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Mark Jakabcsin
12-23-2006, 10:09 PM
Jun (if you are still following this thread),
250 posts so far on this thread, not bad. What is the record for most posts on one thread? I have another idea for a thread topic and I just want to gauge what I am up against. :)

Mark J.

Mike Sigman
12-23-2006, 10:29 PM
My point is that these guys are not the only ones who see the value of internal skills and work hard to cultivate them. The three teachers I have the privilege of working with now have independently found merit in the ideas expressed in these discussions.That's good, but let me tell you my perspective, just for the fun of it. Many hundreds of years ago (at least Tang Dynasty), even though a lot of the information was reserved for "those in the know", this basic stuff we're talking about was so well known that most styles had it. What they began to do was compete among each other and different styles began to develop their own versions of "the smartest way to do this stuff so that we get more power than the other guys."

Right now, most western version of Asian martial arts have been pretty blind (or at least highly limited) about this kind of movement skills. So we're having this surreal fist-fight among and with a lot of people about whether such a thing even exists or not.

That means that we're just watching the entre' to the final chapter, by any means. Wait until the discussion comes around to "the best way to do it".

I'm staking my position, BTW, on the idea that Ueshiba used the very soft approach as preferable. But that's just Aikido. The interesting part is what the other arts really should be doing and how this will all come together among all the Asian arts in the end. A really good indicator came, IMO, from Ushiro Sensei, who already sees the way it's all going and who has begun sharing some things with Aikido. That was a very positive step forward.

My thoughts.

Mike Sigman

statisticool
12-24-2006, 12:11 AM
..is that his god, Cheng Man Ching, clearly differentiated between this form of strength and "li". If CMC was so wrong, why is Justin such a fanatic follower, hosting webpages in adulation of Cheng Man Ching? Weird, isn't it?


I think there's a clear non-religious reason why martial artists like CMC have info webpages and other people do not. It probably has to do with them having accomplishments and being one of the early taijiquan pioneers in the US and having great students.

But I'm still not sure (and you obviously aren't) why CMC or anyone else even enters in the discussion when you are directly asked questions. We're talking about your conception of 'internal' stuff, not Cheng's.

If you have a personal fued with Robert Smith or CMC, I suggest you write some articles or a book and present your theories to the martial arts community instead of discussion forum outbursts. It would be quite an interesting read, maybe.

But it would be even more interesting if a demonstration of the efficacy of the 'ground strength vector' in a full resistance/contact match would be videotaped for us all to see. Do any exist?

statisticool
12-24-2006, 12:15 AM
...is talking about will change your perspective once you get hands-on experience with the sort of internal connection and internal strength skill that Dan, and Mike Sigman, have labored in great detail to present here and on other forums.


I'm not saying actual skills don't exist. I'm saying what has been offered as what distinguishes them from regular ol' external skills is not convincing. That is, all explanations point to regular ol' external stuff.

Gwion
12-24-2006, 01:06 AM
I'm not saying actual skills don't exist. I'm saying what has been offered as what distinguishes them from regular ol' external skills is not convincing. That is, all explanations point to regular ol' external stuff.

Good ol' Justin talkin' bout Good ol' external skills and good ol' normal physics. None o dat strange eastern mumbo jumbo.

Why did you start Aikido again? Were you out to learn something new, or did you just want to study it so you could talk about how it has nothing to do with ki but rather GOOD OLD NORMAL physics.

You seem to think Ki is really tough to describe, maybe some have a hard time, but jut pick up a copy of 'ki in daily life' or any of Koichi Tohei's other books, and I garuantee you'll have the clearest and most clear descriptions you can imagine.

I'm sorry that you're so anti-poetic, romantic, mystical, religious, or anything besides 'good ol' western materialism, but I would urge you to consider that this other 'stuff' is some of the most enriching aspects of life.

--WW

Kevin Leavitt
12-24-2006, 03:14 AM
Wayne your mistake is assuming that Justin has set foot in an actual aikido dojo, I have yet to ascertain if he has even studied aikido, or any martial art for that matter other than reading it on the internet.

I referred him to my instructor, Jimmy Sorentino, who BTW is not a Dan Harden fan, I don't believe he has been by to train at all in our dojo in Arlington. You have to wonder about how open minded someone is that won't even seek to understand in the physical sense of experience.

Kevin Leavitt
12-24-2006, 03:29 AM
Sorry, I would say that it not so much that he is not a fan.....the right words would be skeptic.

Mike Sigman
12-24-2006, 07:27 AM
Sorry, I would say that it not so much that he is not a fan.....the right words would be skeptic.Ah, "Skeptics".... the greatest concentration of Aspergers Syndrome types.

Asperger’s Syndrome is a neurological disorder that is often described as a milder variant of autistic disorder, and both conditions are grouped under the broad diagnostic category of autistic spectrum disorders, or pervasive developmental disorders. Pervasive developmental disorders (PDDs) are marked by significant impairment in several areas of development, especially those involving social interaction, language development, and communication skills. The trait most characteristic of Asperger’s, though it is not present in all cases of the syndrome, is a pedantic, monotonic speech pattern, usually focused on a particularly narrow area of interest.

Mark Freeman
12-24-2006, 10:41 AM
Jun (if you are still following this thread),
250 posts so far on this thread, not bad. What is the record for most posts on one thread? I have another idea for a thread topic and I just want to gauge what I am up against. :)

Mark J.

Alot more than 250, over a 1000 and you start to get near the longer threads ;)

Merry Christmas

Mark

statisticool
12-24-2006, 10:54 AM
Good ol' Justin talkin' bout Good ol' external skills and good ol' normal physics. None o dat strange eastern mumbo jumbo.


I cannot help it if some internal theorists' explanations of what they believe distinguishes internal from external is not convincing.


I'm sorry that you're so anti-poetic, romantic, mystical, religious, or anything besides 'good ol' western materialism, but I would urge you to consider that this other 'stuff' is some of the most enriching aspects of life.


So much for attack the argument not the person. :)

So what, specifically, from that book do you feel cannot be explained without resorting to mysticism?

Kevin, I'm still wondering how you are measuring ones' understanding of ki. If you just say 'by demonstration, come visit', I'm then wondering why it wouldn't be demonstrating just regular old physics, mechanics, efficient body movement, timing, and the like.

Michael, you said


One of the things I can do, none of us can fully explain, but it's something I was taught how to do and I essentially only follow the mechanics to get there.


Can you share this baffling skill with us? Just what is it (maybe post a video- it has to be shown, right?), and who, specifically, are these people that cannot fully explain it? Can you share their names? Perhaps some of us around here can fully explain it. I'm sure you do want to figure it out.

And demonstrations of the efficacy of the 'ground strength vector' theory in a full resistance/contact match, videotaped. Do any exist?

Oops, more questions. I'll have to work on that.

statisticool
12-24-2006, 11:02 AM
BTW, Justin...what skills exactly do you want demonstrated and in what scenario or rules, constraints do you want to employ to isolate the conditions in which one would interact with you?

I thought my questions have been pretty clear already.

-I'm looking for clear reasoning that distinguishes what some call 'internal' from 'external' without their reasoning amounting to talking about 'external' in other (typically ill-defined, subjective, unmeasurable, or undistinguishable from 'external') terms.

-Video of someone using the 'ground strength vector' sparring effectively with high levels of contact and resistance, with explanation of how it differs from regular ol' sparring.

-Clear explanation why Internal = Extermal + Something. What is that something else? Can it be objectively measured?

Jim Sorrentino
12-24-2006, 11:03 AM
Hi Kevin,Sorry, I would say that it not so much that he is not a fan.....the right words would be skeptic.Yes, that's correct. But, like any good skeptic, I am always open to objective demonstration. By the way, I look forward to seeing you when you're back in DC!

Ah, "Skeptics".... the greatest concentration of Aspergers Syndrome types.Mike, you're not implying that I fit that diagnosis, are you? :)

Jim

statisticool
12-24-2006, 11:14 AM
You have to wonder about how open minded someone is that won't even seek to understand in the physical sense of experience.

Of course, the logical mistake you're making is trying to make this about my martial skill or lack of, which was never a relevant issue since I am asking questions of internal theorists' claims. Plus I've already mentioned I've done such things qith dojos and invididual (though not with the dojo you recommended, although I did watch there) and in each case came away thinking that there is something there that is very nice but just regular ol external in the end.

So why not therefore just attempt to focus on the questions that I am asking about internal theorists' claims and provide answers to the questions?

Mike Sigman
12-24-2006, 11:19 AM
Mike, you're not implying that I fit that diagnosis, are you? :) No, I was thinking of Justin's pal Stephen J. Goodson and Justin himself. Goodson is a member of the DC Area Skeptics and he talks and reasons just like Justine does. Constant "Skeptics" like Goodson and Smith are notoriously comprised of more than their share of Apergers types.

Generally, the people who post, regardless of all the answers and previous lengthy discussions (as Justin does), the same questions over and over, in the same negative connotations, are the "Skeptics" who actually are evincing a personality disorder. A quick look at Justin's posts, for example, would show that we're not dealing with someone who wants answers, but someone with a perpetual grudge and a fixation. I think we should recognize that sort of person is not there to reason and just shut them out of the discussion. He ignores all invitations to "go see", so it's pretty obvious that he really doesn't want to know... he wants to hear his own narrow views parrotted back at him.

My opinion, FWIW

Mike

Mike Sigman
12-24-2006, 11:45 AM
I thought my questions have been pretty clear already.

-I'm looking for clear reasoning that distinguishes what some call 'internal' from 'external' without their reasoning amounting to talking about 'external' in other (typically ill-defined, subjective, unmeasurable, or undistinguishable from 'external') terms.

-Video of someone using the 'ground strength vector' sparring effectively with high levels of contact and resistance, with explanation of how it differs from regular ol' sparring.

-Clear explanation why Internal = Extermal + Something. What is that something else? Can it be objectively measured?
I've actually answered this question more than a few times on the forum. You don't really want the answer, you just want to argue and attempt to disparage. Frankly, I post some fairly clear descriptions knowing full well that most people will gloss over them and that's as it should be. The people who want to know will search for information everywhere and wouldn't spend so many hours of their day trying to play 'gotcha' with "Walter Sigman" and other completely aberrant games.

For you to be so fanatically devoted to Cheng Man Ching that you host webpages for him and yet you don't know what jin is... that's actually hilarious. And I'd like for you to stay that way. It's Karma at its best. And as I said... CMC attempted to explain what jin was, so why not see if you can figure out what he meant? Maybe you can write letters demanding to see CMC in some match with an MMA fighter to prove that his stuff was any good or that jin has value?

But why don't you ask the same questions on the Cheng Man Ching list, BTW? I'm told that you don't seem to have that same curiosity on that list.... a list which people are reportedly leaving rapidly because too many nuts have gotten on it.

Regards,

Mike Sigman

Kevin Leavitt
12-24-2006, 01:44 PM
Jimmy, hopefully I did not insinuate that you'd have anything but an open mind! Good to see you are out there!

Looks like I am moving back to DC area here this spring, they want me back at the building! I am looking for houses in the Barcroft area, so should be close by the dojo! Cannot wait to start training again on a regular basis!

I too am a skeptic, BTW, of much of this, and especially of those that tend to say "I know something that you don't", that said, it is quite possible, and I am of the school too, "prove it to me". I think that is a very healthy attitude to have.

I do however, stop short (i hope I do at least), of saying emphatically that some one is wrong or cannot do it, simply because of my lack of ability to conceive or because I have a simplistic, reductionist view of how things work.

I don't need to travel around the world to realize that it is somewhat round and not flat as was thought of (I guess some people still believe that too though!).

Kevin Leavitt
12-24-2006, 02:07 PM
Justin wrote:

Of course, the logical mistake you're making is trying to make this about my martial skill or lack of, which was never a relevant issue since I am asking questions of internal theorists' claims. Plus I've already mentioned I've done such things qith dojos and invididual (though not with the dojo you recommended, although I did watch there) and in each case came away thinking that there is something there that is very nice but just regular ol external in the end.


So what good would a video do. You admit that you were able to watch a class and determine that what was going on could be explained as external.

I think the big mistake you make is taking a dualistic western view of the world. Every thing to you is black and white....can be explained in terms of positive/negative, good/bad, right/wrong.

I don't really think you can split things into internal and external exclusively, these are simple words that help us reduce complicate things into manageable concepts.

I really don't understand internal and what it is as compared to....what???? what is internal? everyone talks about it, but can't explain.

I can start a technique from a thought or a perception, I suppose this is internal...the action I take is of course external! So for every phenomena that you observe, you will reduce it to, "yeah, whatever, that is just plain ole physics!"

Don't believe a bunch of cranky old martial artist.

Many of the brightest minds in science have reached conclusions that things are much more complicated in the world than we think.

How about there are no absolutes.. Quantum phyiscist have reached that conclusion. Vibrational energy does exsist at the sub atomic level, the changes in vibrations affect the overall structure of things. Wow, that sounds very familar to me. This are not tai chi dudes, but scientist!

I'd recommend several things:

The Quantum and the Lotus ISBN 0-609-60854-1
The Fabric of the Cosmos by Brian Greene ISBN 0-375-72720-5
A decent video, albeit somewhat skeptical and suspect, but makes you think, "What the Bleep to we know?"

Also, on a simplier level. If we sparred NHB, and I was able to beat you by simply laying on you and moving gently and not even get out of breath....while you are gasping for air and using all your might to keep me from submitting you...what do you call that?

I use the skills of kokyu, timing, breathing, and all that stuff....while you'd be using simply physical strength. Is it mystical? No, is it external...most certainly....but can it also be internal? Absolutely. It all starts with a mindset, a thought, a perception, and an action based on an interpretation of the things around me.

Kevin Leavitt
12-24-2006, 02:14 PM
Here is a good quote from The Fabric of the Cosmos by Brian Greene page 4-5.

"But, you might ask, what of it? Surely any sober assessment would conclude that although we might not understand everything about the universe-every aspect of how matter behaves or life functions-we are privy to the defining, broad-brush strokes gracing natures canvas. Surely as Camus intimated, progress in physics, such as understanding the number of space dimensions; or progress in physics, such as understanding all the organizational structures in the brain'or, for that matter progress in any number of other scientific undertakings may fill in important details, but their impact on our evaluaton of life and reality would be minimal. Surely, reality is what we think it is; reality is revealed to us by our experiences.

To one extent or another, this view of reality is one of many of us hold, if only implicitly......it's easy to be seduced by the face nature reveals directly to our senses. Yet in the decades since Camus' text, I've learned that modern science tells a different story. The overarching lesson that has emerged from scientific inquiry over the last century is that human experience is often a misleading guide to the true nature of reality. Lying just beneath the surface of the everyday is a world we'd hardly recognize."

Kevin Leavitt
12-24-2006, 02:17 PM
I do believe it is possible that there are those out there in the past and present that have broken into new paradigms and have figured out how to tap into these subtle differences and can help us better perceive these things.

It is not about internal or external as the two cannot be separated, but about opening your mind and youself to listening to something new.

Josh Reyer
12-24-2006, 02:26 PM
Justin wrote:
I use the skills of kokyu, timing, breathing, and all that stuff....while you'd be using simply physical strength. Is it mystical? No, is it external...most certainly....but can it also be internal? Absolutely. It all starts with a mindset, a thought, a perception, and an action based on an interpretation of the things around me.

Simple, "regular old physics":

Light is a wave AND a particle.

...

...

mind blows

Mike Sigman
12-24-2006, 02:43 PM
Simple, "regular old physics":

Light is a wave AND a particle.How about "light *sometimes behaves* like a wave phenomenon and sometimes like a particle"?

Best.

Mike

statisticool
12-24-2006, 03:59 PM
Simple, "regular old physics":

Light is a wave AND a particle.

...

...

mind blows

But is it external strength light or internal strength light?

;)

statisticool
12-24-2006, 04:08 PM
No, I was thinking of Justin's pal Stephen J. Goodson and Justin himself. Goodson is a member of the DC Area Skeptics and he talks and reasons just like Justine does. Constant "Skeptics" like Goodson and Smith are notoriously comprised of more than their share of Apergers types.


suggest you take your personal fued up with Goodson. Perhaps publish and article for the MA community to critique instead of internet ramblings?


I think we should recognize that sort of person is not there to reason and just shut them out of the discussion.

Ah, the 'I don't wanna answer or I cannot answer because skeptics question my pet theories' excuse.

You've been asked many questions I'm sure others besides me would be interested in. Are you now claiming that they too are not here to reason?

statisticool
12-24-2006, 04:10 PM
For you to be so fanatically devoted to Cheng Man Ching that you host webpages for him and yet you don't know what jin is...


I'm not sure why you're fixated on CMC. Must be sour grapes.

I'm not asking CMC questions, which is impossible. I'm asking you (which is proving to be impossible).


I'm told that you don't seem to have that same curiosity on that list....


Told by yet another anonymous person you refuse to name, I'm sure.

statisticool
12-24-2006, 04:15 PM
So what good would a video do.


I'm wondering what the best example of 'internal' as offered by the internal theorists is. Surely there is some video? I'd think there would be given that there are a lot of videos of what people call external.


what is internal? everyone talks about it, but can't explain.


People have/had magainzes named internal strength and go on at length about it. I'd think they'd be able to educate us.


The Quantum and the Lotus ISBN 0-609-60854-1
The Fabric of the Cosmos by Brian Greene ISBN 0-375-72720-5
A decent video, albeit somewhat skeptical and suspect, but makes you think, "What the Bleep to we know?"


I've done the last two, I'll check out the first. Thanks.


Also, on a simplier level. If we sparred NHB, and I was able to beat you by simply laying on you and moving gently and not even get out of breath....while you are gasping for air and using all your might to keep me from submitting you...what do you call that?


If you were to beat a person in that manner, an observer would probably says you used muscle, momentum, and friction. Are you putting that forth as an example of 'internal strength'? What distinguishes it from efficient use of ol external stuff?

Cady Goldfield
12-24-2006, 04:23 PM
Oh, Justin, just go ahead and say what you really want to say, seeing as it's Christma Eve:

Bah, Humbug!

Oh, and expect three spirits to visit you tonight, starting at the stroke of midnight: The Spectre of Internal Skills, the Sprite of Kokyu, and the Phantom of Ki. By dawn, you'll be seeing things in a different light, I guarantee you.

Merry Christmas. :)

lol

statisticool
12-25-2006, 06:52 PM
Oh, and expect three spirits to visit you tonight, starting at the stroke of midnight: The Spectre of Internal Skills, the Sprite of Kokyu, and the Phantom of Ki. By dawn, you'll be seeing things in a different light, I guarantee you.

Merry Christmas. :)

lol

They blasted me with their ground strength vectors. ;)

I'm wondering if Kiss. Ueshiba understood these body mechanics the way you know who discusses them. I'm not able to find it in Kiss.'s writings anywhere. I'd think that of anyone, Kiss. would have been taught these things being O'Sensei's son and all and training with him for a really really long time, rather than anybody else, if these things as you know who describes them are really fundamental to aikido as claimed.

Mike Sigman
12-25-2006, 07:40 PM
I'm wondering if .... Go look, then. Quit talking so much.

Upyu
12-25-2006, 11:56 PM
If anything, Justin's posts strengthen the axis between my ears :)
I'm getting really good at passing the "ki" in between them, lol.

Kevin Leavitt
12-26-2006, 01:12 PM
Justin Wrote:

Quote:
Also, on a simplier level. If we sparred NHB, and I was able to beat you by simply laying on you and moving gently and not even get out of breath....while you are gasping for air and using all your might to keep me from submitting you...what do you call that?


If you were to beat a person in that manner, an observer would probably says you used muscle, momentum, and friction. Are you putting that forth as an example of 'internal strength'? What distinguishes it from efficient use of ol external stuff?


Are you reading my post, or just selectively picking out the parts you want to hear or read?

I said there was no separating internal or external IMO. Again, you can call it what you want, I don't care. Efficient use of energy or what not, it does not matter.

Just think real hard about why it is that I am able to be more efficient than you. Experience? Are you younger, faster, stronger....in better shape? Probably so.

How do you account for the fact that I am able to out think, move more actively and efficiently. Experience? Actually, in theory, you should be able to read a book, memorize the techniques mentally, then use your brain/muscle to beat me since your synapse are probably able to fire faster.

So how do I beat younger guys? It starts with a thought, a perception, an experience. It starts from electrons. particles of light, all that good stuff, it gets built up to a mechanical motion...a response.

How do dogs know what their masters are going to do. Instincts right? they what for subtle clues in the enviornment, based on things they have observed keenly. They are able to read the energy and subtle clues.

So, what do you call all that?

It ain't special, some people are just able to read things better than others.

Do you really think KI is any different.

The Dali Lama is reputedly refined his mind through meditation to be able to do some special things in percieving people.

It is all related.

How do you account for paralyzed people being able to walk again when it is physically impossible. They can reprogram their minds.

I read a story a while back about a blind kid that was able to develop basically sonar perception by listening to sound and clicks.

What do you call that? Yeah...it is simple physics...all of it.

Go ahead, be blind to the fact that humans have the ability to expand their potential in many, many subtle ways. Kokyu is just the tip of the ice berg. It is your loss, not mine...so what do I really care? I Don't to be honest.

DH
12-26-2006, 02:21 PM
W'ere far into discussing these topics. So it bears repeating yet again.
No one..... is stating that what they are doing is singular and unknown. In fact if one reviews: it is stated over and over that this knowledge of internal skills is out there. Just rarely seen.

But again upon review the evolving history on Aikido Journal and here has been more or less:
1. They don't exist.
2. They were never the basis for anything in Aikido
3. Ueshiba go it from China and the Chinese arts- or from Shinto rituals..and not from Daito ryu
4. That they were not in Daito ryu
5. Mike's skill was Bogus
6. Ark's skill was Bogus
7. My skill was Bogus

Over the course of two years we have -in general- discussed the undeniable abilities of Takeda, Sagawa, and Kodo to exhibit the same skills if not better skills than Ueshiba and explore the very real possibility that since we all .....SAY.... these skill are everywhere- that Ueshiba could have just as easily as not- gotten ALL of his skills from Takeda. As he himself proclaimed "Takeda opened my eyes to the truth of Budo." Then cited sources in all manner of books and interviews of men in arts from training with Takeda, folks who trained with Ueshiba in Aikido, in Fighting spirit of Japan with referrence to Judo and a (Surprise) Aikijujutsu guy, that these skils were trained in Judo too. Then Karate and to the older CMA.
All, for some strange reason pointing to pushing and pulling and solo training as a source for power and understanding.

So to be very explicit -folks were/are stating these skills are everywhere in one form or another in Asian arts, just not openly shown.

Back on point.
Then as time passed a series of folks felt the three guys who yak about it the most Mike, Rob, and me. They reported back they are real and they are "diifferent" than what these Aikido men have felt from their teachers on one level or another.

At the very least we seem to have moved forward from "they don't exist" to the possibilty that they do indeed and now are discussing their relevance in Aikido or any Asian art-with no real consensus. The pendulum arc or polars being; some say they are the very root of it-others say nonsense.

Some are hanging on to skeptisism even in the face of their very own people testifying to the reality of these very real skills. But that's to be expected. The better educated in the CMA who are very familiar with internal skills are using their best Jewish accents and simple saying
"So this is news?"

In the mean time it appears dozens more from Aikido are going to get out this year and train in these skills. Thus they will have stepped- many for the first time-into the heart of all Asian martial arts. Hopefully they will bring it back and re-educate their western teachers about the basics they turned their backs on or never knew.

Ikeda was bold enough to look outside of Aikido; at Systema and in Ushiro's skills and to make a bold statement that change is needed in Aikido.
Its good to see others following a true leader.

In any event it seems almost unbelievable to still be reading folks denials and skeptisism. But we have all seen the skill levels of the unimaginative by-the-numbers guys .Good, rote, "do what they were told" workers who got firmly ensconced in the arts for decades. Time-in has never been a reliable indicator or promise of either skill or enlightenment. With any luck over the next decade the lowest common denominator will have basic bodyskills (hopefully not learned elsewhere) that will challenge the teachers still left walking through these technique based body arts while asleep-at-the-wheel. Just as computers made dinosaurs of Executives who could not do their own typing...so it will be for instructors of anything called "Asian" who are not conversant in these skills.
Should be a fun decade.

Cheers
Dan

statisticool
12-26-2006, 02:44 PM
It seems O'Sensei didn't talk about vectors, Kiss. Ueshiba didn't talk about vectors, and Moriteru Ueshiba doesn't talk about vectors.

I wonder if any technique where one leaves the ground can exist in an internal martial art if by definition one needs the strength of the ground to make it internal.

statisticool
12-26-2006, 02:53 PM
Are you reading my post, or just selectively picking out the parts you want to hear or read?


I'm responding to the parts I personally considered important.


I said there was no separating internal or external IMO. Again, you can call it what you want, I don't care. Efficient use of energy or what not, it does not matter.


OK, then what are you debating exactly? I'm addressing those who consider what they call 'internal' different from what they call 'external'.


How do you account for paralyzed people being able to walk again when it is physically impossible.


It obviously wasn't physically impossible, then.

Mike Sigman
12-26-2006, 03:09 PM
It seems O'Sensei didn't talk about vectors, Kiss. Ueshiba didn't talk about vectors, and Moriteru Ueshiba doesn't talk about vectors.

I wonder if any technique where one leaves the ground can exist in an internal martial art if by definition one needs the strength of the ground to make it internal.Gee.... I had a couple of native Chinese point out to me that "energy" was not a good definition for "jin" at all, despite the usage by Smith and others of "energy". They said a better term would be "force vector". Turns out that's very true. Maybe instead of always looking to play "gotcha", you should start doing some research, if you're really interested. But you're not really interested, are you? You've got some imaginary vendetta you're playing out in which you play the role of "Smarter Than Other People". In your mind.

Mike Sigman

Mike Sigman
12-26-2006, 03:10 PM
who consider what they call 'internal' different from what they call 'external'. Why don't you find out what "nei jin" means, as opposed to "wai jin" and report back to us? Or would you rather keep contending? I think we all know the answer, having seen a number of your posts.

Mike Sigman

Kevin Leavitt
12-26-2006, 04:08 PM
Dan,

I for one, have no way of knowing if your (or any one elses) skills are bogus or not. At this point, I only have hope that maybe one day I will have the opportunity to meet with one of you and learn from what you have apparently harnessed and codified in some way

I am not much about discussing the technicalities on all this vector this, vector that...simply would like to learn how to do these things and be able to employ them in daily life and in martial situations that are more than simple exercises that are very controlled in nature.

DH
12-26-2006, 05:11 PM
Hi Kevin
As I said before...and am hesitent since many here seem to keep talking past each other....over and over and over.
I'm not talking about testing and fixed exercises either.
If I talk about anything else I tend to get into trouble. My goals and aims are clear. MMA. I only care where it works.... there.
Testing is testing for other reasons. And its a neutral way to talk with others. If you bring up fighting- what does that do? Draws their minds back into technique.
Talk about a static test?
They think you're talking about tricks and shortcuts.
Many are so firmly ingrained and embedded into their way they canle even begin to cope with thinking any other way. Its sets up a conlfict within themselves so they don't truly even hear what you are actually saying to them.
Oh well.

From this side it seems to make sense to me.
Solo training, testing, playing and then practical use.
I don't know any simpler way to say it.

Those who say they can do these things VS those who can do these things.....shows.
Those who get it ....well.....get it. It all makes sense. To them


And...I still prefer to be cordial and nice about the whole thing and make folks laugh and have fun. Anyone who loves the arts will love this stuff.

Happy holidays
Dan

DH
12-26-2006, 05:28 PM
Hey Kevin
I Think of it like this.
At its very core it isn't about who is better. Its about WHAT is a better way to train.
We're all trying to just get better Right?
So Its as if we-together- are looking out ...lets say...at "it"
as our better.
Not who.
Make more sense?
Whats great is this stuff isn't style specific. You can do it and leave a martial prejudice at home.
And Ueshiba said?
"Takeda opened my eyes to true Budo." (internal skills)

Ueshiba opened our eyes
"That you don't have to cause harm with it."
Cheers
Dan

Ellis Amdur
12-26-2006, 08:26 PM
Whats great is this stuff isn't style specific. You can do it and leave a martial prejudice at home.
And Ueshiba said?
"Takeda opened my eyes to true Budo." (internal skills)

Ueshiba opened our eyes
"That you don't have to cause harm with it."

I don't have anything to add. I just wanted to quote it to read it again. Left me smiling. Never been more succinctly and elegantly.

Best

statisticool
12-26-2006, 09:30 PM
Gee.... I had a couple of native Chinese point out to me that "energy" was not a good definition for "jin" at all, despite the usage by Smith and others of "energy". They said a better term would be "force vector".


So? Who are these un-named people and what are their backgrounds? Just as many, actually probably tons more, native speakers, including dictionaries, say otherwise. (remember, Chinese like CMC, Ben Lo, and many others consulted Smith with his work)

But that is not the issue. I'm asking where did O'Sensei or any of his family (you know, the actual founders of the martial art under discussion) say specifically 'vector'. Not your interpretation of what the word is, but their actual words.

statisticool
12-26-2006, 09:32 PM
Why don't you find out what "nei jin" means, as opposed to "wai jin" and report back to us?


