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With all the discussions on internal power it can leave a person's head among floating clouds. I offer some good reading on the subject of internal power and Aikido. It can't be proven, but many argue there are element of Taoism in O'Sensei's philosophy relating to things as internal power.
Beautifully explained by Rev. Barrish we are given an insight to things internal and details of O'Sensei and Shinto.
I have read the article by WeiI sometime ago, and enjoyed it. And, it came to me highly recommended. Then recently, Rev. Barrish posted some excellent information in relation to internal power, that I highly recommend. I found the last statements in each text to be an unexpected surprise of similarity. I am hoping this will help in the understanding of those peeling the onion layers away of Aikido; to be helpful to others as it was for me.
Intuition, the invisible action a collection of all actions practiced. After years of practice this is what I have come to understand as intuition. I observed that when I practice a technique whether it works or not my body and mind remembers it. That is each and every moment of practice I have ever done. Overtime, I think I have practiced a certain technique thousands of times and each time collecting information that is evaluated by both my mind and body. The purpose here than is the next time I do the technique all that information will and does come into play. It floods both mind and body instantaneously into action, without the slightest thought. A process of which is completely devoid of all that conscious and analytical stuff that goes on in the forefront of our minds.
When I don't interrupt my intuitive process with my forefront thoughts of judgment and all those things, I am freer to act and discover. As an Observer rather than an actively committing self-evaluation, I allow all that stored information to flow freely and come into play in a heat-beat. And I like that.
The biggest pothole to my intuition of course is my own active judgmental stuff hijacking my intuition. Once that is done, the doubt monster takes over and finishes me off to where I completely stop, shut down. Resulting in me having to slump off to a corner diseased with self-doubt, and nursing a wounded ego. You should see it, I mentally do beautiful wazas on myself. My mental Aikido is
Yep, that's me. I am an average guy and there isn't anything special about me when it comes to Aikido. I didn't study under anyone famous or well known and stuff. And those I seek to train with in Aikido are those I think can teach me something. I can say it has been a success.
I believe, no matter how long I have or will train that I will always be a student. I can always learn from everyone, and I do.
I have had my share of dry periods between training and Sensei's. It has been good and bad. But nothing is perfect and you do the best you can do. No experience is a wasted one if you take the perspective of learning from it, that there is always something to learn from it.
I read a lot about O'Sensei's life and his writings. Both are at times rewarding and disappointing. O'Sensei is a person of interest to me; his vision for Aikido training, his life, and his views. I wish, I was able to train with and under him. In this way, I would be able to touch Aikido in its original form and intent.
I started Aikido as a result of being bullied, and found a different reason to study Aikido as a result of Aikido. I wanted to kick butt to get revenge, and found that such a path, as a result of Aikido, is a disasterious and petty path. Therefore, my skill in technique is less important than the development of my character and what I learn from Aikido. As I see it, we are all chasing O'Sensei, some people are further behind than others, some are closer then others, a
There is another thread about a person having questions about experiencing the Kohai/Sempai (K/S) thing at a dojo. Thus far many of the replies vary in degree of what it is and how it practiced. None of which I read are from those in Japan who are experiencing it.
I suggested as an offer of help to the situation in terms of understanding the K/S thing is to look at Sumo. Why, well Sumo is said to be the model for today's martial arts in terms of cultural practice.
I went hunting, because I not in Japan and I wanted to know some things and on my journey I ended with...you guessed it Sumo to explain the K/S model- as a benchmark, or what have you.
What I found along the way I will post in quotes below. But during my journey, I found these two Japanese words; Mibun and Kakushiki that kept being associated to the Tokagawa period. Many scholars site this period to be very important in terms of change and formation of laws and social structures in Japan. It sees during this time social hierarchy was really stressed, and so was laws (includes the system and social protocol-from what I gathered.
It seems from my experience and of that I read from others and there dojo's the K/S outside Japan vary greatly in knowledge, practice, and importance. It would be interesting to me to know if that is the case in Japan?
This is what I found:
Overall K/S is thing about respect and responsibility, a mentor program, an apprentice program. A sports team where the pros ar
We just can't sweep the ugly truth under the rug and forget about O'Sensei's war experiences and the horrors of the way the Japanese, at that time, acted during the war. But many would love to do that, to sweep the ugliness under the rug and forget it. To bury what is too shameful to remember forever. Some will not face it, some distract out of embarrassment with glossy folklore romanticism. Some, well they flavor it with mystical salt and pepper. Others are very happy the ugly truth is redefined and misunderstood. But, this ugly truth, the history, is very vital in understanding Aikido and what is behind it. Because as time marches on history gets further away from the truth, from accuracy, as it slips into misty obscurity. It becomes forgotten or ill-remembered, at best. The result is the distortions and twisting of the truth, or the real reason behind why we practice Aikido, and why it is about love, and what that truly means.
This truth is something, unbearable for some as it is, should be the first lesson taught in Aikido. If this was done, it would best serve Aikido and be truer to O'Sensei and his Aikido.
I don't think there is enough people in the world of Aikido who knows about what I spoke of in my blog entry. We kind o
"It is one of the hardest things in this prison life: the strain caused by being continually in the power of people who are only half-sane and live in a twilight of reason and humanity." Wrote Sir Laurens Jan van der Post, during his internment as a prisoner of war, of his Japanese captors in WWII.
