Seishindo is a human potential discipline designed to help you live in an emotionally balanced, life-affirming manner; to more consistently live with enthusiasm, compassion, and a sense of truly belonging in the world.
Seishindo is a Japanese term which can be said to mean “the cultivation of a pure heart and simple mind” or “the cultivation of the whole self”. When you study Seishindo you are invited to enter into a fuller relationship with your body, to become more aware of your surroundings, and to experience the connection that you have to all of life.
The philosophies, theories, and practices drawn upon in Seishindo are taken mainly from:
Shin Shin Toitsu Aikido, “Sei Tai”, NLP (Neuro Linguistic Programming), Ericksonian Psychology, Cybernetics, and Self Relations Therapy.
Initially Seishindo was formulated in regard to human beings as “unique individual living systems.” Only later, was Seishindo adapted for use in business and other clusters of human communities. For the time being we continue to define the Seishindo concepts from the perspective of individual human beings, and we ask you the reader, to notice how these concepts also pertain to businesses, organizations, and communities.
The General Belief System of Seishindo:
Nothing stays the same forever.
This can be especially comforting to understand when faced with seemingly insurmountable problems.
We are all “perfect” as we are. Another way to say this is “We are all perfectly imperfect.”
Each person is much greater than the sum of their parts.
Trust in your intelligence, talents, creativity, and soul, and do the same with all you come in contact with.
Each person is capable of many great things. Strive to “recognize” and honor your own magnificence, and the magnificence of everyone you meet. We each have many gifts to share with the world.
We each have all the resources we need to live a fulfilling, healthy life. This is especially so when we consider we each have resources available to us from our network of friends, family members, colleagues, and community at large. We hold this belief even though we’re aware of people and cultures who seem to be destined to great hardship and tyranny.
The whole world is talking to you and offering you all you need. The task is learning how to “listen” and receive.
Each person’s life is supported by an “intelligence” (Spirit) that is the generative force manifesting the universe we live in. At every given moment you can tap into this intelligence to support you in living the life your true heart desires.
“You” are a relationship. You are not alone. We’re all always in relationship with other people and our environment. We’re all always in relationship with Spirit. Sensing into and appreciating our many interwoven relationships is crucial to maintaining a life affirming, compassionate experience of “self” and “other” and what is possible in the world. You can’t really trust in yourself, more than you can trust in Life.
Your body holds the answer to many puzzles your cognitive mind alone cannot express or solve.
Life is a paradox we will never fully comprehend with our rational mind.
Your thoughts, actions, and emotions are all part of “one loop” of intelligence. It really isn’t possible to separate out the physical, emotional, and rational components of “self”.
Logic and emotion are two sides of the same coin. You can’t have one without the other.
The body is intelligent, expressive and wise and communicates in a highly sophisticated and systematic manner.
Your “body language” leads to the generation of your verbal language. Change the language of your body and you will change the way you think and feel.
Pain, stress, and disease are all due to excess energy being trapped in the body. Consider your body to be like a greenhouse. When you’re struggling with various challenges it’s like when the sun’s shining strongly, and all the windows in the greenhouse are closed. Without enough air movement the building overheats and soon all the plants will start to wilt and die. Seishindo helps you learn how to “turn down the heat” by better ventilating your system with breath and movement.
When experiencing a challenge, staying “embodied and present in the moment” will greatly aid you in solving or dissolving the challenge.
In order to stay embodied and present your body needs to be able to digest and assimilate your emotions. It’s really a lot like when you eat. Eating too fast means your body gets stressed. Talking and thinking too fast has the same effect. When faced with challenges you need to slow down, pause often, and BREATHE.
The meaning of our life (our reason for living), is a mystery we’re all attempting to figure out.
Everything that occurs in your life has the possibility of being transmuted into a life affirming gift.
With humility we can realize what we don’t know is much larger than what we do know.
Every challenge you encounter has a solution.
“Problem” and “solution” are two sides of the same coin. When experiencing a problem, do your best to find a way to flip the coin.
Suffering, and hopefully joy as well, will visit you many times in the course of your life.
Most of us live much of our life in the past, believing we are living in the present.
We each have the task of giving the story of our life a happy ending.
No matter how hurtful or “wrong” we find certain people’s actions to be, we’ll do well to consider that each person acts from a place of “positive intention”. The key in this regard is recognizing that oft times we attempt to fulfill positive intentions by implementing lousy strategies.
We’ll do well to rest easy in the knowledge that frailty and failing are part of the human condition. Few, if any of us, live our entire life adhering to the beliefs that are dear to us.
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What I have written here forms the basis for the Seishindo teleclasses, workshops, and coaching. If you find my words “speak” to you then please consider exploring your Seishindo further, by engaging in one of our offerings.
I would be happy to hear from any of you who would like to consider engaging in Seishindo. Please feel free to contact me via email if you would like to discuss what is possible.