Why don't you work on answering some questions.

Do you believe that any technique where one leaves the ground can exist in an internal martial art if by definition one needs the strength of the ground to make it internal? Yes or no?

Mike Sigman
12-26-2006, 09:40 PM
So? Who are these un-named people and what are their backgrounds? Just as many, actually probably tons more, native speakers, including dictionaries, say otherwise.

But that is not the issue. I'm asking where did O'Sensei or any of his family (you know, the actual founders of the martial art under discussion) say specifically 'vector'. Not your interpretation of what the word is, but their actual words.You really simply don't know much about the subject, do you? Get at least a basis of knowledge before you start demanding people accede to your whims. Jin is jin. There is only one. Ki is Qi. Oh, BTW.... "jin" has a number of possible definitions; what happened was that the translators simply didn't understand it was a skill, not an "energy".
http://www.taiji-qigong.de/info/articles/jumin_transljin_en-2.html

But like I said, you're not really trying to debate the issue.... you simply want to cavil at every point because you don't know enough to debate the facts. You have worship pages for Cheng Man Ching, yet you assiduously avoid answering a simple question about his discussion of forces in "Thirteen Treatises". You're here only to make noise and show what a typical Cheng Man Ching follower is like. Most people, including most of the CMA world, got the idea long ago about the typical CMC followers.

Mike Sigman

Mike Sigman
12-26-2006, 09:50 PM
Why don't you work on answering some questions.Why? You never answer any. Where's the answer about CMC's force descriptions from Thirteen Chapters? You're not here for anything but to contend incessantly, looking somehow to prove me wrong about something you have no knowledge of. Get off my case.

Erick Mead
12-26-2006, 10:21 PM
Whats great is this stuff isn't style specific. You can do it and leave a martial prejudice at home.
And Ueshiba said?
"Takeda opened my eyes to true Budo." (internal skills) -I don't have anything to add. I just wanted to quote it to read it again. Left me smiling. Never been more succinctly and elegantly. That statement can be taken a number of different ways and it can't be shown that he meant it as you take it. More to the point -- "Budo = internal skills" is a vastly underinclusive categorization of Budo, what it means and may be applied to accomplish. Most of you do not practice in real conflict situations. I do -- everyday. Aikido plays a role in that -- everyday. Physical skills of any kind, much less internal "skills," largely, do not.
Ueshiba opened our eyes
"That you don't have to cause harm with it."The latter statement is undoubtedly true, but it applies to both the narrowly physical view of aikido, (and the even narrower view of internal work) as well as to the broader view of Budo - and of Aikido's place as a strategic art (heiho) as well as a do.

The writ of Aikido is far larger. I find lessons and application nearly everyday, in one form or another. Businessmen I know live in a world of different sorts of conflict than I do (though some cross over), but hard conflict nonetheless. Between them, these are the sorts of things that people usually kill over, so I suppose it is "real" enough as conflict goes. Other areas of life have their own native conflicts, but I write my criticism from what I know, and many of those spill over into my world, too.

Aikido taught me to relax into real conflicts as they develop, to take the center, and to be moved (in every sense). Good litigators do not make themselves vulnerable by being coldly passive and unemotional. We have to first sense something if we are to be able to exploit it to end the conflict on acceptable non-violent terms. And that, after all, is our function, and one that we share with Aikido. Law is budo. Go read what form of trial preceded "wager of law," if you doubt it.

My perspective is on these actual everyday conflicts, where the result ultimately is for men come with guns to take people's stuff or their freedom. Really, the only actual power I, or any lawyer, can excercise (without persuading a court to issue an order) is force people to sit there and answer my questions. And with that narrow blade a great deal of Aikido occurs.

Argument and persuasion, "logic" when it serves, but other means if it doesn't. We may not act in ways that might be expected from our feelings. Also a trait in common with the principles of Aikido. That does not mean we do not feel, or that we can afford not to.

If we are to persuade on grounds of moral or emotive arguments, we must understand the ways these sublter and more explosive tools work. To be effective they cannot be forced -- or they will be immediately be seen as false. They must be handled with ease, familiarity and genuine comfort-- in other words relaxed in in the situation at all times. Sort of like blasting with nitro. Tense and you stumble; stumble and you die. Kuzushi -- simple really. And people wonder why lawyers prefer cold logic -- sharper, but far safer.

Most of this is not remotely physical, although the subtext of my work is always about violence and the sanctioned uses of force. That's why people don't like lawyers. Our hands are usually ready on the hilts of the weapons that matter - most days.

The worst conflicts don't involve weapons, not even empty handed ones. Truly, it would be immensely more satisfying if they could be that simple. The worst weapons are not even physical. The hearts of men cut deeper than the finest sword. Where do internal skills aid in the practice of Aikido in that setting?

Training for relaxation in this sort of setting is the most likely use of the art of Aikido that anyone is likely to use in this age. And trust me, in this arena, and many others like it, YOU WILL BE MOVED -- the narrow focus of your "skills" has no useful place. Tell it to the men with the warrant and the shotguns.

Indeed, in this context, the oppositional contradictory tensions and counterpoises you all advocate hardly seems relaxed at all. In that setting, the undue focus on internal work almost seems to make aikido irrelevant in real world settings. Since I know that it is highly relevant and exceedingly useful, I conclude that the approach is fundamentally flawed, mainly by overemphasis. The problem is not in what is asserted, but what is denied.

I expound to some extent because the narrowing of Aikido's principles to this "be all and end all" of solipsistic internal work is so deeply troubling to me. It has no obvious referents to the strategic response of relaxation in the face of real conflict that I interpret in the context of this thread as being a central part of Aikido and the chief reason to practice an archaic and arcane budo in this modern age.

Cady Goldfield
12-26-2006, 10:25 PM
Ah, crap. Ellis wrapped that topic up so nicely, short and sweet, and then Erick comes back from Christmas break... :p

:D

Mike Sigman
12-26-2006, 10:47 PM
....The latter statement is undoubtedly true, but it applies to both the narrowly physical view of aikido, (and the even narrower view of internal work).... Aikido is physical, or people wouldn't have to dress up and go to the dojo and get a partner to work out with. Let's be realistic. If we get into these semantic glorious sunsets about Aikido, we can do the same thing about how ditch-digging is actually a broad, mentally-satisfying insight into the cosmos, as well.

But the main point I'd make is about the comment regarding "the even narrower view of internal work". We need to get this straight. The basic skills and subsets of what people are so blithely calling "internal" work is actually extremely broad. There are aspects of it in the secret lore of Hinduism, Buddhism, Confucianism, Chinese martial arts, calligraphy, dancing, tea ceremonies..... the same with Indian, Japanese, Indonesian, Thai, Malay, etc., etc., arts.

This is a huge and very ancient set of skills and usages. It is Aikido that is a narrow vestige of these skills, not the other way around, as surprising as that sounds. These skills, to some degree or another, are found referenced in stuff they pull from tombs that are B.C.E. The real question is not whether these things exist, how to do them, etc., but which came first ... the Yin-Yang cosmology or these skills.

FWIW

Mike Sigman

statisticool
12-26-2006, 11:04 PM
Oh, BTW.... "jin" has a number of possible definitions; what happened was that the translators simply didn't understand it was a skill, not an "energy".


Native speakers, many of them martial artists, didn't understand what the term meant?


You have worship pages for Cheng Man Ching, yet you assiduously avoid answering a simple question about his discussion of forces in "Thirteen Treatises".


You sure do have a funny definition of 'worship'.


Most people, including most of the CMA world, got the idea long ago about the typical CMC followers.


More appeal to anonymous unverifiable people?

statisticool
12-26-2006, 11:05 PM
Where's the answer about CMC's force descriptions from Thirteen Chapters?


As mentioned, I am asking you about your theories, your interpretation, not CMCs.


Get off my case.

You're welcome to not respond, as you always were.

So, again, do you believe that any technique where one leaves the ground can exist in an internal martial art if by definition one needs the strength of the ground to make it internal? Yes or no?

Robert Rumpf
12-26-2006, 11:06 PM
My goals and aims are clear. MMA. I only care where it works.... there.

To borrow a response from Ellis:

"I don't have anything to add. I just wanted to quote it to read it again. Left me smiling. Never been more succinctly and elegantly."

Unfortunately, I am not currently interested in MMA. I am interested in Aikido.

Since Aikido is not a Bu (martial method) of violence but rather a martial art of love, you do not behave violently. You convert the violent opponent in a gentle way. They cannot behave like hoodlums any longer.

To the extent that external/internal or any skills teach this idea, I am interested - and am willing to learn as I am able and can be taught by instructors and students I respect and whose technique, talents, or personality I envy or find insightful.. This is a reason why I have mentioned my limited Ki Society experience as being a positive example of examining such internal skills in an Aikido context. I'm currently not able to actualize this idea of Aikido as love, but I keep trying.

I've considered trying Ki Society again, but I like what I am learning now, and I have a life outside of Aikido. When I run out of learning here, or my situation changes, I may look for other things.

However.. the skills I have learned in Aikido that I've found most applicable outside the dojo to this point in my life are those that I get to practice when the technique fails, needs to be coaxed out of uke, or involves me being in danger.

If examining those things with a portion of my effort, and not focusing 100% of my efforts on internal skills within an MMA context is taking me "full speed... in the wrong direction" (as seems to be the theme) than so be it. I can come back around again later and get the stuff I missed. In the meantime, I am still learning.

Rob

Upyu
12-27-2006, 12:09 AM
Most of you do not practice in real conflict situations. I do -- everyday.


<sniffs Erick's Ego> :D


The latter statement is undoubtedly true, but it applies to both the narrowly physical view of aikido, (and the even narrower view of internal work) as well as to the broader view of Budo - and of Aikido's place as a strategic art (heiho) as well as a do.


"Narrower view" of Internal Work??
All the components you discussed, relaxation, heiho etc etc, all are inevitably trained and ingrained through internal work :confused:
If anything, digging deeper into Internal Work only opens more questions, both physical and mental.

The only reason the physical side of internal work is even being discussed is because so few have a basic idea of what's going on.
When it comes to this stuff I'll be the first to admit I've only got my foot in the door. But unless the base is raised, no meaningful conversation can be made about "Aiki", physical or otherwise.

We could go on and on about the mental aspects of Aun, induced by the physical training.
The concept of Imashime. How not giving 100% raises performance and strangely seems to give better results.
How that also feeds back into the idea of "Ukeire" (recieving), "Jin ni modosu", which all ties into everyone's favorite keywords of musubi, "ai", love etc etc etc.
Or examining the concepts of A-Un, Go-Ju from a mental perspective.

But the reality is, until you have the physical skills, you can't really discuss it.

I remember spending an extensive amount of time myself with a particular member of Sam Chin's Iliquchan group. The person in question definitely has "the skills" in spades, and back then he used to fill my ear on all the mental aspects, the theoretical perspectives to which I nodded and thought I understood.

Looking back now, I had an "idea" of what he meant, but I really didn't get it. Now that I have my foot in the door of this stuff, it's easy to see I really didn't have an idea of what was meant. And that perspective is only going to change even more if I dig deeper into these skills.


It has no obvious referents to the strategic response of relaxation in the face of real conflict age[/B].
Dude. You don't have to. You can't pull off these skills if you're tense mentally or physically. That's just a given.
"Handling" your opponent with 30-40% of what you have is the realm of "Bujutsu." :D

Erick Mead
12-27-2006, 12:30 AM
Aikido is physical, or people wouldn't have to dress up and go to the dojo and get a partner to work out with. "The body is the door to the gardens of the soul." Some Persian, I forget who.

You can hang out by the door if you want and discover the intricacies of doorish principles. I love, doors, really. But, it's rather simple, tangent push, pivot and hinge, repeat as needed. The far larger and more subtle art that door encloses is the point.

The real fruits of training are only likely to be so close to the door by mere happenstance, however. I have a big basket and I'm going a good bit further in to see what all is ripe for harvesting today.

Which part was it, exactly, that waxed all "happy-bunny" cosmological for you ? The part about depositions, court orders, deppity sheriffs with guns and papers, people losing control and hurting others over money troubles or property. Or was it just the sappy feel-good part about lawyers who have human emotions only the better to use them against other people ?

I must admit the last one got me all misty-eyed.
But the main point ... the comment regarding "the even narrower view of internal work". ... get this straight. The basic skills ...so blithely calling ...extremely broad. ... secret lore ... etc., etc., arts. ...huge ... ancient .. Aikido ... a narrow vestige ... These skills, ... are B.C... but which came first ... the Yin-Yang cosmology ... or these skills. Hallooo!
Hallooo!

Who are you talking to way over there, and why do you keep walking away?

"Even narrower" as in focussed more narrowly on the body (and one's one body) disregarding, as Dan has said "the other guy." Disregarding the commonalities of the two souls about to meet in the most intimate physical and spiritual embrace outside of a marriage bed. If you think that violence is not intimate, in every sense, then you really do have much to learn.

I truly consider that view more narrow than Aikido's "sincere regard" for the other guy. Love, even. Tenderly and brutally delivered. Often with a stout length of oak.

As for "semantic glorious sunsets," I prefer the term "Tequila sunrise." Or better yet how about just straight up? Lime's fer sissies or old women.

Maybe it was the shock of an admission that we actually manipulate people, sometimes in distinctly unkind ways. Lawyers and martial artists. All in a good cause, of course, but budo is like that -- an ugliness turned to better end.

Gardens grow bitter herbs also.

Erick Mead
12-27-2006, 01:10 AM
<sniffs Erick's Ego> :D No, really, you have no idea. Rank. Truly.

I could give a rats behind what your opinon of me is. I would give a great deal to see to it that what I know Aikido can deliver in conflict in practical human terms is not buried under sophistry masquerading as "martial effectiveness" dressed up in bamboo skirts. How many people did you talk out doing harm to themselves or others last year over long-running, intractable conflicts, without ever facially addressing the point so as to shame or break an already burdened soul, or destroying the other side in conflict, which would have only done precisely the same thing by different means. That is what Aikido can do in a real conflict. The kind where the guys with tinbadges and guns tend to show up afterward.

Really, speaking martially, get a gun -- or an aircraft carrier. And trust me -- I know sophistry when I catch a whiff -- and it smells no better.
We could go on and on about the mental aspects of Aun, induced by the physical training.The concept of Imashime. "Bondage?" Ick. :crazy:
If anything, digging deeper into Internal Work only opens more questions, both physical and mental. See, questions are inherently more dangerous than answers. Having a solution that is diverging instead of converging is a sign of a problem. If the generic question is "What then must we do?," I know two right answers to that question, and Aikido fills the bill in practically applying both of them.
But the reality is, until you have the physical skills, you can't really discuss it. No, we just do physical skills in a manner consistent with the strategic goals and methodology of Aikido. Which you have, by no means, persuaded me are remotely close to what you are doing.

Tim Fong
12-27-2006, 01:41 AM
I have a week or so before I have to start studying for the Bar, so what the heck, why not waste some of it here =)

Mike raises a good point about the closeness of "physical practice" to religious and physical practice.

Erick, you have mentioned before that your course of undergraduate study involved Chinese philosophy and religion. However, reading the texts is only half of it. When people use(d) those texts in the actual _practice of religion_ there were physical/movement based practices that went with them, whether in Chan/Zen, Daoism, or even Neo-Confucianism. I spoke recently to a good friend of mine who is a Chinese-trained Classicist who is also fluent in a number of other Asian languages. He mentioned that there simply isn't much good material in English regarding the practices that accompanied the texts, because for the most part the scholars translating them had little interest in that aspect. Unfortunately reading the texts without the practices is essentially incomplete. Rob makes a good point too that one can hear the words, but can't understand without going through the actual practice.

Now when I made the above point to another friend of mine ( like Erick, he is also a hermeneuticist) he flipped out and said that it sounded like True Believer religion, and not like science.

Is it religion? Or is it science? Do we need to jam it into a little box to make sense of it? Or are current categories simply inadequate to describe what is happening? Do we try to force reality to line up with what we already "know", or do we try to force what we know to line up with reality?

Well chew on this:

The primary experimental method to study the "presence" is to place the person in a simulated "cave", an acoustic chamber, where they are blindfolded and sit in the dark for about 30 min. The person wears a helmet or a collection of solenoids arranged around the head (like a crown) through which complex magnetic fields are generated. By applying specific patterns of weak magnetic fields that imitate the brains own activities, about 80% of the normal population report the experience of "another". Only specific patterns produce the experience; a reversed presentation of the pattern does not. People exposed to sham-field conditions rarely report the experience.

What we have found

We have found that: 1) the verbal label (usually supplied by the culture) the person places upon the experience strongly affects how it is recalled even within a few seconds after the end of the experiment, 2) experiences along the left side are usually aversive while those associated with the right side are more positive and may have "thoughts" associated with them, 3) increased geomagnetic activity in association with right hemispheric stimulation encourages the incidence of a sensed presence, 4) when a person attempts to "focus" upon the sensed presence it appears to become dynamic (to "move") since the act of focusing alters brain activity and hence how the applied complex fields interact with the brain, 5) an inordinate number of people who experience a sensed presence attribute them to gods or deceased individuals, 6) about 7% of the population, particularly males with enhanced temporal lobe lability and who attend a religious place frequently), report that if god told them to kill they would in his name, and 7) certain patterns of applied magnetic fields produce subjective experiences that are sometimes considered "parapsychological" or "paranormal". By applying a specific sequence of magnetic fields through the brain of a person who had experienced a "haunt", we generated the experience as well as paroxysmal electrical activity that suggested a source deep within the right temporal lobe.
link (http://www.laurentian.ca/neurosci/_research/mystical.htm)


And also, an interview with the researcher and some of his associates:

Dr. Persinger is a neuroscientist who has been conducting experiments with a helmet that pulses tiny bursts of electrical activity into the brain. Persinger says the pulses can simulate mystical or spiritual experiences.

And at the University of Pennsylvania, Dr. Andrew Newberg can show, through a brain scan, the parts of the brain that are activated during meditation, and also during prayer.
Link (http://www.pbs.org/wnet/religionandethics/week510/cover.html)

Mystical and spiritual experiences...now who in Aikido would have anything to do with those? :rolleyes:

Upyu
12-27-2006, 02:48 AM
<snip>
"Bondage?" Ick. :crazy:
<snip>


Majide imi wakaran, bakajanee? Oubei kayo teme! ww :rolleyes:

Lol. I hope you meant that in jest ;)
Imashime deals with "restraint", or "holding back."

Not whips and chains man (though if that floats your boat, to each his own :D )

But its also a physical skill, not simply an "idea." A physical skill/approach needed to execute more complex versions of the skills we're talking about.

Kevin Leavitt
12-27-2006, 04:51 AM
Eric Meade wrote:

The worst conflicts don't involve weapons, not even empty handed ones. Truly, it would be immensely more satisfying if they could be that simple. The worst weapons are not even physical. The hearts of men cut deeper than the finest sword. Where do internal skills aid in the practice of Aikido in that setting?

It is all a matter of perspective. If you are the guy staring point blank at the end of an executors gun, I think that is probably the worst you will ever face. It is all realitve to the situaiton.

Mark Jakabcsin
12-27-2006, 07:25 AM
Bears are hungry. Bears seek out food. Bears learn to find food. Bears eat food when they find it. Bears will continually go back to the same place as long as food continues to appear. That is what bears do.

Continually leaving food out in the open and then blaming the bear for eating it is pointless, silly and non-productive. Not feeding the bears seems to be the better approach.

MJ

Cady Goldfield
12-27-2006, 07:46 AM
To borrow a response from Ellis:

"I don't have anything to add. I just wanted to quote it to read it again. Left me smiling. Never been more succinctly and elegantly."

Unfortunately, I am not currently interested in MMA. I am interested in Aikido.
-snip-
Rob

But Rob, that's what is being said here -- that while someone like Dan may use his internal skills to fuel his fighting method, aikidoka could use the same thing so that they don't have to fight at all.

I think that because the concept of what's going on internally is difficult or impossible to envision if one has not felt them. Being "unthrowable," "unpinnable," "unhittable" and "unlockable" means that one can take an attack and choose either to return it in kind, or to "deflect" it without harming the attacker. How does that not serve aikido?

Furthermore, what is also being stated here is that Ueshiba had these skills and maintained that they are what constitute true budo. We can be merciful and compassionate, but really only from a position of strength, not weakness. When you can Stop the Spear and then choose not to impale your attacker upon it, that is true budo.

If you are saying that aikido should never be anythiing more than a cooperative pas de deux, practiced as a square dance and only in the dojo, then that's one thing. But if you see aikido as a discipline that you can take out into the world with you, and possibly use it to defend your life from physical assault, then you may be off base.

Those here who have the historical and technical knowledge (and who may practice MMA) are saying that these internal skills are the birthright of aikido, and that it time for aikido to take them back and truly live Ueshiba's vision. What does that have to do with MMA?

Robert Rumpf
12-27-2006, 08:34 AM
But Rob, that's what is being said here -- that while someone like Dan may use his internal skills to fuel his fighting method, aikidoka could use the same thing so that they don't have to fight at all.

I think that because the concept of what's going on internally is difficult or impossible to envision if one has not felt them. Being "unthrowable," "unpinnable," "unhittable" and "unlockable" means that one can take an attack and choose either to return it in kind, or to "deflect" it without harming the attacker. How does that not serve aikido?

I agree with all of this. This is why I think highly of what the Ki Society has to offer (in the ideal world), as I mentioned in my above post (and have said numerous times before). You are the one who has told me that this stuff is not practiced in modern Aikido at all and that "Dan has done things never recorded before by Aikidoka" (or something like that). I respectfully disagree, but that's ok.. For what its worth, the Ki Society also has the advantage of not being located solely in Massachusetts, Durango, or whatever sundry places the non-Aikido people here are at.

I also think that there are more options than those you listed above in terms of responses, which I have learned about (and continue to learn about) from my Aikido classes and life but I expect that this training would help with the implementation and awareness of those, too. So would weight training. So would judo. So would karate. So would kendo. Granted, I think the internal skills are more... special... This is again why I have interest in this stuff: from the Aikido perspective.

Furthermore, what is also being stated here is that Ueshiba had these skills and maintained that they are what constitute true budo.

You lose me at the bold.

We can be merciful and compassionate, but really only from a position of strength, not weakness. When you can Stop the Spear and then choose not to impale your attacker upon it, that is true budo.

This is a complex set of statements. I think there is more to it than that. Certainly, you can find strength in apparent weakness, and weakness in apparent strength.

If you are saying that aikido should never be anythiing more than a cooperative pas de deux, practiced as a square dance and only in the dojo, then that's one thing.

Never said that. Never advocated it either. Since I've tried to explain my feelings about this before, and I clearly can't communicate them, I'll just say that I agree that such a thing would be bad.

But if you see aikido as a discipline that you can take out into the world with you, and possibly use it to defend your life from physical assault, then you may be off base.

This is most likely true, or at least I am not efficiently spending my time if that is my goal (regarding the defense part).

Those here who have the historical and technical knowledge (and who may practice MMA) are saying that these internal skills are the birthright of aikido, and that it time for aikido to take them back and truly live Ueshiba's vision.

I don't think they are just the birthright of Aikido. Hence why they can be learned and used in MMA. Presumably all martial arts have (or more likely had) these things at some level, and most likely the other "do" have these in common.

I'm all in favor of internal skill development. I just don't think they are the only skills worth having, and I'm not even sure that they are the most important skills. In addition, I think the appropriate place for an Aikidoka to learn these skills if they are interested is the Ki Society, or by training themselves in the context of the techniques with fellow students. What does that have to do with MMA?

One other thing: I wouldn't hold my idea of appropriateness against another. If they choose to work in the MMA arena - that's fine with me. However, when I go onto the Aikido mat, I want to practice Aikido.

Rob

Mike Sigman
12-27-2006, 09:12 AM
I'm all in favor of internal skill development. I just don't think they are the only skills worth having, and I'm not even sure that they are the most important skills.So, are you suggesting (looking at your whole post) that Ki skills are some complementary skill that is possibly useful in Aikido, but not really necessary in order to do Aikido?

Regards,

Mike Sigman

Mike Sigman
12-27-2006, 09:53 AM
You are the one who has told me that this stuff is not practiced in modern Aikido at all and that "Dan has done things never recorded before by Aikidoka" (or something like that). I respectfully disagree, but that's ok.. For what its worth, the Ki Society also has the advantage of not being located solely in Massachusetts, Durango, or whatever sundry places the non-Aikido people here are at. If you're arguing with Cady (and I certainly don't agree that Dan is bringing anything new to Aikido, so you need to argue that with her... I'm just saying that a lot of the current teachers don't know this stuff), then you don't need to drag poor ole Durango into the retort, Rob.

I also agree that the Ki Society has *some* of this stuff and that other people have it to varying degrees. My point has been that the people that really know it don't show it. The people that don't know it either pretend they already do know it or that it's not really important. Those people in the latter category are far more harmful to Aikido and students than someone like Dan is.

Regards,

Mike Sigman

Lee Salzman
12-27-2006, 10:19 AM
Is it my imagination or was this not the actual topic of discussion?

The question for the forum at large is how do you or your system teach/train an individual to become relaxed? Is there a specific method or is it simply a hope that over time the student will relax? What drills or exercises are explicitly used for the purpose of teaching relaxation and it's powers?

I don't see where this was supposed to turn into yet another thread (I lost count somewhere) about whether this is useful to aikido at all and who knows it and who doesn't and... Seemed to me like the thread was supposed to be about, for those who actually want to positively discuss it, the methodologies for training these qualities into the body?

Robert Rumpf
12-27-2006, 10:26 AM
Is it my imagination or was this not the actual topic of discussion?

I don't see where this was supposed to turn into yet another thread (I lost count somewhere) about whether this is useful to aikido at all and who knows it and who doesn't and... Seemed to me like the thread was supposed to be about, for those who actually want to positively discuss it, the methodologies for training these qualities into the body?

Sorry to contribute to thread-drift.

Mike Sigman
12-27-2006, 10:46 AM
Seemed to me like the thread was supposed to be about, for those who actually want to positively discuss it, the methodologies for training these qualities into the body?Heh. :) Is that the criterion for discussion? No negatives critiques? Interesting.

You know, just having something out for discussion means that people will play around, wander off topic, hopefully come back, and so on. Thoughts and information come out, depending on the real interest and character of the contributors.

Even though not everything posted on the thread has been helpful, I personally have been able to glean some interesting perspectives, have had to think more about how I would reply to something (thereby forcing me to formulate my thoughts -- always helpful), and so on.

As an example, I'll share a thought that I had last night and came back to this morning...because the thread, even with its off-topic components, is still alive and motivating me to think:

The Ki Society approaches the use of kokyu forces through relaxation. This means that they are using a "traditional" ki and kokyu combination that is often simply referred to as "Ki". Regardless of what they call it, they're still doing exactly what I've positted a number of times... they're using the ki structure (mind/fascia) and the willing/manipulation of force vectors.

Core to the Ki-Society approach is the idea of relax and move and there is a lot of power if you do it this way. What they neglect to mention is that over and over, the "right way" is used as a correction in their classes, so the idea that "teaching people to simply relax" is being used is not really accurate at all.

The real problem comes with the idea of using the hara/"one-point". The idea of using the middle can actually be looked at in 2 ways: one way ties the hands to the hara via a connection and the other way involves mentally manipulation forces more or less from the middle (this is not strictly true, but it's a side-issue to the discussion). Full-blown powers involve both methods.

So what we have is that most of the Aikido we run into is mostly technique, although sometimes with a dab or two in a few places of using the body middle to effect a technique.

The Ki Society uses "ki", but in the limited sense of mainly using force manipulation and a coordination of the body "ki". Very real mind-body coordination.

There's a further step that, in my opinion, O-Sensei used by combining an active hara with the coordinated body (you can see him blatantly do this in some of his jo and bokken work). The problem with this last step is that it is a step that can contain a wide degree of abilities in the 2 major categories I mentioned.

OK, so my point is that to get into the full combination of powers, you need to train the body movement far more that just relaxation. Yes, relaxation is crucial in order to bring out some of these 'new' (they're somewhat innate, but that's also another discussion) coordinations. If you build up your Ki, but in a method that still uses "normal movement" as its basis, you're going to wind up in a limited cul de sac of Ki usage. That needs to be considered in relation to the Ki Society training, *in my opinion*.

See what a meandering thread can do in terms of still forcing you to think? ;)

Best.

Mike

Lee Salzman
12-27-2006, 11:32 AM
I don't mean to say thread drift or negative critique is bad. Just that from my view in the peanut gallery, I see the same argument, same opinions, same players. People have agreed to disagree already. But so much useful potential dialogue is being blocked by questions that can be entirely suspended for the discussion - we've got 12 pages devoted to shooting down the validity of the topic, as opposed to the topic. Aikido itself really seems tangential to the topic, if that's what people are so hung up on. Just for selfish reasons, it would be cool to see more discussion of "how" rather than tiresome, endless discussion of "why".

