Mushin – The Martial Arts Concept of “No Mind”
Mushin is the Japanese martial arts term used to describe the concept of “no mind” or “mind without mind”. This is the ability to act and react intuitively without hesitation or active thought (i.e. when sparring or in a self-defense situation). Part of this concept relies on muscle memory achieved through extensive training.
In a mental state of Mushin, the martial artist is often inside the “decision loop” of their opponents. They are not slowed down because they are not planning out their next five moves. In traditional martial arts such as Karate, martial artists often use meditation in order to practice this mental state. However, Mushin is generally achieved by only very experienced martial artists.
For other martial arts mental and spiritual concepts, please visit the section on Martial Arts Philosophy.