Gyokko Ryû is an excellent school, profoundly related to the new theme for 2017 of “controlling the space”.
Let me explain. In Sensei’s last class, he spoke about Tama, the Sphere. Tama is also read Gyoku, and Gyoku is the “pearl” find in the name Gyokko. (1)
We read on the Internet that Gyokko is the “jewel tiger”. This is incorrect, Gyokko is the “tiger Pearl” or the “Tiger sphere”.
When we say “zero” we see a circle. But what if “Zero” is not a flat circle, Maru (2), but in fact symbolises the sphere of the controlled space that Sensei is speaking about?
We leave the world of the second dimension of Nijigen no Sekai for the Sanjigen no Sekai, and the sphere of controlled space is created. (3)
My feeling is that this is what Sensei wants is to understand. We are at the centre of this sphere, this is why “zero” he keeps saying that “zero” is not empty.
But as it is often the case in Japanese, there’s more.
Zero is also Mu (4), and Mu is nothingness. Nothingness is the secret to playing in the controlled space. In this space, everything is possible because we are not emitting anything. We are Mushin, free from obstructive thoughts. (5). We do not try to win, we play with the attacker’s intentions. This is Asobi, being playful. (6)
While walking in Kashiwa yesterday, the sign “OIOI” caught my eyes. “OIOI” is a Japanese department store on the platform next to the station. It is pronounced “Marui, marui”, spherical. (7)
Was it a sign from the gods?
1. 玉/tama/ball; sphere; globe; orb|bead (of sweat, dew, etc.); drop; droplet|ball (in sports)|pile (of noodles, etc.)|bullet|bulb (i.e. a light bulb)|lens (of glasses, etc.)|bead (of an abacus)|ball (i.e. a testicle)|gem; jewel (esp. spherical; sometimes used figuratively); pearl
2. 〇/maru/circle (sometimes used for zero)|’correct’ (when marking)
3. 二次元/nijigen/two dimensions vs 三次元/sanjigen/three dimensions; three-dimensional; 3D; 3-D|(joc) real world; IRL (in real life) +
世界/Sekai/the world; society; the universe|sphere; circle; world|renowned; world-famous; well-known outside of Japan|realm governed by one Buddha; space
4. 無/mu/nothing; naught; nought; nil; zero|un-; non-
5. 無心/mushin/innocence|free from obstructive thoughts
6. 遊び/asobi/playing|play (margin between on and off, gap before pressing button or lever has an effect)
7. 円い/marui/round; circular; spherical|harmonious; calm
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