Are you sharpening your tools before starting your work?

Are you working with them in the same condition as the day before?

By sharpening my tools, I switch myself into working mode.

By the time I finish preparing the tools, my heart and body is completely in working mode.

For me, the preparation of tools also prepares one’s self.

Some people take “sharpening” as simple work and do it while talking or thinking about something else. However, people’s thoughts all reflects onto their movements, and transfers until their fingertips. Tools prepared in a unfocused state like this can only reach a certain level. Repeating this work in a mentality like this, no matter if you do it hundreds of times, you will not improve.

The tools are a part of our body, the projection of our hearts.

To do excellent work, it’s necessary to prepare one’s heart and body (a tool) to the highest condition. Therefore, when “sharpening” a blade, it’s crucial to sharpen with the heart aiming for the “best cutting edge”.

The maintenance of tools is fundamental to woodworking. Only when this is achieved, one can get started with the work.

Therefore in my school, the very first thing I teach is the “sharpening of the tools”.

Understanding what the “sharpest possible edge” is with a blade I sharpened, students sharpen aiming for that.

Once you understand the perfect condition, you can decide on the condition you wish to aim for. The first thing to understand is the best condition.

It takes time to be able to sharpen to the best condition. The best way to do efficient and clean work is by making sure not to rush and properly attaining the skills of sharpening.

If you’re able to even just once create the best cutting edge, no matter the condition, you’ll be able to use that skill to prepare your tools. It is said, preparation results to 80 percent of the work. What this means is once the tools are prepared, one can say 80 percent of the work is completed. Preparing the tools to a good condition, that is, arranging your heart into the best condition, is very important.

Before starting your daily work, make sure to prepare your tools, setting your heart and body (a tool).