Following the Martial Path
Lessons and Stories from a Lifetime of Training in Budo and Zen
Book Specs: $24.95 USD, 6″ x 9″ Paperback, 259 pages, 86 Images, Black and White on Cream Paper, Pub Date: December 5, 2016, ISBN: 978-1-943155-22-4
About the Book
Following the Martial Path illuminates the lessons learned in the martial arts, which transcend techniques of attack and defense. It is a journey of self-discovery, originating in physical training and leading to the spiritual dimensions. Walther G. von Krenner, trained with numerous talented and famous martial arts practitioners, including Gene LaBelle, Hal Sharpe, Tohei Koichi, Takahashi Isao, and Aikido founder Ueshiba Morihei O-Sensei. Explaining good times and lessons in humility, Following the Martial Path is von Krenner’s account of his martial art journey.
This book stresses the connection between Zen, art, and martial pursuits. Besides conveying the important lessons learned throughout decades, Following the Martial Path contains calligraphy, artwork, and invaluable photographs (of Aikido founder Ueshiba Morihei and others) that have never before been published. In addition, it contains lectures given by the founder of Aikido that have not previously been published.
“You have to forget about technique. The further you progress along the path, the fewer teachings there are. The true path is no path.” ―O-Sensei Ueshiba Morihei
“Walther’s quest for the true meaning of Budo is presented in many tales throughout the book. Some are classical, others personal. Such tales are both entertaining and enlightening. Walther makes the key point that a martial artist should be an artist in the broadest sense: a student of literature and poetry, and (in his case) a practitioner of such disciplines as calligraphy, painting, shakuhachi playing, sword connoisseurship, and tea ceremony.” ―From the foreword by John Stevens, author of The Way of Judo, Abundant Peace, and Sacred Calligraphy of the East
“I cannot give this book enough praise. It is elegantly put together, and exemplifies one of the concepts presented in the book: Shibumi. Shibumi is ‘a quality of serenity, introspection, modesty, formality, nobility, and reserve. It is opposed to everything that is garish, lewd, sensuous, or noisy.’ It also does an excellent job of explaining why martial artists would want to have and appreciate the lessons and stories presented. Everything always comes back to the study of martial arts. My copy is already highlighted, dog-eared, and thoroughly traveled. My hope is that this book becomes one of the new classics that make their way around martial arts circles. With that in mind, I have to give this book a 5 out of 5 Ninja Stars.” —Jaredd Wilson, Martial Thoughts
“Walther von Krenner paints a portrait of Budo in a time and place. A time and place that is quickly vanishing yet vital to deeper understanding and experience in the martial ways. He was an outsider receiving instruction from what became some of the most important sensei, and even legends, in the Japanese martial traditions. His story, shared lectures from Ueshiba and Tohei and others, and his personal insights are a valued addition to our understanding of Asian martial arts and cultural traditions.” ―Dr. Mark Wiley, Publisher, Tambuli Media