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While baking a chiffon cake...

When I have the time and energy, I like to bake sweets and breads. I like baking because not only can I see my family’s happy faces, I can also adjust what I make to the level of sweetness that I like best. Unfortunately, because I like eating snacks it’s difficult for me to lose weight easily, but I also feel satisfied and happy when my house is filled with the sweet smell of baking.

Today, I was in the mood to eat green tea chiffon cake today, so I decided to make it right away. But it’s not easy to make chiffon cake and because of this, I sometimes fail. It may not expand well, or it may deflate and become hard. There are actually many ways of failure. You can mash the bubbles from the meringue too much, keep the air in the mold while pouring it, or remove it while it's still hot. Basically, if you follow a sloppy process when making chiffon cake, you will fail. This is what I kept thinking to myself as I watched my cake gradually expanding today.

Actually, the exact same thinking applies to the martial arts. When a technique doesn't work well, the reason is usually that the person who was applying it did something sloppy. As I mentioned in my previous blog post about “Chijo-i”to implement a technique well, not only is the physical approach to the technique critical, but also the ability to sense the feeling of the opponent at the same time. If either element is applied in a sloppy manner, it won't work. Just like baking, the process of making the dough itself together with the sense of when put it into the oven and when to take it out of the mold are also steps that must be done carefully before you can achieve the final result of a beautiful chiffon cake.

The results of your baking also depends on how you feel throughout the entire process. Mixing it in a hurry, not making the meringue carefully, or taking it out of the mold in a hurry when you have no time to spare will all lead to a bad outcome. I think it's easy to fail when your mind isn’t focused, such as when your technique is at the mercy of the opponent's actions. At that time, you can't concentrate on your own senses, or you don't feel the opponent's movements and reactions clearly.

A technique feels best for both the person who is applying it and the one who is receiving it when not only the form of the technique is applied well, but also when both opponents can sense each other’s feelings or mindset.

As I was thinking about these things, my cake finished baking. Even though I was thinking about many different things while the cake was in the oven, because I could follow the entire process smoothly this time, I was rewarded with a beautiful matcha chiffon cake!

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