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Today, a reading outside of aikido literature has led me to ask some questions about what I, an aikidoka with Asperger's Syndrome, am attempting (among other things) to accomplish in my training: to apply the Founder's budo to the resolution of my personal challenges. But how complicated a proposition is this? And more directly, how in blazes will this WORK?!
I've begun reading Nick Dubin's rather thoughtful work, Asperger's Syndrome and Anxiety: A Guide to Successful Stress Management. In the second chapter, Dubin expounds at length on a number of the social & psychological challenges that "Aspies" like me face, while trying to keep the reader from becoming intimidated or discouraged, and summarizes by saying, "Instead of viewing the world as a dangerous place, view yourself as a brave warrior heading into battle." This, I now realize, is EXACTLY what I've been trying to do, my whole life, through MA practice & fandom.
It's an appealing metaphor, to be sure. But it runs into a kink when you consider, further, how Aikido interprets the warrior ethic: as being utterly opposed to conflict on principle, not bracing for it with every moment. So before I go overboard with the analogy of "asper-kido" as the solution to all my problems, I'd better sort this out.
Ueshiba-kaiso had a unique interpretation of the word, "budo": the martial path. It might be said that he took the Tokugawa-era principle of "The Life-Giving Sword" to an extreme, when he recast budo as the m