Student Impression of Noble House Kenjutsu Dojo
Through life we follow several paths. Some of them bring us happiness, some them bring us pain, some of them help us discover the world, some of them help us discover ourselves. I have followed various paths in an attempt to discover the world. I have fallen and risen again in order to experience and discover more. However, a man that knows the world but does not know himself is like the bushes when beaten by the wind. His will follows the stimulus of the senses, lacking any possibilities for developing a proactive approach to life. With time the senses make you play a hide and seek game with that inner man that wants to develop enough will power to take what life brings, making the best out of it. Tired of playing hide and seek, I decided to follow a new path. One that would help me experience, understand and conquer the complexity of the human nature contained within myself.
It has been said that martial arts can help their practitioners develop enough will power to overcome their urges and desires in order to achieve training goals and spiritual development. However, many schools' philosophies and methods are far from achieving the intentions of the original martial arts. I wanted to be careful to choose a martial art school that would keep me in contact with the traditional methods. Based on the reputation of the original martial arts and the consistency of the school preserving it, I would be able to ensure the purity of the process that would help attain my goal. To develop the will that would help conquer myself; my will over my desires.
After an exhausting Internet research, looking through several commercialized martial arts school pages, I found the Nobel House Kenjutsu page. Not long after I started reading the page, I realized the value of the information contained within the same. Through this information I develop an image of the school. It was apparent to me that this school was placing an enormous effort in trying to preserve the traditional way of the samurai warrior. Being impressed by the methods and goals expressed by this school through their web page, I decided to communicate to Noble House Dojo, my honest and sincere desire of becoming a student.
To train with Noble House, I had to be able to travel from my country of residence, Puerto Rico to Edmonton, Canada, where the school is based. That is approximately a 15 hours flight (including stops), but as long as it worth it, I was able to make the sacrifice. Because of the nature of the training required to learn this martial art, Noble House can only accept a limited number of students. I believe that my honest and sincere desire to learn this art, as expressed in my communication to Noble House, was the only thing that facilitated my admission to the school.
Once accepted I did not develop any real expectations, but the opportunity to train with Noble House was overwhelming. I was eager to learn as much as possible through the limited time of my training, two months and a half. I have had other kinds of sports training in earlier stages of my life, but I knew this training was going to be substantially different. After arriving in Edmonton and starting training, I soon realized that the focus of this discipline was not only training the mind and body but also the spirit. The aim was to make an effort to have them work together to attain the desired goal. Mind, body and spirit are combined as tools to achieve technical and philosophical development and increase the possibility of a positive impact on ourselves and society.
It did not take me long to realize that this is easier to say than to attain. Hours of technical training, exhausting physical training sessions, and a sincere effort to develop an understanding of the nature of the samurai discipline, are unavoidable elements to find the way. I also discovered that there is no personal glory in learning the discipline. You will never be good enough, you will never be the best. The only gratification obtained from living the samurai way is the personal development attained by internalizing the discipline and making it a part of yourself. Being what you have learned. Applying to your life what the sword teaches you. Experiencing the philosophy from when your eyes open in the morning until you close them at night.
Because of the nature of this training, I sincerely do not recommend anyone with the wrong intentions to get involve with this martial art. Doing so, will be pretending to be someone one is not and will only produce wasted time and effort.
At the present moment, my time in Edmonton is almost finished, as well as my period of introduction to the samurai discipline. I will soon be leaving for my country of origin, but not without taking with me the hunger for kenjutsu knowledge and technical development. I am also taking with me a whole new spectrum of experiences that will help me attain the goal that I came here looking for; to conquer myself. If a man conquers the world but is not able to conquer himself, he will be a foreigner in his own territory.
Finally, I would like to thank from the bottom of my heart, Sensei and all the members of Noble House Kenjutsu, for their help, support and for making me feel at home. Whatever I accomplish is their accomplishment as well.
Japhet Noble House Kenjutsu Dojo Student