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Teaching I add my ripples to the pond. Out they travel from the center of my experience and touch many lives along the way.
I knew from the outset that one day I would teach Aikido and have my own dojo. Teaching is my way of adding to the song of Aikido. As I give back what I have learned from others and discovered for myself I weave new threads into the Aikido tapestry. It doesn't end there though. Some of my students will go on and become teachers in their own right. Aikido will be enriched by their experience and knowledge. Aikido is no longer a single art. That ended when O-Sensei took on his first student. Each practitioner brings to the mat an Aikido colored and shaped by who he or she is.
This is why the argument over which Aikido is the real, true Aikido is pointless. Aikido has become so multifaceted that the argument is rendered meaningless. I think that O-Sensei intended Aikido principles and techniques to be applicable to all situations that may occur in one's life and that with dedicated study and a correct attitude anyone should be able to master said principles and techniques.
It has been argued that Aikido philosophy has become irrelevant in the modern world. The words ‘peace' and ‘harmony' are said with a sneer in the voice as though the ideals represented thereby are without worth and need no mention in the context of a martial art. So today you have Aikido being taught as a pure fighting system without regard to the philosophical foundation that led O-Sensei to create the art in the way that he did. You also have Aikido being taught as an art that mostly disregards martial applications in favor spiritual development and personal growth. In between the extremes the Aikido spectrum is full and rich with variety.