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By Alan Lai, Sho-Dan
Shihan, Downtown Karate Dojo
Hong Kong Karate Club


This thought of this week is NO THOUGHT!!

I learned "MUSHIN" from Sensei Kaplan in one beach workout in Hawaii about three years ago. He said,"MUSHIN means if you want to wake up, you just wake up without thinking about waking up itself or lying on the bed anymore; if you want to read a book and study, you just open the book and study it without thinking of other things or not to study. But that doesn't mean you just do everything without plan. Instead, you plan ahead carefully and be loyal to and stick with what have planed with MUSHIN." To paraphrase Kyoshi, "Just do it" means "Just MUSHIN."

"MU-" is actually translated from Kanji (Chinese character) which means No, nothing, empty. "-SHIN" also means from Kanji the heart. Yes, the heart! Ancient Chinese believed our mind or cognition is from our hearts. Even now, Chinese people still say in Chinese "You are doing it with no heart."  That means you are doing it uncarefully and carelessly.  Therefore, MUSHIN can be translated literally as NO HEART! Of course, I am not saying we should do things with no care but abide by the spirit beyond the literal meaning of this word, "MUSHIN."



Alan Lai
Hong Kong Karate Club

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