anzawa sensei
Onuma sensei   Umeji sensei
                   Dropping the Ego: Kyûdô

German guests of Japan like
       Erwin Baelz
    studied Kyûdô as a
       meditative art
 (in Tôkyô 1880 – 1904)
              Dropping the Ego: Kyûdô

The philosophers Eugen Herrigel
(1924 – 1929)

and Karlfried Graf Dürckheim

studied Kyûdô
as a meditative discipline
(Awa sensei)
              Dropping the Ego: Kyûdô – one shot, one life

                The term „one shot, one life“
          nowadays is understood in a metaphoric way:

Each period of shooting, each arrowflight, represents the life cycle, the
         seasons of a human life in crescendo and decrescendo
         Dropping the Ego: Kyûdô       “one shot, one life”

 In the meditative practice of kyûdô the archer goes through a
  sequence of „kata“ (form).
 In most of the Kyûdô schools there are 8 of these kata, therefore
  they are called „hassetsu“
 In the kyûdô-school „Heki ryu, bishu chikurin ha“ of Shibata
  Kanjuro the central one of these kata remains unnamed.
  Therefore the total of them are called „shichi-dô “ („seven steps“)
  But the word is not the matter, the name is not the process.
 Now I will introduce you to these seven steps which are not
  performed separatedly but rather in a kind of smooth and flowing
       Dropping the Ego: Kyûdô   “one shot, one life”

 Each practice session is opened („hajimemasu!“)
  and closed („owarimasu!“) by a short Zazen
                                       Dropping the Ego: Kyûdô – Yô-i

 The archer at the shooting line starts with the
  kata of Yô-i (being prepared):
 „forget ambition, pride, future and past:
  these are illusions and clinging to them
  is a defilement“
 to gain a ‚pure mind/heart„ the archer
  imagines to be empty like a vessel to
  receive what may be put into it;
 to be open for that which happens
Dropping the Ego: Kyûdô

      Yumi daoshi
       (=presenting the bow)
 Dropping the Ego: Kyûdô

 Ashibumi:
 Setting the feet onto a line
 leading from the middle of the
 target to the feet of the archer
Dropping the Ego: Kyûdô

   Dôzukuri:

  ‚Screwing„ the feet into the
  ground to achieve
  a secure stand and firm posture
  To achieve a goal it is essential
  to start from a welldefined
  standpoint and to have a clear
Dropping the Ego: Kyûdô

  Yu(mi) ga mae:

 The bow is held in front of
 the archer to insert the arrow
 into the bowstring
Dropping the Ego: Kyûdô

       Yumi ga mae: Anchoring the shooting
        glove into the bowstring
                     Dropping the Ego: Kyûdô

• Monomi: Looking onto the target
„like a tiger looking at the prey“
                 Dropping the Ego: Kyûdô

 Uchiokoshi – „to set up the house“:
  The bow is raised slowly „like mist is slowly rising from a
                    Dropping the Ego: Kyûdô

 (=push and pull)

this process may open a
glimpse into another
                        Dropping the Ego: Kyûdô

• ‚Hikitori„ … until full draw ‚kai„

  „dividing / opening the bow“
  is a very meditative process
  which requires full attention
  and awareness for the
  moment being
               Dropping the Ego: Kyûdô

 Full draw: Kai                 Hanare = release
                       Dropping the Ego: Kyûdô

 Zanshin = „Lost heart“           -
  the remaining form
         Dropping the Ego: Kyûdô
  shichidô at 28 m distance: “hitote”

            Dropping the Ego: Kyûdô
          shichidô at 28 m distance
Yugamae                               with two arrows
              Dropping the Ego: Kyûdô
           shichidô at 28 m distance
Ashibumi                                Dôzukuri
       Dropping the Ego: Kyûdô
greeting the target and:
              “cut ego!”
                   Dropping the Ego: Kyûdô

• A very meaningful moment: while greeting the target the
  archers are making the gesture of seppuku:
   “If the arrow misses the target I shall kill myself!”
  Today‟s meaning is: “cut ego!”
Dropping the Ego: greeting the target and “CUT EGO!”
Which of the ladies is more advanced in her practice?
                   Dropping the Ego: Kyûdô
                  shichidô at 28 m distance

      monomi                    uchiokoshi and hikitori push and pull
before raising the bow                 towards... ... Kai...
                     Dropping the Ego: Kyûdô
shichidô at 28 m distance: kai (balance) and hanare (release)
                Dropping the Ego: Kyûdô

shichidô at 28 m distance                 zanshin
Dropping the Ego – “Kyûdô in the very cold season”

  Yô-i                               Yumidaoshi
            Dropping the Ego:
    “Kyûdô in the very cold season”:

