Soke often says “if you focus only on the waza, you will become only a collector of waza”. I believe that this is a comment that we have all heard numerous times.
I think the global point here, if you are not sure, is that fixation or attachment will weaken you as a budoka. What we seek and strive for in martial arts is “Internalization”. Without internalization, then what we have learned is useless to us.
Clearly, Soke has internalized this art and when it is internalized, it is real. That is why we all train with him and not the karate master on the other side of the mat. To internalize something takes many years of training. So, if someone was to say “I know this art, or I’m good at it” I would say, well how long have you trained? That person might have strong taijutsu and look great, but internalization is a natural process and takes time and there is no shortcut. I made this point in an earlier post about empty taijutsu. Even if someone can look good, does not mean that their taijutsu is not empty.
Back to the point about waza. It is natural to want to collect the waza, because then you have something tangible. When you have something tangible, then you can rely on it, sell it to others in a seminar and use it to get you somewhere. But the truth is what we are seeking in this art is not tangible. So beware of the desire to fixate on waza, and beware of those that will show you the waza. With this fixation, there is a lack of internalization, and not what we are striving for if we are training with Hatsumi Soke.