From the Publisher: “The Heart of Aikido: The Philosophy of Takemusu Aiki” takes the reader on a spiritual journey straight to the essence of Aikido, in the words of the great Founder himself. Ueshiba, affectionately known as O’Sensei, or “Great Master,” devoted himself to the promotion of peace and expression of universal human values, and spent a substantial part of his life imparting and teaching these values. Taken largely from transcripts of lectures he gave, The Heart of Aikido draws on the essence of the Founder’s philosophy and spirituality based on the Shinto religion, and his beliefs on the divinity of the true self and the universe. His teachings also emphasize the importance of harmony in Aikido, and how ultimately humans can foster a peaceful society by dispelling aggression through such harmony.
This long-awaited English version is a translation of the original Japanese classic. Among the many Aikido books that exist today, this book will stand out for its heartfelt focus on the spiritual message of the Founder, and how that message resonates with equal urgency in today’s world.
Translation by John Stevens. “The Secret Teachings of Aikido” is a collection of the spiritual teachings of the Founder. In this book, Morihei Ueshiba explains how Aikido is both the spirit of love and the study of that spirit. The author reflects on the rich and varied landscape of Aikido philosophy, discussing how Aiki is the marvelous functioning of breath, and how, through diligent use of Aikido’s breathing techniques, the practitioner can achieve true harmony.
Budo, the only manual produced by O Sensei, was published before the war, in 1938, but he strictly limited its distribution. Around 1990, the Ueshiba family decided to publish this book. Then Doshu, Kisshomaru Ueshiba added a biography of O Sensei. Also added were a collection of photos of O Sensei demonstrating technique in 1936 at the Noma Dojo. The text is translated by John Stevens.
This book is an English translation of “Budo Renshu”, which was the first of two books actually authored by O’Sensei in the 1930’s. Illustrations are reproductions of the original drawings from that text. Although primarily technical in nature, the book does contain an interesting chapter on the doka.
An alternate cover design (blue background) with a different ISBN was used in the 1997 First Edition. Content is the same in either volume.
Publisher: Japan Publications, Sugawara Martial Arts Institute
This book was originally one of the two compiled works of O’Sensei, published in Japanese in 1933. This very scarce edition has been painstakingly translated into bilingual English/Japanese by Larry and Seiko Bieri, and republished in 1978 under the supervision of Kisshomaru Ueshiba Doshu. It is profusely illustrated with hand drawings, and bound in the traditional Japanese fashion, with cardboard slipcover. The book reads back-to-front. Covered are much technique and explanation of principles.
Notes: Extremely Limited Edition – Reprint of Original 1933 text, with English translation added.
This is one of the most popular Aikido books of all time. Originally published as a pocket-sized volume (see photo with yellow cover), a full-sized softcover edition (see photo with white cover – 93pp, ISBN#1570629641) was published in 1992. The book is a collection of writings and quotations by O’Sensei, translated and edited by John Stevens Sensei.
The book consists of a series of proverbs by O’Sensei, the sequence of which varies from one publication to another. Many of the proverbs are presented in a form of Japanese verse called “doka”. Illustrations are limited to depictions of kanji symbols.
Hardback edition (see photo with maroon cover – 184pp, was added in 2005. The 2010 hardback edition (white cover/red title) comes with an audio reading on CD.