Yugamae                         Uchiokoshi
                  Dropping the Ego: Kyûdô

    Uchiokoshi                                    KAI
begin of push and pull            balance of pushing and pulling forces
                 Dropping the Ego:   Kyûdô

          KAI                            hikitori, almost KAI
from the teacher‟s view         pushing and pulling towards balance
   Dropping the Ego:
     “Kyûdô  is
polishing your mind”
      Shibata XX.

    moment of KAI
    Dropping the Ego: Kyûdô

•   „Kyû dô - a Dô - not a sport
•   Kyû dô is meditation in standing position: Ritsu Zen.
•   The purpose is not: to hit the target,
•   the purpose is: to polish your mind
•   You aim at the mato, but you hit your own heart“
    (Shibata XX.)
    “Kyûdô is
dropping the Ego”
   Shibata XXI.

  moment of KAI
                            Dropping the Ego
          Suhara Kôn Rôshi, Enma Dôjô (Engaku-ji, Kamakura)

   „Do not cling to my words
because words will not teach you.

  But if we strive hard in practice
I may help you to experience what
      your yumi asks from you“
       Dropping the Ego in Kyûdô and in Zen: Comparison of teaching

• Zen principles traditionally attributed to Bodhidharma:
  1)  kyoge betsuden (delivery beyond the scriptures)
  2)  furyu monji (no trust in letters/scriptures)
  3)  jikishi ninshin (straightly allude to man„s spirit)
  4)  kensho (clear sight into the own nature and discover
      buddha nature inside your self)
• All of these are to be found in the teaching of Morita and
  of the Kyûdô masters as well
                                           Dropping the Ego
Suhara Kôn Rôshi:
  “Kyûdô may easily be learnt,
  but its higher dimensions
  are hard to be achieved”

                                 Farewell picture at Enma Dôjô,
Shibata Kanjuro XX. onyumishi teaching
“you cannot learn Kyûdô from books
  - the taste of kyûdô only may be
     experienced by practice” –
   “kyûdô is your physical koan –
 you will experience the solution by
            practice only”
   “...on the path there are seven
          The path – Dô – and the seven defilements
• 悲しむ (Kanashimu) be sad
• 驚く (Odoroku be surprised
• 喜ぶ (Yorokobu) be glad, happy
• 患い (Urei)     be sorrowful
• 恐れる (Osoreru)       being timid, afraid
• 思う (Omou)          pondering, cogitate
• 怒る (Okoru)          be angry, annoyed
Reminding at the ruminating thoughts in shinkeishitsu
  (neurasthenia/ hypochondic nervousness)
The adherence to these emotions and thoughts binds
  much of vital energy (psa: „libido“).
Dropping the Ego: ZEN           Harada Dô-ichi Rôshi:

 • „Zazen is not ‚meditation„
   Zazen is ZAZEN!
   it is what it is:
   Shikantaza.“ (just sit)

                        „When you sit, you sit.
                         When you breathe in,
                         you are aware to breathe in.
                         When you breathe out,
                         you are aware to breathe out.
                         Nothing else. That„s it.“
Dropping the „Ego‟ in Morita-Therapy
           Morita Shoma
                       Dropping the „Ego‟
                 Morita-Therapy: Taitoku

 Morita Therapy begins with a period between 5 to7 days
  of absolute bedrest in isolation which means some
  sensory deprivation.
 This may remind us to the waiting procedure of 5 to 7
  days (niwa-zume or tanga-zume) before getting
  admission into a Zen Cloister
                        Dropping the „Ego‟
                 Morita-Therapy: Taitoku

 In the first stage of Morita Therapy the patient lies on
  the futon in his room for hours and hours and thoughts
  come up and disappear. Inevitably the preoccupation
  with symptoms and dis-ease will arise.
 As there is no chance for distraction from the present
  situation anxiety and brooding will haunt him (or her).
  This is a psycho-somatic experience, not a moment of
  intellectual insight.
   Dropping the „Ego‟
  - bedrest in isolation:
    Taiken ryôhô
Sole, but not lonesome
                                 Dropping the „Ego‟
                    Morita-Therapy: Taiken ryôhô

• the term says that the whole person is involved in this
  intuitive experience of „conflict is solution“
• Morita named his therapy an „experience-therapy“
  (taiken ryôhô; Morita Shoma)
• This strong accent on psycho-somatical experience
  instead on cognitive insight has a parallele to the
  tradition of the teaching methods used by zen masters, as
  Fuchs has convincingly shown in her book „eternal
  practice“ (Ewig üben, Fuchs Mariko, 2009)
                        Dropping the „Ego‟