Pls read links first. Caution war isn't pretty- some links have graphic images and content. Could be disturbing and upsetting to some.
Once you have read all this, does O'Sensei's philosophy of love, peace, harmony, and so on make more sense? Does his philosophy become more clearer? Does Aikido make more sense?
O'Sensei being a soldier and then a prisoner of war, I can't imagine he wasn't effected by the brutality and inhumanity impose on the Chinese, Americans, and Philipino soldiers and people. After the hideous war crimes committed by the Japanese army and their obsessive and fanatical power lust, I can't imagine that he didn't want to change the world.
O'Sensei's process of change was evident in his life after the war, and it obviously profound and lasted a life time. It was a very powerful change, that effected his entire way of life and for us how he would practice budo. He clearly had a fierce love for budo. Budo was something that was his soul. It wasn't a hobby, but the very culture he grew up
Reflecting on the new thread I posted recently. I see how Aikido is changing the way international corporations do business. They are modeling Aikido for new organizational change.
Back some years ago, around the early 1990's many organizations used "The Book of Five Rings" as an aggressive tool in business here in the states. But I believe that was base on the fact the Japanese had use the book as a platform for successful business practices. Then later we have seen the success or popularity of the Six Sigma model in business. Now, the trend to use martial arts models for business has turn to a less aggressive model based on Aikido in areas such as organization, and management.
Aikido has a greater dynamic that I think is seen in O'Sensei's mission to have Aikido not be just a single minded combat. I base my management style solely on Aikido. I don't incorporate Aikido completely, since Aikido is very complicated and O'Sensei was very stylistic in conveying his philosophies and thoughts. I have look at other managers and their management styles comparing them to mine. I can say these managers often come to me seeking advice and problem solving solutions based on my success. It is funny I am training other mangers in Aikido thinking, unbeknownst to them, and they are finding success.
Aikido, I believe is not a single minded combat used in business, as business is often compared to war. It is a multifaceted and dynamic art, Aikido that can be applied su
I have been told Kaizen is a new term or concept for the Japanese. Kaizen (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kaizen) falsl under that new wine in an old bottle thing. It really is like many things I use in my practice not stated directly in Aikido's writing. But, possibly modeled in O'Sensei as part of how he practiced budo. I think it is clear he was always striving for improvement.
It is something I really try to establish in my Aikido; improvement continually within my practice of Aikido. I think it is another one of those secrets that go unnoticed, or over-looked so it isn't stressed. I also think it isn't as appealing because it sounds so common, and seems to go without saying. But that isn't Kaizen, I think there is a conscious effort and mind set that goes along with integrating the concept of Kaizen into practice.
It is clear Kaizen is generally associated with a process that reflects modernization. I call the Kaizen of today a gendai thing. But I think the idea of continual improvement is a old one for the Japanese and in found in Budo.
From my experience I have come to understand there is a mindset of dedicating yourself to always improving which is going forward. And avoid sliding back which would be not working toward constant improvement.
Through the years of studying the Kaizen model, I have been able to recognize it in other theories and models in all sorts of fields. I feel based on that and my personal experience Kaizen might be a turbo boost f
Like the top pro athletes, it is clear in the life stories told about O'Sensei's life, O'Sensei had the same power of mind (an internal strength), that doesn't get much discussion which seems to play a key role in the success of O'Sensei's skill and power.
I have be bloging and posting allot about the power of the mind. I have discussed how we think and perceive Aikido training and growth requiring mental strength, or mental power. The same power we see in successful professional and Olympic athletes, over and over again. And, now I want to explore further into the power of the mind and the role it plays that could help all of us improve our Aikido.
There is allot of posts about improving Aikido and what it is lacking. The bulk of that never mention mental training that leads to the power of the mind, which seems to be an unnoticed technique in its self. I don't know why it is over-looked as it is allot. But, it is technique for what ever reasons it isn't stressed,. I think it is more important to focus on the power of the mind, and its ability to improve our technique among other things.
After the host of Japanese classes I took in college, one of the most predominate I walked away thinking was, the effort, the focus and the result of mental training they developed over the centuries. At certain periods of time in the Japanese history mental training started with children and wasn't exclusive to only the military trained. It seemed to permeate every strata of
Not a part of O'Sensei's writings or part of his vision for Aikido, the Three Don'ts of Leadership are rooted deeply in ancient Chinese Zen culture, am told. The "Three Don'ts of Leadership" I feel can apply to the life and training of an Aikidoka.
Leadership holds three don'ts; when there is alot to do, don't be afraid; when there is nothing to do, don't be hasty; and don't talk about opinions of right and wrong.
I use the perspective of the "Three Don'ts" to improve my training:
When my mind is over filled with thoughts of instruction, I become overwhelmed thinking alot of all the things I need to do, to make the technique work right. Like being afraid, my movement is impaired, I move awkwardly, unnaturally, I don't blend, and stuff. It's a train wreck. But, if I control and extinguish all those instructional thoughts crowding my head, am not afraid of doing the technique wrong. Because I am not afraid, I move better; I blend, and all that. I am more relaxed and can flow.
When I am fairly good at a technique, being comfortable at a certain level of ability, I tend to rush the technique through. Rushing a technique is going through it routinely, mechanically, and not being focus.
I certainly don't talk on the mat about what is right or wrong with a technique and mine or anyone else's performance. That interferes allot and leads to the other two Don'ts. If you are being critical and pointing out what is right and wrong during a te