Posts from October 2014

Teaching the absolute – Weekend quote

A blind practitioner was having a Zen talk with his teacher. Questions of teaching lineage were bothering the student.
“How can we know for sure if these are the Buddha’s words or something written by his students?” he asked.

The sun disappeared and dark night descended.

Before he went on his way his teacher gave him a lantern with a lit candle.
“What shall I do with it?” asked the blind student, “I can not use it.”
“A lantern will help others.” said the teacher and slid the door shut.

The night was deep and silent. The blind monk held the lantern high and felt his way with a walking stick. Suddenly, after walking for about an hour, the blind guy bumped into someone so forcefully that they both fell down.

“Can’t you see where you’re going?” asked the blind man angrily.
“Your candle went out, my brother,” said the other guy softly.

Teaching the absolute


Training for the week of 26-30.10.2014

This week we will work on kicks in Koto ryu and it’s role in Kanstesu waza distancing.
At the veterans’ groups we will learn three different kata from the high levels of Kukishinden Ryu and check the strategies they use to work with different beats and rhythms in combat.
There will not be a weapon session this Friday.

Video of Using a kick to work the distance

Video explaining rhythm and beat


Weekend quote – P. D. Ouspensky

1st quote

Everything ‘happens’. People can ‘do’ nothing. From the time we are born to the time we die things happen, happen, happen, and we think we are doing.

This is our normal state in life, and even the smallest possibility to do something comes only through the work, and first only in oneself, not externally.

2nd quote
From: A Further Record, By P. D. Ouspensky

akban lion

Invitation to the 5th Ninjutsu colloquium

This Friday, at 24.10.2014, 08:00 sharp, at our Tel Aviv Honbu dojo we will meet, practice and debate an intricate and deep kata. Yoav Alterman Sensei called it, “The Everest of kata”. This kata is Gyaku nage, a sequence from the higher level of the Nine demons system. This will be Colloquium number 5 for this year. Here’s a link to all of 2014 colloquiums.

In a Colloquium one of the veteran students presents a Kata or a subject, we practice with it and then debate. We are good debaters. This is not Sparta, this is AKBAN.

All AKBAN veterans and students are invited. If you are a student or a teacher from another school you are invited too, but please contact us here to reserve a place Send Mail.

To sum it up: welcome.

An invitation and an exemplary kata of the 5th colloquium


Training this week, 19-24.10.2014, and Colloquium in Friday

This week we will be returning to regular schedule. Sukkot holiday was filled with seminars. You can watch and listen to Miles Kessler sensei meditation fundamentals here. The first part of weapon seminar video will be ready later this week.
לוח שיעורי נינג'יטסו

The beginner and intermediate groups will practice basic Ninjutsu kicks and work these into relevant kata that combine strikes and kicks.

At the veteran groups we will explore rhythm and speed changes in the Shirabe Moguri gata level of Kukishinden Ryu. We will see how tempo changes divert the attention of the opponent and wirk these into randori sequences.

The Fifth Ninjutsu colloquium will take place this Friday (24.10.2014, 08:00 sharp). Akban practitioners are invited, as usual. Students from other schools are welcome, with the approval of their instructor, or if they are group leaders themselves.


Video of basic Ninjutsu kicks

Video of the theme kata of the 5th colloquium


Fundamentals of meditation, weekend quote – Miles Kessler

  1. Anything that arises in your experience, you can take as an object of meditation.
  2. Anything you can observe isn’t you.
  3. Everything can be observed.

Three basic instructions to help you out with the practice of mindfulness:
Number one,
Anything that arises in your experience, you can observe.
Anything that arises in your experience – right now, if you feel your body, your mind, whatever, there is something happening in your experience, physical sensations, feelings, the mind is angry or happy or whatever – if you can observe that, it’s good. Anything that arises in your experience you can take as an object of meditation, you can observe it. Pressure here, I can take that as a meditation, my object of meditation. Anything that arises you can observe.


