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Saturday, April 20, 2024

Morihei Ueshiba

UeshibaMorihei Ueshiba is the founder of Aikido. and is therefore often referred to as Kaiso ("The Founder") or Osensei ("Great Teacher").

He was born as son of a land owner on 14 December 1883 and in his youth studied a number of martial arts. After his service in the Japanese army, he moved to Hokkaido, heading a pioneer settlement where he met and studied with Takeda Sokaku, the founder of Daito-ryu-aiki-jujutsu. Ueshiba opened is first dojo in Ayabe in 1919, where he had joined a sub movement of the the Shinto sect.

Morihei Ueshiba was a deeply spiritual man and in 1925 he exerienced what he called himself a great spiritual enlightment which also fundamentally changed the way of his martial arts. He developed his own style which he first referred to as Aiki-jutsu which later became Aikido.

In 1927, he moved to Tokyo where he set up a new dojo. After moving a couple of times to larger premises to accomodate the growing number of students, he eventually moved into a purpose-build hall in the municipal of Shinguku. This final ocation was originally named Kobukan and eventually became the Aikikai Hombu Dojo.

In 1935, Ueshiba started to buy land in Iwama and in 1942, when he owned approximately 17 acres of farmland, moved there permanently and founded the Aiki Shuren Dojo. In the aftermath of the 2nd World War, until 1948, the practice of martials arts was prohibited. However, Ueshiba continued teaching Aikido in secret at the Aiki Shuren Dojo in Iwama and while travelling. When the prohibition was finally lifted, the Aiki Foundation was established by the Japanese Ministry of Education with permission of the Occupation forces and the Hombu Dojo re-opened in 1949.

Ueshiba delegated most of the work running the dojo and the Aiki Foundation to his son Kisshomaru and spend his time in prayer, meditation and with farming, but continued to travel extensively to promote Aikido.

In 1969, Ueshiba became ill and was diagnosed with liver cancer. He passed away on 26 April 1969.

He awarded his master students the 8th Dan Aikido and encouraged them to develop their own Aikido. The first 8th Dan was awarded to Kenji Tomiki in 1942, who then developed what today is known as the Shodokan Aikido style.




Dojo Address:
North Ryde RSL Youth Club
Cnr Magdala Rd & Pittwater Rd
North Ryde
NSW 2113

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