Tag Archives: Wellness

Sensei’s Journal: Entry # 19 – Symbols Of The Shaman

21 Feb

There are no symbols of rank in either my Kata-Rx for Wellness program or my Katannabis (Kata-Rx entheogenically combined with medical cannabis). Karate was different. There were ten levels (called “Kyu” grades) from beginner to black belt. These levels being represented by various colored belts, starting with white, and/or stripes on the belt. At black belt there are also ten levels, called “Dan” grades. The lowest being first degree (San-dan) and the highest being tenth degree (Ju-dan). The various black belt degrees from fourth grade (Yon-dan) to tenth grade (Ju-dan) are somewhat exotic involving combinations of the colors black, red and white. For a description of the black belts in the Goshin-Do system please use this link https://senseijohn.me/2011/02/27/the-burden-of-rank/

In the photo below are the three black belts that have the most meaning to me. They best represent my development and views on kata throughout the years. They are, my first degree black belt (now a grayish-white with age), my fourth degree (Yon-dan) belt, (red and white stripes on one side and black on the other) and my seventh degree black belt (Nana-dan) (red and black sides). See endnote # 1

You will notice the Kanji on the one tip it reads, “Ichi-Nichi Issho” or “One day one lifetime.” I was so enamored of this philosophy that, beginning with my fourth degree belt, every belt thereafter had the embroidery. I also named my Kata-Rx for wellness hallmark kata for the philosophy.

My original black belt represents the period during which I became comfortable with developing and experimenting with the physical aspects of kata. I had also earned the title of “Sensei” (literally “Before-being”, but loosely “Teacher”). This period brought about a deep rooted imagination to discover so-called “hidden” self-defense techniques in the Kata. Thus began a period of introspection and discovery.

Decades later I was awarded my fourth degree black belt and the title “Karate-Do Renshi” (karate advanced teacher or coach). At this time I began to develop my concept of the “Three battles of Kata” to represent the idea that there was more to kata than just the physical. There was the spiritual which codified state-of-minds, emotions and psyche and the environmental which represented the interrelationship between Kata and the physical environment. These were the earliest stages of my Kata-Rx for wellness program and its humble beginnings with my “Sanchin Kata for everyone” campaign and book.

Even more decades later when I was awarded my Seventh Degree (nana-dan), I began to develop my Katannabis program – the entheogenic combination of my Kata-Rx and medical cannabis as a meditative, mind-expanding practice.

So there you have it, the evolution of my Kata-Rx and Katannabis programs symbolized by three belts. I look at them now not as symbols or ranks, but as my “Symbols of the Shaman.” But, that is for another day.

Until the next time, I remain, 

Sensei John Szmitkowski

And by-the-way:

You can try my Kata-Rx for FREE, safely and conveniently in the comfort of your own home by enrolling for FREE in my online class: https://kata-rx.teachable.com/p/preview-kata-as-moving-meditation

Endnotes:

 1. I had passed my fifth degree black belt (same coloring as the fourth degree except that the white stripe is black) onto my senior black belt. I buried my sixth degree black belt (one side alternating red and white panels with the other side black) with my father who would drive me to my earliest lessons when I was ten years old.

Follow Sensei John on Instagram. Simply follow “1day1lifetime” for daily updates on all of Sensei’s projects:

  • Kata-Rx for wellness & mindfullness;
  • Katannabis (the entheogenic combination of Kata-Rx & medical cannabis);
  • Kata-Rx & Koan daily meditations;

Enjoy your Instagram experience with Sensei John.

Sensei’s Journal: Entry # 18 – Katannabis, Snowstorms & Darts

7 Feb

Two days snowed in! 

No internet, no cable t.v., both knocked out by the high winds. What to do? Katannabis*meditation three times a day, write, and throw darts (which helps me write). Invent an entirely new, unheard of dart practice routine? Sure, why not.

It was the day after “Snowmaggedon.” Outside temps being in the single digits with below zero wind chills I didn’t mind staying in and having an extra day off work. I finished my noon time (second for the day) Katannabis. I took a break from writing.  I was practicing darts while watching “Bellies and Bullseyes” on YouTube when an idea for a new practice routine came to mind. I thought it through and then tried it and Damn it was fun!

Generally I find that after a good Katannabis meditation session my darts throwing is fluid and smooth. My mind is free of pressure and the idea of “achieving results” or improving. I simply throw for enjoyment and relaxation. True, I do want to hit the target, but thats a mere desire. I don’t add-on baggage and pressure. This allows my mind to wander (rather than concentrate on practice). 

As such, my darts practice is undisciplined. It but it generally contains a few simple routines:

1. throwing the cricket numbers counting the total number of hits;

2. twenty darts at 20 (100 darts at 20 once a week);

3. take out 121;

4. 20 darts at double 16, 8, 20, 10;

5. around the board counting the number of hits.

I have a few dart set ups in my collection, including one prized somewhat rare set from Accudart. I throw then all. (See endnote # 1) Choice of dart varies mostly depending on my mood, but sometimes my hand and joint discomfort will warrant one set over the others. At present I’m mostly throwing my newest set, the Shot Ronin Rei in 23 grams. 

