Ki

"We begin with the number one in counting all things. It is impossible that this one can ever be reduced to zero. Because just as something cannot be made from nothing, one cannot be made from zero.

Ki is like the number one. Ki is formed from infinitely small particles, smaller than an atom. The universal Ki condensed becomes an individual, which in turn condensed becomes the one point in the lower abdomen, which in turn infinitely condensed never becomes zero, but becomes One with the Universe. Thus we understand the definition of Ki."

--Koichi Tohei Sensei

Ki is a concept which has no direct parallel in western society, but is fundamental to most eastern societies. Depending on the region you are in, it can be referred to as ki, qi, chi, prana, and others. In the Japanese language, Ki can be used in reference to air, atmosphere, energy, spirit, mind, heart, will, or intention. In the Ki Society it is most often used to mean energy, or the life force of the Universe itself.

The Kanji (Chinese writing system adapted by the Japanese) contains two radicals. One radical stands for air/atmosphere. The other represents a rice field. Therefore the character for Ki represents the three fundamental needs for life: Air, Food, and Water(as rice needs water to grow in).
Ki is the basic unit of the universe from which all life springs. In traditional eastern medicine the sick person will be said to have a blockage of their Ki (much like a kinked garden hose) preventing it from flowing freely. This blockage is what causes the ailment. The doctor will then attempt to eliminate the blockage, stimulate the flow of Ki, and give the person a new start on life.

Because Ki is free flowing and fundamental to all living things, it belongs to no one person any more than another. A powerful Aikidoka (student of Aikido) does not have "strong Ki," but rather has reached a deep enough state of calm, relaxation that permits the Ki of the Universe to manifest itself and flow freely through the individual. This means that everyone can utilize Ki if they follow Ki Principles.

Nearly impossible to describe in words, it is only through proper mind and body coordination that one can truly experience and come to understand Ki.

Five Principles for Studying Ki

  • Be Receptive and Open Minded (Shoshin - Beginner's Mind)
  • Persevere until you Master the Principle (Shugyo)
  • Apply Ki Principles in Daily Life
  • Change Your Subconscious Mind in a Positive Way
  • Study to Teach Others Well (Setsudo)

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