Erick Mead
12-27-2006, 12:04 PM
I have a week or so before I have to start studying for the Bar, so what the heck, why not waste some of it here =) ... and may God have mercy on your soul!
Erick, you have mentioned before that your course of undergraduate study involved Chinese philosophy and religion. ... can't understand without going through the actual practice. I practice. Aikido. You? The "skills" advocates seem to make a dissociated object out of one's own body, and dissociated even farther from the objectified opponent. Aikido is precisely the reverse, expanding the subjective so as to also subjectify the opponent in "a spirit of loving protection."

If you want a thread of Chinese thought for this, look to Wang.
Later generations did not know that the point of departure in becoming a sage is in being completely dominated by heaven-given principles, but devoted themselves to seeking to become sages by means of knowledge and power; for they thought that sages are all-knowing and all-powerful. Each said to himself: "I must comprehend the exceedingly great knowledge and power of the sages, before I can rest." For this reason they did not devote themselves energetically to moral principles, but vainly dulled their mental energies and exhausted their strength that they might worm it out of books, or search it out of nature, or surmise it from various signs left by the sages. With greater increase in knowledge there came greater increase in passion; and the greater the power they attained, the more they obscured moral principles. The point here is not that books, or nature, or signs are things to be avoided or which have no use or meaning. It is the purposes to which they are turned in the "investigation of things" that is the danger. The will to power and the satisfaction of passion are the dangers.

The so-called "internal work," "skills" seem -- from their advocates positions so far -- not to expand the scope of the internal to include the opponent, but to actually reduce it. I am a big fan of the utility of reductionist knowledge but I know enough not to stop there, or to deny the uses of holistic knwoledge, either. Aikido is an expansion of inward, subjective knowledge to include the former object of conflict. This only happens by relaxing the boundaries between self and other, movement and stillness -- and not by hardening the internal into some uncrackable, immoveable nugget.
Now when I made the above point to another friend of mine (like Erick, he is also a hermeneuticist) he flipped out and said that it sounded like True Believer religion, and not like science. "Hermeneutics": you said that like it was a dirty word. The hermeneutic circle is a powerful observation about seeking Truth. The parts cannot be understood without some vision of the whole, and the whole cannot be understood except through experience of the parts, etc. Theory is meaningless in the absence of concrete facts -- which are themselves meaningless in the absence of organizing theory

Or in Neo-Confucian terms -- in the investigation of things, knowledge and action are one. " ... the high and the low, altitude and depth, together constitute the great round, unmoved stillness, from what other point can knowledge of the doctrine be gained?"
The cycle of refinement from being to knowing and back to being, etc. is endless, and always centered, if you let it be. Descartes was not wrong, but only half-right. They cannot be separated.

Relaxing that mental boundary is therefore more natural to both knowledge and action -- which Aikido teaches -- than maintaining the distinction so as to be unswayed or unmoved by "external" forces -- which is where these "skills" advocates' arguments tend. By making the opponent's will ineffective you externalize, reduce and reject it. This is inherently unrelaxed because there is an opposition of wills, and therefore an opposition in physical terms. They even speak of "contradictory tension" as a physical principle -- as if that inherently unrelaxed state could possibly be reconciled to principles of Aikido and relaxation in the training of this art. A body at war with itself is hardly poised to not be at war with another body.

By accepting the opponent's will and its consquences in joining your will to it, you subjectify and expand it, eliminating the tension of wills altogether. As technique is refined in giving expression to that mutual will, you eliminate the remaining mental and physical vestiges of opposition. In other words, you can progressively relax, because there far less work or thought for you to have to do in the conflict.

He volunteered his decision and his energy to do the heavy lifting for us. I just follow along. He tries to impose his will, but fails to understand the full ramification of what he has willed. As a result, his knowledge and action are not initially unified. I help him understand that, and help to unify them for him ...

Erick Mead
12-27-2006, 12:07 PM
<snip>
"Bondage?" Ick. :crazy:
<snip> Lol. I hope you meant that in jest ;) Too good to pass up. :D

Mike Sigman
12-27-2006, 12:13 PM
I practice. Aikido. You? Pecking order stuff. Tohei was reported to watch someone's Aikido and say something to the effect, "Where's his Ki?". I.e., without Ki it's not really Aikido.

In the current discussions about the ki, how it works, how it's practiced, etc., it becomes obvious that not everyone uses it in their Aikido. Why else would Ushiro Sensei be invited by Ikeda and Saotome Senseis to teach aspects of this stuff (maybe they don't know what they're doing?)?

The question is.... is this stuff a necessary basic in order to claim that someone "does Aikido". If it is a necessary basic, then a lot of people claiming to do Aikido are not really doing Aikido and their understanding is skewed. An interesting philosophical debate, eh?

Regards,

Mike Sigman

Erick Mead
12-27-2006, 12:20 PM
But Rob, that's what is being said here -- that while someone like Dan may use his internal skills to fuel his fighting method, aikidoka could use the same thing so that they don't have to fight at all. But I don't want to stop the fight, I want him to join him in his fight, to support and continue the thing he has begun. He may, at that point, find that he wants to stop fighting, at which point -- so do I. Not the same thing at all, really.
Furthermore, what is also being stated here is that Ueshiba had these skills and maintained that they are what constitute true budo. A point that I continue to contest, with good authority, I might add, and which remains unproved from any authority yet offered. Even the videos offered so far do not show the things that the advocates claim that they show along these lines. He taught his art to his students, who taught it to us -- that art is Aikido, and Aikido truly is budo.
We can be merciful and compassionate, but really only from a position of strength, not weakness.
The timeless and universal seduction of power -- which tends to corrupt, as Wang Yang-ming and Lord Acton both warned.
Those here who have the historical and technical knowledge (and who may practice MMA) are saying that these internal skills are the birthright of aikido, and that it time for aikido to take them back and truly live Ueshiba's vision. Assuming authority and proving things from it are two different things.

Cady Goldfield
12-27-2006, 12:24 PM
If you're arguing with Cady (and I certainly don't agree that Dan is bringing anything new to Aikido, so you need to argue that with her... I'm just saying that a lot of the current teachers don't know this stuff),

Hm. I don't think that anyone is claiming to bring anything "new" to aikido. More that there is much that could be "returned" to aikido.

Erick Mead
12-27-2006, 12:30 PM
I practice. Aikido. You?Pecking order stuff. ... without Ki it's not really Aikido. ... a lot of people claiming to do Aikido are not really doing Aikido and their understanding is skewed. An interesting philosophical debate, eh? It is beyond debate and evidenced here that a lot of understanding about Aikido is skewed. However, constructing a definitional fallacy does not constitute debate, philosophical or otherwise, or prove anything -- except that by defining terms as we like, we can reach any arbitrary conclusion we like.

Asserting that Budo="the skills" and Ki ="the skills" and that therefore Aikido = "the skills" are unwarranted narrowings of all the concepts involved -- which I happen to know because I practice them.

Cady Goldfield
12-27-2006, 12:37 PM
A point that I continue to contest, with good authority, I might add, and which remains unproved from any authority yet offered. .

Whoa. You had a seance and summoned the ghosts of M. Ueshiba and S. Takeda?! :eek: Well, they were probably yanking your chain, Erick. ;)

You know, just because you can't see something with your eyes, doesn't mean that it's not there.That has already been discussed on this forum. Reminds me of one of the best exchanges in Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's Sherlock Holmes series (This from the Devil's Foot Root):

Sterndale: How do you know?
Holmes: I followed you.
Sterndale: I saw nobody!
Holmes: That is what you may expect to see if I follow you.

Get out in the world and experience things hands-on, then come back and say it's just a figment of many ancient and modern MAs' imaginations. So much easier to debate it from your comfy chair, though, with zero experience! I get the sense it's just a topic of idle debate for you, or you would climb outta your box and truly seek the answers...

Erick Mead
12-27-2006, 12:55 PM
Seemed to me like the thread was supposed to be about, for those who actually want to positively discuss it, the methodologies for training these qualities into the body? That answer is quite simple, although getting some people to accept and actively follow this advice of the Founder is trying, at times. Of course, many of them do not, or no longer, practice aikido.
In these teachings listen most
To the rhythm of the strike and thrust
To train in the basics (omote)
Is to practice the very secrets of the art.

Progress comes to
those who train in the
inner and outer factors.
Do not chase after "secret techniques,"
for everything is right before your eyes!

Aiki!
The root of the power of love
A love that must grow ever broader.
Practice the basics with all of your attention when you are training, and you will see what is there. Do it mindlessly, impatiently, or in the expectation of something other than what it will show you -- and you will miss it. Unifying the inner (self) and the outer (enemy) occurs progressively in that practice. Tension in conflict is created by the mind -- it is artificial. Relaxation of the boundaries between you and your enemy is actually more natural, more effortless, and more effective.

As you work through this in practice your mind starts to actually believe it. You learn a practical lesson in what Aikido and the higher levels of all budo share with another stream of divine wisdom:

"Be not afraid! Neither let your hearts be troubled."

Conquering (Masagatsu Agatsu) is not to conquer the object of fear, but its subject. And then you are truly free to be easy and relaxed in all circumstances.

Ellis Amdur
12-27-2006, 12:57 PM
Apropos some of these discussions, when I first started training Araki-ryu (and was still doing aikido on a daily basis), my instructor asked me, "My understanding of aikido is that it is supposed to resolve conflict. So, if you are in a bar and someone - say an obnoxious drunk grabs you and won't let go - like this <he grabbed my arm hard> - what would you do?" I immediatedly responded with a nikkyo (and I was and am pretty good at this technique - I was practicing on an almost daily basis with the then uchi-deshi at the Aikikai, circa 1977, as they liked to slam around the big guy). My instructor countered the technique, as I recall, with some simple shifts of posture and redirection of force. "What would you do now?" he asked. I replied, "I'd use atemi," and gestured slugging him in the face. He started laughing. "So that's the art of reconciliation I've been hearing about? You'd just hit a poor drunk who's too intoxicated to know what he's doing? You just slug him in the face when your lousy wrist-lock doesn't work!!!!? How about if you do the technique like this?" CRUNCH. A very definitely non-aikido wrist/arm lock brought me to the ground. "Seems to me that when your techniques are weak, you end up more violent, not less so I guess Araki-ryu is the art of peace isn't it?"
Reminds me of the story of John L. Sullivan shoulder checked on a train by a young thug. Upon Sullivan saying "excuse me" as the kid passed, his friend remonstrated, "You don't have to be so damn polite! You're the heavy weight champion of the world." Sullivan said, "I'm the heavy weight champion of the world. I can afford to be polite."
If any translation is needed, why would anyone object to any training method that would make your aikido more powerful?

Best

Mike Sigman
12-27-2006, 01:01 PM
It is beyond debate and evidenced here that a lot of understanding about Aikido is skewed. However, constructing a definitional fallacy does not constitute debate, philosophical or otherwise, or prove anything -- except that by defining terms as we like, we can reach any arbitrary conclusion we like.

Asserting that Budo="the skills" and Ki ="the skills" and that therefore Aikido = "the skills" are unwarranted narrowings of all the concepts involved -- which I happen to know because I practice them.Well, based on all your previous conversations, in addition to some comments from people that know you, you're giving off the impression that you really don't know exactly what we're talking about. No problem... I'm sure that will be ascertained and publicized before this is all over. Maybe Ikeda Sensei should have invited you to give the kokyu instruction at Summer Camp. I'll suggest it to him. ;)

The point I was making is sort along the lines that when the discussion is this complex and slippery one of ki/kokyu and who does it to what degree and what degree is needed in Aikido, and so on, it's difficult going.

If, as some people are suggesting, Aikido is already chock full of good Ki skills, then I'd suggest they go back and look at the archives from a year or two ago. Both AikiWeb and Aikido Journal. Look at the current books on "how to do ki" and "advanced Aikido techniques".... which don't have any explanations of how to really do these complex body mechanics.

If, on the other hand, there is not much knowledge of these skills and how to obtain them in Aikido, these open-forum discussions, getting instruction with an eye to Aikido applications, and so forth, are a lot more preferable, in my estimation, then going and taking a course in Goju Karate, Wing Chun, Systema, etc. Every substantive contribution to the conversation should be a welcome one. Every "already there in the pecking order so leave me alone with this Ki stuff" instructor should be looked at askance. IMO. ;)

Regards,

Mike Sigman

Cady Goldfield
12-27-2006, 01:14 PM
I agree with all of this. This is why I think highly of what the Ki Society has to offer (in the ideal world), as I mentioned in my above post (and have said numerous times before). You are the one who has told me that this stuff is not practiced in modern Aikido at all and that "Dan has done things never recorded before by Aikidoka" (or something like that). I respectfully disagree, but that's ok.. For what its worth, the Ki Society also has the advantage of not being located solely in Massachusetts, Durango, or whatever sundry places the non-Aikido people here are at.

True, I'd said some thangs... ;) ... but meant mainstream aikido. Which does constitute most aikido. Again, it's not because these are magical secrets, but just that they have been sidelined or inadvertantly lost from the curriculum. It's been stated many times that those who may have "gotten it" from Ueshiba didn't pass it to their students either by choice, by inability to transmit, or by lack of ability by the students. Others went outside aikido to get it and bring it back, Shioda and Tohei, for instance, but there was a limit to the number of even their students who seem to have been able to fully receive the skills.

And to go back to one of Justin's comments about K. Ueshiba -- it might occur to some that just because one is the son of the Big Honcho of a discipline or art, doesn't mean that he will be comprehend (or even, dare I say, be given) the complete system. This has happened universally throughout the world of crafta and disciplines. It happened in crafter's guilds, martial arts, science, music and art, where the crafty ol' master didn't give even his kids the deepest tricks of his trade. Or, the kids just didn't "get it" because it was beyond their abilities. The passed on what they could to the best of their ability.

I expect the flames to flare momentarily... ;)

I also think that there are more options than those you listed above in terms of responses, which I have learned about (and continue to learn about) from my Aikido classes and life but I expect that this training would help with the implementation and awareness of those, too. So would weight training. So would judo. So would karate. So would kendo. Granted, I think the internal skills are more... special... This is again why I have interest in this stuff: from the Aikido perspective.

I wouldn't argue with this. No art, none, is complete in and of itself, and an intelligently woven set of skills from other disciplines can enrich and broaden what we have. That's what MMA are about, as long as they are not a "leftovers stew" mix lacking in sound knowledge of each discipline's fundamentals and principles. And, there must be a complementary theme or thread that connects each so they are not discrete hunks of information that cannot be integrated with one another, or which conflict with the movements and body needs of each discipline.

Cady Goldfield wrote:
Furthermore, what is also being stated here is that Ueshiba had these skills and maintained that they are what constitute true budo.

You lose me at the bold.

I was referring to the repeated references to those internal skills as empowering Ueshiba's aikido to the point that he could truly "stop the spear" -- be at a point of absolute power over a potential assailant but to do no harm. Why do we train in potentially (and easily) lethal arts, but to ensure that we never have to kill anyone?

Cady Goldfield wrote:
We can be merciful and compassionate, but really only from a position of strength, not weakness. When you can Stop the Spear and then choose not to impale your attacker upon it, that is true budo.

This is a complex set of statements. I think there is more to it than that. Certainly, you can find strength in apparent weakness, and weakness in apparent strength.

It's not a complicated concept, Rob. People who are very strong and wielding great power have the luxury of "being" weak -- of showing gentleness and compassion -- and making concessions by choice. People who are powerless do not make concessions by choice, they are forced to choose to submit or to die. If they do not wish to die, then neither option is a real choice. Obi Wan could "die" because he was ultimately powerful and knew he would gain "Unimaginable Power" by joining the force. Ewoks, on the other hand, were just so much dead meat crushed by the Evil Empire's robot stompers, though they were doughty little dudes. ;)

Cady Goldfield wrote:
Those here who have the historical and technical knowledge (and who may practice MMA) are saying that these internal skills are the birthright of aikido, and that it time for aikido to take them back and truly live Ueshiba's vision.

I don't think they are just the birthright of Aikido. Hence why they can be learned and used in MMA. Presumably all martial arts have (or more likely had) these things at some level, and most likely the other "do" have these in common.

"Birthright" might not have been my best choice of words. What I'm saying is that Ueshiba brought these skills into aikido and it made his aikido the powerhouse that it was. That it wasn't universally passed on is evident in the inability of his most senior students to replicate his feats. Ingrediants were missing, and remain absent from the vast majority of aikido curriculums. If they weren't we wouldn't be seeing this neverending debate on MA and aikido forums.

They certainly aren't, and never were, limited to Ueshiba's aikido. After all, he got them from Takeda, and Takeda himself didn't invent them; he received them from the koryu training he "inherited" or obtained. From what I've been reading, hearing from traditionial CMA people and observing over the past decade, internal skills were one of a number of elements of many old family martial systems in various Asian cultures.

I'm all in favor of internal skill development. I just don't think they are the only skills worth having, and I'm not even sure that they are the most important skills. In addition, I think the appropriate place for an Aikidoka to learn these skills if they are interested is the Ki Society, or by training themselves in the context of the techniques with fellow students. What does that have to do with MMA?

One other thing: I wouldn't hold my idea of appropriateness against another. If they choose to work in the MMA arena - that's fine with me. However, when I go onto the Aikido mat, I want to practice Aikido.

Rob

Again, I never said that internal skills are "all" there is. They're just one important part of a well-balanced breakfast. ;) For example, you can train in jujutsu or chin na and have yourself a powerful, satisfying set of skills. But add internal power to those powerful external techniques, and your locks, your throws, your pins become "turbocharged." Or you can use them in wrestling and your opponent won't be able to take you down ... he just keeps bouncing off you. Or add them to your sex life and, well...

Happy New Year. :)

Cady Goldfield
12-27-2006, 01:17 PM
Bears are hungry. Bears seek out food. Bears learn to find food. Bears eat food when they find it. Bears will continually go back to the same place as long as food continues to appear. That is what bears do.

Continually leaving food out in the open and then blaming the bear for eating it is pointless, silly and non-productive. Not feeding the bears seems to be the better approach.

MJ

Seems to me the bears are being fed, now, if they seek it out. But if it's offered and they turn their fuzzy snout up at it, they shouldn't snarl.

I hear Yogi is filching pic-a-nic baskets again... and is unstoppable. :D

MM
12-27-2006, 01:20 PM
That answer is quite simple, although getting some people to accept and actively follow this advice of the Founder is trying, at times.


Whew, you can say that again. ;)

Let me help with that advice:


In these teachings listen most
To the rhythm of the strike and thrust
To train in the basics (omote)
Is to practice the very secrets of the art.


Train in the basics. So, you train in internal skills, which are the basics for ki/kokyu/etc. Hiriki no yosei is basics, furutama is basics, funakogi is basics. All those were used to build internal skills.


Progress comes to
those who train in the
inner and outer factors.


Ah, *inner* and *outer*. So, you must train in internal skills (inner) while at the same time, train in techniques (outer).


Do not chase after "secret techniques,"
for everything is right before your eyes!


As Ellis has stated and I use again and again, Hidden in Plain Sight. :)


Aiki!
The root of the power of love
A love that must grow ever broader.


See, Aiki. The internal harmony generated by doing internal training and building internal skills is the root power of love.

Man, you were right. The answer is really quite simple. :)

(All done in slightly sarcastic, yet humorous tones, for those who can't tell.)

Mike Sigman
12-27-2006, 01:29 PM
That answer is quite simple, although getting some people to accept and actively follow this advice of the Founder is trying, at times. Of course, many of them do not, or no longer, practice aikido. No, no.... the really sad part is that many of the people not following the advice of the Founder are in fact not only "doing Aikido", they're "teaching Aikido".... and still doing it wrong. Touche'!

BTW, the real problem is that this type of movement means, to some extent (how much depends on which path you follow), that you have to change the way you move, the way you source your power, and a number of other things. It ain't easy.

What it means is that an "Aikido Expert" who doesn't know how to move in this fashion has to massively change the way he moves (and therefore the timing, etc.) of every technique and "subtlety" that he already "knows".

Take for instance in Ki-Aikido where everyone starts out trying to move softly, letting the actual ki-strength do the work, and the kokyu-power be the basis of all techniques. They've already got a foot in the door. An "expert" or "teacher" coming over from some style where all he's learned is normal-muscle usage combined with an occasional spot of "use the body center to help the technique", simply cannot function as anymore than a beginner in the Ki-style method of doing Aikido. Think about that. It's a HUGE point.

Guess what. Although I'm not sold on all the training methods of the Ki Society (simple opinion.... can be hashed out in the dojo, etc., someday), they're still far more on the right track to Aikido than most of the western Aikido that I've seen. So if Erick is going to start pointing out who does Aikido and who doesn't, it's a conversation that is like a can of worms.

But I ain't had this much fun since Uncle Ed went out back to use the outhouse and the hogs et him. ;)

Mike

Cady Goldfield
12-27-2006, 01:36 PM
But I ain't had this much fun since Uncle Ed went out back to use the outhouse and the hogs et him. ;)

Mike

Well, that explains why Mike keeps responding to Erick's posts, as much as he bortches that they are a waste of his time! :D

Jim Sorrentino
12-27-2006, 02:39 PM
Hi Cady,Get out in the world and experience things hands-on, then come back and say it's just a figment of many ancient and modern MAs' imaginations. So much easier to debate it from your comfy chair, though, with zero experience! I get the sense it's just a topic of idle debate for you, or you would climb outta your box and truly seek the answers...So did you go see Ikeda-sensei when he was in the Boston area a couple of months ago? If yes, what did you think? If no, why not? He will be at Aikido Shobukan Dojo in DC in February, by the way --- see http://www.aikido-shobukan.org/seminars/?seminarid=53.

Jim

Erick Mead
12-27-2006, 02:42 PM
Whoa. You had a seance and summoned the ghosts of M. Ueshiba and S. Takeda?! :eek: Well, they were probably yanking your chain, Erick. ;) I just judge from what the man said and did in teaching the art we have and practice. Since everyone who doesn't actually practice Aikido has these deep insights into its supposed "lost secret," I had assumed they were the one's channeling.

On the specific subject of what revelation Ueshiba received from Takeda, here is an interview of Tomiki Shihan from Aikido Journal #43, (1981): Q: How much was Ueshiba really influenced by Omotokyo? How much did he borrow from the religion? How much did he create by himself?

Tomiki: Though I can't really say how much he developed from the side of technique, I guess we can say there was a great change based on a "change of heart" (kokoro no tenkan). And that is where we find the relationship between the character of Sokaku Takeda Sensei and Ueshiba Sensei. This Takeda Sensei was a martial artist in the old sense: when he saw a person he saw an enemy. If I were to try to give an example I would tell you that if a person happened to come visit him he would "greet" them by instantly grabbing the steel chopsticks from the brazier and shouting, "Who is there?" He would storm out to the entry hall. He was like someone from the "Age of the Warring Countries" (Sengoku Jidai, 1482-1558), who saw his seven proverbial "enemies" in every group of people. He was a man of deep distrust, whose personality never revealed the slightest suki, or vulnerable point. If you happened to ask even a small question he would bellow, "Dare you doubt my technique, kid!" That's how violent his temperament was! Since he was like that, it's not surprising that Ueshiba Sensei was ill-treated by him. So I think that entering a particular faith was a psychological reinforcement for him.

Ueshiba Sensei often said, "Budo is Love". This is one of those "changes of heart".

After all, though, budo concerns itself with life and death situations in which the main question is will one get out alive. It was for the sake of confronting techniques that delve into this area that not only Ueshiba Sensei, but also a number of other great people in the past exposed their bodies to danger. But, on the contrary, the more they try to enter this world of danger of violence, they end up going in a direction that contradicts it all. By placing themselves into the realm of life and death they find that they are confronted again with a deep delving into the problem of death. They find they have embarked upon a spiritual or religious path. The teaching of ai-uchi in budo is that anyone suitably willing to disregard his own death can find an opening for a mutual kill. This palpable fear is vibrantly present in the above depicton of Takeda. A definitive picture of an "unrelaxed" guy, if you ask me.

Ai-uchi, however, as Takeda viewed it was satsu jinken, the death- dealing sword. O Sensei's awakening "to the meaning of budo" that occurred with Takeda accompanied his "change of heart" according to Tomiki. If ai-uchi is true of ai-uchi no satsu jinken then it is just as true of ai-uchi no katsu jinken as well. If by accepting my death I may thereby kill the enemy -- then by actively seeking an opening to save the life of the enemy, your own life may be saved as well.

This is katsu jinken, the life-giving sword, and the reason that Aikido as an art follows the heiho (strategy) of the sword, and not the strategy of Takeda's jujutsu, even though it employs a selection of his techniques as tactical tools. One cannot effectively save another from a deadly fate if one is already dead. If you accomplish your objective of saving him, you have to live long enough to do it. And since his attack is the unwitting opening to his own danger in ai-uchi no satsu jinken, saving him necessitates concluding the attack that put him in danger in the first place.

So relax, already, and just practice.
So much easier to debate it from your comfy chair,... NOT THE COMFY CHAIR!!!!! AAAAAAAAGHH!!

And that's way too relaxed.

And I don't debate this from the proverbial armchair any more than Ellis Amdur does, although we handle it from different perspectives. You should read his article pondering the serious problem of moral hazard the opposite approach creates, as illustrated by Tomiki's depiction of Takeda.

Ironically enough, Ellis probably was actually sitting in a comfy chair when some of the events described occurred. http://www.koryu.com/library/eamdur3.html
[Describing the tramautized sociopathic personality] ...Their capacity to form attachments to others is minimal or even absent. When contact with another human being engenders a feeling of sensitivity or vulnerability, their reaction is often a deep and profound pain, the pain felt by the exile upon tasting the scent of home on the wind, a pain so deep that they may respond by trying to extinguish that which causes the feeling, which is usually the capacity for sensitivity, or even, in the most extreme cases, the human being who evokes the response. ...There are, then, a few people, who have schooled themselves to have no openings, no vulnerabilities whatsoever, to respond with detachment to what they feel they have to do or want to do. If that sounds dangerously close to the image we have of the warrior, good! It's food for thought isn't it? ... as if jerked by an electric prod, [he] leapt back to his feet, and shadow-boxed ... with a kind of wired glee, prancing like an imp in the coals of a fire. At my request, he sat down again and slumped, torpid as a lizard on a rock. It was as if his immobility was as much an act of will as his movement--he never could be said to be relaxed.
...
Am I a moral failure in that I did not kill him? ... When I interviewed that boy, I knew what he was capable of doing. ... I could have saved the child he raped an unimaginable world of pain, and probably other children, too, when he finally gets out of prison. ... My own answer to this question is the choice I made, ...

What, then, is the sword that gives life? There, in a nutshell, lies my concern about the advocacy of this approach to Aikido.

The point lies in both cases, victim and victimizer, whoi are ultimately unified into one person. Juji ( 十 ) the cross shape -- the upright being cut down. The innocent, or outmatched victim who shrinks from ai-uchi, leaves their killing blow waiting around in their hearts to get its licks in. It is not their fault that this happens, but it does happen. This responsibility for further acceptance of an already unjust evil is also forced upon them. All of it being immensely unfair.

But it is their responsibility since no one else can strike that blow or lay it aside for them. If they do not take it for their own, it may take them instead, as Ellis witnessed. Many are drawn to the martial arts for this reason, I might add, although the moral problem is not cured merely by taking them up. If they do not accept it, they may ultimately become one more unwitting link in this chain of horror.

We need profound acceptance, not avoidance, of undesired acts. We cannot fight against or resist this evil. It is within us and it actively seeks us to guide our actions.

We all have an unstruck blow lurking in our darker places. We will strike that blow, sooner or later. We cannot do away with it. We can confront it, we can accept it, and we can convert it ("turn with" it). There is this gift of ai-uchi within us that allows us to do that - but it allows for either good or for ill. We can save our own future victims from ourselves and the violence we have inherited. Or we can destroy them and ourselves, too.

As Ellis' sad tale intimates -- posture is a moral guide. And tension is a sure sign of illness, as ease and relaxation are signs of health. "Not being moved" in the manner of the skills is not a realistic or emotionally healthy option. Certainly, it is not a relaxed option.

That moral tension waiting to be unsprung was beaten into us in one form or another, and will only come out the same way. If we look for it and accept it we can strike the life-giving blow, or the death-dealing blow, just as easily. We must accept the necessary personal pain (shugyo) in either case -- but in vastly different forms depending on our choice. One destroys - the other transforms. One is Aikido - the other is not.

Mike Sigman
12-27-2006, 02:46 PM
I was going to read that whole post, Erick, but the scroll-wheel on my mouse broke from over-use. ;)

Cady Goldfield
12-27-2006, 02:50 PM
Hi Cady,So did you go see Ikeda-sensei when he was in the Boston area a couple of months ago? If yes, what did you think? If no, why not? He will be at Aikido Shobukan Dojo in DC in February, by the way --- see http://www.aikido-shobukan.org/seminars/?seminarid=53.

Jim

Sorry to say that I had to work that Saturday, Jim. Truth be told, if I hadn't had to work I would have been doing my "regular" training, as free Saturdays are rare for me, and training time is precious. :)

But I will make a point to attend an Ikeda seminar next time he is in Massachusetts, and I will write to you about it.