I was feeling good from the Katannabis meditation session, comfortable with being “locked” inside and enjoying both the darts and the “Bellies and Bullseyes” when it hit me. How about playing a virtual game against once of these legendary pro players. As I threw more and more darts I let that idea germinate. Eventually I came up with this new, dare I say innovative, practice routine. I tried it and liked it. I wonder if anyone else has. Here’s what I came up with. Have you ever tried it? If not, give it a go and let me know what you think.

I put on a video of two players. In this instance as I was already watching Bellies and Bulleyes, I used one of the featured games. It was the championship match between Eric Bristow and Jocky Wilson (Episode Part 25 of Bellies and Bulleyes). Lets say I want to “play” a game versus Eric Bristow. I watch the video of him throwing. Then I throw when Jocky Wilson throws (you can pause the video if needed). I then continue in this manner until the game is done. If Bristow checked out and beat Wilson I look to see how my score faired against Wilson’s score. For instance Wilson my have been on 32 when I needed 132 to check out. If Bristow didn’t check out and Wilson won, then I see how my score faired against Bristow’s. I never checked out before the pro, but I can dream about it. Hmm, maybe a nine-darter!

Maybe it was the Katannabis, maybe I simply just had a really fun darts practice or simply enjoyed being home like a sixty year old school kid on a snow-day, but I had a helluva lot of fun with it. I hope you do to – – – 

And by-the-way you can try my Kata-Rx and Katannabis for FREE.

You can enroll my Kata-Rx for FREE, safely and conveniently in the comfort of your own home by enrolling for FREE in my online class: https://kata-rx.teachable.com/p/preview-kata-as-moving-meditation – if you desire, just add your own medical cannabis.

* Katannabis is the entheogenic combination of my Kata-Rx program and medical cannabis.

Until the next time, I remain, 

Sensei John Szmitkowski

Follow Sensei John on Instagram. Simply follow “1day1lifetime” for daily updates on all of Sensei’s projects:

  • Kata-Rx for wellness & mindfullness;
  • Katannabis (the entheogenic combination of Kata-Rx & medical cannabis);
  • Kata-Rx & Koan daily meditations;

Enjoy your Instagram experience with Sensei John.

Endnotes:

1. My current darts include the following (screen shot from my GoDarts profile page):

Sensei’s Journal: Entry # 17 – Katannabis Inspired Musings

31 Jan

Musings from this week’s Katannabis (the entheogenic combination of my Kata-Rx for wellness program and medical cannabis).

Katannabis often gives me insights into various matters. I record the more interesting ones in a journal. Sometimes they ripen into an article that I share here:  

 https://senseijohn.me/category/journal-senseis-kata-rx-exploration/ ; More often not, they remain my personal insights which I tend to hoard. This week I thought I’d share with you some of my journal entries – my rough musings from Katannabis. In the event that any of these musings ripen into a future article, I’ll attach a link here.

1. In order to make it seem like I know what I’m talking about, I want to start with insights into the practice of Katannabis itself.

Continuing to explore Seienchin Kata as it symbolizes Dante’s Portal in the inferno  https://senseijohn.me/2022/01/10/senseis-journal-entry-15-kata-rx-dante-seienchin/ I had the following insights:

  • First, the line “Before me nothing was created” is entangled with the title of “Sensei” which literally means “Before-being.”
  • Second, in the passage ” and when he placed his hand on mine, with a cheerful look from which I took comfort, he led me amongst the secret things.” I now understand that the “He” is Me (influenced by Katannabis in general and Seienchin in particular).

Exploration of and insights into the Suparunpei Kata as to the mandala-effect of performing two specific sections of the Kata with eyes closed and while being conscious of Dante’s Portal.

2. I had some truly noteworthy experiences performing Katannabis:

Wednesday morning while performing my pre-dawn Seipai Kata at the shop where the truck is parked, I was treated to a spectacularly bright view of the planet Venus.

Thursday night I performed Sanchin outside in the cold, clear night under the constellation Orion. It was enhanced by the melodic, haunting sound of a flute. One of my neighbors was either playing the instrument or listening to it.

3. Now for some of my general insights and musings during Katannabis:

I understand (and accept) that “Unwellness subsidizes wellness.” Damn, I really have to write more about that.

My average blood pressure of 153/81 mathematically results in a redigit,specifically 1.888888888888 to infinity

I came up with a new darts practice game. Generally, my dart game (after a good Katannabis session) is improving. I track my results on GoDart.Com

Its now Sunday and I’m starting to compose this article, aided by daily Katannabis sessions during the weekend. Rumor has it that the storm has caused a disruption in product deliveries. Maybe, just maybe we’ll be off Monday and I’ll have another day of intense Katannabis meditation sessions.