Number two,
Anything that you can observe isn’t you.
Anything that you can see in your experience is not you. That one goes deep. You think, oh, what ever, that’s me, wherever I’m at, here, the part of me that’s here, that I’m hiding, if I can see that as a meditative object, it’s not me anymore, it’s not me. It’s an object in my experience, but it’s not me. So, anything you can observe, it’s not who you are fundamentally.


Number three
Everything can be observed.
And the last point is that everything can be observed. Everything can be observed, Everything can be observed. Everything can be taken as an object of observation. Even the sense of self, the most fundamental sense of who you are, with a little bit of practice can detach and be observed with mindfulness.

Taken with permission from Miles Kessler “Spiritual warrior” Dharma talk in AKBAN. Miles Kessler teaches in

Meditation for warriors podcast


Sukkot sessions and meditation seminar, 5-10.10.2014

At Sukkot Holiday we have three seminars, one for meditation and two for traditional weapons. In Chol HaMoed we will not be training regularly.

  • Sunday, 5.10.2014 – Regular AKBAN Jerusalem
  • Monday, 6.10.2014 – Regular AKBAN Ramat Hasharon
  • Tuesday, 7.10.2014 – Regular AKBAN Tel Aviv
  • Wednesday, 8.10.2014, Holiday, no session
  • Thursday, 9.10.2014, Holiday, no session
  • Friday, 10.10.2014 – Meditation seminar, Tel Aviv dojo, 13:00
  • Sunday, 12.10.2014, Wohl rose garden, 16:00-19:00, Weapon seminar
  • Monday, 13.10.2014, No session
  • Tuesday, 14.10.2014, 16:00-20:00, AKBAN Tel Aviv, Weapon seminar
  • Friday 17.10.2014, 08:00, AKBAN Tel Aviv, Weapon session

Meditation seminar with Miles Kessler

At Friday, 10.10.2014, 13:00-15:00, at Tel Aviv dojo we will have an introduction to meditation seminar with Mile Kessler sensei from Integral dojo. The level of action that our recent advance in Kata practice demands necessitates learning awareness and concentration methodically. Miles Kessler is a certified Vipassanā meditation teacher in the Mahasi tradition, and in addition to that, a teacher of  Zen meditation in the Big mind school. Miles has many valuable insights to our practice being a certified Aikido teacher who spent many years in Ibaraki dojo in Iwama, Japan. Miles will present the basics of his systems and an introduction to applying it in our martial arts practice.

We decided that each participant will contribute 40 NIS to AIKIDO without borders.


Sukkot weapon seminars

At the first holiday’s eve (8.10.2014) and the holiday (9.10.2014) and at Hoshaána raba (15.10.2014) and Simhat Tora (16.10.2014) there will be no training.

At Sukkot we will have two weapon seminars. We will repeat Kunai, Kusari, Hanbo and also some middle ages’ Cape and Jacket techniques.

At the regular sessions, before the holiday, we will continue to work the flowcharts of Kukishin ryu techniques. We will introduce the throws I didn’t teach last week and integrate them into the kata. The Tel Aviv veteran group will do Gyaku Nage kata.

One of the videos below was posted last week, but I am reposting it and some great sword work too.


Video of basic strikes in Jogo du Pau

Video of sword work from Flos dualotorum

Video of Moguri dori kata


Weekend quote – Percy Bysshe Shelley

I met a traveller from an antique land
Who said: “Two vast and trunkless legs of stone
Stand in the desert. Near them, on the sand,
Half sunk, a shattered visage lies, whose frown,
And wrinkled lip, and sneer of cold command,
Tell that its sculptor well those passions read
Which yet survive, stamped on these lifeless things,
The hand that mocked them and the heart that fed:
And on the pedestal these words appear:
‘My name is Ozymandias, king of kings:
Look on my works, ye Mighty, and despair!’
Nothing beside remains. Round the decay
Of that colossal wreck, boundless and bare
The lone and level sands stretch far away.”

Video clip by Stephen Hamacek to the reading of Bryan Cranston, Breaking Bad