Another, a man of great physical and mental vitality, Ambassador K.
told me (he was then over sixty) that as a young man he had been weak
and sickly and that he owed it exclusively to Seiza1 that he was now fresh,
vigorous and in excellent health. These are but two examples out of
After Master Okada's early death his work was carried on by a woman,
Dr Kobayashi, with whom I had the opportunity of practising Seiza. She
also gave me the little book 'Words of the Master' to keep with me
always on my way.
... Sayings cif Master Okada
Tanden1 is the shrine of the Divine. If its stronghold is
finely built so that the Divine in us can grow then a real
human bei~g is achieved. If one divides people into ranks
the lowest IS he who values his head. Those who endeavour
only to amass ~s much knowledge as possible grow heads
that become bIgger and so they topple over eaSily, like a
pyramid stand~ng upsi~~ d~wn. They excel in imitating
others but neIther orlgmahty nor inventiveness nor any
great work is theirs.
Next come those of middle rank. For them the chest is
mos~ important. :~ople with self-control, given to
abstmence and ascetIcIsm belong to this type. These are the
men with outward courage but without real strength.
Many of the so-called great men are in this category. Yet all
this is not enough.
But those who regard the belly as the most important
part and so have built the stronghold where the Divine can
grow-these are the people of the highest rank. They have
1 Tandtn-region .hout two inche! below the navel.
Okada T orajiro
developed their minds as well as their bodies in the right
way. Strength flows out from them and produces a spiritual
condition of ease and equanimity. They do what seems good
to them without violating any law. Those in the first
category think that Science can rule Nature. Those in the
second have apparent courage and discipline and they know
how to fight. Those in the third know what reality is.
Seiza makes use of the posture most certain to produce
people of the third category. The sorrows of humanity are
caused by loss of balance. To preserve it one has to have a
healthy body and an upright heart. These can be achieved
only 'on the way'. To reach the way means 'sitting'! If you
'sit' for two or three years you will understand.
From getting-up time until bedtime you must be awake
(on the jump). Keep your posture in Hara, come what may,
and you will be alert in the right way.
You sit for one year, two years, three years, and you
think-and so do others-that you are like one born anew.
In truth however you are just a little shoot on the way to
the development of your being. It takes fifty to sixty years
to become like the heaven-striving cedars and cypresses.
Even if the body is changed in Seiza the deepest inner
state does not change so quickly.
Keep a carp in a pond with a stone in the centre and
another of equal size with nothing in the centre. In the
pond where the stone is the carp swims round the stone all
the time and thus has its exercise without meeting resistance.
He grows more quickly than the carp in the other
pond. This is the result of endless repetition.