And by-the-way You can experience Katannabis for FREE:

Simply combine your medical cannabis and my Kata-Rx which you can try for FREE, safely and conveniently in the comfort of your own home by enrolling for FREE in my online class: https://kata-rx.teachable.com/p/preview-kata-as-moving-meditation

Until the next time, I remain, 

Sensei John Szmitkowski

Follow Sensei John on Instagram. Simply follow “1day1lifetime” for daily updates on all of Sensei’s projects:

  • Kata-Rx for wellness & mindfullness;
  • Katannabis (the entheogenic combination of Kata-Rx & medical cannabis);
  • Kata-Rx & Koan daily meditations;

Enjoy your Instagram experience with Sensei John.

Sensei’s Journal: Entry # 16 – Katannabis & Sherlock Holmes

24 Jan

Katannabis is the entheogenic combination of my Kata-Rx program for wellness and mindfulness combined with medical cannabis. It is a dynamic, moving meditative experience assisted by cannabis. It is my go-to form of meditation for wellness and mindfulness. Click here for my daily Katannabis session:  https://senseijohn.me/2021/05/03/my-daily-kata-rx-katannabis/

Not all of my Katannabis meditation sessions are geared towards my own state of Wellness and mindfulness. On those occasions when I am of sound body and good spirit, I am able to turn the session inwards onto itself. By that I mean that my mediation is geared towards furthering my understanding of the process of Katannabis. Recently I was able to do just that. Using Katannabis, and a Sherlock Holmes book, I was able to explore the function of medical cannabis as the entheogen for my Katannabis session.

This past Friday I had an morning appointment with my cardiologist. This meant that in addition to my normal two days off, I was able to enjoy a three day weekend. I was able to perform Katannabis not just nightly but also midday. Two sessions a day really fostered a superior physical and mental state. My Saturday midday session I delved deep into the role of medical cannabis. I felt great!

To enjoy my relaxed state even more, I picked up the latest book I’m reading. It is one of a sub-genre of Sherlock Holmes fiction wherein the sleuth is pitted against science fiction characters. It is The Shadwell Shadows, the first book in the Cthulhu Casebook trilogy by James Lovegrove. As fate would have it I came across a passage where an entheogen was used by Gong-Fen Shou to introduce Holmes to the alternative dimensions and its god-like inhabitants. Gong-Fen told Holmes, 

“Without the drug it would all be for naught. Nothing would happen. (The) dream-quest would not occur. I might as well just stand there twiddling my thumbs. If one wished to draw down lightening, one needed a lightening conductor, and such was the drug.”

Lovegrove, James, The Cthulhu Casebooks of Sherlock Holmes: The Shadwell Shadows (titan Books, 2016) E-Book chapter 10.


This made me think about the role of cannabis as an entheogen in Katannabis. Unlike Gong-Fen’s entheogen which was the sine quo non, or condition precedent for the experience. Meaning that without it the experience would not happen. The experience of wellness and mindfulness can be had in Kata-Rx without the entheogen.

So why then combine medical cannabis with Kata-Rx to produce Katannabis? The answer is that cannabis serves as an accelerant to the meditative state of mind that is achieved with Kata-Rx. Your state of mind at the start of Katannabis is already heightened by the cannabis. In my experience, it is akin to the state of mind achieved after a thirty minute Kata-Rx session in three or four minutes. So the cannabis is akin to performing a thirty minute Kata-Rx session and then immediately thereafter another thirty minute Kata-Rx session. 

And by the Way – You can try Katannabis for FREE:

You can try my Kata-Rx for FREE, safely and conveniently in the comfort of your own home by enrolling for FREE in my online class: https://kata-rx.teachable.com/p/preview-kata-as-moving-meditation  You provide your own medical cannabis.

Until the next time, I remain, 

Sensei John Szmitkowski

Follow Sensei John on Instagram. Simply follow “1day1lifetime” for daily updates on all of Sensei’s projects:

  • Kata-Rx for wellness & mindfullness;
  • Katannabis (the entheogenic combination of Kata-Rx & medical cannabis);
  • Kata-Rx & Koan daily meditations;

Enjoy your Instagram experience with Sensei John.

Sensei’s Journal: Entry # 14 – Labor Day

6 Sep

“When the body is tired, the mind will often create worries to focus on.” – yumg pueblo

Labor Day weekend. 

For bankers, stock brokers, and office workers the weekend celebrating “labor” is a three day mini-vacation. For actual “labor,” who regularly work a six day work week, it is a mere two days off from work. Two-days, what the aforesaid office worker weekly takes for granted.

At any rate, I was grateful for these two days. I needed a break mentally, emotionally and physically from a grueling summer work schedule. Six days of waking at 5:05 am and not returning home until 6:00 pm (“Thank God of an ‘early’ day”) or even 8:00 pm (“Oh, damn.”). This last week before Labor Day, I was shot. Wednesday promised and delivered a rain day. Normally a day off for outside construction work. But, guess what. We had a rare inside job. No need for a rain day off. I finally made it to Saturday. Work ended and I was home by 4:30 – “Wow an extra-early day.”

