Story: The Tea Cup Lesson...

A learned man once went to a Zen teacher to inquire about Zen. As the Zen teacher explained, the learned man would frequently interrupt him with remarks like, “Oh, yes, we have that too….” and so on. Finally the Zen teacher stopped talking and began to serve tea to the learned man. He poured the cup full, and then kept pouring until the cup overflowed. “Enough!” the learned man once more interrupted. “No more can go into the cup!” “Indeed, I see,” answered the Zen teacher. “If you do not first empty the cup, how can you taste my cup of...

Story: The Stone Cutter...

Once upon a time there was a stone cutter. The stone cutter lived in a land where a life of privilege meant being powerful. Looking at his life he decided that he was unsatisfied with the way things were and so he set out to become the most powerful thing in the land. Looking around his land he wondered to himself what is it to be powerful. Looking up he saw the Sun shining down on all the land. “The Sun must be the most powerful thing that there is, for it shines down on all things, and all things grow from it’s touch.” So he became the Sun. Days later, as he shone his power down on the inhabitants of the land, there came a cloud which passed beneath him obstructing his brilliance. Frustrated he realized that the Sun was not the most powerful thing in the land, if a simple cloud could interrupt his greatness. So he became a cloud, in fact, he became the most powerful storm that the world had ever seen. And so he blew his rain and lightning, and resounded with thunder all over the land, demonstrating that he was the most powerful. Until one day he came across a boulder. Down and down he poured and his thunder roared, lightning flashed and filled the sky, striking the ground near the boulder. His winds blew and blew and blew, and yet, despite all his efforts, he could not budge the boulder. Frustrated again, he realized that the storm was not the most powerful thing in the land, rather it must be the boulder. So he became the boulder. For days he sat, unmovable, and impassive, demonstrating his power, until one day, a stone cutter came and chiseled him...

Story: Shake it off and Step Up...

One day a farmer’s donkey fell down into a well. For hours, the farmer tried to figure out what to do. Finally he decided the animal was old and the well needed to be covered up anyway; it just wasn’t worth it to retrieve the donkey. He invited his neighbors to come over and help him. They all grabbed a shovel and began to shovel dirt into the well. At first, the donkey realized what was happening and cried horribly. Then, to everyone’s amazement, he quieted down. A few shovel loads later, the farmer finally looked down the well and was astonished at what he saw. With every shovel of dirt that hit his back, the donkey was doing something amazing. He would shake it off and take a step up. As the farmer’s neighbors continued to shovel dirt on top of the animal, he would shake it off and step up. Pretty soon, everyone was amazed as the donkey stepped up over the well and trotted...

Story: Musashi’s Disciple...

I will tell you the story of the Samurai who came to see the legendary master Miyamoto Musashi and asked to learn the true way of the sword. The master agreed to accept him as a student. Having become his disciple, the Samurai spent all his time, as instructed by the master, carrying and chopping wood and fetching buckets of water from a distant spring. He did this every day for a month, two months, one year, three years. Today, any disciple would have run away after a week or even a few hours. But the Samurai went on, and in the process he formed his body. At the end of three years he had had enough, however, and asked his master, “What kind of training are you giving me? I have not touched a sword since I got here. I spend all my time chopping wood and carrying water. When are you going to initiate me?” “All right, all right,” the master replied. “Since you desire it, I shall now teach you the true technique.” He ordered him to go to the dojo and there, every day from morning to evening, the disciple had to walk around the outside edge of the tatami, step by step around the hall without ever missing a foot. So the disciple walked around the edge of the tatami for a year. At the end of that time he said to his master, “I am a Samurai, I have a long experience of swordsmanship and I have met other masters of Kendo. Not one ever taught me as you are doing. Now, please, teach me the true way of the sword.” “Very well,” said the master. “Follow me.” He led him far into the mountains to a place...

2013 Holiday Schedule...

Just a reminder to students, Sage Arts Studio will be closed on the following dates for the holidays. We wish everyone a safe and restful holiday season. Thursday, November 28, 2013 – Thanksgiving Holiday Tuesday, December 24 – Friday, December 27 – Xmas Holiday Wednesday, January 1 – Sunday, January 5th – New Year’s Holiday Be sure to join us for the last day of training of the year on New Year’s Eve, for a special training session from...

Welcome to the Online Dojo Nov20

Welcome to the Online Dojo

Welcome to the online dojo. After many years of struggling to keep the school’s website up to date, and also share some of the many useful things on the Internet with my students, I decided to finally incorporate WordPress to help deliver such content. This section of the site is currently free to view, but in the future may be reserved for active students of Sage Arts Studio. In addition to news, announcements and schedule updates, this section of the website will contain a large and growing number of videos on the Martial Arts, class notes, Sage curriculum lists and testing requirements, training advice, interviews with significant Martial Artists, history, stories, and even a few games. Over the course of the next few years, the content we share here will take students to different parts of the world through the contributions of many instructors from a variety of systems. Through this students will begin to build an appreciation for different cultures, languages, and systems of movement. This will give students a way to model their movement after the stylistic characteristics of other Martial Arts. My hope is that this content will greatly compliment students’ regular in-class training. There will be several contributors of original content, particularly articles and training advice, which will include current and past instructors at Sage and other affiliated schools. New content will be added weekly if not daily, so it will definitely be worth your while to check out the site on a regular basis. It will also give students something to do when they can’t make it into class. Be sure to share this with your friends, and invite them to train with us. See you in...