 Suzuki Tomonori: a „natural koan“ (Suzuki, T. 1985).
 It also might be seen as a „self-fabricated koan“
 Like the zen monk clings to his koan, the problem will
  not leave the patient.
 But for the patient the adherence to the symptoms does
  not happen voluntarily, it is experienced as suffering
                         Dropping the „Ego‟

 According to Morita vexating brooding comes up from
  the second day and may prevail until the fourth or fifth
 Morita writes: „The patient„s torments sometimes may
  occur so haftily that he will be tossing about in his bed.
  The more his mental vexations occur, the more it will be
  for sure that he will reach to the goal of the therapy.“
  (Morita 1984a:100).
 in zen-education:
  „The greater the doubt, the greater the awakening“
                           Dropping the „Ego‟
            Morita-Therapy: hanmon soku gedatsu

„The  psychic conflict dissolves suddenly within a
short time and disappears like a heavy pain
suddenly may decrease and one experiences a
freshness of the spirit.
This psychic state have I called „conflict equal to
solution“. (Morita, 1984, shinkeishitsu no hontai to ryôhô, p.100).
                      Dropping the „Ego‟ Morita-Therapy

                  hanmon soku gedatsu
 This term „conflict equal to solution“ (hanmon soku
  gedatsu), which Morita used, points to a zen-buddhistic
 gedatsu is the buddhistic term for salvation, which means
  the achievent of absolute freedom
 the corresponding term in Zen-Buddhism is „bonno soku
  bodai“ = suffering is enlightenment/satori (bodai from
  skrt. bodhi = enlightenment).
                         Dropping the „Ego‟
           Morita-Therapy as Self-Experience

 In my own experience of zettai gajoku there have been
  no vexating thoughts.
  All everyday concerns zoomed afar and I have being
  aware of the tatami room and ist typical atmosphere, the
  windows and the situation prevailing.
    Dropping the „Ego‟
bedrest in isolation
                         Dropping the „Ego‟

                                      Morita-Therapy bedrest in
                                     isolation in Sansei Hospital

   a futon, a narrow desk for
      writing and a diary –
a waste-basket for dropping the
       bedrest in isolation

Dropping the „Ego‟ like clothes
    which may be put off
      Dropping the „Ego‟
   well nurtured:

   when I am hungry,
I eat and I am aware that
           I eat.
    When I am tired,
         I sleep.
 Sole, but not lonesome
               Dropping the „Ego‟
Morita-Therapy – outlook from isolation:

Am I isolated – but separated? What from?
Dropping the „Ego‟: Morita-Therapy – outlook from isolation is rhythm

                                   is energy
      Isolation –
the hospital‟s events are
announced by knocking
 at a wooden board and
made me being aware of
the sound and rhythm of
     Morita therapy:
  light work experience
and the beauties of spring
                                  Morita therapy:

Dropping the Ego - like cherry lets blossom    By watching nature in the garden – fresh leaves,
        leaves fall without regret            dry leaves representing the same process of nature
                         experience of watching nature
            outside of me, inside of me – what is the difference?
the moss with ist fresh green taught me: I am surrounded by nature - nature
                    is outside of me and also inside of me
                     Dropping the Ego - Morita Therapy
          Morita therapy: listening to evening lecture “kowa”

                                                 Dr. Usa‟s evening lecture (“Kowa”)

these kowa resemble much to the
conception and purpose of the
teachings of the Zen master during
zesshin (teisho)
              Morita therapy: evening lecture “kowa”

 kowa have a very similar function as teisho:
 The Morita-psychotherapist gives examples from his
  own experience and of patients, sometimes taken from
  the diary (nikki) to lead the patient to view the hospital
  stay as a field of exercise, exercise or training (shugyo –
  the same word is used in the zen-training)
 As in the teisho in Zesshin, also kowa in a Morita-
  Hospital, the teachings make clear that the individual
  bears the responsibility for his/her progress and path.
            comparing Morita therapy and Zen-education

 Very contrasting from western ‚occupational therapies„as
  a tool for the distraction for patients Morita valorizes the
  work therapy as the heart of his therapeutical concept.
 In Sansei-Spital in Kyôtô work is practice and exercise
  (shugyo ) which bears ist sense in itself.
 Means, sense and goal are the same.
 In psychoanalytical terms „Dropping the Ego“ means
  that narcissistic libido is turned into object-libido
     Dropping the Ego by working: Morita therapy in second stage

 Morita„s idea concerning the function of work and
  vexating thoughts differs much from western
„When vexating thoughts arise, one should not try to
  forget them or to chase them off; one shall
  experience them as they appear. One should rather
  turn towards them and endure them than to
  suppress them by will“ (Morita 1984: 105).
                 Morita therapy in second stage:
            comparing Morita therapy and Zen-education