Now, Monday morning I actually got to sit down at my laptop with a coffee and bagel to tell you the thing that has me quasi-recuperated in body and especially mind is my routine of Kata-Rx For Wellness, Katannabis* and meditation. *Katannabis is the entheogenic combination of my Kata-Rx and medical cannabis. 

I had intended to go into specifics of my routine and meditation. Frankly this blog is full of articles, insights, methods and instruction. Simply search the categories to the right. I would recommend: Kata-Rx For Wellness, Katannabis, Sensei’s Journal and Sanchin.

As I now close the laptop to do a morning Kata and mediation session, I hope my demons will remain at bay at least for the majority of the coming week. Time will tell. I will emphatically say – what got me through last week and what will get me through the coming week is my methods and practices. Without them, I probably spend the day in bed folding and curling inwardly. Ah, the Willow Moon.

“Though our phantoms will never leave us, our demons are almost gone.” – Emilie Autumn

You can try my Kata-Rx for FREE, safely and conveniently in the comfort of your own home by enrolling for FREE in my online class: https://kata-rx.teachable.com/p/preview-kata-as-moving-meditation

Respectfully submitted,

Sensei John Szmitkowski

Follow Sensei John on Instagram. Simply follow “1day1lifetime” for daily updates on all of Sensei’s projects:

  • Kata-Rx for wellness & mindfullness;
  • Katannabis (the entheogenic combination of Kata-Rx & medical cannabis);
  • Kata-Rx & Koan daily meditations;

Enjoy your Instagram experience with Sensei John.

Sensei’s Journal: Entry # 13 – Katannabis & College Memories

26 Jul

A therapeutic benefit of Katannabis (the entheogenic combination of Kata-Rx and medical cannabis) meditation sessions is the ability to recall suppressed memories. Recently I recalled my college experience. This was unusual as my experience was not a fulfilling one. Definitely not one I would look back upon with fondness.

I attended Fairleigh Dickinson University (FDU) in Rutherford, New Jersey. I graduated in 1984 (Magna Cum Laude). I didn’t attend my graduation and simply choose to have my diploma mailed. The University was great. A wonderful institution in a remarkable setting. It was my ability to engage in it that was “off.”

With the exception of the first semester, I worked full time and attended class in the evening. So as to graduate in four years, I also took summer evening classes. There wasn’t a lot of free time to experience the so called “college experience.”

But, there was that first semester. I had saved what I thought was enough money for tuition. This allowed me to work part-time a few evenings a week and attended college full-time during the day. That was a great experience. Unfortunately it didn’t last. I needed more tuition than I anticipated. I changed to the evening sessions and got a full time job – again. My memories of college retained my experiences of the next seven semesters. That first semester was buried deep in my consciousness.

My Katannabis allowed me to recall many, many fond memories of the semester that I had long forgotten. I wrote a comparison of memories from that first semester and those of the subsequent seven semesters wherein I went at night. Lo and behold there were many more. Better still the memories were more rich and fond. 

My Journal Notes

I realized instead of allowing the seven evening semesters to define my college experience. I can choose to focus on the memories of that first semester. I felt better and Katannabis helped.

Try it yourself:

You can try my Kata-Rx for FREE, safely and conveniently in the comfort of your own home by enrolling for FREE in my online class: https://kata-rx.teachable.com/p/preview-kata-as-moving-meditation

Respectfully submitted,

Sensei John Szmitkowski

Follow Sensei John on Instagram. Simply follow “1day1lifetime” for daily updates on all of Sensei’s projects:

  • Kata-Rx for wellness & mindfullness;
  • Katannabis (the entheogenic combination of Kata-Rx & medical cannabis);
  • Kata-Rx & Koan daily meditations;

Enjoy your Instagram experience with Sensei John.

Sensei’s Journal: Entry # 12- The Panther

19 Jul

Seasonal work demands have dictated a change in the frequency of my Katannabis* meditation session. What was once my daily routine ( https://wordpress.com/post/senseijohn.me/3731 ) has become a weekly session on Sunday nights. Sunday being my only day off. 

To describe the effect of this change, I offer the poem The Panther, by Rainer Maria Wilke. Katannabis is now like the image that rushes into the Panther’s eye.

The Panther:

His vision, from the constantly passing bars,

Has grown so weary that it cannot hold anything else.

It seems to him there are a thousand bars; 

And behind the bars, no world.

As he paces in cramped circles, over and over, 

The movement of his powerful soft strides 

Is like a ritual dance around a center

In which a mighty will stands paralyzed.

Only at times, the curtain of the pupil lifts, quietly –

An image rushes in,

Rushes down through the tensed, arrested muscles, 

Plunges into the heart and is gone.

To be sure I still perform short meditations throughout the day. If I did not, I could get through the demands of the day. It helps be cope whereas daily Katannabis expanded me as a person.

The key is to maintain myself until the seasonal demands end and I again have the capability to return to my daily Katannabis.

* Katannabis is the entheogenic combination of my Kata-Rx program and medical cannabis.

