Last Tuesday I had the honor to present the Peace Dojo certificate to Ali Matar, dojo responsible for the Phoenix Aiki Dojo.
This ceremony began by a little class and was followed by a demonstration. It was really exciting to see the progress of the participants who were taking this demonstration in a very formal way.
Then I gave Ali the Peace Dojo certificate and we made a incredible serie of photos. All participants wanted to have a picture with it.
The dojo had prepared a nice buffet and some drinks.
Everybody was honored by this certificate. It represents a very strong encouragement to continue along this project that aims to restore self-confidence and help the residents of the refugee center of the Red Cross to rebuild a new life after the dramas and difficult life conditions they endured in their country of origin.
That’s why Ali choosed the Phoenix as symbol for this Dojo, as a place to help the residents to be reborn from the ashes of what they endured.
Wonderful aikido session for the Red-Cross center for refugees in Belgium. Physical practice is a wonderful way to connect and when you add the aikido ethics you touch each participant profoundly. This place could become the next Peace Dojo in our international network
Il est des personnes qui sont des exemples, des personnes qui nous guident, qui nous inspirent.
Martin Luther King a fléchi le cours de l’histoire en donnant toute sa puissance à la non-violence.
Il y a 50 ans, disparaissait un symbole qui était convaincu qu’il était possible de changer les choses par une forme de désobéissance civile non-violente.
Garder de lui, le message qu’il nous a transmis et que sa mort a imortalisé
The Center for Movement Arts/Shamokin Aikido Kai (TCMA) recently undertook the process of applying for recognition as a Peace Dojo through the Peace Dojo International Organization (PDI). The process involved creating a document/ letter of introduction explaining the work/practice at TCMA to board members of PDI .
I initially modeled our introductory letter on the letter from our sponsor, Christian VanHenten and his Dojo in Namur, Belgium. As I collected information and products for my portfolio, I discovered a more dynamic and advanced platform used by teachers, photographers, and artists of various disciplines called an eportfolio.
The eportfolio “is a private electronic space where you can create, collect, reflect on, organize, and, if you choose, share your work and experiences with others and solicit feedback. Your ePortfolio can include a variety of file types, including text documents, audio, videos, images, and webpages.” (University of Waterloo, CA)(link). A search of the internet will provide a variety of academic sites and examples.
There are any number of FREE website building platforms for this purpose. I located a FREE website builder called WEEBLY. This site provide templates for completing and publishing my project. You can view the final product here:
As PDI expands it’s membership and invites other organizations to join in its mission, utilizing the technology provided in an eportfolio might help to facilitate the process. Additionally, it will surely save a lot of trees.
Mondays, December 4th – 18th, 4:00 – 6:00pm Pacific (California) Time
Here’s some of what you can expect from the course:
Deepen your capacity to listen and speak your truth
Become more conscious of what you communicate beyond words
Learn to notice your deeply embedded core strategies
Develop your ability to self-organize and self-motivate
Manage feelings and harmonize conflict
If you would like to feel more comfortable and effective as you face the inevitable stresses of life, love and learning, please register soon so you can join me in just one week for Somatic Practices For Embodying Nonviolent Communication!
Eleven years ago my wife, Judith, son Sam, and several students went to Ethiopia where we met Tesfaye Tekelu and led Aikido classes as one of a long line of teachers who came to advance his training. Since that time he has started four more schools, developed programs within the Ethiopian school system, and opened, The Institute for Social Advancement to teach alternative ways of dealing with conflict.
I’m heading to Ethiopia in November as part of a team of international trainers to share Aikido and conflict resolution skills with young Africans from Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia, Tanzania, Uganda, and Djibouti. This conference will also bring respected East African elders to share their wisdom and ancient traditions in resolving conflict. This conference will serve as an unprecedented cultural exchange and collaboration for peace and provide a unique stage that brings together African tools and approaches to leadership and conflict resolution with Western and Asian practices and perspectives.
Aikido is a modern Japanese martial way developed in the 1930’s by Morihei Ueshiba who developed it as an art of peace, “away to reconcile the world.”
This is a time for reconciliation near and far!
To help raise funds to support the attendance and participation of 100% of the African attendees along with some of my own travel expenses I have crafted a handmade pin as a thank you for those who help by donating 60 dollars or more.