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June 2018
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2010 Kagami Biraki Training


The day of this year Kagami Biraki was a crisp winter’s day in New York City which felt empty still from the remnants of the celebrations of the American new year. I hastily walked to Honma Dojo through the empty streets. I wanted to get there early, but I arrived just in time.

I climbed to the 5th floor, through the winding slate staircase, to find the dojo already active with energy. A few other dojos had come to train with us today in celebration of Kagami Biraki. Some of the faces I recognized from last year’s gathering, but some were new.

A feeling of anticipation filled the air. I changed quickly and had a few minutes to stretch before we started our training. So much for getting there early.

We lined up in rank order, a little skittery as we found our places intermingling with people from the other dojos. Mokuso. A longer meditation than usual. There is something wonderful about being with so many people in a state of peace, silence. It’s a vibration that you rarely feel in daily life. A sense of kinetic energy.

I’m not sure when Sensei Honma banged the drum to welcome everyone to the dojo but the bass echoed in the human silence and our bodies, betrayed by the weight of the day, responded to the call.

We trained; many punches, many Kiais, many kicks and many sit-ups — this was all done in close quarters with friends side by side. A new year, indeed.

The most wonderful part for me was greeting everyone after we trained, A long line of people all bowing and shaking hands, winding around our dojo, initiating and encircling 2010.


line up

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