C

Jim Sorrentino
12-27-2006, 02:54 PM
Hi Ellis,So, if you are in a bar and someone - say an obnoxious drunk grabs you and won't let go - like this <he grabbed my arm hard> - what would you do?" I immediatedly responded with a nikkyo (and I was and am pretty good at this technique - I was practicing on an almost daily basis with the then uchi-deshi at the Aikikai, circa 1977, as they liked to slam around the big guy). My instructor countered the technique, as I recall, with some simple shifts of posture and redirection of force.I enjoyed that story (as well as the one about John L. Sullivan). But seriously, would an "obnoxious drunk" have been able to counter your nikkyo with the "simple shifts of posture and redirection of force" that your Araki-ryu teacher used? If the answer is no, then nikkyo seems like a good choice. If the answer is yes, then nikkyo (or as Ikeda-sensei might say, your nikkyo ;)) is not a good response to that situation.

Jim

MM
12-27-2006, 02:54 PM
Sorry to say that I had to work that Saturday, Jim. Truth be told, if I hadn't had to work I would have been doing my "regular" training, as free Saturdays are rare for me, and training time is precious. :)

But I will make a point to attend an Ikeda seminar next time he is in Massachusetts, and I will write to you about it.

C

Cady,
You missed an excellent opportunity, then. Ikeda sensei is definitely worth seeing. IMO, anyway. :)

Mark

Erick Mead
12-27-2006, 02:55 PM
.. you're giving off the impression that you really don't know exactly what we're talking about. No problem... I'm sure that will be ascertained and publicized before this is all over. What's with the subliminal threats Mike? that'ts the third or fourth time you have swung that dead cat around. Tiresome, really. I have no reputation to damage. Truly. I am not seeking any, either for that matter. Reputation does not lead to truth. I just point out things that happen to be true. It really requires no skill or personal merit.
Maybe Ikeda Sensei should have invited you to give the kokyu instruction at Summer Camp. I'll suggest it to him. :D -- Which would consist of me falling down everytime he made the stupidly suggested mistake of trying to use me as uke ...
Every substantive contribution to the conversation should be a welcome one. You're welcome. Every "already there in the pecking order so leave me alone with this Ki stuff" instructor should be looked at askance. IMO. ;) At which point, Mike laughably reveals that he:

1) REALLY doesn't know me or my place in the world, and
2) has not talked to any one who really does.

MM
12-27-2006, 02:57 PM
Hi Cady,So did you go see Ikeda-sensei when he was in the Boston area a couple of months ago? If yes, what did you think? If no, why not? He will be at Aikido Shobukan Dojo in DC in February, by the way --- see http://www.aikido-shobukan.org/seminars/?seminarid=53.

Jim

Hi Jim,
I'm still trying to make that one. Work has me scheduled for training that week -- provided the budget money goes through. Although, they're scheduling me for Orlando. Heh. If I don't go to training, I'll be at the Ikeda seminar. If I do go to training, I'll be at the AikiWeb seminar.

Course, my luck will be that I won't go to training and the Ikeda seminar will be full. *sigh*.

Mark

Cady Goldfield
12-27-2006, 02:59 PM
Cady,
You missed an excellent opportunity, then. Ikeda sensei is definitely worth seeing. IMO, anyway. :)

Mark

So Jim tells me. I'll certainly try to make it next time he's in town. :)

Jim Sorrentino
12-27-2006, 03:06 PM
But I will make a point to attend an Ikeda seminar next time he is in Massachusetts, and I will write to you about it.Fair enough. He will be at Shobu Aikido of Boston October 19 - 21. But I hope to meet you, Dan, Mike, Rob John, and Akuzawa before then.

Jim

Ron Tisdale
12-27-2006, 03:13 PM
Ditto on Ikeda Sensei.

B,
R

Cady Goldfield
12-27-2006, 03:15 PM
It would be interesting to be able to compare his aikido now and in a year, now that he has been exposed to Ushiro, and realizes that aikido must now move in a "new" direction.

Ellis Amdur
12-27-2006, 03:21 PM
Reply to Jimmy from up above:

Well, you tell me. You've experienced my nikkyo.

But have you experienced my metaphor???? :cool:

Erick Mead
12-27-2006, 03:24 PM
Reminds me of the story of John L. Sullivan shoulder checked on a train by a young thug. Upon Sullivan saying "excuse me" as the kid passed, his friend remonstrated, "You don't have to be so damn polite! You're the heavy weight champion of the world." Sullivan said, "I'm the heavy weight champion of the world. I can afford to be polite."
If any translation is needed, why would anyone object to any training method that would make your aikido more powerful? Unless Aikido is NOT about power? Which your anecdote illustrates beautifully, BTW. Just because he was the champion didn't mean he had to be polite, any more than just because someone else wasn't the champion would mean he had license to be rude in compensation, either.

Ob-topic. His training allowed him the ability to accept and not to be stressed/tensed/unrelaxed by the fact of the blow. I daresay he could have clocked the guy without tensing up overmuch, in any event.

Erick Mead
12-27-2006, 03:27 PM
I was going to read that whole post, Erick, but the scroll-wheel on my mouse broke from over-use. ;)Too bad. The good parts at the bottom all belong to Ellis. :p

Adman
12-27-2006, 03:44 PM
"Not being moved" in the manner of the skills is not a realistic or emotionally healthy option. Certainly, it is not a relaxed option.Not debating the way you have the above written, Erick. But am I right in assuming that you think the point of the "skills" being discussed (in this "relaxation" thread), is about not being moved? I haven't been able to read the entire thread, so apologies if you've already clarified this.

thanks,
Adam

Jim Sorrentino
12-27-2006, 03:47 PM
Hi Ellis,Well, you tell me. You've experienced my nikkyo.But only when I've been sober! :D And let's not start again with remarks about the spirit of aikido...But have you experienced my metaphor???? :cool:Yes --- that's why I keep reading you!

Jim

Erick Mead
12-27-2006, 04:18 PM
... am I right in assuming that you think the point of the "skills" being discussed (in this "relaxation" thread), is about not being moved? The "skills" that the advocates seem to find missing in AIkido sound pretty much just like good old fashioned kokyu tanden ho to me. They seem to deny that this is the case, or else Mike calls me names and reckons me ungrateful for denying God's gift of which they are the missionaries, and says I am ignorant and ugly too. Which is probably true generally -- but not entirely so on this point.

They have this "test" of pushing without being moved. Unobjectionable as that may seem as a simple training device, the recurrent and emphatic emphasis on that in this and other threads by Mike and Dan as the acid test of "the skills" belies the problem I have identified in this suse of them as it relates to Aikido.

Moreover, the self-absorption, literally disregarding "the other guy" as Dan has said, which they advocate, is very troubling as a training regimen for Aikido, for the reasons I have mentioned. It is antithetical to my experience of kokyu tanden ho and the teaching that I have received as a unifying practice to make two bodies into one coherent whole.

Basically, you train for what you do. And if you train not to be moved -- you are exercising a will "not to be moved," which is just another way of saying "resisting" the opponent's desire that I do move. And I daresay that a sword or a knife would not care about one's will on this score.

And that is very problematic to me if posited as being some lost "root" of Aikido, since it is counter to some very direct statements on this point by O Sensei, (as well as my own experience in the traditions of several of his deshi, but upon which I put far less weight).

Thomas Campbell
12-27-2006, 04:24 PM
"The body is the door to the gardens of the soul." Some Persian, I forget who.

[snip]
"Even narrower" as in focussed more narrowly on the body (and one's one body) disregarding, as Dan has said "the other guy." Disregarding the commonalities of the two souls about to meet in the most intimate physical and spiritual embrace outside of a marriage bed. If you think that violence is not intimate, in every sense, then you really do have much to learn.

[snip]

Pardon my intrusion into this engaging thread, but I have a question--which I'd enjoy hearing feedback on from anyone, but in particular Erick, Mike, Cady, Dan, Rob John, Ellis--and that is:

Isn't the effect of the "internal body skills" to blend with the incoming force of the opponent's attack . . . but within the uke/defender's body . . . preparatory to returning the force, deflecting it, redirecting it? In other words, "tenkan" within uke's body, rather than externally by stepping and changing the position of uke's body relative to the attacker?

If so, that would seem to place Dan's characterization of budo--being able to stop the spear and therefore being in a position to prevent the attack from moving further and causing harm, in a position, really, to extend mercy--more in line with what I think Erick is saying.

"Resolving in-yo in your own body"--tension and softness caused both by contact with the incoming force from the opponent, i.e., the physical force component, but also your own neurophysiological response, i.e., fear, adrenaline surge, breathing, emotional responses--would seem analogous to aikido's tenkan-by-stepping-and-turning. And it would seem to carry lessons for the wider world outside the dojo every bit as useful as any aikido lesson . . .

. . . including a lesson about the context of relaxation in a martial setting. The physiological training to be able to surf the adrenaline surge in the face of danger, to not become frozen or emotionally rocket-thrust into the fray (cf. Systema breathing practices). But relaxation can also be built on the confidence of skill forged and tested. Ellis Amdur wrote elsewhere about softness: "'soft' is skill--a matter of efficiency and grace, not an otherworldly power." Relaxation, too, may be considered a matter of efficiency and grace.

It's been many years since regular aikido training for me, and the only practice in my own experience where I've encountered anything resembling the internal body skills described by Rob, Dan, Mike, et al. is in taijiquan. So if my question above is unclear or my conclusion indicative of fuzzy thinking, chalk it up to inexperience and/or the hydrocodone for my fractured spine. But any feedback would be much appreciated.

Thanks.

Mike Sigman
12-27-2006, 04:27 PM
The "skills" that the advocates seem to find missing in AIkido sound pretty much just like good old fashioned kokyu tanden ho to me. They seem to deny that this is the case, or else Mike calls me names and reckons me ungrateful for denying God's gift of which they are the missionaries, and says I am ignorant and ugly too. Which is probably true generally -- but not entirely so on this point.

They have this "test" of pushing without being moved. Actually, I do not have any "test" like that. My test is for someone to push me and I let them move me. It's enough to tell me what I want to know.Moreover, the self-absorption, literally disregarding "the other guy" as Dan has said, which they advocate, is very troubling as a training regimen for Aikido, for the reasons I have mentioned. It is antithetical to my experience of kokyu tanden ho and the teaching that I have received as a unifying practice to make two bodies into one coherent whole. You're missing the point, Erick. Everyone keeps telling you that, but still you go on theorizing. Worse yet, you try yourself before the jury and keep returning a verdict of "innocent" on yourself. Basically, you train for what you do. And if you train not to be moved -- you are exercising a will "not to be moved,"...That's absurd. It's like saying that if you do Fune Kogi Undo you're in danger of going into spasmodic rowing practice if you're ever attacked. I think everyone here with an IQ above room temperature knows that you're not in danger of losing your soul if you do Tohei and Ueshiba's tests where they stood immobile to an Uke's push. You're so ..... well, "dramatic".

Regards,

Mike Sigman

Cady Goldfield
12-27-2006, 05:17 PM
Unless Aikido is NOT about power? Which your anecdote illustrates beautifully, BTW. Just because he was the champion didn't mean he had to be polite, any more than just because someone else wasn't the champion would mean he had license to be rude in compensation, either.

Ob-topic. His training allowed him the ability to accept and not to be stressed/tensed/unrelaxed by the fact of the blow. I daresay he could have clocked the guy without tensing up overmuch, in any event.

You missed the point, Erick. Sullivan had huge power. That's why he had the luxury of knowing that he could have trashed the thug, but choosing to be "polite" (really, to give the thug a chance to walk on and not get himself in trouble).

A person with no power of body or will would also have been "polite" (really, to supplicate himself before and ingratiate himself to someone who could cause him great physical harm).

Two cases of "polite," two very different reasons for being "polite."

That Sullivan was heavyweight champion of the world is irrelevant -- only a title. The bottom line was that Sullivan had great physical and mental power, which put him over the thug whether the thug knew it or not. Fortunately for the thug, he didn't have to learn the truth because Sullivan had chosen to let him live. ;)

Power is not a dirty word, and it's okay for aikido to have it. It's a tool to promote peace. I think a lot of aikidoka balk at that, because they may see their own possession of real power as a form of benign dictatorship. Which, of course, it could become in some ways, but it beats being a malevalent bully. And it beats being the poor peasant who's bearing the brunt of the bully's malevalence. Better to be powerful than weak, and to be able to use that power for the good of the weak and helpless.

Erick Mead
12-27-2006, 05:19 PM
[Referring to "push" tests] Actually, I do not have any "test" like that. My test is for someone to push me and I let them move me. It's enough to tell me what I want to know. Hmmmm. http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showpost.php?p=160540&postcount=343 Kidding aside, and for curiousity sake.
1. Can you stand in a room and have a 225 pound guy push on your chest without you moving?
2. Can you let someone push on the side of your head while you stand there?
3. Let somone pile drive into you and they bounce off?

Again these are just some simple things I do at the gym and at constructions sites. How about at a dojo?
1. Can you let a judoka try and play you without you using any technique at all and when he tries to throw you he gets a feeling that he is locking himself up and he can't throw you?
2. give somone and arm and try to lock you up and they canlt do anything with it? You're missing the point, Erick. Everyone keeps telling you that, but still you go on theorizing. It is a point you "got," too, Mike, you just do not realize how significant the problem is in what you advocate, because you are not trying to do Aikido -- you are doing something else albeit with a related set of skills. That is and has been my only point.
http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showpost.php?p=160548&postcount=347
[To Dan: re pushing] Many of your early examples indicate that your own students, etc., could not move you... in which case you were either not showing them how to do something or you were magical or they are slow-witted, etc. The "of course you're showing" has been obvious to me, but not to the dear readers of the forum.
You're so ..... well, "dramatic". Oh, Touche'. Marginally better than "ignorant"

Mike Sigman
12-27-2006, 05:25 PM
Hmmmm. http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showpost.php?p=160540&postcount=343 I'm Mike. That's Dan. He lives in Massachusetts. you just do not realize how significant the problem is in what you advocate, because you are not trying to do Aikido -- you are doing something else albeit with a related set of skills. Hmmmmm.... actually that statement pretty much fits you, Erick, if you read my earlier post about what Aikido is and who does it. :cool:

Regards,

Mike Sigman

Adman
12-27-2006, 05:25 PM
The "skills" that the advocates seem to find missing in AIkido sound pretty much just like good old fashioned kokyu tanden ho to me.Okay. Then I'll stick with that, since kokyu-dosa (as I learned the term for the exercise) can be a pretty good test for what I think is being discussed.

When I first "learned" kokyu-dosa, I got it all wrong and resorted to muscling and wrestling, to keep from being pushed over. I then "understood," and "relaxed" and became a push-over (as uke). This was good for a while, and my kokyu dosa did get better (as nage). However, there were those I could not move, unless they were "nice". So, with more "understanding" I realized how important both rolls (uke and nage) were in kokyu-dosa, and how similar they really were. Eventually, the same thing I was doing that made me hard to move as uke, made what I was doing as nage more effortless. I had found that when I was a "push-over", I was performing a disservice to my training partner, because what was really happening is that I had not connected (to the ground, my one-point, my partner, whatever ...), and not truly "listened".

By "relaxing" I have not become immovable or encouraged myself to resist, but I have begun to learn how to connect and listen in a more complete way. If nage can connect to me (my one-point and the ground) in the same way, someone might just think that I "tanked," as I am thrown or pushed over. But my partner and I will know that we connected, as the exercise was brought to a conclusion. What has happened through this learning process is that not only have I gotten better at this exercise (and other things), but I have been able to 'teach' kokyu-dosa with greater clarity and success.

Erick, I am not presuming to explain to you how kokyu-dosa works. I know better than that. I just wanted to convey my experiences on why I would agree that the "skills" being discussed fits nicely with my take on kokyu-dosa (or kokyu tanden ho).

thanks,
Adam

Mike Sigman
12-27-2006, 06:41 PM
I just wanted to convey my experiences on why I would agree that the "skills" being discussed fits nicely with my take on kokyu-dosa (or kokyu tanden ho).The skill that is being discussed is the essence of kokyu-power. When Ushiro Sensei was demonstrating to the one class I watched at the Summer Camp, he was simply demonstrating this same power. Depending on how it's done (the amount of additives to the core power), I would refer to this skill as kokyu, kokyu-tanden, jin, whatever.

In teaching a beginner to use basic kokyu/jin, it's assuredly best to teach it statically, at first, IMO. Kokyu-ho-dosa, Reiki-no-ho, Kokyu-tanden-ho, or whatever you want to call it, is usually the first exposure that most non-Ki-Society people get to practicing this skill and I think they're the worse for not having more focused drills in this exercise.

What I often see in Kokyu-ho is that most of the experienced people in a dojo have learned to play what I call a "Kokyu-ho Game". The top dogs tend to use a short amount of power where the hips or torso, using a static jin, push up to offset Uke and then they rush into a pin or some version of a "throw and pin". They never really get down to just working that kokyu/jin path over and over and developing it. Kokyu-ho becomes a sort of ritual 5-minute exercise for everyone to play and it often seems to lead to the idea that if you move your body and transmit that power through your fixed arms, you have somehow "got it" or are "using your center". This is a large mistaken impression that I see over and over from many people who think they can "use their center" for techniques.

Regardless of a lot of extraneous discussion about Aikido philosophy, tactics, strategies, world love, universal ki, move-out-of-the-way-and-blend, "aiki", etc., it all boils down to movement/technique and the kokyu/ki power. Most particularly it boils down to being able to move with this kind of power. If I went into a Yoshinkan dojo, a Tomiki dojo, an Aikikai dojo, and a Ki-Society dojo (or other factions), I'd feel for the use of ki/kokyu power non-stop and fluidly throughout the technique.... regardless of their version of the technique or related philosophies. That's the entre'. No ki/kokyu.... No Aikido. Same thing Ushiro Sensei says. Same think Tohei Sensei implied. Same thing from other sensei's, too.

When I was as the Shaner workshop earlier this month, a reasonable number of the Ki-Society people used kokyu/ki throughout their technique. How well they did it (some were good, some not so good) is not so important. How well they used their ki in relation to me while executing their technique was not important to me either. The important thing was that they (a lot of them; some of them didn't have it and some missed it and were confused in how to bring it out) used this core skill, so I was satisfied that all the other stuff about good Aikido could be done, depending on their efforts. Once that point is reached, I don't have a problem.

There were a couple of guys who were OK in their ki skills, although I would have argued about perhaps a cleaner way to use the skills, but that argument has to come only after I acknowledge, yes, they did have ki/kokyu skills. They're "in" the right door.

I would not expect to find the same consistency of skills that the Ki-Society group had in a USAF or ASU or Yoshinkai or Tomiki, etc., dojo, based on my past experience. There *are* people within those organizations that do have ki/kokyu skills to the level where I would admit they meet the same baseline standard (or better). Usually, it's an instructor-level person in those organizations that meets (or exceeds) the baseline standard and the skills are not spread throughout the dojo. The troubling part about those other organizations is that too many of the instructor body do not have those baseline skills. That's where the problem starts and compounds, IMO. That's the problem to look at and until these skills get more widespread, it's the big crack in Aikido (trust me... it's a worse problem in western karate, taiji, and a number of other arts. Aikido has the best chance to pull it out.).

The point is to get the baseline skills out there. The idea that Aikido is bereft of these skills in the West is not totally true, but it's missing these skills across such a wide spectrum that it has become a problem.

Static testing and Kokyu-ho exercises are a good start. It's the moving with full kokyu power throughout every increment of a technique that is so importantly missed. When I was at the Shaner workshop, I had a passing thought that an experienced ASU, USAF, or whatever yudansha would simply be at a loss (in almost all cases) to shift gears and work in the mode of feeling the way through a technique to maintain kokyu through every tiny movement in a technique, without using shoulders or localized strength. There should not be that much discrepancy between organizations, IMO, because this is the *core* of Aikido. Once this baseline is met, hey..... let the variations begin and more power to them. ;)

My opinion.

Mike

Erick Mead
12-27-2006, 06:52 PM
I'm Mike. That's Dan. He lives in Massachusetts. Oh, yes. You "root" "ground" and "neutralize."
http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showpost.php?p=159229&postcount=108

Apologies. Huuuuge difference. :rolleyes:

All of your mutually expressed approaches to force manipulation tend to deny, rather than blend with, the will of the attacker. You frustrate the substance of the attack rather than using it as given. You create resistance (or just channeling ground resistance) that pretty much defines as clearcut a boundary of Aikido, as there is from O Sensei's own mouth. I have referred repeatedly to this observation of the Founder that there is "absolutely no resistance" in Aikido. You all ignore it as inconvenient to your purpose, or disregard as though the Old Man didn't know what he was saying.
.. because you are not trying to do Aikido -- you are doing something else albeit with a related set of skills. that statement pretty much fits you, Erick, if you read my earlier post about what Aikido is and who does it. Oh. I didn't know you got to define what Aikido is. I just made clear what it is NOT and have continually pointed the very deep problem of resistance entailed in your approaches, from O Sensei's own words. Well, I guess we just need to appoint you Doshu by unanimous acclaim, then, and you'll set us all aright. :hypno:

Mike Sigman
12-27-2006, 07:04 PM
Oh, yes. You "root" "ground" and "neutralize."
http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showpost.php?p=159229&postcount=108

Apologies. Huuuuge difference. :rolleyes: Your gracious apology is accepted with the same magnanimity that you give it. ;) All of your mutually expressed approaches I haven't "mutually" done anything, Erick. to force manipulation tend to deny, rather than blend with, the will of the attacker. You frustrate the substance of the attack rather than using it as given. You create resistance (or just channeling ground resistance) that pretty much defines as clearcut a boundary of Aikido, as there is from O Sensei's own mouth. I have referred repeatedly to this observation of the Founder that there is "absolutely no resistance" in Aikido. You all ignore it as inconvenient to your purpose, or disregard as though the Old Man didn't know what he was saying. I'll say it again. You don't know what you're talking about. Besides, your "blending" idea is sort of crude, compared with the "aiki" that's been discussed by a number of people, including in the interview with Inaba I referred you to. Oh. I didn't know you got to define what Aikido is. I just made clear what it is NOT and have continually pointed the very deep problem of resistance entailed in your approaches, from O Sensei's own words. Well, I guess we just need to appoint you Doshu by unanimous acclaim, then, and you'll set us all aright. :hypno: No, you just need to quit making assumptions about your great intellect and understanding. Ueshiba certainly displayed episodes of the exact same "resistance" (kokyu force displays) that you say he had nothing to do with. One of you, Erick or Ueshiba, doesn't understand Aikido. Tohei displays it. Abe displays it. Sunadomari displays it. You've got some fixation about "resistance" that you can't seem to get around, even when it's evident to everyone that you've got it wrong.

Regards,

Mike Sigman

Erick Mead
12-27-2006, 10:20 PM
Eventually, the same thing I was doing that made me hard to move as uke, made what I was doing as nage more effortless. ... By "relaxing" I have not become immovable or encouraged myself to resist, but I have begun to learn how to connect and listen in a more complete way. Copasetic. At least half the art is in the ukewaza.
Erick, I am not presuming to explain to you how kokyu-dosa works. I know better than that. I just wanted to convey my experiences on why I would agree that the "skills" being discussed fits nicely with my take on kokyu-dosa (or kokyu tanden ho). I love hearing people describe how they envision how kokyu dosa works. It helps see the variety of imagery that can help people envision it for themselves. Mike, and the Aunkai like "six-direction springs" -- fine as far as it goes, but there are conceptual problems with those images when mapped onto real structure and dynamics. Some of them also have conceptual problems when mapped onto Aikido principles, as I have outlined.

Since you mentioned kokyu dosa I will try to illustrate how I see, in mechincal terms, the relaxed interaction you describe int hat exercise. Classic kokyu dosa or kokyu tanden ho maps better onto a rotational dynamic model mechanically. I will not elaborate the whole conceptual model in dynamic detail here. There are more generalized applications of it that I am still working out. But for the classic kokyu dosa exercise, I have worked out a short applied description according to this model.

In typical kokyu dosa, a downward rotational moment of the forearm at the wrist is applied by the partner initially. In free body rotation, this downward rotation of the forearm at the wrist is equivalent to either upward rotation of the elbow or of the fingertips.

By making a relaxed, upward kokyu rotation of the fingers of the hand at the wrist you actually counter a good deal of the downwrd moment on the forearm in-plane. You allow the wrist joint to accept some rotational moment in place of the elbow, and by actually rotating it to form that curve, the resulting moment on the arm is lessened.

This is done, not by opposing the rotation force all (as with a spring, or countering muscular leverage at the elbow), but by going with that rotation completely -- but from a shifted center, in this case beginning at the fingertips, instead of the elbow.

The natural complementary longitudinal rotation of the forearm, creates an additional eccentric, off-axis, longititudinal rotation of the forearm. That further increases the eccentricity of the applied moment on a second axis. This perpendicular componet induces rotation feedback into the attacker's connection, but off-axis -- and progressive as his applied energy converts to out-of-plane rotation, and reverts back to him.

The out-of-plane rotation frees the elbow to lift (upward rotation remember, like at the fingertips). But since we do not expose the waki, by allowing the arm to to lift outward, the natural lift of the elbow is accompanied by an extension of the arm from the body. That extension allowing the elbow to rotate up further, but to come further in line and increasing the off-axis feedback to the attacker, who is carried progressively off-line and out of center.

At a certain point of this interaction, a hinging moment forms in the attacker's elbow that his own applied resisting moment actually aggravates. His arm almost immediately collapses, at which point completion of the extension with full irimi and rotation from the tanden takes his center.

That inital interaction, writ large, and propagating the rotations from joint to joint back from the fingertips to the tanden with progressive extension at every stage is what kokyu tanden ho is, mechanically. Irimi/tenkan at every scale of the development -- manipulating centers of rotation or angular moments with eccentric complementary rotations.

Erick Mead
12-27-2006, 11:05 PM
Depending on how it's done (the amount of additives to the core power), I would refer to this skill as kokyu, kokyu-tanden, jin, whatever.

In teaching a beginner to use basic kokyu/jin, it's assuredly best to teach it statically, at first, IMO. Kokyu-ho-dosa, Reiki-no-ho, Kokyu-tanden-ho, or whatever you want to call it, is usually the first exposure that most non-Ki-Society people get to practicing this skill and I think they're the worse for not having more focused drills in this exercise. See Mike. We can agree on something after all.
Kokyu-ho becomes a sort of ritual 5-minute exercise for everyone to play and it often seems to lead to the idea that if you move your body and transmit that power through your fixed arms, you have somehow "got it" or are "using your center". This is a large mistaken impression that I see over and over from many people who think they can "use their center" for techniques. Well, well -- blow me down. A twofer.
Regardless of a lot of extraneous discussion about Aikido philosophy, tactics, strategies, world love, universal ki, move-out-of-the-way-and-blend, "aiki", etc., it all boils down to movement/technique and the kokyu/ki power.
Most particularly it boils down to being able to move with this kind of power. ... and just when we thought the trifecta was a lock -- the filly stumbles...

"Power" is a bad choice of terminology, but I'll leave that.

Kokyu tanden ho is altering the center of the dynamic without altering the dynamic itself. That requires sensitivity, for which I give you credit, on your own report, but also not working through any component of resistive or opposed force. The sneaky thing about changes of eccentricity is the very little energy that can cause a dramatic shift in a loosely connected structure. Add three axes and perpendicular components and the possibilities on non-resistive manipulation are staggering.

Changing the center of a dynamic goes well beyond the physical strategy. Aikido transcends the physical in its application, even if these principles are initially learned through the body.
I would not expect to find the same consistency of skills that the Ki-Society group had in a USAF or ASU or Yoshinkai or Tomiki, etc., dojo, based on my past experience. ... it's the big crack in Aikido ... and a number of other arts. Aikido has the best chance to pull it out.). Started ASU, USAF, ASU, Iwama, USAF, Iwama, ASU. East Coast, West Coast, Hawaii. Kokyu ho everywhere I trained. Chiba's students, and he himself, had great things to teach on this point, even during my brief sojourn in his dojo. I learned good stuff, too. Not on your terms, apparently, but good stuff nonetheless. I have not seen the grave lack you speak of where I have trained. I have no sense that these places were particularly exceptional, since they are just where I happened to end up and was able to practice.
... Kokyu-ho exercises are a good start. It's the moving with full kokyu power throughout every increment of a technique that is so importantly missed. And then he pulls it out at the end...

Erick Mead
12-27-2006, 11:46 PM
Ueshiba certainly displayed episodes of the exact same "resistance" (kokyu force displays) that you say he had nothing to do with. Kokyu tanden ho as I described it, and as Adam described it above, and as I had thought you were describing it is not resistant. And O Sensei scandalously did not teach these strength contests in his curriculum. Wonder why?
Tohei displays it. Abe displays it. Sunadomari displays it. Baiting does not become you. Of course, they display kokyu. Who said they didn't?
You've got some fixation about "resistance" that you can't seem to get around, even when it's evident to everyone that you've got it wrong. Evident, huh? I should believe you instead of my lying eyes? It's not my fixation. Blame the Old Man. I just understand what the word "absolute" actually means.

