For the young people of Jakarta, Bulungan is very much a popular street name. The area is like magnet not only for sport lovers and athletes, but artists as well. It is where Bulungan Aikido Dojo lies, at the complex of Bulungan Youth Sports Center to be exact. There, we grow and develop with other youth communities.
In the 80s, aikido dojos in Jakarta were not as many as nowdays. Back then, Manggarai Aikido Dojo, Slipi Aikido Dojo, Departemen Keuangan Lapangan Banteng Aikido Dojo, and Cempaka Putih Aikido Dojo were the only places to train the modern martial art founded by Morihei Ueshiba.
Then, in April 1991, Bulungan Aikido Dojo was established as another sanctuary to train aikido in Southern Jakarta. Other than Mr. Jack M. Tetelepta and Mr. Hery Muryantono, there were also several individuals to be considered as the founders. They were Mr. Dede Lesmana of Cempaka Putih Aikido Dojo, Mr. Andre Delimarta who was one of the board of Yayasan Indonesia Aikikai, Mr. Azantaro and Mr. Wahyu of Manggarai Dojo, and Mr. Ferdiansyah who then founded another local aikido organization named Keluarga Beladiri Aikido Indonesia.
Japan International Cooperation Agency also supported the founding of Bulungan Aikido Dojo. Several Japanese aikido instructors were assigned to develop our dojo. They were Hiroaki Kobayashi (1989-1991), Hideo Azuma (1991-1994), Shinji Maeda (1993-1995), Atsushi Yahagi (1995-1997), and Satoru Shigekoshi (1997-1999). By the priceless knowledge they had taught us, we shall always treasure them as our beloved teachers.
Years go by, yet we never claim Bulungan Aikido Dojo as the best dojo of all. We just consider it as a space with the warmth of kindness and friendliness that will always welcome anyone with smiles and open arms. It is our way of being humble.
The humbleness also teaches us that everything is a process. The black belt holders and the seniors at our dojo are not characters who learn the essence of aikido in a short period of time. We believe that open mind, mental flexibility, and ripeness of our techniques can only be achieved naturally through intensive training.
As Miyamoto Musashi, a famous Japanese samurai in 17th century, had trained in the way of strategy since his youth which then became legendary through his outstanding swordsmanship in numerous duels. So do we perfect ourselves through the art of peace and harmony. If there is knowledge we may achieve, then let us not be blinded by our pride for we do not wish to be heroes. Our dojo only gives birth to aikido practitioners with rectitude, courage, benevolence, politeness, veracity, honor, and loyalty. Therefore, we care not just for ourselves, but also truly for others.
We consider Bulungan Aikido Dojo as a small dojo with great spirits to move forward. From time to time, we train our bodies to be healthy, educate our minds to be full of knowledge, and not to forget loving with our hearts to keep us down to earth. Ultimately, those are our treasure to make the world a better place.