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New Year Statement by Aikido Doshu Moriteru Ueshiba(2023/3/13written)
Aikido Doshu Moriteru Ueshiba
Aikido Doshu
Moriteru Ueshiba
While the novel corona virus that has concerned us since 2020 has entered the 8th wave of infections in Japan, economic activities and daily life have greatly returned to normal, and we have safely finished the year, so I greeted the New Year with the feeling of relief. The state of the world is decidedly not something to be optimistic about, but to be able to welcome the New Year in with no problems is something I am truly happy about.
Looking back at the previous year it was decidedly not a peaceful year. However, starting with the Aikikai Foundation Aikido Hombu Dojo in Tokyo, all regions actively started to move. Events, seminars, the activities of regional federations, local dojos and activities overseas are returning to normal, and with that there was much happiness.
The 59th All-Japan Aikido Embukai was held at the Nippon Budokan for the first time in 3 years. While there were strict requirements for admission not seen before now, as well as a limit of 10 persons per embu, it was the first time in 3 years to have embu from regular dojos, social aikido clubs, and students. In whole, 4000 persons participated, and even though there were no general audience members allowed it was a both a relief and a joy to be able to put on such a magnificent event.
After being cancelled due to scheduling conflicts with the Tokyo Olympics since 2020, we were able to hold the All Japan Aikido Childrenfs training meet for the first time in 3 years as well. As the number of corona virus infections was increasing at the time, we were unfortunately unable to hold the opening and closing ceremony with all attendees at once. However, I was able to watch the energetic youth, and seeing their lively state gave me a bright feeling.
The 19th All Japan Senior High School Embukai was held for the first time in 3 years at the Tokyo Budokan. It happened without a seminar and with no general audience members, but it was held, and I was relieved from the bottom of my heart. Even while their regular high school live were stolen from them, these students pursued their practice of Aikido, and then came to participate in this event. One school even created an Aikido club in this time. I was indescribably moved by that.

The All Japan University Student Aikido Embukai was also held under difficult conditions, and was successfully held the same as in 2021, at the Nippon Budokan. Club activities are restating more and more; with summer training camps being held, but without the introduction of the club and recruitment activities, which makes the situations of the clubs all that more difficult. Even in this situation they entered the Embukai; watching them as they work towards connecting to the next left a deep impression with me.
As life returns to the norm, I have come to think that the norm is a truly precious thing. Continuing on is a truly precious thing. Thinking about the limited time period of 3 years of high school, and 4 years of university, the effects of the corona virus on this time have been extreme, I think. In my view, the past 3 years have been a disaster for high school and university club activities. And because of that, not just the alumni of the clubs but all of us practitioners of Aikido everywhere must extend a warm hand to all of them. I pray that through this the clubs will be enlivened.
The grabbith is a peaceful and gentle disposition, which means gsafety in the family" and from its jumping figure it has become a representation of the ideas of gleaph and gimprove.h It is said that it is the optimal year to challenge something new, so I would like to proactively leap into it.
Additionally, the Chinese character for the year of the rabbit (K) is reminiscent of the shape of a gate opening. As such, it could also stand for gopening the gates of winter and jumping out.h I sincerely hope that this is the year we are freed from corona virus infection, and we can make leaps and improvements from the last few years. Let us walk the path of Aikido conscientiously and quickly.
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