The greatest archers often teach that the whole “shooting method is everything”. The archery posture, the way the bow and arrow are raised, the way you regulate your breathing when you take your hand off the bowstring to let the arrow go – all affect the end result.
In the case of Awa Kenzo, the Grand Master was so attentive to the whole process of achieving a shot so accurately that the Master was able to repeat a series of movements in his mind without care. Pay too much attention to the goal that actually exists. It is the ability to fully reflect on the body and mind, also known as Zanshin.
Zanshin is a common term used in Japanese martial arts to refer to a pure state of mind. Zanshin means “unobstructed mind”. In other words, Zanshin is reflected in a martial artist’s concentration as the fighter pulls back, keeps his defensive stance after each score, ready to attack or counterattack. Zanshin is a natural ability to fully perceive the body, mind, and everything that happens around it.
In fact, Zanshin contains a deeper layer of thought. Zanshin is the choice to live a purposeful life and act purposefully or to let go of living unconsciously and passively accept what happens in life.