Fudoshin (Immovable Mind)
In Japanese, it means “immovable mind”.
Fudoshin represents a mind that is completely at peace, in every situation. When in this state of Unshakable resolve, the mind and an immovable spirit are in the state of fudoshin. It is courage and stability displayed both mentally and physically, you will feel that you can achieve anything you set your mind to. Fudoshin describes a condition that is not easily disturbed by internal thoughts or external forces. It is capable of receiving a strong attack while retaining composure and balance. It receives and evades lightly, becomes grounded, and sends aggression back to the source. Able to face fear, danger, challenge, and even death, and remain calm. Fudoshin means that no outside influence affects your mind.
Fudoshin is especially important when the stakes are highest – like if you’re principles, core values, or fighting for ones life or the ones we love.
You cannot leave any room for doubt or hesitation to creep into your mind, because that can cause a negative spiral that spins you out of control.
A fellow went to a Karate Sensei and said, “If I work very hard, how soon can I be a Black Belt?”
The Karate Sensei looked him up and down and said, “Maybe ten years.”
The fellow said, “No, No, please listen, I mean if I come to class twice as much and practice twice as hard, really work at it, how long—”
The Karate Sensei cut him off. “I’m sorry. I misjudged. Twenty years.”
”Wait!” What! Said the young man, “You don’t seem to understand! I’m—”
“Thirty years,” said the Sensei.
The student was dumbfounded. “Sensei, I don’t understand! Each time I say I will increase my efforts; you say I will take even longer. Why?”
Said the Sensei, Your focus is wrong, focus on the process. “A journey of 10,000 steps, starts beneath one’s own feet, your goal is simple the general direction you plan to walk” “When one eye is fixed on the goal, you have only one eye on your path.”
Focus on each step, the effort, your attitude, not the reward at the end of it. You must be willing to give yourself time. You are accustom to having everything come easily to you, but this is not the way of life or of the martial arts. Learn to actively work toward goals without setting a limit on how long you will work. Remove your arbitrary deadlines from your mind.
Once upon the time there was an old farmer who had worked his crops for many years. One day his horse ran away. Upon hearing the news, his neighbors came to visit. “Such bad luck,” they said sympathetically.
“Maybe,” the farmer replied.
The next morning the horse returned, bringing with it three other wild horses. “How wonderful,” the neighbors exclaimed.
“Maybe,” replied the old man.
The following day, his son tried to ride one of the untamed horses, was thrown, and broke his leg. The neighbors again came to offer their sympathy on his misfortune.
“Maybe,” answered the farmer.
The day after, military officials came to the village to draft young men into the army. Seeing that the son’s leg was broken, they passed him by. The neighbors congratulated the farmer on how well things had turned out.
“Maybe,” said the farmer.
The farmer is practicing non-judgment. He understands the true nature of life, that you can't judge any event as an "end" in a way. Our life doesn't play out like a work of fiction. Don’t force things, relax, don’t be overly anxious when faced with a challenge
A Cup of Tea
A Great Sensei received a young man, who came to inquire about traditional martial arts training. The young man talked and talked about his desire to be a great martial artist, how fast and strong he was, and how he would one day beat every challenger.
The Sensei politely served the tea. He poured his visitor’s cup full and then kept on pouring.
The young man watched the overflow until he no longer could restrain himself. “It is overfull. No more will go in!”
“Like this cup,” the Sensei said, “you are full of your own opinions and speculations. How can I show you real martial arts unless you first empty your cup?”
Most folks only take the martial arts while they are excited, they do it until they get bored or busy, always wanting the Sensei to dazzle them with a new flashy skills.
While a few others truly study the martial arts; learning the culture, the history, the students, and the teachers. As these few study and learn, they are humble and practice diligently, applying the lessons to life, feeling honored to learn such an amazing art, with utmost respect for their fellow students and teachers.
Kyoshi Charles Riedmiller 7th Dan Head Instructor/Owner Summit Martial Arts Delaware, Ohio and has over 45 years experience in the Martial Arts, he started training in Goju Ryu karate and Judo at age 13. He been training in Goju Ryu & Shorin Ryu Karate, Kobudo, Judo, Jujitsu, Aikido for over 4 decades and BJJ for over 20yrs with Professor Pedro Sauer. He has been dedicated to teaching authentic, high quality Martial Arts his entire life. Sensei Riedmiller has taught thousands of Military, Law Enforcement, pro-fighters/champions and martial art students of all ages.