Once again, the quote: We adhere to the principle of absolute nonresistance, that is to say, we do not oppose the attacker. Thus, there is no opponent in Aikido. The victory in Aikido is masakatsu and agatsu; since you win over everything in accordance with the mission of heaven, you possess absolute strength. I'II note that O Sensei's admonition echoes very closely my quote above of Neoconfucian scholar Wang Yang-ming. http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showpost.php?p=163055&postcount=315 He, similarly, counselled against the imitation of the "power" enabled through acquired wisdom as a shortcut to wisdom itself.
" ...becoming a sage is ... being completely dominated by heaven-given principles, [not] seeking to become sages by means of knowledge and power...With greater increase in knowledge there came greater increase in passion; and the greater the power they attained, the more they obscured moral principles.Hence, my continued criticism of your approach, with some backing, I might add, for my "fixation."

Adman
12-28-2006, 12:29 AM
Erick,

Whew! :freaky:
The only reason I could follow any of what you wrote is because of my familiarity with the exercise in question. Am I mistaken, or have you reduced the entire exercise to technique? I know you were trying to mechanically disect it, so that might be skewing my assumption.

So, to get back to "How to teach and train relaxation", you wouldn't use your previous kokyu tanden ho mechanical description, to teach it, would you? To someone sitting there in front of you? I'm not much of an instructor, but a fairly successful kokyu-dosa can be shown in just a couple of minutes. But this would mostly involve some technical tricks that only offer a glimpse at what lies beneath, as I'm sure you would agree. For the purposes of this forum, and more specifically this thread, wouldn't it be helpful to offer some pointers in performing this exercise to help acquire proper relaxation?

Here's what works for me (for starters).
For nage:

No sudden movements. If you have to "surprise" your uke, perhaps you're not as "relaxed" as you thought. Oddly enough, when done correctly, uke will be surprised, even when they know it's coming.
Try the exercise as slowly and as smoothly as you can.
If something stops/gets stopped, something else can move.
Can you, in turn, be pushed over at any moment? All the way to, and after the "pin"?
You should really not have to resort to anything that resembles "strength".
Let uke grab your wrists however they like. Soft/hard, under/over, close/wide, or even trapped to your thighs (that one's fun!)
Uke is not a "jerk" (for the most part ;) ). If they are resisting, just put them out of their misery and throw them!

For uke:

"Relax"! It's just a "ki test". ;) or ...
... see #5 under "nage".
If you begin to feel resistance, don't hold your breath.
Are you fighting? Remember, this is not a competition. ;)
The cords on the side of your neck should not be protruding through the top of your gi.
Do you:
a) "feel" as though you are resisting, or ...
b) "feel" as though nage is getting in their own way, giving you more stability.

If your answer is "b)", just throw nage and put them out of their misery.
Either way, you still might be a "jerk".

Perception is everything.


Feel free to add or subtract, depending on your skill level.

thanks,
Adam

James Young
12-28-2006, 02:08 AM
And if you train not to be moved -- you are exercising a will "not to be moved," which is just another way of saying "resisting" the opponent's desire that I do move. And that is very problematic to me if posited as being some lost "root" of Aikido, since it is counter to some very direct statements on this point by O Sensei, (as well as my own experience in the traditions of several of his deshi, but upon which I put far less weight).

If that's the case then I wonder if O-sensei realized he wasn't doing aikido when this film was shot:

http://youtube.com/watch?v=yxxb2ctulEs&mode=related&search=Morihei%20Ueshiba

Starting at about 1:55 in he demonstrates his immovabilty from both a head push (sounds like one of the tests that Dan described but I think he specified standing) and then later his immovable jo. Since he does publically demonstrate this aspect as part of aikido and many of his deshi visible in the film witnessed it, it leads me to believe that quotes of him and his deshi which allude to avoiding resistance are not necessarily referring to these skills in particular, but rather other forms of resistance which are common responses to an opponent's attack. Just my opinion.

Gernot Hassenpflug
12-28-2006, 06:22 AM
Kuroda Testuzan writes in his books about the training of "floating body" in iai/ken/jujutsu practice, and how seated practice is a quicker route to learning than standing, by virtue of making the use of normal strength even more awkward and in many cases impossible. He then notes that when one has obtained the body to do the "floating body" which is very very light, it is just the same to then make oneself heavy or immoveable. Thus, there is no contradiction between being either light or immoveable when one considers the training that is required in order to as a side effect be able to manifest either one or the other.

Mark Jakabcsin
12-28-2006, 06:50 AM
Gernot,
Are Kuroda Sensei's books available in English? To me he was a jaw dropper at the Expo a few years ago.

Mark J.

Gernot Hassenpflug
12-28-2006, 07:38 AM
Ah, sorry, don't think so. I've sent volume 1 to Robert John, he's a master at extracting the pithy comments that I missed :-) I'm on volume 2, and there's a volume 3 too. It's about the training of a bujutsu body for ki/ken/body unity. I could try to summarize parts of it but I wouldn't be doing the contents justice at my level of ability. I'm happy to answer questions privately though or on a different thread if there is interest.

Mike Sigman
12-28-2006, 08:37 AM
Am I mistaken, or have you reduced the entire exercise to technique? That was my impression, too, but I didn't comment because it was pretty obvious.

The exercise is "Kokyu-ho" or even better, "Kokyu-Tanden-ho". It works the Kokyu and the Tanden (from the Chinese word "Dantien"). The Tanden is the area that as you develop it, it changes you. That's why the breathing exercises all go first to the Tanden/Dantien and why so many exercises focus on strengthening the Tanden. The "One Point", "Hara", "Center", etc., all refer to this same area for those basic reasons.

To cut to the chase, this basic Kokyu exercise is meant to develop kokyu, the middle, and the hips/upper-thighs to some extent (suwari techniques are meant to do this last even more).

"Kokyu" generally refers to the forces that you manipulate with your mind. Its essence is the "jin" I keep referring to; there are a couple of other important components, but that's a side issue to this discussion.

Here's a picture I borrowed for the moment from Karl Friday's nice book about the Kashima-Shinryu in order to show their version of kokyu-ho.
http://www.neijia.com/KokyuHo.jpg

There are a number of versions of "the right way to do Kokyu Ho", but you have to always ask yourself, "What is the main intent of this drill or technique?". I usually shorten that down to "what's really going on here?", but it is the question I constantly ask myself when I watch someone do a drill or technique.

The reason I used the illustration from Dr. Friday's book (buy it so he won't sue me for copyright infringement) was to show a somewhat more straightforward approach to what is really the main purpose.

The main purpose is to teach someone how to use kokyu force, the essential method of movement/power in Aikido and most other Asian arts when done beyond the amateur level. Anything other than that practice is extraneous to a basic Kokyu-Tanden-ho.

The title says it is kokyu practice; it is. For all practical purposes, I could kneel in front of a wall with one of those large inflatable exercise-balls on top of my hands which are resting on my thighs, and then lift up and into the wall slowly, keeping a pure kokyu force (not strength) going from my hips throught the ball to the wall. It's the same basic practice, if you cut to the heart of the exercise.

Is it "resistance"? Sure. O'Sensei didn't develop his great physical strength by never using resistance to train with.... that's a completely absurd and off-base interpretation of "Aikido". O-Sensei had specially heavy garden implements made for him, used an iron bokken, etc., etc. Weight is resistance. Neither your normal strength nor your kokyu strength can increase if you don't gradually increase resistance. Actual waza should avoid resistance; exercises are not waza, even though some people try to make them so.

Personally, I don't use kokyu-training since I do essentially the same sort of training while standing on my legs (training them at the same time) and mixing in other elements. But the principles are the same and you'd see it if you watched me and evaluated "what is he really doing?".

There's a key to relaxing that is critical, but no one has even come close to mentioning it. So I'm not. At the moment, I'd just suggest that to do this right is going to take a good teacher, not a description on a web forum. ;)

Regards,

Mike Sigman

Ron Tisdale
12-28-2006, 08:47 AM
Consider this my statement of interest :>

There is an excellent interview with Kuroda S. at aikido journal, where he speaks of how kata developed the body you speak of. I'm sure it's been linked here before...if I can find it I'll link it again.

Best,
Ron (Hi Mark, good thread!)
Link as promised...

http://www.aikidojournal.com/article.php?articleID=85&highlight=kuroda

DH
12-28-2006, 09:08 AM
Speaking of body movement. Review any....any of Ueshiba in motion. Watch him, then watch his ukes. Why......do they move differently?
http://youtube.com/watch?v=HYUTRSvWcI4&mode=related&search=Morihei%20Ueshiba

Why are you guys not even trying to start to think about why?

The light body is connected- in the same way the heavy body is. There is no difference. With weapons the need to move with connection becomes heightened and immediate. Moving with intent, with the entire body moving as a whole is both quicker and safer. Where leaving parts of you behind will literrally result in parts of you being left behind ;)

With Kuroda we are once again seeing pieces of the same truth hidden in plain site. WIth dullards arguing every step of the way. True believers, are good students. Leave them alone. They make good ukes. For the rest keep looking wire frame the motions between Ueshiba and his ukes. What would it look like if they were both doing the same thing and moving the same way?
It would not be Aikido as you know it.
The uke would not be extending forward with pieces of himself all over the place. He would not need to be "extended" to deliver power. Therefore drawing him out would be a significant challenge. Further were he to be drawn out he would move in an entirely different way with his body connected he would move as a unit and simply be in balance....over there a little. Trying to get him to fall down would be quite challenge.
Aiki- would thus be fullfiled. Aiki as a do would be realized.
The way it is typically done is to have one over extend in his attack, move with a broken disconnected body that is tailor made to be led and to follow.
The reason so many IN aikido baulk at these sorts of statements is true connection in oneself is so rarely taught or trained. Folks may take offense at that as well but any review of the many videos availble are the truths of what Japanese Aiki is...staring at back you from the grave. Map a wire frame of movement over photos of Shioda over Ueshiba, over Sagawa over Takeda. Take a look at Kuroda. At Otake. Ask yourself if you could take that center?

Guys letting their bodies be led around flopping like fish are not even in the same art form. Just playthings. You won't ever get there. Ever. You need to stop, think, and re-set. Re-wire you. Rework you. Start to dare to even begin.. to start to think... you too can be unthrowable. Find ways to learn how to make that happen.
Continuing to be uke and think like an uke will make you forever an uke and low level. No matter who tells you different. Mastery of you leads to mastery. You won't get there learning ways to fall down better. That's just more ways to make good students.
I think its perfectly hilarious that in "Aikido, the masters course" Shioda (another Daito ryu guy) outlines a clear direction of where to go. Doesn't tell anyone a damn thing about actually how to do these things. Just waves one, big, red flag, for the intelligent that he is in fact doing things ...different. Were you actually to learn ways to do what he says- he coudn't throw YOU. More great advice, sitting on the shelf of the kid who goes to practive to learn to cooperate and fall down.
Truth from the grave.

Cheers
Dan

DH
12-28-2006, 09:28 AM
The only I'd make to the notion of sitting is that it is not a requirement. It is just an easier way if you choose it. Why?

Its a great equalizer.
1. Its a shorter path to the ground with less support intereference.
2. Short, lighter people don't have to move as much mass.
3. Taller people can get under easier
4. Its easier to not isolate-fire muscle groups. as you have eliminated some from the mix.
5. You can teach much the same idea in ground fighting positions like the guard and the mount and side mount. Oops.. that may be too much for the Art-in-a-box crowd to absorb.

Back to skirts, silk pajamas, cultural imagery, and things :D
Peng jin...the one jin, is aiki-age. As such they are universal in the true start of power. The other ways come later to folks with a curiosity to start on step one. The power and connection in you in suwari waza is not in a hand shape or elbow shape or certain motion. Those are ways to manipulate a connection and are shown way to often to beginners. IMO. They should never even be taught to beginners. Once shown, the less talented attach themselves to them and start doing..................technique. And never learn the true way.

These skills bring the best of all possible potentials to Aikido and to anything else for that matter. But particularly with Aikido. They are important-even essential, since the techniques and the framework of them were designed around these skills.
Without these you have no hope of standing against someone who trains them.

Cheers
Dan

Erick Mead
12-28-2006, 09:47 AM
The only reason I could follow any of what you wrote is because of my familiarity with the exercise in question. Am I mistaken, or have you reduced the entire exercise to technique? I know you were trying to mechanically disect it, so that might be skewing my assumption. I am pleased that you did understand it, as that confirms for me that this approach has some validity, and that I can breakit down in termns simple enough to uderstand if you have felt it. And no I have not reduced it to technique --you are correct about the mechanical dissection. I only did it because you DID indicate familiarity with what is occurring. The same would not be appropriate for a newbie until they have also felt the interaction a few times -- any more than deep discussion of ki and kokyu is going have any possible meaning to a student at that stage.

The physical parts of what is going on have two components, one mechanical, which I have addressed, the other dealing with sensation and control, which I have not addressed directly. The description is about WHAT occurs in a successful applciaiton, not HOW you go about making it happen, much less WHO is "making" anything happen, and still less, WHY. Knowing what occurs allows better focus of the mind on refining particular aspects of sensation and control, and that allows you follow those sensations according the identified principle of action to produce the same effects in slightly different settings.
So, to get back to "How to teach and train relaxation", you wouldn't use your previous kokyu tanden ho mechanical description, to teach it, would you? To someone sitting there in front of you? I'm not much of an instructor, but a fairly successful kokyu-dosa can be shown in just a couple of minutes. Sure. But teaching one rudimentary way to do it does not teach the principle that is being applied. A student must always be shown and feel the interaction. But given a sound principle that the student is better able to understand and envision -- together with one or several perspectives of "feel" -- allows the mind to extend the applciation of those principles to perspectives of feel in all variations of attack and response that are possible in kokyu dosa exercise, and in Aikido technique generally.

Ki/Kokyu serve well in this regard for those who natively leanr them or take the time to learn the root concepts thoroughly. My approach is not a criticism of the traditional system I just firmly beleive that the West is not without an ability to express those same concetps in its own idiom, and therefore to broaden the terms of reference for discussing the principles of action in Aikido. So far as I have been able to tell, no one else has seriously tried. I hope that I am mistaken but I beeen looking at these issues for some time now, and nothing has come to hand. So I started from scratch, always keeping a reference actual techniques taught in the lineages I have experience in and to O Sensei's statements in their native context.
But this would mostly involve some technical tricks that only offer a glimpse at what lies beneath, as I'm sure you would agree. I am sure you would also agree that physics is not a technical trick.
For the purposes of this forum, and more specifically this thread, wouldn't it be helpful to offer some pointers in performing this exercise to help acquire proper relaxation?

Here's what works for me (for starters). What struck me in your list, which is good, is that it is largely negating instruction: "Not" or "Don't"

For nage: Not sudden ... not jerky ... don't stop.. don't be pushed over...
don't resort to strength ... don't force a particular grab ...

For uke: Don't worry... don't use strength ... don;t fight ... don't pop a vein ... don't resist ...

Conversely, I am working on affirmative description of physically valid mechanics of the interaction to supplement the necessary negative corrections. That way a student has a perceptible goal to strive for, rather than merely a maze of repeated negating instruction. That can be very frustrating, and creates its own potentailly bad training environment if the student does not understand the purpose of the instruction or the ultimate goal it serves.

Michael Young
12-28-2006, 10:01 AM
Learning good Ukemi is not about learning how to fall down...learning good ukemi is about being responsive.
I'm not arguing that you should train a bad habit of throwing yourself off-balance and not moving unified. Nor am I arguing that the solo/internal type of training many are advocating needs improvement and re-evaluation in the Aikido world...I'm right on page with you there. My views on individual solo training have changed drastically over the last year or so, thanks in part to this forum and my exposure to people like Ushiro etc...I'm sold. However, how can anyone learn Aikido if nobody falls down I wonder? I know that this isn't exactly what your advocating, but at the same time I believe there is some inherent and important value in learning proper ukemi. I think a balance of skills is necessary for actually training in martial responsiveness...internal strength is not the only skill set needed in Aikido, it is one part of it (arguably the most important part as it does relate to everything else and is probably the hardest thing to develop correctly). Relating it back to the topic of this thread, relaxation is a very important part of learning internal skills; it is also a very important part of ukemi. Connectedness during moving is important too, rather it be as uke or nage, and its totally impossible to achieve it without correct relaxation. Most of O'Sensei's favorite ukes have also come to be known as some of the best teachers now...the guys who "got it". There must have been some reason for that. I don't think of ukemi training as training myself TO fall down, but instead HOW to save myself when necessary. Because, as good as you may get at internal strength someone is always better, or luckier, and training yourself not be sensitive as to when you are open and had better move is a big mistake.

Perhaps many wouldn't see this as germane, but In the grander scheme of things (i.e. stuff that applies "outside of the dojo") there are some very valuable lessons to be learned from ukemi. Heck, at a really base level, I hear more stories of Aikido-applied-in-real-life from an ukemi basis. "I tripped over my dog, and totally surprised myself by just instinctively taking a roll, didn't get a scratch" type stories, as opposed to the number of times I've heard about folks getting into street fights or muggings and using their skills.

Back to lurking and enjoying the thread (and the petty arguments too, we all like a little soap-opera now and then).

-Mike

Erick Mead
12-28-2006, 10:24 AM
And if you train not to be moved -- you are exercising a will "not to be moved," which is just another way of saying "resisting" the opponent's desire that I do move. If that's the case then I wonder if O-sensei realized he wasn't doing aikido when this film was shot:

http://youtube.com/watch?v=yxxb2ctulEs&mode=related&search=Morihei%20Ueshiba

Starting at about 1:55 in he demonstrates his immovabilty from both a head push (sounds like one of the tests that Dan described but I think he specified standing) and then later his immovable jo. .. and yet again the video offered to rebut me, proves my point in several ways. First, it was a demonstration -- not a class. That is the chief complaint by the "skills" folks, that he showed nifty tricks that he did not teach his students to do in his classes. They want the shortcut power and the knowledge, as I have intimated, not the wisdom that it flows from.

"Immovability" "Not moving?" Look closer, my friend. Why was his head doing these nifty little sagittal plane rotations and forward extensions, alternately extending his neck, lifting and dropping his chin slightly in response to the pushes? You even see him do quite clearly once in the close-up. Pretty much letting himself "be moved," just not in the way they wanted him to move.

That is directly cognate to the wrist flexion/rotation mechanics in the kokyu dosa exercise that I illustrated above. And to complete the throw he lets the center of that same sagittal plane rotational moment shift to his center, as I have described in the kokyu dosa example, sitting him up erect, he shakes his head and they fall away.

The jo trick immediately following is much the same. He initially leads them forward (the way they want the jo to go) and then extends across them perpendicularly with a distinct hip turn, placing all four of them into a slight kuzushi in the shikaku away from him, by applied moment at the end of their own arms.

He has several iterations of extending his arm in seigan forward extension (a rotation from the torso, and back again in a small giri cut rotation) to shift their attempts to recover balance right back into shikaku from the perpendicular axis. All of this is, again, directly cognate with the kokyu dosa description I gave. The significant difference with the "jo trick" is that he is off-axis to begin with.

The high degree of art demonstrated is in the sensitivity and degree of control over those mechanics. But that flows from his mastery of those principles innately, not from power -- of any kind.

As Galileo said:
"Il muove." "He moves."

Kevin Leavitt
12-28-2006, 10:25 AM
Yea I understand, but how long should it take to learn to roll and fall down? I mastered those skills long ago.

I get the whole dynamic of ukemi and the nage/uke relationship. Also that Aikido is designed primarily to teach principles. got it.

Also, Ukemi done the way I was taught is about self preservation and recovery to a position of dominance and balance again.

It ain't about bailing out or falling down or tanking done correctly.

In BJJ we typically start one person in a dominant and one person in a submissive role and then say go. No issues there.


I think though at some point we need to deal more with non-compliant ukes where the dominant/submissive role is not so clear cut. That said, many at that point say, whoa...we are getting too competitive and what are we really learning? How to struggle and use strength.

Maybe so, maybe not. Maybe we are learning how to confront reality and to fight through this to a point of relaxation and balance where we can once again learn to apply the principles. I don't know.

I see Dan's point though, if you are simply learning how to fall down, that ain't gonna help you grow. That is not how I typically do ukemi though.

DH
12-28-2006, 10:32 AM
Back to lurking and enjoying the thread (and the petty arguments too, we all like a little soap-opera now and then).

-Mike

I don't. And here, its a distraction. Rarely, have I read so much functionally uselss advice in such loooong posts.

Anyway
Regarding Ukemi, I can't be clearer than I have been here and in the Ueshiba and Ukemi thread. I haven't advocated what you have referred to and have included every condition you named.
Then you yourself make my point. If someone doesn't fall down how can you have Aikido?
There's two answers.
Aikido as we know it?
or the way of Aiki
Aikido as we know it....You can't.
The way of Aiki? Absoloutly.
Were two masters of Aiki power to meet... not a lot would happen
What would Shioda and Ueshiba look like as masters?
What would it look like were Sagawa and Takeda have challenged each other later in life?
A Japanese version of Push hands.
Do you suppose, for even one second, either one would be chasing a hand of the other guy in a circle? As a picture- its as ludicrous as any of you doing it. Stop thinking of being less than them.
Challenge their model to you. Walk in their example. Work on you.
When does a student stop his teacher in his tracks and realize he has to leave to move forward? When does your growth necessitate a change in direction. A need to start looking for a way to power and non-cooperation that leads to the ultimate cooperation of resolving In-Yo.

1. Learning to fall down is simple and can be taught directly. We all need to learn it and do it. .....OK done!
2. The "art" of falling and training to exhaustion to... fall down. Makes you good at losing. Its stupid and embarrassing for a man to do.
3. Learning to fall while attacking and still continuing the fight and winning-harder still and more worthwhile.
4. Learning to stand....... is a life long study.

The true "art" of Ukemi was what Takeda, Sagawa, Kodo, Ueshiba, and Shioda were doing in exhibiting their ability to handle attacks.
Not in falling down.
Many of these arts are "having us on" and bringing us through a protracted overly-long weeding out process of selection. And not teaching us the true way.
We need to stop thinking like the good little student being spoon fed.
As Sagawa said.
"I'm showing you!.....Think!!"
Theres nothing more I can say.
Cheers
Dan

Erick Mead
12-28-2006, 10:49 AM
There is an excellent interview with Kuroda S. at aikido journal, where he speaks of how kata developed the body you speak of. I'm sure it's been linked here before...if I can find it I'll link it again.
http://www.aikidojournal.com/article.php?articleID=85&highlight=kurodaThanks Ron.

From the article, and re the kokyu dosa exercise discussion: Generally speaking, a technique where the opponent is sent flying "when one merely extends his hand" is considered to be a secret technique, but it is nothing more than slightly extending one's arm in an unusual movement when the opponent is mainly executing normal movements. That type of movement where you lightly extend your arm will have no effect on someone trained in true martial arts. Anyone who does kokyu dosa properly learns to be able to redirect things with relative lightness and ease as uke just as well as nage, even to the point, as Adam says, of possibly "being a jerk" -- not by "not moving" -- but by moving differently.

I would submit that by doing his jo trick and various "push" demonstrations O Sensei realized its ego temptation, both for advertising purposes, to entice students (the man had an art to promote, remember), but also the dangers of actually teaching those tricks to students because of the equal ego temptations to learn to "be a jerk." The puerile "Hah!" "Gotcha!" moments are deeply antithetical to development in the principles of Aikido as I have received them. They provoke the resistive mind and its power hunger. Maybe I missed something and I am supposed to "be a jerk," but I really don't think so. Maybe I succeeded (failed), anyway.

I think it is a fascinating confirmaiton of the reasonableness of such a concern, to see that the ego power trip temptation lives on long after he is gone, in students not even born until he had passed..

DH
12-28-2006, 11:05 AM
Thanks Ron.
The puerile "Hah!" "Gotcha!" moments are deeply antithetical to development in the principles of Aikido as I have received them. They provoke the resistive mind and its power hunger. Maybe I missed something and I am supposed to "be a jerk," but I really don't think so. Maybe I succeeded (failed), anyway.

I think it is a fascinating confirmaiton of the reasonableness of such a concern, to see that the ego power trip temptation lives on long after he is gone, in students not even born until he had passed..

If "Jerks" and "ego power trips" are an indication of resisting and stopping the spears-the very definition of Budo, then I'm in good company. The passive agressive players can end up where they belong-on the floor looking up.

Even for the gentle pretenders the fact that they are in an art that teaches them to control someone is an indicator of two things.
One, there is, even in cooperation, an intent to control. One can call it misdirect or lead or whatever they wish. They are in the mix by their presence on the mat. the true passive-agressive.
Two, they have agreed to train to affect and attackers attack.

Thus.they have resisted the attacking mind by agreeing to alter it.
The rest of the argument is about levels of violence and levels of skill to control it. And some being fundementally more at peace and honest with themselves about pursuing it to higher levels.

Being called a jerk by practicing to resist- puts me in very good company-like the founders of Aikido. Who actively practiced reistence.
Not being fooled into following what he "said", and becoming a perpectual training dummy...but rather what he "did"...and learning to defeat and control an opponents agression is good for us.

****************************

Shihan quoted in AIkido Journal:
It is clear the way Aikido is practiced today that the only peaceful resolution to conflict these people will see ...is that when they are lying unconscious at the feet of their opponent."

Sagawa"
I had to change /adjust my training methodology. The training needed to strengthen the parts needed for Aiki is different from "Normal" training. However, if you are passionate enough you'll realize what this means, since I drop hints on how to train during our normal practice.
It is more important to strengthen the body than seek flexibility. No matter how flexible you make the body there is no point if it is weak. Making the body flexible AFTER you strengthen it is a different story altogether…Strengthening your body will bring about a "sharpness" to your technique.

Erick Mead
12-28-2006, 11:29 AM
To cut to the chase, this basic Kokyu exercise is meant to develop kokyu, the middle, and the hips/upper-thighs to some extent (suwari techniques are meant to do this last even more). ... There are a number of versions of "the right way to do Kokyu Ho", but you have to always ask yourself, "What is the main intent of this drill or technique?". ... The main purpose is to teach someone how to use kokyu force, the essential method of movement/power in Aikido and most other Asian arts when done beyond the amateur level. Anything other than that practice is extraneous to a basic Kokyu-Tanden-ho. There we go, agreeing again. :grr:
For all practical purposes, I could kneel in front of a wall with one of those large inflatable exercise-balls on top of my hands which are resting on my thighs, and then lift up and into the wall slowly, keeping a pure kokyu force (not strength) going from my hips throught the ball to the wall. It's the same basic practice, if you cut to the heart of the exercise. :D Ah, disagreement. :) Conflict.

Dynamics is not statics. Isometrics does not give dynamic feedback and so is limited in its abilty to provide the first issue in kokyu dosa -- which is musubi, the connection that must be established to provides both "feel" and the route of control. To state my conclusion first, I can win as long as my opponent strikes first. ... When I practiced this with my students, the speed of the attack was irrelevant, and I could win easily. This was only because I had developed the eyes to see the movement of the opponent's spirit. This inner vision is, in Kono Sensei's words, a spirit of technical dimension called rapport or telepathy or the working of the brain--I can't find the appropriate words for this. That dynamic is missing in an isometric exercise. The orientation of the attack and required musubi changes constantly throughout the kokyu dosa exercise. Just as you cannot tickle yourself, any sense of applying kokyu between you and the wall is merely a reflection of yourself and not the same as partnered kokyu exercise.
Is it "resistance"? Sure. ... And thus the problem. Train for what you do. Do not train to do what you do not wish to do. Actual waza should avoid resistance; exercises are not waza, even though some people try to make them so. Why avoid resistance? Why make the distinction? Kuroda seems to disagree with a distinction that wouold allow kata (exercises) to depart in principle from waza (tehcniques). I take a common sense viewpoint with respect to these kinds of kata. In other words, I believe that kata are not substitutes for actual fighting. If there were such a thing as kata that can be used in a real situation, I would like to see them. I think that it was in this sense that Morihei Ueshiba O-Sensei used to say that one should not attach too much importance to kata. However, this is something that only a man of his stature, who has already reached that level, can say. We ordinary people would lose all clues about how to execute real techniques if we were to reject the kata.
...
However, from the standpoint of someone who has trained with a complete understanding of techniques from the beginning, everything will seem natural. It will simply seem to be the result of accumulated training and the degree of training. The kata are what lead one to this level. O Sensei's point, which Kuroda gave due credit, was that adherence to set form can obscure principle, especially in a dynamic art, and he was more concerned with innate principle. Kuroda's point is that kata or exercises have an continuing evolutionary relationship to techniques, and at every level of development. If the exercises are, in principle, different from the techniques, there is a serious problem.

Thomas Campbell
12-28-2006, 11:44 AM
[snip]
5. You can teach much the same idea in ground fighting positions like the guard and the mount and side mount. Oops.. that may be too much for the Art-in-a-box crowd to absorb.

[snip]

Thanks for the idea, Dan. Will do (once the doc gives the go-ahead). Looking at it, it seems like an obvious extension of working from sitting, but sometimes the obvious eludes us.

Mike Sigman
12-28-2006, 12:05 PM
Dynamics is not statics. Isometrics does not give dynamic feedback and so is limited in its abilty to provide the first issue in kokyu dosa -- which is musubi, the connection that must be established to provides both "feel" and the route of control. That dynamic is missing in an isometric exercise. Y'know.... you keep trying to make everything waza and you don't understand that if you're using basically the wrong type of strength, all your waza training is wrong.