Try it yourself:

You can try my Kata-Rx for FREE, safely and conveniently in the comfort of your own home by enrolling for FREE in my online class: https://kata-rx.teachable.com/p/preview-kata-as-moving-meditation

Respectfully submitted,

Sensei John Szmitkowski

Katannabis Kata Syllabus – Origins

12 Jul

This week I would like to compare the Kata I used to develop my Katannabis syllabus and the original kata of the Goshin-Do Karate system. The Kata are presented in the order taught. Kata in bolds italics were incorporated into my Katannabis syllabus.  (For more on the syllabus, please click here: 

Goshin-Do Karate Kata * (for videos of these Kata please visit):

Taikiyoku

Sanchin

Ten-Ni-No

Fuku

Gekisai

Kunchaba (removed)

Kanto

Seienchin

Wansu

Ananku

Chi-Ni-No

Seisan

Gojushiho

Seipai

Chinto

Suparunpei

Regularly I will also perform the Goshin-Do Kata that were not formally placed into the Katannabis syllabus within the Katannabis ceremony. This allows me to more fully explore the Katannabis meditation experience.

Try it yourself:

You can try my Kata-Rx for FREE, safely and conveniently in the comfort of your own home by enrolling for FREE in my online class: https://kata-rx.teachable.com/p/preview-kata-as-moving-meditation

* The Goshin-Do Kata span the student ranks from white belt to San-Dan, Third Degree Black Belt.

Respectfully submitted,

Sensei John Szmitkowski

Follow Sensei John on Instagram. Simply follow “1day1lifetime” for daily updates on all of Sensei’s projects:

  • Kata-Rx for wellness & mindfullness;
  • Katannabis (the entheogenic combination of Kata-Rx & medical cannabis);
  • Kata-Rx & Koan daily meditations;

Enjoy your Instagram experience with Sensei John.

Sensei John’s Journal: Entry # 11 – Physicality & Spirituality

5 Jul

July 4th, 2021. (Sunday)

The three day holiday weekend gave me ample opportunity to treat myself to in-depth Kata-Rx and Katannabis (the entheogenic combination of Kata-Rx & medical cannabis) sessions. This allowed me to delve deeply into the interrelationship between Physicality and Spirituality. In the coming weeks I’ll post some of my observations and conclusions.  For now, some introductory comments.

Physicality and spirituality concepts and methods are for most polar opposites. Physicality is found in the gym, or now, in a “cyber-gym.” Spirituality is found in the various Houses Of Worship. Both are desired, but sought through separate pursuits. In fact, the two are as intertwined as the classic “Yin / Yang” symbol. They are also directly proportionate. The more arduous the physical, the more profound effect on the spiritual. And, vice-versa. This is because the more arduous the physical the greater the draw to the “dark side” of states-of-mind. Thus the greater the need for the light of the spiritual. On Father’s Day my youngest daughter sent me a gift. A book,  inward by yung pueblo. I found the following:

reminder:

when the body is tired

the mind will often create

worries to focus on. *

This observation is is one that was revealed during my Katannabis exploration. Now, the question becomes how to mitigate the dilatory effects of arduous physicality? The answer is Kata. The methodology is to be found in either Kata-Rx or Katannabis.

In the coming weeks I’ll post my observations of the relationship between physicality and spirituality. This will start with the concept that Kata is the bridge between physicality and spirituality. 

Until then, I remain,

Sensei John Szmitkowski

ENDNOTES:

  • inward, yung pueblo (Andrews McMeel Publishing, Kansas City, Mo, 2018) p. 18. 

Try it yourself:

You can try my Kata-Rx for FREE, safely and conveniently in the comfort of your own home by enrolling for FREE in my online class: https://kata-rx.teachable.com/p/preview-kata-as-moving-meditation

Follow Sensei John on Instagram. Simply follow “1day1lifetime” for daily updates on all of Sensei’s projects:

  • Kata-Rx for wellness & mindfullness;
  • Katannabis (the entheogenic combination of Kata-Rx & medical cannabis);
  • Kata-Rx & Koan daily meditations;

Enjoy your Instagram experience with Sensei John.

My Katannabis Kata Syllabus

14 Jun

This week I want to share with you the specific Kata that I perform during my Katannabis sessions. Again, Katannabis is the entheogenic combination of my Kata-Rx and medical cannabis. 

An important note:  For those readers that do not know a Kata. Don’t worry, you can learn a Kata that I specifically designed for you for FREE. Using  this “One Day / One Lifetime” Kata, you, too can experience the life enhancing benefits of Katannabis. A link to my FREE online course where you can learn at your own pace in the comfort of your home is contained in Endnote # 1.

Before I reveal my Katannabis Kata, I need to emphasize that you do not need to learn these specific Kata. Any style’s Kata syllabus can provide the necessary Kata. (To view Kata videos, please see Endnote # 2 )To assist you in creating your own Katannabis syllabus I have placed the kata into levels of functionality; what is to be desired from the kata performance. For purposes of this article I have used general descriptions as to the purpose of each level. Each level builds upon the next facilitating the transformation from a physical-based reality to a more spiritual-based experience. A deep discussion is beyond the ken of this article, his will be more greatly discussed in future articles.

