Edward Haupt Sensei

Edward Haupt Sensei, the founder of Zenshinkan Dojo, passed away on June 28, 1999. Haupt Sensei began his training in Aikido in 1971 under the direction of Hideki Shiohira Shihan. Haupt Sensei earned both his shodan and nidan rank in Shinshin Toitsu Aikido while training in California under Shiohira Shihan. While training in California, he attended the California Professional School of Psychology and earned his doctoral degree in clinical psychology. In 1975, Haupt Sensei met Fumio Toyoda Shihan in San Francisco who would later become his long time Teacher and the inspiration for the creation of Zenshinkan Dojo. Haupt Sensei also gained exposure to Koichi Tohei Shihan, founder of the Ki Society.

While in California, Haupt Sensei began his training in Zen and became a student of Tanouye Rotaishi, Zen Master, of the Daihonzan Chozen-ji temple in Hawaii. His practice in the Rinzai tradition of Zen meditation was later continued under the direction of Hosokawa Roshi. In 1989, Haupt Sensei bought a farm in Rutland, Massachusetts and named it Setsudo Farm. Setsudo means "to pass on the Way of the Universe". There he established a branch of the International Zen Dojo Sogenkai under the direction of his current Aikido and Zen Teacher, Toyoda Shihan. Aikido training was offered concurrently with Zen meditation and Zenshinkan Dojo was born. For nearly 10 years Zenshinkan Dojo existed in a barn that became the spiritual sanctuary for many students searching for sincere Budo and Zen training. During that time Haupt Sensei earned his sandan and yondan rank, under Toyoda Shihan, and became a Teaching Committee Member for the Aikido Association of America. Haupt Sensei's fierce intensity drove his students to push beyond their perceived boundaries and develop themselves in a martial Way that would carry into their daily lives.

In 1998, Haupt Sensei sold Setsudo Farm and Zenshinkan Dojo found a temporary home at the Greendale YMCA in Worcester, Massachusetts. Zenshinkan Dojo expanded and Haupt Sensei continued the work of spreading Aikido and Zen training to his students and supporting his Teacher, Toyoda Shihan, and the greater community of Budo practitioners across the country. Shortly after Haupt Sensei's death, his students coordinated the effort of establishing a new home for Zenshinkan Dojo to carry forth the mission that he endeared.

Haupt Sensei shared his development with numerous students, patients, colleagues and acquaintances. Apart from his work in Aikido and Zen, Haupt Sensei dedicated his career to clinical psychology where he assisted in the personal and professional development of persons from all over the United States. His contributions to these people's lives is incomprehensible and there are those that continue to carry on his work in his memory.

Haupt Sensei's dedication to his training challenged us to wake up to the lessons that surround us in daily life, to live with intention, and to be present in all that we do. He offered himself as a guide to his students in helping us face ourselves. Through demanding physical and spiritual training, by his example and love, he helped us find the Way. Haupt Sensei was a man that brought a profound intensity to life. He lived each moment in full vigor and gratitude. His passion for personal development was rare and his presence was inspiring. He was a true spiritual Teacher and a source of salvation for those who followed him. Haupt Sensei continues to be the Teacher of many.