And BTW.... just as you go off on the wrong track about "resistance" (notice you don't want to say much about Ueshiba's use of it other than to say he "didn't teach it"... which is not totally true, BTW), you also go off on the wrong track about "isometrics". The proper kind of resistance is fine. The proper kind of "isometrics" is fine. The proper kind of "strength" is fine, used in context with the tactics and strategy of Aikido.

But, I'm not going to argue this thing on Kokyu-ho too specifically because some of it comes close to information that I think people need to find out for themselves. Lengthy internet analyses never created a single master. ;)

Regards,

Mike Sigman

Ellis Amdur
12-28-2006, 12:11 PM
In post #375, Dan wrote, paraphrasing or quoting Sagawa:
It is more important to strengthen the body than seek flexibility. No matter how flexible you make the body there is no point if it is weak. Making the body flexible AFTER you strengthen it is a different story altogether…Strengthening your body will bring about a "sharpness" to your technique.

If you wander over to Aikido Journal, you will find an interview up with Abe Seiseki:
INTERVIEWER: Wasn't Sensei somewhere around 75 years old at that time?

ABE: That's right, and extremely healthy. His body had the flexibility of someone seventeen or eighteen years old. Even so, he had gradually lost weight (over the years) and he complained about how much his muscles were sagging. But, when he put his ki into them, "pop," they became hard as steel.

Which leads to some metaphoric connections. What's the difference between iron and steel? Because Abe didn't say "hard as iron," which would be a description of a hard, heavy, dense metal that is not very flexible and doesn't take an edge. Steel, on the other hand, is flexible, hard and takes an incredible edge. What was that thing that Ueshiba is reported to have said? Oh yeah, "Aikido is a manifestation of the sword." Perhaps that too has an internal component. At any rate, "muscles like steel" WHEN you put "ki" (what's that again) in them, leads to a different type of "blending," doesn't it? Soft muscles to steel muscles - just like that. POP!

Best

DH
12-28-2006, 12:29 PM
Hi Ellis
More excellent points as well. Hmmm... metaphores, metaphores. What is the optimum tempering quality for simple steels as commonly decribed? What are its attributes in load bearing and shock absorption?
Spring temper. Spring steel.
Maximul ductile range of a given type while retaining a measure of hardness. How would that relate to mind, bone and sinew. How do we find it in ourselves? How do we step beyond?

What are we seeing? The connections are all connected!
The "steel in cotton" phrase of Taiji the "flexible steel" phrase often used in DR. And students missing that "hard feel" source and trying to mimic it by either speed or strength and blowing the whole thing. Then on to shapes and movements. Anything but getting the source. What the hell were they doing all along? Where do we breath? What do we lead into what, where? Why is it like soft wrapped movable steel on the surface? How can they train in the winter and be warm with no gloves?
In practical training.
Why is nage....Uke?
Why push?
Why solo train?
Why are long weapons valuable for the body. Whats...out there?
The answers being hidden in plain site.
The solution being to stop, turn around, and go full speed in the other direction...and still do Aikido.
It will just look different.

Cheers
Dan

Mike Sigman
12-28-2006, 12:34 PM
At any rate, "muscles like steel" WHEN you put "ki" (what's that again) in them, leads to a different type of "blending," doesn't it? Soft muscles to steel muscles - just like that. POP! I always liked the phrase "....when you mobilize the qi."

Kokyu/jin manipulations aren't that hard to do and learn. And as Kuroda noted in that interview, against a skilled martial artist these tricks aren't always as earth-shaking as they are against a neophyte in a demonstration setup. Not that they're not useful martially.. just not the end of the world as we know it.

On the other hand, to have the ki to mobilize and make those muscles as hard as steel takes a long time to develop. It's different than the kokyu/jin stuff in that regard. ;)

Mike

James Young
12-28-2006, 01:21 PM
"Immovability" "Not moving?" Look closer, my friend. Why was his head doing these nifty little sagittal plane rotations and forward extensions, alternately extending his neck, lifting and dropping his chin slightly in response to the pushes? You even see him do quite clearly once in the close-up. Pretty much letting himself "be moved," just not in the way they wanted him to move."

If that is what you meant then I don't disagree. The interaction is a dynamic one where forces are changing and coming in different directions and of course he has to make minor adjustments to reconnect to these changing forces and to "ground" them out or neutralize them. In most other demonstrations of "immovability" there are also such minor adjustments always taking place. I never equated immovability (in the macro sense) with being completely frozen still or not moving at all (in the more micro sense of the adjustments you noted). And I would venture to guess everyone else referring to these "immovability" exercises would also not equate the two. If you were earlier arguing about necessary movement in that micro sense and I misinterpreted what you said then I apologize.

Mike Sigman
12-28-2006, 01:36 PM
If that is what you meant then I don't disagree. The interaction is a dynamic one where forces are changing and coming in different directions and of course he has to make minor adjustments to reconnect to these changing forces and to "ground" them out or neutralize them. In most other demonstrations of "immovability" there are also such minor adjustments always taking place. I never equated immovability (in the macro sense) with being completely frozen still or not moving at all (in the more micro sense of the adjustments you noted). And I would venture to guess everyone else referring to these "immovability" exercises would also not equate the two. I agree with you, James. However, the amount of movement can vary between a beginner and an expert, between someone with great strength and someone with not-so-great strength (and as Ueshiba got older, you can be assured that his powers weren't as great as when he was in his prime), and most important of all is how much force is actually being applied. For instance, as I've mentioned before, Tohei's "immoveable" stance would not be so immoveable in front of a speeding 1955 Chevrolet pickup truck. I.e., there are common-sense limits to these events and trying to talk common sense while someone else is trying to pick the fly-shit out of pepper can be fairly non-productive.

Positing for a moment that some beginner pushes against Ueshiba in his prime and Ueshiba doesn't move a hair (i.e., not discernibly), there is no "rotation" to worry about in any sensible analysis. Things can be overanalyzed to the point that they get incomprehensible.... as Adam tried to diplomatically point out to Erick.

The discussion has been sensible for the macro phenomena. The micro discussions seem to be a refuge, rather than an attempt to discuss any agreed-upon macro phenomenon. And that seems to be because the subject isn't fully comprehended by everyone. :cool:

Best.

Mike

James Young
12-28-2006, 01:52 PM
However, the amount of movement can vary between a beginner and an expert, between someone with great strength and someone with not-so-great strength (and as Ueshiba got older, you can be assured that his powers weren't as great as when he was in his prime), and most important of all is how much force is actually being applied.

Absolutely. Abe-sensei has an exercise where he has people grap him strongly in morote-dori and then he returns that energy back to them with a slight wrist motion which in turn takes their center. When I practice this I can sometimes do it but my wrist movement is quite visible. When Abe-sensei does it his movement can be practically invisible as he talks about getting it down to 1mm or less.

Mike Sigman
12-28-2006, 02:13 PM
Absolutely. Abe-sensei has an exercise where he has people grap him strongly in morote-dori and then he returns that energy back to them with a slight wrist motion which in turn takes their center. When I practice this I can sometimes do it but my wrist movement is quite visible. When Abe-sensei does it his movement can be practically invisible as he talks about getting it down to 1mm or less.Another factor to consider also is how cooperative the Uke's are. Many times I watch a demo that I can grok the point of but I can't fully judge how valid the demo is because of that floating percentage between skill, strength, and uke-cooperation. I'll bet if some of the partners you tried it with also became uke's for Abe Sensei doing the same demo, you really wouldn't be sure exactly how much of it was due to Abe's skill versus Uke's shill. ;)

Best.

Mike

DH
12-28-2006, 02:21 PM
Absolutely. Abe-sensei has an exercise where he has people grap him strongly in morote-dori and then he returns that energy back to them with a slight wrist motion which in turn takes their center. When I practice this I can sometimes do it but my wrist movement is quite visible. When Abe-sensei does it his movement can be practically invisible as he talks about getting it down to 1mm or less.

Not this is what Abe Sensei is doing at all. It just brought something to mind we were talking about in the dojo the other night.

It might be worth mentioning that while using ground strength is a good beginning to gaining a sense of neutrality in order to capture center on contact.... it is not required or the only way. Many have gotten by with forms of Hiriki for years. You can have various windings in the body that manipulate others forces. But here's the thing they will never lead to higher skills. In a sense we can be cheated out of a deeper study by an expert in a lower level skill.
Being able to use the whole mind/body connection to build you one step at a time to being able to eventually remain neutral under more pressing loads and change-ups when someone enters your sphere and you can instantly respond.... is far beyond hiriki and shapes of hands.
It is why Sagawa dismissed some "very" famous men- as going in the wrong direction.
It isn't in the hands.
It's all in the hands.
Those two statements are as far apart as the earth to the moon.

Cheers
Dan

Mike Sigman
12-28-2006, 02:39 PM
Being able to use the whole mind/body connection to build you one step at a time to being able to eventually remain neutral under more pressing loads and change-ups when someone enters your sphere and you can instantly respond.... is far beyond hiriki and shapes of hands.James said, "....he returns that energy back to them with a slight wrist motion." I.e., I didn't read that to mean "he returns that energy back to them by means of a slight wrist motion." Abe knows full well how to use jin, as has been highlighted by a number of Gernot's posts.

FWIW

Mike

Erick Mead
12-28-2006, 02:47 PM
Y'know.... if you're using basically the wrong type of strength, all your waza training is wrong. A point on which we once more, sadly, agree. :(
And BTW.... just as you go off on the wrong track about "resistance" (notice you don't want to say much about Ueshiba's use of it other than to say he "didn't teach it"... which is not totally true, BTW) "We adhere to the principle of absolute nonresistance, that is to say, we do not oppose the attacker." He said it - I didn't. Complain to him, not me.
, you also go off on the wrong track about "isometrics". It was your example ...
But, I'm not going to argue this thing on Kokyu-ho too specifically because some of it comes close to information that I think people need to find out for themselves. But quite a few here have found those things out. One of your complaints is that they do not do it very well. The criticism is fine where constructive. Some here do do it well. The discussion about the concepts and principles to apply in relaxed kokyu training is very useful to both.

But the mind instructs the body -- just as the body intstructs the mind. It is good to do both, and not disregard either one in favor of the other. One or two things have been improved in course of human endeavor by carefully working out concepts that are already applied in practice , and by more carrefully laying out their principles in concept, finding ways to improve performance, ease of use or facility of instruction.

O Sensei advocated a course of development in scientific terms very specifically in Budo Renshu.

DH
12-28-2006, 02:54 PM
James said, "....he returns that energy back to them with a slight wrist motion." I.e., I didn't read that to mean "he returns that energy back to them by means of a slight wrist motion." Abe knows full well how to use jin, as has been highlighted by a number of Gernot's posts.

FWIW

Mike

Huh??
I know. That's why I opened with this
Not that this is what Abe Sensei is doing at all. The post juds brought something to mind we were talking about in the dojo the other night

....and I wanted to SPECIFICALLY make sure I was not referring to him when I said it. :D

Cheers
Dan

Erick Mead
12-28-2006, 03:26 PM
If that is what you meant then I don't disagree. The interaction is a dynamic one where forces are changing and coming in different directions and of course he has to make minor adjustments to reconnect to these changing forces and to "ground" them out or neutralize them. In most other demonstrations of "immovability" there are also such minor adjustments always taking place. I never equated immovability (in the macro sense) with being completely frozen still or not moving at all (in the more micro sense of the adjustments you noted). And I would venture to guess everyone else referring to these "immovability" exercises would also not equate the two. If you were earlier arguing about necessary movement in that micro sense and I misinterpreted what you said then I apologize. I'll except out your comments about grounding and neutralization, and say I think we do agree, and then point out the problem with those terms.

To paraphrase Mencken, as long as uke gets what he wants, and gets it good and hard, then Aikido is happening. Uke should be getting movement that he wants, but be initially befuddled why it is not working out like he planned. As long as uke gets to open his desired treasure box and then recoils from the snake that wants to kiss him, then Aikido is happening. It is always his decision to make, not mine.

"Rooting, grounding and neutralization" in the sense that uke cannot sense a movement as he intended it is perceived as resistance and provokes reaction to that perception. The moment I input force opposing his, in any component whatsoever, it communicates a direct signal in the primary channel. He then knows exactly why it is not working becasue he senses me stopping him. Oppositional force provokes a response because his mind is keenly focussed there. And he will react by changing what he is doing. I do not want him to do that.

If all my forces are at right angles (juji) to his, and all my responses give him the limb/body rotations/contact he was looking for, then my manipulations of the center of rotations and of perpendicular components of force do not provoke any intial response. And then if he continues to do what he planned -- I have already beaten him.

Getting ready to oppose him, I will get tensed. If aII I am doing is laying my small amount of force on him from the side, I can be more relaxed and just lay my hand, or body at the place it needs to be and then just move my whole center there in one piece.

Kokyu training allows one to better perceive those secondary channel inputs on the other two coordinate planes. That's why Mike's point about these things not working in the same way against more skilled opponents is true, they are not so single-minded as the attacker without kokyu training. Then it is a chess match -- where, generally, the first one to give up -- ends up winning.

Mike Sigman
12-28-2006, 04:43 PM
"We adhere to the principle of absolute nonresistance, that is to say, we do not oppose the attacker." He said it - I didn't. Complain to him, not me. That's fine, Erick, but there are a number of videos of O-Sensei taking a direct push to his chest, his back, his thigh, etc., and knocking people back. Your absolute assertion that in Aikido the response must be 90-degrees or more to the incoming force are simply wrong and I'm tired of pointing it out. You don't know what you're talking about. And you STILL have not been able to differentiate in your theories how kokyu force is different from normally-used force, so all your theories are pretty certainly based around normal force. If you understood what kokyu force was, it would have been clear some time ago in the conversation, implying pretty clearly that you don't understand.

What you do with your wildly complicated (I'm not saying that I haven't seen people do exactly what you're doing.... I'm just saying it misses the point; they didn't have any kokyu skills to speak of either) description of kokyu-ho is miss the point. O-Sensei's responses to the pushes I mention above.. to the chest, to the back, to the thigh, etc.... are him showing his kokyu/jin skills. Yes, someone can duplicate those things coarsely (although I'd bet you can't do the thigh one correctly), but they don't have the jin or the supporting ki. The "jo-trick" can be duplicated with a light-enough push, etc., but that's not what O-Sensei was showing... it misses the point to do it muscularly. The unbendable arm can be duplicated in several ways that use mostly muscle... but that misses the point. You're missing the point of the basic strength and you're sliding in the excuse that certain things don't meet your personal criteria for Aikido, so they can't be allowed as training for Aikido. Absolute buffoonery. You've seen the point at some time in the past, obviously, or you wouldn't be continuing with this fatuous dodge. Training the basic strengths of Aikido (the conditioning training) is not the art of Aikido. But I've said that in numerous posts. Your implication is that Tohei's "Ki Tests" cannot be part of Aikido. Tell it to Tohei, who actually studied with Ueshiba. Tell it to Ikeda for bringing in Ushiro.


In other words, instead of asserting your take on what O-Sensei meant and putting in angles of forces for him that he himself did not adhere to (on video!!!), why don't you go learn what it is that you're missing, as has been suggested to you a number of times?

Regards,

Mike Sigman

Erick Mead
12-28-2006, 05:21 PM
That's fine, Erick, but there are a number of videos of O-Sensei taking a direct push to his chest, his back, his thigh, etc., and knocking people back. Your absolute assertion that in Aikido the response must be 90-degrees or more to the incoming force are simply wrong and I'm tired of pointing it out. Yes, I know, because you do not understand the mechanics, while I do understand the use of kokyu. He did use it to reorient their own force to knock them back and never used a force that was in anyway in opposition to theirs to do it.

NASA uses a similar principle every time they de-orbit orbit a shuttle (which not too coincidentally, is basically what you are doing to your uke with technique -- BTW). That kind of mechanics is just as counter-intuitive to your "common sense" as kokyu is in linear "push-pull" mechanical terms. It ain't "push-pull" at all. That's what they mean when they talk about "rocket science."

And you STILL have not been able to differentiate in your theories how kokyu force is different from normally-used force, so all your theories are pretty certainly based around normal force. That's because the difference between kokyu force and "normal" force is that kokyu force is actually applied normally.

See if you can get the joke in that.

If you understood what kokyu force was, it would have been clear some time ago in the conversation, implying pretty clearly that you don't understand. Actually, you inferred that. I implied nothing of the kind.

[jo trick] it misses the point to do it muscularly. Ah. His hips turned. I guess I missed that anatomy lesson where muscles weren't involved in that. It is in the applicaiton of all of the structure, the whole of it together, and I am pretty sure that muscles have to come included.
Absolute buffoonery. You've seen the point at some time in the past, obviously, or you wouldn't be continuing with this fatuous dodge. Ah -- the Mike I've come to know and love.
Your implication is that Tohei's "Ki Tests" cannot be part of Aikido. Tell it to Tohei, who actually studied with Ueshiba. Again YOUR inference, nothing implied by me. And again -- way above my paygrade.
Tell it to Ikeda for bringing in Ushiro. Why don't YOU tell him why he brought in Ushiro -- I surely won't presume to do so. I've met him. He's a nice man. With a broad mind. And a generous host by all accounts. You have some ideas he said something that he actually didn't but I addressed that before elsewhere.

Or perhaps you think he just "implied" it, in which case, I apologize.

In other words, instead of asserting your take on what O-Sensei meant and putting in angles of forces for him that he himself did not adhere to (on video!!!), "They have eyes -- but do not see, ears -- but do not hear." It is all there -- in the videos. The chest push, thigh push, now head push and jo trick. Every one that has been shown has the little rotational conversions and (mathematically) normal forces. I do hope you got the joke.

You can see it if you know what you are looking for -- and wish to see. I've described it the mechanics of the visible motions for each example that has been offered.

Mike Sigman
12-28-2006, 05:35 PM
Yes, I know, because you do not understand the mechanics, while I do understand the use of kokyu. He did use it to reorient their own force to knock them back and never used a force that was in anyway in opposition to theirs to do it. Don't get me wrong, Erick.... I see and have seen for quite some time what your theory is. I'm afraid that at some point in time you're going to have to begin saving face by saying that your "gyational movement" is actually the simple vector addition that it's viewed as throughout Asia, except for some quasi-religious pockets. O-Sensei absorbs incoming forces with his legs and the mentally-trained vector addition I've mentioned; he returns the force at an angle underneath the incoming force. That's the essence of it. You're reduced to arguing that joints are rotational devices so you "knew it all along". Sorry. Forget NASA. Just look at simple vector addition and, while you're at it, admit that you were wrong about your orthogonal or more assertion. According to your posted assertions, O-Sensei is doing Aikido wrong.

Mike Sigman

Mike

Mike Sigman
12-28-2006, 06:35 PM
NASA uses a similar principle every time they de-orbit orbit a shuttle I just love that explanation. Next time I'm at a meeting with a bunch of martial-arts experts, I'm going to have to tell this one as an anecdote. Quit these false gods, Erick, and follow the true god, Occam.

Mike

Mark Freeman
12-28-2006, 06:50 PM
Quit these false gods, Erick, and follow the true god, Occam.

Is someone in need of a shave? ;)

Cady Goldfield
12-28-2006, 07:44 PM
Yes; of about 50,000 words from his last week's-worth of posts. :p

raul rodrigo
12-28-2006, 07:58 PM
O-Sensei absorbs incoming forces with his legs and the mentally-trained vector addition I've mentioned; he returns the force at an angle underneath the incoming force. That's the essence of it. You're reduced to arguing that joints are rotational devices so you "knew it all along". Sorry. Forget NASA. Just look at simple vector addition and, while you're at it, admit that you were wrong about your orthogonal or more assertion.


In the 1935 Asahi News demo, Osensei does exactly this in response to a two handed push to his shoulders. Uke goes flying back along the line of attack. Shioda used to do the exact same thing in his demos. No evasion, rotation, gyration or obfuscation. Morihei absorbs the incoming force by sending it through his body into the ground and then sends it right back.

eyrie
12-28-2006, 09:53 PM
There's a key to relaxing that is critical, but no one has even come close to mentioning it.

For those wondering, thinking and questioning... perhaps this might help...
http://www.ec-online.net/Knowledge/Articles/relaxationresist.html

I think there are several elements to attaining a "state" of relaxation, however unnatural it may be, but if I had to pick a key/critical element, I would be guessing "state of mind"...

statisticool
12-28-2006, 10:11 PM
Those here who have the historical and technical knowledge (and who may practice MMA) are saying that these internal skills are the birthright of aikido, and that it time for aikido to take them back and truly live Ueshiba's vision. What does that have to do with MMA?

Clearly the MMA types involved with aikido means that aikidoka have to start selling supplements, make their gis look like NASCARs with ads all over them, and maybe get cute "tough" nicknames, for example Terry "The Crazy Butcher" Dobson, John "I'll Remove Your Liver with a Rusty Spoon" Stevens, and Moriteru "I'll Break You, Punk!" Ueshiba.

statisticool
12-28-2006, 10:15 PM
My point has been that the people that really know it don't show it.


That begs the question then of how does one know that they really know it.

statisticool
12-28-2006, 10:23 PM
The so-called "internal work," "skills" seem -- from their advocates positions so far -- not to expand the scope of the internal to include the opponent, but to actually reduce it. I am a big fan of the utility of reductionist knowledge but I know enough not to stop there, or to deny the uses of holistic knwoledge, either.


From my POV, the 'internal' stuff, at least the specific brand of 'internal' stuff proposed by some people in this thread, seems to be some talk about 'oh we consciously alter force vectors'. Considering forces are everywhere; being sent from my fingers as I type, from my feet as I slide my chair on the floor, etc., and I can consciously alter all of these, they explain precisely nothing because they 'explain' everything.

Mike Sigman
12-28-2006, 10:25 PM
That begs the question then of how does one know that they really know it.Well, I invited Chen Xiao Wang to my home and tried it out, Justin. What have you done besides worship Cheng Man Ching, a dead man whose skills you've only read about in a book, from behind your keyboard? Your idea of "begging the question" seems to always include an aversion to getting it on, for some reason.

Mike Sigman

Erick Mead
12-28-2006, 10:28 PM
In the 1935 Asahi News demo, Osensei does exactly this in response to a two handed push to his shoulders. Uke goes flying back along the line of attack. Shioda used to do the exact same thing in his demos. No evasion, rotation, gyration or obfuscation. Morihei absorbs the incoming force by sending it through his body into the ground and then sends it right back. Post it. We'll see.

statisticool
12-28-2006, 10:29 PM
No, no.... the really sad part is that many of the people not following the advice of the Founder are in fact not only "doing Aikido", they're "teaching Aikido".... and still doing it wrong. Touche'!


Is that anything like people who claim to understand the basis to all internal martial arts but who haven't actually trained in said martial arts longer than the people they want to correct?

Just curious.

statisticool
12-28-2006, 10:40 PM
, is usually the first exposure that most non-Ki-Society people get to practicing this skill and I think they're the worse for not having more focused drills in this exercise.
...
They never really get down to just working that kokyu/jin path over and over and developing it.
...
How well they did it (some were good, some not so good) is not so important.
...
The important thing was that they (a lot of them; some of them didn't have it and some missed it and were confused in how to bring it out)
...
There were a couple of guys who were OK in their ki skills, although I would have argued about perhaps a cleaner way to use the skills,
...
The troubling part about those other organizations is that too many of the instructor body do not have those baseline skills.
...
, it's the big crack in Aikido (trust me... it's a worse problem in
...


Will you teach an all aikido seminar to remedy this dire situation of lack of skills?


That's the entre'. No ki/kokyu.... No Aikido. Same thing Ushiro Sensei says. Same think Tohei Sensei implied. Same thing from other sensei's, too.


The difference is, that their use of certain words seems to be much different than your use.

Erick Mead
12-28-2006, 10:55 PM
I just love that explanation. Next time I'm at a meeting with a bunch of martial-arts experts, I'm going to have to tell this one as an anecdote. Quit these false gods, Erick, and follow the true god, Occam. I knew you had some missionary in you, Mike. Explains a lot.

Occam??? Oh my. Oh no. Really? Omigod.

Using the father of Western reductionism to advocate the preferential use of holistic Chinese traditional concepts like jin and qi,and the Japanese version - kokyu, -- in place of physical mechanics that have been understood since Kepler and Newton?
There's a belly laugh.

Hoo-boy!

No. .. Hold on.

Really.

I'll catch my breath

.. in a minute...

Wait .. now, my eyes are tearing up,

I can't see.

--------------

Better now. Very relaxing though. I must recommend it. Contemplation of the utterly absurd. Very calming.

Try this "general, non-calculus introductory physics course" Rotational equlibrium and dynamics http://theory.uwinnipeg.ca/physics/rot/index.html

Erick Mead
12-28-2006, 10:57 PM
Yes; of about 50,000 words from his last week's-worth of posts. :p You counted? Making it shorter takes far too much time, Cady. Electrons are cheap.

Mike Sigman
12-28-2006, 11:00 PM
I knew you had some missionary in you, Mike. Explains a lot.

Occam??? Oh my. Oh no. Really? Omigod.

Using the father of Western reductionism to advocate the preferential use of holistic Chinese traditional concepts like jin and qi,and the Japanese version - kokyu, -- in place of physical mechanics that have been understood since Kepler and Newton?
That's ummmmmm sort of silly since I've previously posted references and anecdotal support for the idea that "jin" has a close translation in "vector force". Although you flail around looking for support in big words and grandiose theories... you're drowning yourself.

Regards,

Mike Sigman

statisticool
12-28-2006, 11:28 PM
since I've previously posted references and anecdotal support for the idea that "jin" has a close translation in "vector force".


Tossing anecdotes aside since they're worthless, I wonder why some knowledgable Chinese martial artists still don't translate jin as "vector force".

statisticool
12-28-2006, 11:30 PM
Well, I invited Chen Xiao Wang to my home and tried it out, Justin.


Then according to you


My point has been that the people that really know it don't show it.


Chen Xiaowang doesn't really know it because he showed it.


What have you done besides worship Cheng Man Ching, a dead man


Again, you have a strange definition of worship. But that's par for the course; you have a strange definition of jin, ki, etc., too.

Mashu
12-28-2006, 11:32 PM
In the 1935 Asahi News demo, Osensei does exactly this in response to a two handed push to his shoulders. Uke goes flying back along the line of attack. Shioda used to do the exact same thing in his demos. No evasion, rotation, gyration or obfuscation. Morihei absorbs the incoming force by sending it through his body into the ground and then sends it right back.


Post it. We'll see.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HYUTRSvWcI4

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B7Cfpay1X2c

Erick Mead
12-28-2006, 11:45 PM
I'm afraid that at some point in time you're going to have to begin saving face by saying that your "gyational movement" is actually the simple vector addition that it's viewed as throughout Asia, except for some quasi-religious pockets. To show me up, Mike, you first have to actually engage an argument with some evidence that actually proves what you say instead of assuming that what you want it to prove is there somehow. Sometime. Anytime. Really.

And did you ever ask yourself what sort of dynamic the Tai-Ji/In-Yo tomoe symbol is depicting ? Is that "vector addition" or is it "rotational conversion." You are aware, I take it, that in China and Japan pictographic symbols carry explicit, not merely metaphorical, meaning?

Altering eccentricity of rotation in 3D is NOT, repeat, NOT anything remotely like plane "vector addition" nor is angular momentum, nor inertial moments, nor is gyrostatic conservation of momentum that causes precessional tumbling. All of these things can be seen in basic movements of aikido and kokyu exercise, and in the videos that keep being offeried. Love to see more, by the way, to anyone who is listening.
O-Sensei absorbs incoming forces with his legs and the mentally-trained vector addition I've mentioned; he returns the force at an angle underneath the incoming force. Did he happen to mention that at all, anything like he mentioned the importance of Juji, the cross shape, 90 degrees even? You know, like where he referred to the art as "jujido", like he did in one of the Doka. Anything, something, about springy legs?
According to your posted assertions, O-Sensei is doing Aikido wrong. No, by definition he is doing it right, and I give his statements and teaching vastly more weight than you do. Like the "absolutely no resistance" that I am "hung up on" just because he said it.

You are just seeing it wrong, because you do not know what you are looking at in mechanical terms. Vectors sound good and they're easy. Who said kokyu was easy? It wouldn't be very martially useful if it were that easy. It is very simple -- but not easy.

Notably, you have never yet tried to rebut the mechanical analyses of the chest push video, the thigh push video, and now the head push and jo trick. I gave descriptions that people can judge for themselves from the videos whether it is descriptive of what they see or not. There has been no clamor against the analyses form that quarter either.

I may occasionally blather on for lack of time to tightly edit, but you just deny. That is not argument and persuades no one. It is just easy, and simple, and wrong.

Erick Mead
12-29-2006, 12:29 AM
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HYUTRSvWcI4 I saw the two handed shoulder grab in this one, which had slomo. I did not see the described move in the other one. But cool. Thanks.

The two-handed grab starts at the 00:05 mark and the slomo version at about 00:09.