Level 1:

Facilitates the physical: Kata are strong, swift and create a need for oxygen intake. One important characteristic is that the kata contain similar sequences and a similar pattern with one building on the other. (see Endnote # 3)

my Katannabis Kata:

Fuku

Gekisai

Level 2:

Similarly facilitates the physical experience but using one Kata. This Kata should be somewhat unique within the system containing, inter alia, a unique pattern and sequences.

my Katannabis Kata:

Kunchaba

Level 3:

Contains two Kata, one a physical Kata and another that introduces the enhanced breathing methodology of certain Goju-Ryu Kata (see Endnote # 4)

My Katannabis Kata:

Ananku

Seipai

(Now starts my Sacred Trinity of Kata)

Level 4:

One Kata should now achieve the same physical to spiritual (represented by the enhanced breathing). Whereas the previous level symbolized this with two Kata, this level reinforces the transition with one Kata.

My Katannabis Kata:

Seienchin

Level 5:

Fully encapsulates the Katannabis experience in one Kata.

My Katannabis Kata:

Suparunpei

Level 6:

Hard-wires the spiritual experience into your physical reality

My Katannabis Kata:

Sanchin

Zazen (using Sa, Ta Na Ma concepts)

Seems relatively simple. Trust me, the above summarizes a decades of my mental “Kata Laboratory.” For almost fifty years, I lived my motto of “Think * Sweat * Experiment” with Kata. It hasn’t always been easy. In the future, I’ll dissect each kata, the functionality of each level and the slight modifications of the kata. At this juncture I will note that the modification highlights and emphasizes a physical posture that is found within all the kata of Katannabis. That posture serves to connect one kata to the next, one level to the next. Thus, while performing individual kata, the entire Katannabis experience is unified. All is in fact, one.

Respectfully submitted, 

Sensei John Szmitkowski

ENDNOTES:

1. You can learn my Kata-Rx for FREE, safely and conveniently in the comfort of your own home by enrolling for FREE in my online class: https://kata-rx.teachable.com/p/preview-kata-as-moving-meditation

2. To view the Kata mentioned in this article, please use this link:  https://senseijohn.me/kata-syllabus/   and select the Kata you wish to view.

3. Examples include the Taikiyoku series of Kata, the Gekisai series of Kata, The Pinan series and the like.

4. At this point, the Katannabis performer may need to learn these kata. At a bare minimum, the kata Sanchin MUST be learned.

Social Media:

Follow Sensei John on Instagram. Simply follow “1day1lifetime” for daily updates on all of Sensei’s projects:

  • Kata-Rx for wellness & mindfullness;
  • Katannabis (the entheogenic combination of Kata-Rx & medical cannabis);
  • Kata-Rx & Koan daily meditations;

Enjoy your Instagram experience with Sensei John.

Cannabis As An Entheogen In Katannabis Meditation

31 May

I wholeheartedly advocate the wellness and mindfulness aspect of Kata. I fell in love with kata at age ten; fifty years ago. I embrace the idea that anyone can and should learn and perform kata. Thus, Kata need not be taught solely as part of a karate program. I called this belief “Kata-RX.” 

I not only advocate Kata-Rx, I practice it daily. Twenty years ago, I started feeling that something was missing. Kata sustained and nourished me. But I felt more was possible. Through contemplation and experimentation I realized that a more fulfilling experience and a greater ascendancy was possible. Cannabis was the key. Cannabis accelerated the process. What do I mean?

Experience showed me that a certain level of mindfulness was achieved after performing Kata-Rx for about thirty minutes followed by ten minutes of Zazen meditation. Experimentation showed me that a micro-dose of cannabis prior to the start of Kata-RX accelerated the mindfulness process. The micro dose prior to Kata-RX took me to that heightened state at the very start. The Kata-RX experience then took me further. The result was stunning. 

This is illustrated by the chart below. Starting at the bottom, you can see the levels of ascendancy that are possible through Kata-Rx. All the tools of ascendancy are within you and Katannabis which is the entheogenic combination of Kata-Rx and medical cannabis.

A word about cannabis dosage. I want to stress that it is important that you use a micro-dose of cannabis. You are not looking to get “stoned.” 

You must be able to perform the Kata with technical proficiency. Sloppy, stoned Kata will NOT invoke the physical and mental benefits of Katannabis. If stoned you will not achieve the fullest Katannabis experience.

The casual observer should not notice a difference in your Kata performance during the Katannabis ceremony. I emphasize casual observer because to the enlightened observer (one that has expanded consciousness through Katannabis) a difference can be seen in your eyes during the Kata. The eyes reflect your your inner consciousness. Thus, they will disclose an enhanced Kata experience to those with similar vision.

So a little goes a long way. Consideration should also be given to the manner in which you interact with and utilize the cannabis. Simply put, treat the cannabis with respect. Just like your kata, the more respect you pay to cannabis the more embracing your experience and relationship with the herb.

