Foreword: This may be phrased a little weirdly and be utterly ridiculous sounding so apologies. A couple of days ago, I was sitting an exam for my psychology class and one of the topics of study was the different components of the human brain and what they control - Hippocampus for Spatial memory, Occipital lobe for Visual perception etc. One thing that caught my attention was the Amygdala being responsible for emotions (most notably fear) and the different cultural or nurtured influences that impact on how much fear it is appropriate to show. So as I sat there in my exam furiously scribbling away my answers, my mind started thinking back to something I've finally started to really "get" during training - there can be no fear when training, especially not in something like Muto Dori - and that's something that requires concious effort for me at this stage. I "know" my opponent has a bokken and will have sufficient control of the weapon just as I "know" we'll be moving at half pace or so in order to work the mechanics but there is still a little burst of adrenaline that fires off as Uke begins to move (or a big burst if it's Mr. Parker ) Anyway... I guess my question is, with the warriors of Fedual Japan and indeed all other cultures, they have proven it's possible to overcome or eliminate the fear during combat. Short of suggesting everyone who ever went into battle had a lobotomy prior to the event, how does one actively get to the stage when fear is a non event? Again in my personal journey, Mushin is still elusive I'm afraid and I'm worried I may be doing the meditations before class incorrectly even though they are guided ones because I still seem to end up trying too hard to let go if that makes any sense at all. Help? Thoughts? Surgeons?