Samples from

The Journey of Aikido:
Reflections on the Path

by Lawrence Novick
The Mind fears,
becomes attached,
and sees differences and limitations.

The Heart trusts,
and sees similarities and possibilities.

In contraction
the Mind analyzes,
protecting against vulnerability.

In expansion
the Heart feels,
embracing vulnerability.

Aikido holds both
in balance,
teaching us to be safe
yet remain open,

to protect ourselves
yet embrace a difficult moment
with a sense of compassion and grace.
  Aikido without  
  martial responsibility  
  is dance.  

  Aikido without  
  moral responsibility  
  is fighting.  

  Embracing both  
  we find a new way  
  of being.  

Kinesthetic Invisibility
describes the skill of
not giving any physical reference,

achieved through connection, flow,
moving from center rather than hands,
with Ki rather than muscle.

Done correctly,
an attacker does not feel anything
out of harmony
that they need to react to
or can counter.

When someone is aggressive,
don't throw them or retaliate.

Help them de-stabilize themselves
even further.

Then release them.