So today turns out is Star Wars Day! Like most of my generation that was born in the 1980s and early 90s we were reaping off of the benefits that Generation X had with the movies only later to
suffer enjoy the presence of episodes 1-3. That was not the main attraction however; it was the presence of the books (X-wing series for me), action figures, and models that dotted the 90s. I remember when I was in junior high one of my goals was to complete one X-wing series in one sitting. At that time it was a 400 page endeavor with no pictures, not an easy task.
I would like to share something a local legend here in the Aikido community. According to said legend, one of George Lucas’s many influences on his creation of the “Force” and in the Jedi came from a library book that he borrowed that was written by George Burr Leonard (1923-2010) who is a famous Aikido student of Robert Nadeau Sensei, 7th Dan. In the book George Leonard had written many of Nadeau Sensei’s early teachings of body/mind harmony and energy work that was taught to him by the founder of Aikido, Morihei Ueshiba O’Sensei.
So yes, whenever you pick up a light saber and pretend you’re a powerful Jedi knight protecting the galaxy from the Empire and evil-doers (trying to impress your Princess Leia, saving your ass from the Jabba-the-Hutt of your life, etc.), take a moment and embody the fact that you are practicing a bit of Aikido. Now if you’ll excuse me, this young padawan will go back to getting owned by the training droid…
Till next time ladies and gents, and may the force be with you!