First of all, it blows away Mike's "up from underneath" idea, since O Sensei is clearly carrying the connection with uke down from the top.

As uke grabs O Sensei's shoulders, he commences a forward and downward rotation of the torso from the hips as with a deep giri cut. Uke's connection is tangent to that rotation, and so perpendicularity is preserved. Uke's hands are rotated down at the wrist, and there is a complementary rotation of his elbows forward and up, which then also pops his shoulders up.

With his elbows and shoulders up, he can no longer push on O Sensei, and he has to dump all that momentum he built up if he is to stay upright. He has to lift his center to bleed off more momentum but he cannot get high enough, without getting vertical. To get upright he has to bring his bottom part forward more under him, and his top part back.
O Sensei blends with the top-backward rotation of his attempted recovery. Uke's arms are at full extension by this time and they are braced against O Sensei, and the irimi of his motion, combined wiht uke attempt at recovery is enough through uke's shoulders to pitch uke back off his feet. By the time uke's fall begins properly, O Sensei is actually at the bottom of his "cut" moving away.

Basically, he applied upon uke the reverse wave of the proper kokyu tanden ho movement, and got the reverse result. He cracked the whip using uke's own arms. A wave is just a translated rotational energy.

You can feel the means of producing and the direction of the rotations that uke felt yourself. Extend your arms in front of you in tegatana . Now without voluntarily changing your elbow curve, rotate your wrists vertically down to their comfortable limit. Now force them slightly past that with wrist tension alone, and see what happens to your elbows and feel what changes in your shoulders. That, in a much sharper and more kinetic impulse dynamic, is what happened to uke in the video.

Counting all together we have:
1) O Sensei's rotaiton of his torso forward and down
2) the induced downward rotaton of uke's hands at the wrist
3) the upward complemetary rotation of the forearm at the elbow,
4) then the same again at the shoulder
5) Uke' torso rotation trying to recover his balance., which is just continued as his throw

Do you take my my point, now?

Mashu
12-29-2006, 12:43 AM
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=atiMoGT6dgM

@ 1:03-1:06 ?

eyrie
12-29-2006, 01:58 AM
And this one...
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JUtQ1VA-qnY&mode=related&search=

@ 0:51-0:55 (from the BACK and FRONT).

Mike Sigman
12-29-2006, 08:05 AM
To show me up, Mike, you first have to actually engage an argument with some evidence that actually proves what you say instead of assuming that what you want it to prove is there somehow. Sometime. Anytime. Really. I'm not going to engage in a specious argument of yours that I grokked immediately when you laid it out, Erick. Nor am I going to get drawn into side issues by needlessly stating obvious things like vectors are first-order tensors and then using 3-dimensional cartesian coordinates that we can gleefully solve using matrices and determinants. It's simply a game you want to play and one that I see as pointless. Before you start your bulky analyses, you need to know the subject... to talk, you must first show the right to talk. As far as I'm concerned, you've never argued from any position except your "credentials". Credentials and $4 will buy you a cup of Latte at Starbucks.

Regards,

Mike

Mike Sigman
12-29-2006, 08:14 AM
First of all, it blows away Mike's "up from underneath" idea, since O Sensei is clearly carrying the connection with uke down from the top. Bzzzzzt. Dishonesty. That's not the video I was talking about.... different example, so don't apply my logic to it.As uke grabs O Sensei's shoulders, he commences a forward and downward rotation of the torso from the hips as with a deep giri cut. Yes, he uses a weight vector instead of a ground vector. Ever notice how often I put in " ground (or weight) " in my descriptions? Let's skip this one and stick with the simpler ones from the ground, the ones that were under discussion. There's something about the weight ones that I don't want to blab in public. BTW..... there's your yin-yang (in-yo) dichotomy.... the ground or the weight.

Mike

Mike Sigman
12-29-2006, 08:18 AM
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=atiMoGT6dgMNice chest bounce (since we're sticking to the simple examples for analysis' sake) near the middle, but in that one, Shioda simply charges into the oncoming push, relying on his ground-supported MV to be greater than Uke's obviously lesser mv. No real neutralization. Certainly no "gyrational movement".

FWIW

Mike

mjchip
12-29-2006, 08:26 AM
Nice chest bounce (since we're sticking to the simple examples for analysis' sake) near the middle, but in that one, Shioda simply charges into the oncoming push, relying on his ground-supported MV to be greater than Uke's obviously lesser mv. No real neutralization. Certainly no "gyrational movement".

FWIW

Mike

Don't be so sure Mike, if you analyze the movement with the latest NASA supercomputer, you might be surprised to find some microscopic gyroscopic movement. LOL :)

Mark

Mike Sigman
12-29-2006, 08:30 AM
Don't be so sure Mike, if you analyze the movement with the latest NASA supercomputer, you might be surprised to find some microscopic gyroscopic movement. LOL :)Absolutely. In fact, we might even work quantum mechanics and super-strings into a really rigorous analysis!


Here's more what I had in mind for analysis. This is a clip showing Ueshiba in a few thigh bounces and at least one front-on chest bounce:

http://www.neijia.com/UeshibaKokyu.wmv

Best.

Mike

mjchip
12-29-2006, 08:53 AM
Absolutely. In fact, we might even work quantum mechanics and super-strings into a really rigorous analysis!


Here's more what I had in mind for analysis. This is a clip showing Ueshiba in a few thigh bounces and at least one front-on chest bounce:

http://www.neijia.com/UeshibaKokyu.wmv

Best.

Mike

Let me start out by saying I'm a robotics engineer with formal education and training in electronics so I know all about and have an aptitude in technical analysis. In my job, this aptitude has been a tremendous benefit, in the dojo this has been a tremendous liability. In fact, my teacher used to scream at me "stop thinking, stop analyzing......you're moving like one of your robots." It took me years and years to "let go" so that I could get the basics. Now that I have a better understanding of the basics (15+ years worth) I'm starting to analyze (off-line, not during or as part of my regular training) the training methods/technical curriculum in some detail. Still though, I'm having a lot of trouble reconciling Erick's superanalytical dissertations with what I "feel" in the dojo. When I read them I can't help but recall the phrase "the analysis of paralysis"......

Mark

DH
12-29-2006, 09:05 AM
Now imagine the ukes not doing that type of ukemi.
How much force do you think is "really" being applied by Ueshiba, folks?
What do you suppose that level of force would like if it were applied to students who were actually trained to have structure both in attack and defense? How would their bodies both generate force to begin with? And then, how would their properly trained bodies respond?

Picture Ueshiba trying to do that to the Shioda that appeared in his later videos?
What would trained structure of the uke bring into the mix?
Who is being trained .....exactly.. to do what?
Why can you be trained to start to do these things in a short time, yet no one is?
Who doesn't even know, and was never taught to begin with?
Who is being duped into years long apprentiships playing crash test dummy hoping for the "goods?"
Maybe..... there is another way?
In the end why would anyone ....ever...train to "react" like that?

As I've said for decades "Want to "really" watch a martial arts demonstration and see." Watch the attacks, not the person doing his schtick.

Just who, is enabling whom, to do exactly what?
A better uke would be a better Nage. A better Nage is all about taking ukemi and remaning standing.
And what you do in order too better receive is all about you training you...not doing things to them.

Full speed...in the wrong direction.
Cheers
Dan

mjchip
12-29-2006, 09:14 AM
Who is being duped into years long apprentiships playing crash test dummy hoping for the "goods?"
Maybe..... there is another way?
Cheers
Dan

Hi Dan,

On a related note to your question above, I went to the chiropractor yesterday (after a year long absence from treatment) and he said to me "your skeletal frame is a mess.......are you still subjecting your body to that train wreck you call martial art practice?". I do frequently ask myself the question "is there a smarter, safer way to train that doesn't compromise the essence of the practice?". One of the few reasons I'm looking for a smarter way is because I want to practice my entire life and at the rate I'm going I'll be hurting by the time I hit 50. Over the years of training I've sustained the following injuries: two torn labrums (both sides), one partially torn distal biceps tendon, separated AC joint, knee cap tracking problem, lower back problems.

Despite feeling that this way is out there, I keep rolling snake eyes on my own. That is one of the reasons I'm looking forward to hooking up with you in the new year.

Best,

Mark

Erick Mead
12-29-2006, 09:20 AM
Bzzzzzt. Dishonesty. That's not the video I was talking about.... different example, so don't apply my logic to it. Yes, he uses a weight vector instead of a ground vector. Ever notice how often I put in " ground (or weight) " in my descriptions? Let's skip this one and stick with the simpler ones from the ground, the ones that were under discussion. There's something about the weight ones that I don't want to blab in public. BTW..... there's your yin-yang (in-yo) dichotomy.... the ground or the weight. Doesn't fit so let's not discuss it? Ground reaction is a different physical principle (mass inertia) from gravity acceleration (attraction between two masses). Thus, you are founding your model on TWO fundamental physical principles. Actually since you are interposing supposed spring tension (strain energy) in the legs it is actually THREE principles.

Angular momentum is ONE principle. It has no resistive component since all interactions are at right angles. The effect of your sense of vector additon is achieved, but not by the means you assume. The principle of angular momentum and its conservation explains things that vector addition simply cannot be used for. That is what you are playing with when you shift centers of rotation or alter the radius of turn. It is used as easily going up or coming down (and left, right or kitty-corner, for that matter). It works both for the micro movement of the limbs or the macro movments of the body. As O Sensei showed.

So TWO or THREE fundamental physical principles underlying kokyu or ONE.

Let's get a second opinion, shall we?

Doctor Occam? -- paging Doctor Occam??

The Taiji tomoe, which you did not address is one whole with two eccentric centers enfolding one another in rotation. It is a marvelous cross-sectional depiction of the hips in rotation -- isn't it?

MM
12-29-2006, 09:27 AM
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B7Cfpay1X2c

That's the second vid. Did anyone notice that, for the most part, once Ueshiba touched the attacker, he didn't move very much. I don't mean his arms, I mean his feet and body. He really doesn't move around much once contact was made.

Mark

Mike Sigman
12-29-2006, 09:29 AM
What do you suppose that level of force would like if it were applied to students who were actually trained to have structure both in attack and defense? How would their bodies both generate force to begin with? And then, how would their properly trained bodies respond?

Picture Ueshiba trying to do that to the Shioda that appeared in his later videos?
What would trained structure of the uke bring into the mix?
Who is being trained .....exactly.. to do what?I understand your point, Dan, and you're not wrong... but then again you're erring (IMO) on the side of negativity. The stuff Ueshiba does could certainly be looked at a training-level efforts at some good principles that can certainly be applied in a martial situation. I use what he did as part of many of my moves. Sure, I generate more power in actual application, but when I'm working with an Uke I use about what O-Sensei did because I don't have the need to damage Uke in order to prove some point about "martial" application. Get off O-Sensei's back. ;)

Regards,

Mike

DH
12-29-2006, 09:29 AM
Well I've had folks here all week....every day.
From all over.

There is a small path, hidden in the woods, away from that blazing video taped, who's who of martial "arts" super highway.
With people training -to have power and connection. I think we're having fun.....and actually learning to to remain standing, be healthy and stop attackers dead in their tracks.
Let them martial "artists"...... go to the chiropractors.

Cheers
Dan

DH
12-29-2006, 09:39 AM
Hi Mike

Not my point. I shoud have been more clear, sorry.
Whether using less force or maximum, what do you teach your fellow practicioners to do as a response? I would never teach that level of ukemi...broken structure in attack, lost structure in response. In short the ukes are a perfect model of poor teaching.
Like waiting on the sidelines in sandlot baseball hoping to be picked to play with the good guys.

I teach folks their own body sense and connectivity; day one, act one, scene one. How to build power and receive mine. Constantly buildng their bodies and then a level of response that is pro-active to applied force to nuetralize it -in them.
Think of it like push hands where you can give ground and technically lose but remain standing and intact....just..over there.
For those inclined it can get way more intense, but that detracts from my central point here.
It is rare to non-existant to "need" to fall down like that as a response to force. And slowly building them to be powerful and not willing dupes is a first order of business.
It's a koryu model. Actually being witnessed here in Takeda, Sagawa, Kodo, Ueshiba, and Shioda. But many-even most don't get what they're seeing.
Its what Ellis and I were jibber jabbering about.
Just a view.
Dan

Mike Sigman
12-29-2006, 09:40 AM
Doesn't fit so let's not discuss it? Ground reaction is a different physical principle (mass inertia) from gravity acceleration (attraction between two masses). Thus, you are founding your model on TWO fundamental physical principles. Actually since you are interposing supposed spring tension (strain energy) in the legs it is actually THREE principles. Pretty good, Erick. Although your words are slightly skewed, you just named the principles of the Ki of Earth, the Ki of Heaven, and Man on a bridge in the middle. Beginning to get the picture? And guess what.... if you go back and look at your cosmology, you'll see that the number of factors arithmetically increases in complexity. See? Your complaints were foreseen before Christ was born.

Regardless, my analysis, if you look at my previous posts, had to do with the simpler example of only ground-based force because it's easier for everyone on a public forum to understand. And like I said. Gravity-based examples are a different, though pretty similar case. And if you go back and look at numerous posts of mine, I mention the gravity side of the dichotomy, so your quip about "if it doesn't fit", etc., is wrong.... although now I'm beginning to think that you're becoming intellectually dishonest in your fever to prove me wrong. Have you thought about joining forces with Jusin? He's very smart.... look at his webpage that boasts of his accomplishments. ;)Angular momentum is ONE principle.
So is nuclear fission, but it's not something we need to take into consideration in a simple analysis. What next? Calabi-Yau manifolds to allow for the extra dimensions we need to do a *real* analysis? The Taiji tomoe, which you did not address is one whole with two eccentric centers enfolding one another in rotation. It is a marvelous cross-sectional depiction of the hips in rotation -- isn't it? Except that has nothing to do with Taiji returning to Wuji, does it?

Mike

Erick Mead
12-29-2006, 10:17 AM
in the dojo this has been a tremendous liability. In fact, my teacher used to scream at me "stop thinking, stop analyzing This is not the dojo and your teacher is perfectly correct. Mike keeps trying to make it seem like I teach people to DO Aikido in this way, which is ridiculous. The dojo is not a a physics class. But you know, working out a couple of points of the physics might just help with the training that we do in the dojo. I use analytical thking to help me criticaly identify and to correct their failures, and sometimes to explain their failure in that way, depending on the student.

I am not doing this out of some unilateral vision of what Aikido ought to be or to add in its continued development in the world. O Sensei in Budo Renshu said: Today, it is important to train thinking (all this) in terms of scientific warfare. He also wrote in that same book that students should always be "keeping in mind the principle where...the spirit of Yagyu Jubei [and others] meet." Hiroshi Tada Shihan (9th dan) wrote in an IAF conference address in 2004, and quoted Yagyu Jubei saying "... the root of the art of warfare lies in the understanding of the reason of the mind and its underlying principle. Therefore, the root of the art of warfare is based on the training of mentality..."
Still though, I'm having a lot of trouble reconciling Erick's superanalytical dissertations with what I "feel" in the dojo. When I read them I can't help but recall the phrase "the analysis of paralysis". I expect so. Thay are not intended to help you decide what to feel or what to do before you perform the technique or exercise. Don't use them to understand what you should feel before you feel it. Use them to critically dissect what you felt when you failed.

This is the place for analytical exercise, to find ways to improve training and understanding in the dojo, not to find some analytical analogue to show how to DO Aikido. This is most definitely NOT the place to do what the dojo is for. It is for what we are doing -- sharing, arguing analyzing, looking for ideas for improvement of changes of perspective on the training that we do.

Analysis (and all scientific endeavor) is fundamentally the wisdom of failure. There is plenty of failure to dissect in the dojo. Your technique fails, or is inefficient or adversely affects your balance or you opponent reverses you unintentionally. But you only analyze it after the movement fails. Never before.

Success could just be dumb luck, and you can't dissect good fortune to see how it ticks. To dissect a perfectly good working watch would be a sin. You wait until it is broken -- then you take it apart and see why it no longer works right. The failure of a feasible task ALWAYS has a cause.

Ki and kokyu concepts are holisitc, and therefore not amenable to analysis. The mechanics of kokyu are initally counterintutive (kind of like rotational dynamics), and later -- utterly natural and unthinking, which is its distinct strategic advantage. Their mechanical aspects are amenable to analysis, however, and their is no reason why they should not be subjected to it, understanding all along that analysis is not the be-all end-all either. Science is always a mode of partial turths.

Analysis is desgined to refocus our attention on the memory of our feeling to the moment of failure in our unthinking movement.. The we can define its cause, and work to feel the cause of failure better and thus to eliminate it from our training. That's what kihon is for.

In forums like this we can work out schemes of analysis, or other un-scientific (but perfectly valid), modes of criticism to correct failure.

Aesthetics is a powerful training tool, and utterly unscientific. Nevertheless, and almost invariably, UGLY technique is also BAD technique. I don't have an particularly aesthetic mind, but many do. I recognize the equal corrective power and relevance of that approach, however. There are many others besides , and they are all valuable in their own ways.

Mike Sigman
12-29-2006, 10:19 AM
Incidentally, just to sum up what's going on for those who are confused:

The idea of "relaxation" has to do with building up ki/kokyu skills and how best to do that in a "relaxed" manner. The side discussion is mainly about Erick's contention that the basic skill in Aikido centers around rotational movement and its priniciples. The other side of the discussion is sort of like "OK, there are a lot of rotational things in the *waza* of Aikido, but that's not the principal core strength that is the basis for all those waza. Erick maintains the principal movement study is indeed rotational movement and angular momentum, a theory, insofar as I know, that is unique in Asian martial arts.

At present we're looking at a couple of short, what I would call "bounce jin" examples of people simply pushing on Ueshiba Sensei and getting bounced back. It's a simple example of what is widely known in Asian martial arts as the "swallow and spit" maneuver using jin/support from the ground as the core strength.

The supporting force Ueshiba uses for the "swallow-spit" maneuver (something several people on the forum had previously posited is only a phenomenon in Chinese martial arts!!!) is the kokyu/ki/jin that is the same force that is used in a Ki-Society "Ki Test" and which is developed with great relaxation.

A secondary example in one of the video clips showed Ueshiba Sensei responding to a push by leaning down .... the force he uses in that example (partially... there's also a cute additive trick that's hard to see) is the same force that the Ki-Society develops in the "unliftable body" or in kokyu throws like sayunage, etc. Some throws, BTW, use a combination of both jins. That would be the substance of conversations in the future, though.

FWIW

Mike

Cady Goldfield
12-29-2006, 10:24 AM
Clearly the MMA types involved with aikido means that aikidoka have to start selling supplements, make their gis look like NASCARs with ads all over them, and maybe get cute "tough" nicknames, for example Terry "The Crazy Butcher" Dobson, John "I'll Remove Your Liver with a Rusty Spoon" Stevens, and Moriteru "I'll Break You, Punk!" Ueshiba.

lol
Just as there are lots of "kuhrotty" schools with signs (next to the monthly rate plans) saying "We 'R' A Blackbelt School," there are lots of folks claiming to practice "MMA," when in fact they are doing a hodgepodge of bits they've gleaned from spending 6 months at a kuhrotty school, a year at a TKD school, a year at a silat school, a few months of arnis/kali, a seminar in "Jeet kune do" and... you get the picture. They skim a shallow set of skills off the top, mostly individual techniques and "tricks," but never learn the sound principles beneath them.

Because they are the ones that mainstream and advertise ("Learn Eight Martial Arts In One! Only $89.95 a month!), it's easy to understand why MMA would get a bad rap.

I remember a lot of those schools and "teachers" back in the late '70s and '80s, many of which were encouraged by the popularity of Hong Kong kungful movies back then. Bruce Lee really got a lot of people started, both on the legit and the "kuhrotty" paths.

But there are individuals who really are deep students of the arts, who can't remain in an institutional box learning just one "way." They are intelligent and know that they must stay in a system long enough to understand what makes it work, before venturing to combine it with anything else. It doesn't happen overnight, but in the course of years or decades. Such people can claim to practice MMA legitimately. It's not a "leftover stew" of bits and pieces, but big chunks of sound knowledge from different sources, all of which complement each other and can be integrated. They don't try to make a Frankenstein monster out of discordant parts, but, rather, tie together underlying physical and mental principles that are pervasive throughout the arts and human bio-mechanical world.

They definitely aren't mainstream, so again, the pervasive picture of MMA will be the Jim-Bob School of 10 Deadly Arts-in-One.

Erick Mead
12-29-2006, 10:31 AM
Pretty good, Erick. Although your words are slightly skewed, you just named the principles of the Ki of Earth, the Ki of Heaven, and Man on a bridge in the middle. Beginning to get the picture? And guess what.... if you go back and look at your cosmology, you'll see that the number of factors arithmetically increases in complexity. See? Your complaints were foreseen before Christ was born. "The WAY begets the ONE, the One begets TWO, Two begets THREE and Three begets the Ten Thousand things."

So, riddle me this, O Student of Taoist Master Occam: Which is closer to the Nameless Way -- ONE or THREE ?
Regardless, my analysis, if you look at my previous posts, had to do with the simpler example of only ground-based force because it's easier for everyone on a public forum to understand. A angular momentum model (rotation/inertial radius) tracks directly with the intimate connections between irimi/tenkan.

I must be missing YOUR exposition of tenkan in the ground springs and the deadfalls.

Mike Sigman
12-29-2006, 10:46 AM
"The WAY begets the ONE, the One begets TWO, Two begets THREE and Three begets the Ten Thousand things."

So, riddle me this, O Student of Taoist Master Occam: Which is closer to the Nameless Way -- ONE or THREE ? Well, that's actually a good question and cuts right into the problem of mixing these western and Asian perspectives, as you've just done, and then demanding an answer, as you've just done, without noting that a discussion of the difference in terms is important.

As an example, when Tohei pushes someone by storing and releasing along the ground-based kokyu/jin path, he is using the power of the earth and he calls it "ki". When Tohei is weighting someone down, like in sayunage or similar downward throws, he is using gravity (and a couple of mechanical additives, perhaps)... but he calls it "ki". If he knows how to do really good stores and releases, he uses the fascial areas of the body to do it and he would also call that "ki". In the Western-science paradigm, we would split those things up and have 3 different force sources. In the Asian paradigm, they would only have one. See the problem from your mixing the 2 paradigms and then demanding an answer in the Asian one? A angular momentum model (rotation/inertial radius) tracks directly with the intimate connections between irimi/tenkan. You're just bound and determined to fit your theory in, Erick. The reason you're so insistent on the rotational movement discussion is because most of your understanding of Aikido has to do with avoid, turn, blend and so you've developed this theory of angular momentum. It's a secondary-level theory that misses the primary "jewel" that Ueshiba spoke about. Frankly, I'm happy if you stay on that track... I consider it the workings of Karma. ;) I must be missing YOUR exposition of tenkan in the ground springs and the deadfalls. This is exactly what I'm talking about. You're caught up in the theory of the waza and most of the rest of us are talking about the basic "Ki" in the same way that Tohei pointed out that it was the core of Aikido. Sure there is tenkan and sure there are lots of techniques, etc., that contain angular momentum which affects the throw.... but a discussion of that is very secondary to the core forces that we've been talking about. Since you don't understand the core forces, you don't realize how absurd the angular-momentum position actually is..... so you incessantly defend it while my eyeballs get tired from rolling so much. :rolleyes: ;)

Mike

Erick Mead
12-29-2006, 11:22 AM
Incidentally, just to sum up what's going on for those who are confused:
The idea of "relaxation" has to do with building up ki/kokyu skills and how best to do that in a "relaxed" manner. The side discussion is mainly about Erick's contention that the basic skill in Aikido centers around rotational movement and its priniciples. The other side of the discussion is sort of like "OK, there are a lot of rotational things in the *waza* of Aikido, but that's not the principal core strength that is the basis for all those waza. Actually, a fair summation, Mike. Now, can we have the explanation for the admitted "rotational things" in the waza that fits the "core strength" model" from your perspective?
Erick maintains the principal movement study is indeed rotational movement and angular momentum, a theory, insofar as I know, that is unique in Asian martial arts. Its uniqeness in the self-understanding of Asian martial arts in traditional terms is beside the point. It is more accurate to say that Aikido has not really yet tried to come at the problem from a systemic Western analytical perspective, despite the Founder's advice in this regard as early as 1933. I only say this becasue I have never seen any, and I have beeen looking for about ten years now. I won't presume to speak for "Asian Martial Arts."
It's a simple example of what is widely known in Asian martial arts as the "swallow and spit" maneuver using jin/support from the ground as the core strength. Well -- I gave a simple example of the body motion for people to feel the mechanical operation of what O Sensei did to his uke in the two-handed shoulder grab video above.

Could you please do the same for the "swallow and spit" maneuver, since it is rather a novel description for Aikido, so everybody else can try it at home and see if it fits their actual feelings of things in an Aikido dojo?
A secondary example in one of the video clips showed Ueshiba Sensei responding to a push by leaning down... the same force that the Ki-Society develops in the "unliftable body" or in kokyu throws like sayunage, etc. "Unliftable body" can be explained by the formation of hinges (i.e. --rotation potential) at four joints on the body. Get three ping pong balls. Take a hula hoop and cut it in half. Prop both vertically against a smooth wall (just so that they don't fall laterally) and a floor that wil not allow the support to slide out. They bear their own weight.

Cut one at the top and put a ping pong ball at the joint. It now has three hinges, one at each support and one in the center. It will still bear its own weight. Take the other one and make two cuts forming three equal pieces, and insert a ping-pong ball at each joint. It will collapse under its own weight because with four hinges capable of rotating there is virtually no effective moment (other than incidental friction) to hold up the wieght of the middle piece, and the whole thing buckles at the joints.

Counting now from the point of attemtping to lift the body at the forearms you have two elbows, two shoulders, and two scapular joints, or six potential hinges. So unliftable body merely allows those six joints to rotate freely in response to the lift, and it will be impossible. If you isolate any two of them with joint tension the lifters can isolate another pair with leverage and then lift you.

Tohei's teaching that you must relax completely is shown by a straightforward "kitchen physics" model to be absolutely correct mechanically for the unliftable body (which I would have assumed it was, anyway). MIke's approach to this in mechanical terms by "leaning down" is far less obvious.

Erick Mead
12-29-2006, 11:46 AM
.. when Tohei pushes someone by storing and releasing along the ground-based kokyu/jin path, he is using the power of the earth and he calls it "ki". When Tohei is weighting someone down, like in sayunage or similar downward throws, he is using gravity (and a couple of mechanical additives, perhaps)... but he calls it "ki". Not even Tohei can manipulate gravity or the inertia of mass. He CAN manipulate the support structure of a body in a gravity field, but that requires shifitng the center of mass from its base of support , or vice versa. He can manipulate and shift moments of inertia by making the proper connections (musubi) to do that -- but that requires a rotational analysis.
The reason you're so insistent on the rotational movement discussion is because most of your understanding of Aikido has to do with avoid, turn, blend and so you've developed this theory of angular momentum. You really do indulge speculation, don't you? Nope, sorry, all wrong. Irimi, irimi, irimi and if doubt, irimi. (I over-emphasize for effect, but not very much). It's his attack and he can have it, but it is typically MY line, and my center and he has to find his own, thank you very much. Suriage, kiri-otoshi and suri-otoshi are my preferred images of underlying principles for effective Aikido waza. Big conneciton and inertial moment manipulation -- all three of those.
discussion of that is very secondary to the core forces that we've been talking about. If you get around to a mechanical model of your vision of "core forces" let me know. If you don't want to -- then your discussion and mine are really not even addressing one another, at all.

Envision the swallow/spit thing, or kundalini serpents, or dantien lotuses blossoming, or whatever, if it works for your training. The saliva bit sounds real messy though..

Mike Sigman
12-29-2006, 11:47 AM
Actually, a fair summation, Mike. Now, can we have the explanation for the admitted "rotational things" in the waza that fits the "core strength" model" from your perspective? What? Your question is not clear. I'm saying that your analysis is of *some* "turning things with no resistance" (except your theory falls on its face in some of Shioda and Ueshiba's angles of attack in response to an incoming force) is an analysis of the waza.... i.e., an analysis of the tactics and strategies of Aikido, not the core forces. The discussion, which you keep missing (now, it's pretty clear you're doing it on purpose rather than admit any error) is of the basic forces of movement, the "ki", which are part of the *conditioning* and *basic forces*, not the waza. You're talking waza, we're talking basic forces.

I saw your point when you first proposed it. I could probably make your argument for your and use force-couples and angular momentum, pretty much as you're trying to do. The reason I won't bother to even go there is that I can do these things and I know that approach is wrong.... and I also know that anyone who can really do these things would know I didn't know anything if I proposed such a theory as yours.

