I’ve been studying Iaido with the New York Budo Association since 2005. In 2017. I helped turn the school from a volunteer organization into a not-for profit organization 501-c(3). I am currently the acting President and one of the Senior Instructors. The specific style of Iaido I practice is called – Ryushin Shouchi Ryu (柳心照智流), under the direction of Phil Ortiz Sensei and Soke Kunikazu Yahagi (矢作訓一 二代宗家). I currently hold a ranking of Godan (5th degree) Shidoin (this is an official teaching license from Japan) in Ryushin Shouchi Ryu and Shodan (1st degree) in Muso Shindan Ryu.
The term iaido (居合道) is of deep significance. Literally, it means the Way (道) of existing (居) in harmony (合) with others. From beginning to end, iaido is never a way of destroying an enemy, but is a Way of destroying the overblown ego. If there is no ego, one can live in peace and harmony with others.