Shin Shin Toitsu Aikido
“Shin Shin Toitsu” basically means, “the coordination of spirit and body.” This form of Aikido was created by Koichi Tohei sensei, and outside of Japan this form of Aikido is usually called “Ki Society Aikido.”
In Aikido class, the student is taught how to be fully present and safe, without needing to be aggressive, and or combative. The practitioner learns that through the development of coordinated activity by their body, brain, and spirit, most attacks can be neutralized or definitely dampened, before they are even launched. You come to realize that your own thoughts are often what elicit an attack from another, and that the more you embody a life of compassionate strength, the more harmonious your life will tend to be.
It is important to note that you can accomplish all of this without any loss of self, and without the need to placate aggressive people by simply acceding to their demands.
Another key concept of Aikido, is that we have the greatest strength and manifestation of will, when we enter into a state of dynamic relaxation, and use “10% of 100% of our total self” rather than exerting excess effort with only a portion of our total self.
Furthermore, in Aikido we are taught to “think” and react from our “hara” or lower abdomen.
You are invited to read Charlie Badenhop’s articles on Aikido philosophy.
The form of “Sei Tai” explored in Seishindo is called “Noguchi Sei Tai” as created by Haruchika Noguchi sensei. “Sei Tai” basically means “properly ordered body.”
In simple terms Noguchi sensei said that we all hold on to excess energy that inhibits us from rebalancing ourselves and thus we inhibit our ability to remain physically, mentally, and emotionally healthy.
Noguchi Sensei used to say that the body is like a top: If it isn’t moving, you can’t realize what it is meant for and how to use it. One of his main premises was that people tend to use unconsciously generated strategies to organize their body in such a way that they hold onto excess energy in their system, and inhibit the body’s natural movements. It is this holding of excess energy and the concurrent inhibition of movement that he said causes illness and less than full health in general. When you release excess physical tension, you discover that your unconsciously generated body movements change, along with your thoughts and your emotional state. Physical tension and emotional tension are realized as two sides of the same coin.
A second premise of Noguchi sei tai, as we understand it, is that you need to find a way to encourage and allow the unconscious organization patterns of your body to release with a minimum of direction from your conscious mind. In almost all instances attempting to consciously and willfully change one’s posture and physical holding patterns rarely gets the results that one would expect and desire. The simple reason for this being that conscious thought processes uses the “wrong muscles”. Consciously directed actions usually involve some degree of involuntarily tensing one’s body, rather than freeing up the nervous system and muscles, to act spontaneously. One of the purpose of studying Sei Tai is to create an orderly way to unconsciously move and reorder the body, while adjusting those parts of the body that we cannot normally move through consciously directed movement.
When we experience ourselves as the relationship between our cognitive self and our somatic self, and join this relationship to our interaction with the outside world, we are able to better generate a sense of health and well-being.
NLP (Neuro Linguistic Programming)
The Art, Science, and Practice of Understanding and Valuing People
“Neuro” signifies that all experience is received through the neurology of our senses. What we cannot register with our consciousness, we cannot know.
“Linguistic” refers to the fact that we code a large quantity of the information received through our senses into language. “Programming” relates to how our sensory awareness and language is organized by our mind into our own personal set of habits and a culturally accepted form of reality.
NLP can help you to have a deeper understanding of, and appreciation for, the dynamic interplay of personal spirit, language, cultural and personal programming, physiology, sensory experience and the environment. These are the factors that make up the foundation of each person’s reality. These are the variables that you will need to know how to alter, in order to create meaningful change within yourself.
NLP is considered to be one of the foremost fields of study for demonstrating excellence in the areas of communication, shared leadership, creativity, and conflict resolution. NLP has been extensively applied to the study of how mental strategies, communication patterns, and value systems, influence a variety of business and personal activities.
The basic objectives of NLP are to:
* Understand and “model” how various individuals and organizations create life affirming, solution oriented processes that foster the sharing of knowledge, the creation of intelligence, and a sense of well being and personal excellence.
* Transfer the understanding of such processes to individuals and organizations that desire to evolve and improve their current abilities.
This discipline is an exquisite model for understanding how it is that each person constructs, communicates and believes in their own personal reality. This knowledge will be of great benefit in helping you to understand the logic and feelings of your counterparts, and how it is that you structure your version of reality.
The dictionary says cybernetics is “The science of communications and automatic control systems, in both machines and living things.” Although this might start out seeming a bit mechanical in nature, cybernetics can help us to understand how a major part of the total communicating people do (both verbal and non-verbal) is systematic in nature, yet outside of their conscious awareness. We can improve our ability to communicate both interpersonally and intrapersonally, as we become more aware of our habitual patterns of expression and come to understand how we can alter our expression to better fit each particular circumstance that we enter into.