Until next time, I remain,

Sensei John Szmitkowski

Follow Sensei John on Instagram. Simply follow “1day1lifetime” for daily updates on all of Sensei’s projects:

  • Kata-Rx for wellness & mindfullness;
  • Katannabis (the entheogenic combination of Kata-Rx & medical cannabis);
  • Kata-Rx & Koan daily meditations;
  • Kata Laboratory where you can “Think – Sweat – Experiment” with your Kata & Sensei John’s innovative concepts.

Enjoy your Instagram experience with Sensei John.

Sensei’s Journal Entry # 10: Wednesday’s Secret

10 May

Just let me fight my secret war.”

— inspired by a lyric from Concrete Blonde’s “Joey”

All wars cost. Death, maiming, destruction, mental anguish & despair. Internal wars are not excluded. Pain, aches, fatigue, uncertainty, survival. War is declared, “One country has invaded another,” “X-country has declared war on Y-country. Internal war is silent, it creeps on caterpillar feet.* No one knows, save for the person fighting it.

A laundry list of mental sludge oozes through the mind’s soul. Festering bubbles of memory pulsate and dare you to prick them with mind allowing their stink to vent. Toxic ooze bubble by to drown the mind-soul. Secret, silent War has been declared. Weapons deployed to fend off the attack. The first salvo of Katannabis fired. 

These were my thoughts, presented (without further clarification) after a particularly satisfying, rare, morning Katannabis session Wednesday May 5th, the first rain day cancellation of work in five weeks of six workdays a week. Five days off and thirty five days of work. Fatigue, fortitude, perseverance. A streak broken. The text message received at 6:11 that morning, announcing work was cancelled was the traditional:

“Game called today on account of rain, I will see you tomorrow at the usual time.”

A day off from physical aches and pains and mental fatigue. But the war still rages. Battles to encounter before I sleep. Rain, don’t think of enjoying the day, having fun. Think rather of what to do today to make surviving tomorrow easier.

To secret wars,

Sensei John Szmitkowski

* inspired by a poem by Dennis Rhodes,  “. . . the tide creeps in on caterpillar feet, silent and complete.”

** the poem is the photo is an abbreviated version for my Instagram, the full poem by Emil Cioran (which I found on the “Poetic Outlaws” Facebook page) is: “ I have always lived with the awareness of the impossibility of living. And what has made existence endurable to me is my curiosity as to how I would get from one minute, one day, one year to the next.”

FREE help in your secret war:

You can try my Kata-Rx for FREE, safely and conveniently in the comfort of your own home by enrolling for FREE in my online class: https://kata-rx.teachable.com/p/preview-kata-as-moving-meditation

Follow Sensei John on Instagram. Simply follow “1day1lifetime” for daily updates on all of Sensei’s projects:

  • Kata-Rx for wellness & mindfullness;
  • Katannabis (the entheogenic combination of Kata-Rx & medical cannabis);
  • Kata-Rx & Koan daily meditations;

Enjoy your Instagram experience with Sensei John.

My Daily Kata-Rx & Katannabis

3 May

There’s been interest in my specific daily Katannabis / Kata-Rx routine. So, let me share it with you. If there’s anything that keeps me going it is this very routine.

Each day I engage in two Kata-Rx meditative session. One in the evening and one in the morning.

For my own reasons I consider the evening session the first session and the morning session the second. I’ll explain the import of this in a future article. What lay between, six days a week, is work, thus it becomes part of the meditative ritual. The hardships of earning a living are softened by transforming it from a physical activity to a spiritual meditative pursuit.

Through the unique blending of sessions, work, sandwiched in the middle, effectively becomes part of the session. As arduous and physically challenging that work is, it becomes part of my meditation. Thus, the physical demands of work are transformed into a spiritual endeavor. But much more on that in a future article.

      The first session is my evening session. I usually perform this session around 6:30. If I’m not home from work in sufficient time, I may abbreviate the evening session. This session is my Katannabis session (the entheogenic combination of my Kata-Rx and medical cannabis). During this session, I utilize a micro-dose of cannabis followed by my Katannabis ritual. I start by performing the various kata that are included in the ritual. This is then followed by ten minutes of my personalized zazen, seated meditation. I personalize my zazen by incorporating “Sa – Ta – Na – Ma” chanting, proceeding to a seated Ghost Hands Kata (single hand version) with additional meditative movements. Please recall that in the single hand version, you visualize performing the double hand version. Here’s a link for more details on my Zazen https://senseijohn.me/2021/01/18/senseis-kata-rx-journal-entry-2-my-daily-zazen/

The result of the Katannabis session is a deep-rooted, primordial sense of alert-calmness, a state I describe as an awakened erotic euphoria.