• Not escaping from unwelcome ruminating thought,
  rather turning to them and become one with them like the
  rinzai monk becomes one with his koan resembles to the
  Zen-education, as Usa Genyo has emphasized. This
  indeed is
• „the application of the Zen Doctrine“
                      (Usa, G. 1954:8 according to Rhyner, 1987).
       Comparison between Morita therapy and Zen-education:
                      Therapeutic community

• In Sansei-hospital the patients and the staff build a
  therapeutic community.
• As the head of the hospital and his family live at the
  premises he is available any time needed.
• A group of patients is elected to run the self
  administration (jichikai) which organizes and monitors
  all including small duties (toban ), which each of the
  patient has to take over.
• This fosters the responsibility of every member of the
  therapeutic community.
       comparing Morita therapy and Zen-education

• This construction of a therapeutic community in a
  Morita-clinic is quite similar to the organization of a
• Zen master and monks live together in the same area.
• If the master does not practice Zazen with the monks he
  is available for them any time needed.
• Work (samu) is not for distraction, but to to maintain the
         comparing Morita therapy and Zen-education

• Rest and isolation as well as work in Morita therapy have
  their functions and foundation much more like in the
  spirit and practice of Zen-Buddhism than in the sense
  of Reil (1803) and Otto Binswanger (1896).
• Watching nature, working in nature,
   the kowa lectures,
   the function of the community and
   the system of duties
   have much in common with the life in a zen-closter.
                 Dropping the Ego: Aru ga mama

• My Kyûdô master Shibata XX. teaches:
  „…what hinders you to practise kyûdô in its pure sense is the fact
  that you are so full of expectations, full of hope and wishes.
  So you miss the ‚beginner„s mind!
  The wish for enlightenment or for hitting the target blocks the
  clear sight. Don„t shoot for ‚good results„ or for ‚enlightenment„,
  just practise kyûdô for kyûdô!
  The arrow may hit the target – good. The arrow may miss the
  target – good. Take it as it is – and watch your mind.“
• This ‚it-is-as-it-is-ness„ is the same as in Zen
          Dropping the Ego and dropping egodropping:
                       Aru ga mama
• So it is with Morita therapy:
  Its heartpiece is the term
                     „aru ga mama“,
  which means literally „it is as it is“
  and if we relate it to a person it means that this
  person may be as he/she is beyond all conceptions
  and classifications.
• Arugamama (kono/sono mama) means the
  acceptance of reality around us and within us as it
  is and as it emerges in this very moment.
        Dropping the Ego and dropping egodropping:
                     Aru ga mama

• For the patient this means the acceptance of
  him/herself and also of the symptoms as
  they are (arugamama),
• the patient learns by own experience
• that the conflict is the solution (hanmon
  soku gedatsu )
• This means: With and in spite of symptoms
  there can be a life filled with rewarding
  work and development.
                  Morita Therapy and Zen: Conclusion
• Morita therapy is rooted deeply in the spirit of Zen and has little
  in common with the theory of western psychiatry and
• Throughout his life Morita has done buddhistic studies
• he often explicated his opinions by zen-terms.
• during the decicive timespan of the development of his own form
  of therapy Morita has made his own experience in a cloister of
  the Rinzai-school of Zen
• In his comprehensive evaluation „Morita-Therapy and
  Zenbuddhism“ Rhyner (1987) comes to the conclusion that for
  reasons of academic acknowledgement Morita preferred to
  emphasize connections of this therapy with western medicine
  rather to show its mighty roots in Zen-Buddhism.
                     Dropping the Ego

• Bruno Rhyner (1987) writes:
 „between Morita-Psychotherapy and
 Zen-Buddhism exists a deep relationship as the
 handling of methods and the most important
 conceptions of Morita therapy are based on
   Dropping the Ego
„One shot – one life“

  Dr. Weski„s message
                 Dropping the Ego. One shot – one life“

• Herbert Weski, a fatherly colleague of mine, had been my long-
  time companion in the “British Longbow Society”. When he
  suffered from a very malignant tumour and he felt that he would
  have to leave his body soon, he called me to visit him. “I have
  tried out, if I could shoot with only one leg, but I decided not to
  give my leg to the surgeon!” he said.
  He handed to me a big package of books about archery and told
  “If you come into a similar situation as I am now, please give
  these volumes to someone who appreciates them!”
  And he ordered me to bring a message to our friends in the
  Longbow Society: Now I can bring it to you:
      „One shot, one life“ Dropping the Ego in the end
                      Hanare - Release

  “It‟s not so difficult to live or to end living;
after you embraced life and gripped life tightly,
    in the end it‟s all a question of release!”
Dropping the Ego: One shot – one life

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