Practising

"He who doesn't have a longing for the Absolute
will be content with a quiet and mediocre life"

Cézanne

 

Training, "Keiko" in Japanese, is a lifelong task.
In Kyudo, the image that the word "keiko" conveys is "to improve through repetition".
Thus one always remains a pupil.

The Archer loves the Bow and the world of the Bow without a particular reason.
He is happy to shoot the bow, to repeat the correct movements.
He experiences this mysterious moment , unsettling and inexplicable,
at the moment of release.
So he boldly enters into it with all his heart.
He only needs the intuition that there is something there,
there in the heart of the Bow, and that he must comply without expecting anything.

Beginners and experienced archers alike have to follow the same process.

Kyudo.  One also says Yumi no michi : the way of the bow.

 This path is to keep to the study, the way.
 To follow the essential rules and teaching, then to apply them in the practice
as well as outside the practice.  
It is to find this integrity, this line which aligns us with the centre of the target
as well as with all things visible and invisible.

 

Neither results nor form matter.
One doesn't practise because it is "healthy", because it is "good for stress",
or for psychological, physical and emotional reasons.
One draws the bow, striving as simply as possible towards "Beauty, Goodness, Truth".
One draws the bow in all innocence.
Then, if one complies with the basics of the teaching, with the rules of Nature,
it is natural that the arrow will hit the target.