      My morning Kata-Rx session is performed in three distinct stages. At no time is medical cannabis involved in the morning session, thus it is a Kata-Rx session not Katannabis. The first stage is at home as I prepare for my work day. It involves performing various Katannabis Kata (without the medical cannabis). These kata will vary; however, I always perform the Kata Suparunpei. Every Wednesday I perform the Kunchaba Kata in memory of my friend and comrade Shihan Wayne Norlander, R.I.P. Right before I leave for work, I go outside, start my motorcycle and perform Sanchin Kata as the bike warms. I then leave.

      After I arrive at the shop, I text my wife I’m safe. Hey, first things first. I then sit on my bike and repeat my zazen ritual. In this session I only visualize performing the single hand version of my Ghost Hand Kata. Thus, I engage in a double visualization – visualizing performing the single hand Ghost Hand which includes a visualization of performing the double hand Ghost Hand Kata. Zazen concluded, my work day officially started. I’ll use my Kata-Rx as needed throughout the day to make it until the work days end when I again return home.

So that’s my daily Katannabis ritual (evening) and Kata-Rx meditation (morning). You can learn Kata-Rx for FREE in my online school using this secure link: https://kata-rx.teachable.com/p/preview-kata-as-moving-meditation

Well that’s my Kata-Rx session and Katannabis ceremony. Until next time, I remain,

Sensei’s Journal Entry # 9: Kamawan

12 Apr

I’m going to use this week’s nightly Katannabis to more deeply explore the depths of meaning of this cryptic sign that was displayed outside “hard-core” dojo in antiquity.

As you can see, the sign has two elements. A Kama (sickle) and a Wan (rice bowl). Together they symbolize the word “Kamawan.” While there is no direct translation of Kamawan, the phrase is interpreted variously as “It doesn’t matter” and “I(we) don’t care.” Martial oral tradition has a more figurative interpretation. When hung and displayed outside “hard-core” Dojo, the phrase Kamawan was interpreted as:

“We don’t care if you enter or not, we don’t care if you challenge us or not.”(See endnote # 1)

I’ve often meditated on the implications and applications of Kamawan. Last month during a nightly Katannabis session, I began to see more, let’s say “spiritual” applications. Normally, I would include my thoughts in a journal entry and post it here. However, since I somewhat recenlty discovered Instagram, I’ll post my observations daily all this week on Instagram. Simply follow me at “1Day1Lifetime.

Great News! Kamawan for FREE!

You can try my Kata-Rx for FREE, safely and conveniently in the comfort of your own home by enrolling for FREE in my online class: https://kata-rx.teachable.com/p/preview-kata-as-moving-meditation

Until next time, Kamawan,

Sensei John Szmitkowski

Follow Sensei John on Instagram. Simply follow “1day1lifetime” for daily updates on all of Sensei’s projects:

  • Kata-Rx for wellness & mindfullness;
  • Katannabis (the entheogenic combination of Kata-Rx & medical cannabis);
  • Kata-Rx & Koan daily meditations;

Enjoy your Instagram experience with Sensei John.

ENDNOTES:

1. Kamawanu is an integral part of oral tradition of Goshin-Do Karate-Do. It is the companion to the tale of Dojo Yaburi, or those that would challenge a Dojo owner and keep his fees for one month’s teaching – if he was not up to the challenge. The following reference to Kamawanu may be both of interest and helpful: Furuya, Kensho, Kodo: Ancient Ways (O’Hara Publishing, Santa Clarita, CA, 1996) p. 40.

Sensei’s Journal – Entry # 8: Bees & Dragons

22 Mar

A favorite practice in both my Kata-Rx For Wellness and Katannabis meditation (the entheogenic combination of Kata-Rx and medical cannabis) is to contemplate a koan, idea, concept or poem. Here is one example from last night’s Katannabis. This one is martial in nature. It was born of war.


In last night’s Katannabis, I used it to consider its application to a peaceful, serene lifestyle. Much of martial ideology superficially speaks in terms of conflict. A deeper understanding of it leads one down a peaceful path of conflict resolution.

The koan abbreviates a lesson from the wars of antiquity. The original can be found in Opinions In Ninety-Nine Articles”, Takeda Nobushige (1525-1561). The full text is: “One’s soldiers should not yell abuse at the enemy. An old saying goes, “Arouse a bee and it will come back at you with the force of a dragon.”

          Try Kata-Rx yourself for FREE:
You can try my Kata-Rx for FREE, safely and conveniently in the comfort of your own home by enrolling for FREE in my online class: https://kata-rx.teachable.com/p/preview-kata-as-moving-meditation

Here’s another example of Kata-Rx and a Koan you may enjoy filmed in a gentle snowfall.



Respectfully submitted,


Sensei John Szmitkowski


Follow Sensei John on Instagram. Simply follow “1day1lifetime” for daily updates on all of Sensei’s projects:

   Kata-Rx for wellness & mindfullness;

    Katannabis (the entheogenic combination of Kata-Rx & medical cannabis);

    Kata-Rx & Koan daily meditations;

    Kata Laboratory where you can “Think – Sweat – Experiment” with your Kata & Sensei John’s innovative concepts.

Enjoy your Instagram experience with Sensei John.

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