You personally can't do these things, so you don't really understand that your analysis is simply a wasted exercise in "well, it *could* work if you juggle this and juggle that." Its uniqeness in the self-understanding of Asian martial arts in traditional terms is beside the point. It is more accurate to say that Aikido has not really yet tried to come at the problem from a systemic Western analytical perspective, despite the Founder's advice in this regard as early as 1933. You need to understand that just because someone does a systematic analysis using western paradigms, it doesn't mean that their analysis is right. Happens all the time in quiz answers in college.... lengthy analysis and solution, but it turns out to be wrong. Could you please do the same for the "swallow and spit" maneuver, since it is rather a novel description for Aikido, so everybody else can try it at home and see if it fits their actual feelings of things in an Aikido dojo? How do I know that what a lot of people "feel" in a dojo that I've never seen (and allowing for the "given" that most people can't do these things) is going to match what I describe? In fact, this stuff needs to be shown before someone really understands. If I say I hit someone with my shoulder using these forces, everyone imagines a shoulder-hit that they know of... not the shoulder hit that I would do. So it needs to be shown. "Unliftable body" can be explained by the formation of hinges (i.e. --rotation potential) at four joints on the body. I don't want to go into the downward forces, as I've already said. You're missing that one, too. You need to go see someone who can do these things.... they're both simpler, yet more sophisticated than you're envisioning.

I gave you a very good and simple explanation for the bouncing Uke off of him that Ueshiba did. That's how simple these analyses should stay, IMO. If you knew more, we could get more complex, but that simple explanation I did is, IMO, the best level for these types of discussion on a public forum.

Regards,

Mike Sigman

Mike Sigman
12-29-2006, 11:52 AM
Not even Tohei can manipulate gravity or the inertia of mass. He CAN manipulate the support structure of a body in a gravity field, but that requires shifitng the center of mass from its base of support , or vice versa. He can manipulate and shift moments of inertia by making the proper connections (musubi) to do that -- but that requires a rotational analysis. Actually, I don't know what Tohei is capable of personally, in all regards, but I know that you simply don't understand this topic and you're making wild guesses and assertions on this topic that only show you don't understand the full potentials. This is both simple and yet *very* sophisticated in its possibilities and actualities.
You really do indulge speculation, don't you? Nope, sorry, all wrong. Irimi, irimi, irimi and if doubt, irimi. (I over-emphasize for effect, but not very much). It's his attack and he can have it, but it is typically MY line, and my center and he has to find his own, thank you very much. Suriage, kiri-otoshi and suri-otoshi are my preferred images of underlying principles for effective Aikido waza. Big conneciton and inertial moment manipulation -- all three of those.
If you get around to a mechanical model of your vision of "core forces" let me know. If you don't want to -- then your discussion and mine are really not even addressing one another, at all.

Envision the swallow/spit thing, or kundalini serpents, or dantien lotuses blossoming, or whatever, if it works for your training. The saliva bit sounds real messy though..Whatever. I'm very comfortable because what I know I've seen played out time and time again by many different Chinese and Japanese experts. I'm also very comfortable with speculating that the thought will cross your mind that you wish you could delete part of Jun's archives. ;)

Regards,

Mike Sigman

Mike Sigman
12-29-2006, 12:05 PM
Erick.... do you really think that O-Sensei, Tohei, and many others were stressing "RELAX" so that rotational movement would be better? Why not just strengthen the ligaments and tendons around the joints? Once again we get back to the inescapable conclusion that none of those guys really understood proper Aikido, I know, but......


Mike

Erick Mead
12-29-2006, 12:21 PM
... I know that you simply don't understand ... ... you're making wild guesses and assertions ... you don't understand the full potentials. Mind-reading, again. You don't know me, you don't know anyone who does. Really. We are a backwater down here, and have been for oh, about four-hundred fifty years now, give or take.
I'm very comfortable because what I know I've seen played out ... Nice to know you do not question what you think you know, and see what you want to see.
I'm also very comfortable with speculating that the thought will cross your mind that you wish you could delete part of Jun's archives. ;) All mine, every word, even the completely goofy bits. Even the mistakes -- since I will own up to mine -- if you ever care to show one to me, instead of asserting my pathetic ignorance of your perfect wisdom and Great Truth. Failure is my teacher, daring to fail is my only wisdom, and any truth I have is utterly provisional. In regards to you, Mike, however, I seem, sadly, not to be learning all that much.

Do you really care so much about your perceived personal reputation that you think other people take it going the other way as some threat, or looming disaster, or a matter of even mild concern ?
If so, then Chuang-tzu would be deeply ashamed of you, as a student of the Tao, if, of course, he cared the slightest bit about shame.

But, of course, that would be speculating, so I won't.

Erick Mead
12-29-2006, 12:30 PM
Erick.... do you really think that O-Sensei, Tohei, and many others were stressing "RELAX" so that rotational movement would be better? Yeah. Pretty much. Free and easy joints articulate rotations freer and easier.
Why not just strengthen the ligaments and tendons around the joints? Because in a rotational framework increased ligament strength would only be useful to "store and realease" more "torque." Torque is material strain energy that is stopping or delaying a rotational moment -- i.e. resistance.

"Resistance is useless," Mike, everybody knows that. :p

Especially in torque -- becasue most structures are at their absolute weakest when stressed in torsion.

Mike Sigman
12-29-2006, 01:10 PM
Yeah. Pretty much. Free and easy joints articulate rotations freer and easier.
Because in a rotational framework increased ligament strength would only be useful to "store and realease" more "torque." Torque is material strain energy that is stopping or delaying a rotational moment -- i.e. resistance.

"Resistance is useless," Mike, everybody knows that. :p

Especially in torque -- becasue most structures are at their absolute weakest when stressed in torsion.There's two ways to make a bow. One of them focuses on the bow structure for the power and pulling the string stores potential energy in the bow; the other way would be to have a rigid bow and a string that is flexible, strong, and elastic so that the potential energy is stored in the string. You're only familiar with the first type of bow so you have trouble imagining the second type of bow when someone says "arrow".

Mike

justin
12-29-2006, 03:24 PM
[QUOTE=Erick Mead]Yeah. Pretty much. Free and easy joints articulate rotations freer and easier.
Because in a rotational framework increased ligament strength would only be useful to "store and realease" more "torque." Torque is material strain energy that is stopping or delaying a rotational moment -- i.e. resistance.

"Resistance is useless," Mike, everybody knows that. :p

i always thought "I always thought resistance was futile" :D

sorry couldnt help myself there

Erick Mead
12-29-2006, 05:57 PM
There's two ways to make a bow. One of them focuses on the bow structure for the power and pulling the string stores potential energy in the bow; the other way would be to have a rigid bow and a string that is flexible, strong, and elastic so that the potential energy is stored in the string. You're only familiar with the first type of bow so you have trouble imagining the second type of bow when someone says "arrow". A bow is NOT relaxed -- it has mighty tension in the string and tremendous flexion in the bow. It is about as UNRELAXED as anything I can possibly think of.

Nobody, (not even, and especially not even, aikidoka) walks around like a set of taut piano wires.

Cut one end of your bow string. Voila! It's a whip. And very relaxed. Of course, when relaxed you are a chain of linked bones -- but the same rules on conservation of angular momentum apply when you crack it like a whip.

Let one end of a chain fall and the tip of the falling chain has GREATER acccleration than gravity. In other words, conserved angular momentum in a constantly reducing radius can exceed the applied energy of the gravity you purport to use.

See here, http://math.arizona.edu/~ura/031/Taft.Jefferson/Report.pdf.
On page 2 there is a time lapse series of the simultaneous drop of a ball and the chain end.

It speaks for itself. There is power here. Utterly relaxed power.

The same dynamic is true -- exceeding the straight push, linear force input (your springy legs push, vice letting gravity pull) -- when applying legs or hip turns to rotation. You use the conserved angular momentum with reducing radius, and increase the angular velocity (e.g. - the chain ( micro) or the skater's spin (macro)) The result is a geometric increase of applied kinetic energy (square of the velocity term).

Conversely, an input force can be powerfully dissipated by the reverse mechanism. Receiving energy so as to allow you to turn ( even if your feet stay ion the same place) and then increasing the effective radius, conserves the angular momentum, but slows the angular velocity and thus reduces the applied energy at the connection. His attack evaporates.

Similar energy amplification or dissipation can be achieved with the square radius term in the moment of inertia equation. If you shift the center of the rotaiton you immediately alter the radius of the effective inertial moment of his attack in the new orientaiton and make his attackless effective.

A perfect example of this that is more simple to see in application is in the jo suburi, katate gedan gaeshi. The stick is coming up from below and behind you. If you just catch it with the free hand in the opposiut side jodan hasso, it still has a fair bit of residual energy when it hits your hand. Instead, place your free hand behind the gripping hand as it passes the target in front of you. As it continues to swing up and back, progressively extend the distance between the hands slding the rear hand back as you come to jodan hasso. It stops of its own accord because you have altered the inertial radius by opening the distance between your hands, and bled off nearly all the angular velocity by doing that.

If you shift his attack to different orientation where your static inertial moment is greater, his attack is inherently less effective. If your effective inertial radius becomes larger, uke requires a geometrically larger applied force to turn you. If his effective inertial radius becomes smaller, you require a geometrically smaller force to turn him.

You can combine these approaches using both principles. Using conservation of angular momentum you increase or dissipate angular velocity while also shifting centers of rotation to strategically alter moments of inertia of one or the other or both of the players.

There is a potential for a squared force multiplier at four points in the interaction of one technique. Nage's angular veloicity and his moment of inertia, and uke's angular velocity and his moment of inertia. If all four are either doubled or halved (to nage's advantage in each case), then the effectiveness of nage's strength is potentially magnified by 16 times on his own side (2^2 * 2^2), and the effectiveness of uke's strength is potentially diminished by a factor of 1/16th ((1/2)^2 * (1/2)^2).

The cumulative force multiplier to nage's advantage is 32 times the straight ahead strength contest. All of this comes from purely proper application of principles in aikido technique. This level of disparity in effective strength created wholly by technique explains a great deal of the dramatic nature of the "tricks" that everybody is so entranced by.

For everyone. Quit stressing, RELAX, do the techniques properly. They really do the work for you. Remember O Sensei was an eighty year-old guy doing these things to strapping young bucks and some doubting sumo champions. He convinced them that strength measures, even esoteric ones, were superfluous. He had an edge, and "core strength" was not it. Not at his age. Laser-like coordination and multiplicaiton of his available strength, that was.

For Mike: Do you have ways of making gravity or springy legs do that for you? Increase applied energy by the square in any single point of interaction. To combine four points of applicaiton in a single technique for a potential on the order of a thirty-two-fold effective strength advantage? In two ways, derived from the same basic operating principle?

Especially without ever having to get realky unrelaxed and tense up -- like a strung bow.

YOU acknowledge that this is not so much about the condition of the body as it is about the coordination of it by the mind. If you show me some square terms in your version of the mechanics by vector addition, I will be willing to believe that an eighty year-old man could employ them and take you far more seriously on the mechanical criticisms.

Otherwise, do what you do to train by whatever means, as long as it works to improve your training, and God bless you.

And Have a Happy New Year!.

Erick Mead
12-29-2006, 06:00 PM
Yeah. Pretty much. Free and easy joints articulate rotations freer and easier.
Because in a rotational framework increased ligament strength would only be useful to "store and realease" more "torque." Torque is material strain energy that is stopping or delaying a rotational moment -- i.e. resistance.

"Resistance is useless," Mike, everybody knows that. :p I always thought "resistance was futile" :D There we go mixing up Borg and the Vogons again.

Is there no cultural literacy, anywhere? :D ;)

eyrie
12-29-2006, 06:20 PM
...
Cut one end of your bow string. Voila! It's a whip. And very relaxed. Of course, when relaxed you are a chain of linked bones -- but the same rules on conservation of angular momentum apply when you crack it like a whip.

Let one end of a chain fall and the tip of the falling chain has GREATER acccleration than gravity. In other words, conserved angular momentum in a constantly reducing radius can exceed the applied energy of the gravity you purport to use.


Gosh Erick, bondage, whips and chains? :D

Sorry, for thread drift, but it was way too funny to pass up....

Mike Sigman
12-29-2006, 06:27 PM
A bow is NOT relaxed -- it has mighty tension in the string and tremendous flexion in the bow. It is about as UNRELAXED as anything I can possibly think of. Well, I tried to tell you something important, but what the hey. That's the best hint I'll give you.

;)

Mike

Erick Mead
12-29-2006, 09:06 PM
Gosh Erick, bondage, whips and chains? :D

Sorry, for thread drift, but it was way too funny to pass up....Fair enough. If you're laughing, you're listening. Surely, you have felt the cracking whip action in a really proper, totally relaxed ikkyo? It is there, without any doubt.

Bondage though -- that would be more like "contradictory tension", and therefore more of Mike's cup of tea....

eyrie
12-29-2006, 09:34 PM
I'm not sure about a cracking whip action, certainly not in ikkyo, or whichever variation of ikkyo.... ;)

Also, my "version" of ikkyo could very well be different from yours.... ;)

OK, let's use ikkyo as an example... suwari-waza shomen uchi ikkyo... great way to feel the up-down contradictory tension, at least the way I do it.... AND... the harder uke pushes, the more they off-balance themselves. ;)

YMMV...

statisticool
12-29-2006, 09:40 PM
when Tohei pushes someone by storing and releasing along the ground-based kokyu/jin path,


"Ground based", heh, like everything we do (skiing, brushing teeth, sitting in an armchair, etc.) since we touch the ground?

Wow, what explanatory power!

Mark Jakabcsin
12-29-2006, 10:02 PM
Mike and Eric and forum at large,
Out of curiosity have either of you seen/experienced technique from Okamoto Sensei of Daito ryu Aikijujutsu Roppokai? If yes, I would be interested to hear your opinions of what he is doing.

Take care,

Mark J.

DH
12-29-2006, 10:21 PM
OK, let's use ikkyo as an example... suwari-waza shomen uchi ikkyo... great way to feel the up-down contradictory tension, at least the way I do it.... AND... the harder uke pushes, the more they off-balance themselves. ;)

YMMV...
I was having this conversation with a fellow today. Its hard to explain until they feel it that their attempts to throw with muscle results in them throwing themselves. Once felt it becomes a shared talking point that needs no futher explanation
There is a difference between that typical leading throw stuff and the more direct ones when they push or enter to grab and they load up their own structure as you connect to them. Its great for Judo or jujutsu. Its also a large contributory factor in "capture center on touch" of Daito ryu.
Of course there are many things to do with the captured effect, but that's a different discussion.
As well it can begin to differentiate the use of whole body power from the often seen Hiriki power use in Japanese arts.

Cheers
Dan

Jorge Garcia
12-29-2006, 11:03 PM
Mike and Eric and forum at large,
Out of curiosity have either of you seen/experienced technique from Okamoto Sensei of Daito ryu Aikijujutsu Roppokai? If yes, I would be interested to hear your opinions of what he is doing.

Take care,

Mark J.

My comment would not be referencing any of the previous conversations but I would say that Okamoto Soshi works with small circles made by any and all parts of the body. He is usually in a natural stance so I would say he grounds himself and has little intentional tai sabaki except for perhaps an occasional small step. The end of the techniques though are important as well in that they usually drive toward the center of the person. Finally, the techniques are loaded with Aiki and require a lot of skill to execute consistently. Perhaps someone else can discuss the theme based on the discussion at hand and my comments can be an aid as a reference for the discussion.
Best wishes,
Jorge Garcia

DH
12-29-2006, 11:41 PM
It would be a mistake to look at the circles and get caught up in them. They are not what is driving the techniques-they are an after-effect. You can try the circles all day long and up with nothing for your efforts.....many do. Ask him to connect without completing a circle ;) That'll be the end of that comparison. Comparing what you "see" to what is reall is tenuous at best. There are many things going on around a central theme.
You might as well look at push hands and call it shoving and go try that. ;) The many jins Peng, lu, ji, an, etc. are all expressed in a way from one central theme...

Cheers
Dan

Jim Sorrentino
12-30-2006, 06:04 PM
Hello Dan,Now imagine [Ueshiba's] ukes not doing that type of ukemi.
How much force do you think is "really" being applied by Ueshiba, folks?
What do you suppose that level of force would like if it were applied to students who were actually trained to have structure both in attack and defense? How would their bodies both generate force to begin with? And then, how would their properly trained bodies respond?I remember a published account by the late Terry Dobson (cite unavailable, I apologize) in which he described taking ukemi for O-Sensei when O-Sensei did the "jo trick". As I recall the article, Dobson said he had seen O-Sensei do the trick before, and was unconvinced of the sincerity of the uke. Therefore, one day, when O-Sensei extended the stick (a bokken in the story), Dobson did not wait to be picked, but as soon as O-Sensei indicated that he needed uke, Dobson sprang up and charged full-speed at the bokken, fully intending to knock it out of the way. I believe the phrase Dobson used to describe what he felt when he made contact with O-Sensei's bokken was, "It was like running into a brick wall."

What would you criticize about Dobson's ukemi in that instance? It does not seem to me that he was being "duped". Further, if I remember correctly, the incident took place a while after Dobson began his aikido training --- long enough for him to be more than a completely clueless beginner.
Picture Ueshiba trying to do that to the Shioda that appeared in his later videos?
What would trained structure of the uke bring into the mix?
Who is being trained .....exactly.. to do what?
Why can you be trained to start to do these things in a short time, yet no one is?
Who doesn't even know, and was never taught to begin with?
Who is being duped into years long apprentiships playing crash test dummy hoping for the "goods?"
Maybe..... there is another way?
In the end why would anyone ....ever...train to "react" like that?
As Lee Salzman said, I'd like to see some discussion of how you (and others) train people to do "these things". Based on my experience in Uechi-ryu karatedo, I agree that it does not take a very long time to become relatively immoveable in a hand-to-hand context. But unfortunately, it is also quite easy to become unresponsive (and hence too slow) in contexts in which movement is necessary.

As for why someone "can you be trained to start to do these things in a short time, yet no one is", what has your experience been with your students? Do most of them "get it", or not? If not, why not? In my experience, solo training is challenging for many aikidoka because it lacks the social structure that they are seeking when they decide to pursue aikido. But those who stick with some form of solo practice experience improvement in their aikido. This is not surprising. Most of O-Sensei's more accomplished students came to him with other martial training, and many of them continued that training while studying aikido.
As I've said for decades "Want to "really" watch a martial arts demonstration and see." Watch the attacks, not the person doing his schtick.I agree with you completely. That is why, whenever I take ukemi for Saotome-sensei or Ikeda-sensei, I attack as if my karatedo teachers are watching. They (S. and I.) seem to like it.
A better uke would be a better Nage.Again, I agree with you.
A better Nage is all about taking ukemi and remaning standing.
And what you do in order too better receive is all about you training you...not doing things to them.Well, this reminds me of another story, told in a class taught by Dan Messisco of Aikido of Modesto. Dan M. is fluent in Japanese, and at the time of this story, he lived in Hawaii and spent every other month in Tokyo training at the Aikikai Hombu. One day, his training partner was a young, strong sandan or yondan on the Hombu "instructor track". As Dan described their interaction, every time that Dan was nage, the Japanese fellow stopped Dan's technique cold. Dan was getting frustrated, but the he had a realization: by "trying to do technique to his partner, he was attacking his partner, and since he was attacking, then he, Dan M., must be uke.

So every time the Japanese fellow stopped Dan M.'s technique, Dan would take ukemi! After a few minutes of this, the Japanese fellow became quite angry, and sputtered, "Stop doing that! I want to take ukemi!"

Dan replied in the most elegant Japanese he could muster, "Who is preventing you from doing so?"

Jim

Tim Fong
12-30-2006, 10:43 PM
Jim,
Hasn't there been a lot of discussion about bodyskill training methods already? I mean, we've had quite a few threads on the topic.

DH
12-31-2006, 10:45 AM
Jim,
Hasn't there been a lot of discussion about bodyskill training methods already? I mean, we've had quite a few threads on the topic.
He doesn't know or "get" these things, Tim. His comments on his Karate training providing him with an "understanding" that immovability leads to unresponsiveness and slowness? Well….what's there to say? It helps us understand where he's coming from. Also why it's pointless to keep repeating everything over and over.
His reply is either intentionally disingenuous or it just innocently expresses a total lack of understanding of these skills. They were odd observations and questions for a teacher who "claims" -his- teachers not only know these skills but also teach them openly.


Cheers
Dan

Jim Sorrentino
12-31-2006, 01:49 PM
Hi Tim,Hasn't there been a lot of discussion about bodyskill training methods already? I mean, we've had quite a few threads on the topic.Sure. And yet, there is still interest. The question for the forum at large is how do you or your system teach/train an individual to become relaxed? Is there a specific method or is it simply a hope that over time the student will relax? What drills or exercises are explicitly used for the purpose of teaching relaxation and it's powers?Mark, you started the thread --- do you believe that you have received sufficient answers to these questions?

Unlike Rob John, neither Dan nor Mike have systematically described (and illustrated with video), here on AikiWeb, what they do. I don't believe it's disingenuous to ask, occasionally, that someone who states that "people can be trained to do these things in a short time, yet no one is," back it up with some rational discussion of his methodology. Dan has said, more than once, that he would enjoy "talking shop". Well, I'm listening.
He doesn't know or "get" these things, Tim. His comments on his Karate training providing him with an "understanding" that immovability leads to unresponsiveness and slowness? Well….what's there to say? It helps us understand where he's coming from. Also why it's pointless to keep repeating everything over and over.
His reply is either intentionally disingenuous or it just innocently expresses a total lack of understanding of these skills. They were odd observations and questions for a teacher who "claims" -his- teachers not only know these skills but also teach them openly.Dan, please go back and re-read what I wrote. (After all, I try not to misquote you, or mischaracterize your statements.) Specifically, I said that it was my experience that the kind of immoveability I sometimes achieved and saw in Uechi-ryu could, sometimes, lead to unresponsiveness and slowness.

And, Dan, how about answering my question about your opinion of Dobson's experience as uke for O-Sensei when O-Sensei perfomred the "jo trick"? Since you have said more than once that most people taking ukemi for 8th dan are "dupes", I think it's fair to ask you to discuss an example of someone who, it seems to me, was not a dupe.

Happy New Year! See you on the mat eventually, I hope.

Jim

Ellis Amdur
12-31-2006, 01:57 PM
<sigh> Since I'm responsible for the story - I think - and in any event, have heard it first hand, let's get that part right. Terry said that Ueshiba would never call him out for ukemi for the "jo trick" And he therefore thought it was a scam, that the loyal Japanese uke were just making the old man look good. So one time, with three guys pushing, he jumped up, and threw a flying cross-body block on the backs of the three guys pushing. And bounced off. Which leads to at least two conclusions: 1) That Ueshiba seeing him coming, grounded with the legendary skill attributed to Yang Cheng Fu when he was hit by a rickshaw man at full run and the latter bounced off, tipping himself and his passengers on the ground, or further, "pulsed" - not in the direct way as with Shioda doing it with chest or back directly facing the uke - but ostensibly sideways. Whew! 2) the uke were all braced themselves with full force and consciousness so as NOT to put any power on the old man that would tip him over, breaking his bones and resulting in their death by assasination by old right wing cronies of the old man - and it was THEY who embodied the ground force/path. :)

Jim Sorrentino
12-31-2006, 02:04 PM
Hi Ellis,<sigh> Since I'm responsible for the story - I think - and in any event, have heard it first hand, let's get that part right.Thanks!

Jim

Mike Sigman
12-31-2006, 02:10 PM
<sigh> Since I'm responsible for the story - I think - and in any event, have heard it first hand, let's get that part right. Terry said that Ueshiba would never call him out for ukemi for the "jo trick" And he therefore thought it was a scam, that the loyal Japanese uke were just making the old man look good. So one time, with three guys pushing, he jumped up, and threw a flying cross-body block on the backs of the three guys pushing. And bounced off. Which leads to at least two conclusions: 1) That Ueshiba seeing him coming, grounded with the legendary skill attributed to Yang Cheng Fu when he was hit by a rickshaw man at full run and the latter bounced off, tipping himself and his passengers on the ground, or further, "pulsed" - not in the direct way as with Shioda doing it with chest or back directly facing the uke - but ostensibly sideways. Whew! 2) the uke were all braced themselves with full force and consciousness so as NOT to put any power on the old man that would tip him over, breaking his bones and resulting in their death by assasination by old right wing cronies of the old man - and it was THEY who embodied the ground force/path. :) Well, that didn't settle much of anything. If Dobson hit the guys pushing, he didn't feel the jo, he felt the postures of the guys pushing. The real problem is that there are several videos of that stunt out there and none of them show Ueshiba convincingly holding any real force for any appreciable time. Period. Yet when *one* person is pushing on Ueshiba's head in seiza, he holds it plenty long enough to be able to see he can really do it.... albeit with some wavering, etc., even though it is only one person pushing on his head.

Incidentally, the Yang Cheng Fu story had more to do with an automatic chieh jing (receiving jin... an aspect of the same jin we're talking about in a lot of these posts) where an incoming force is automatically absorbed and bounced out, just like Ueshiba shows in the videoclip I cited in an earlier post.

Regards,

Mike

Mike Sigman
12-31-2006, 03:08 PM
Unlike Rob John, neither Dan nor Mike have systematically described (and illustrated with video), here on AikiWeb, what they do.Well, not wanting to be too much painted by the broad brush, I'd suggest that I've printed more "how to" information on this stuff in the last 2+ years than anyone else in the history of the forum.

Bear in mind that a lot of my motivation is more along the lines of providing information specifically to the people like a younger me that was looking for information sources on how to do this stuff. In my Aikido heyday, there was no information and it was very frustrating. I KNEW there was such a thing as this strength and pretty much all I got was poo-poo's from the "experts" in the Aikido community.

On a realistic level, I realize that putting this information out is still only going to affect or be useful to a very limited number in the Aikido (or other m.a.'s) community, so I'm not driven by the unrealistic thoughts of mass conversions.

Doing Aikido with these correct kinds of core strength is like going to heaven; everyone want to do it.... but not yet. ;)

FWIW

Mike

Moses
12-31-2006, 04:15 PM
Doing Aikido with these correct kinds of core strength is like going to heaven; everyone want to do it.... but not yet.

Reminds me of a similar Zen saying,
"the number of hairs on a bull, is the number of people seeking enlightenment; the number of horns, is the number of people who find it" ;)

Moses

Moses
01-01-2007, 04:27 AM
Hey, to everybody . . . . Happy New Year !!!!!!!!!!!!!!! :D
Moses

Mike Galante
01-01-2007, 04:39 AM
Essentially the idea is that any movement comes from the "center" (hara, tanden, dantien, "One Point", "Field of Cinnabar", whatever). So the ground, via direct vector forces up the legs, supplies the "solidity of the Earth"; the weight/gravity supplies the power in the other direction. Both of these powers reside in the middle for us to access. The trick, though, is to get these powers unhindered out to the rest of the body. It's getting these powers out to the hands, feet, or anywhere on the body that starts the discussion about "relaxation".

Mike:

I have to respectfully disagree with one important point here.

You have described the forces from the earth, essentially gravitational. Correct? But, you have not mentioned anything about the inner "spiritual forces" acting.
If one views only the body and its relation to the earth, one neglects the essential dynamic which Usheiba emphasized. That is that we, as practitioners of his art, are creating heaven on earth, and uniting human beings as one family, right?

So what happened to heaven?

The unseen forces both of the earth and of the heavens is what i am talking about. The most common reference is the Kundalini. The sleeping serpent energy rising up the spine.
At the top of the head, the Chinese acupuncture point at the crown is "gate of heaven",
If you watch osensei closely in some of his videos, he is reaching skyward with his sword, quite often. You will also see him scribe an imaginary circle above his head and then make a piercing strike, in the center of it. One cannot convince me that he is practicing a practical martial technique.
No, In my humble opinion, he is piercing the heavens, to start a flow. He may be piercing (energetically speaking) his own crown chakra from that perspective, who knows.
I have had extensive experience with kundalini yoga for over 30 years. Powers of ki, when uniting heaven and earth within a human being is a sight to behold.
I am sorry to be so forthright, but usheiba is, very much misunderstood, and I think, because he was surrounded by martians (people ruled by mars) from earlier years, they tend to be preoccupied with the martial aspects of aikido and neglect the spiritual. Just my humble opinion.
What i am trying to say is that the realized usheiba, filled with ki, from above and rooted below, like a great tree, is what made him so stable, and so invincible. Difficult to understand from a mechanical point of view.
Look at the photos, and videos, where he is reaching skyward with his bokken. He looks like he is drawing down (tuning in) the heavenly forces to me, anyway.
I do not claim to understand these things completely, but I would like to see more deep meditation, and even kototama practice to open up to these deep energies and increase them, so that then we can begin to understand what usheiba had to say.
The chakras above the waist are what makes us human. The Tanden unites the upper with the lower energy centers, then we can be more complete as aikidoists, and as humans.

The only way these more subtle forces can flow in a person is in a relaxed state.

God help me if I am being presumptuous

VERY VERY HAPPY NEW YEAR TO ONE AND ALL,

Mike Galante

Gernot Hassenpflug
01-01-2007, 06:11 AM
Mr. Galante, if this spiritual power has as a necessary precondition physical training (much as does yoga) and perhaps it can be argued that original yoga and the practices which the Indian influence spread via China and Korea to Japan have at their core a similar goal in terms of what they want to achieve with the human body, then there is a relationship between spiritual and martial power (or that in other pursuits commonly known as art forms in Asia), is there not? So what we in aikido and other Asian martial arts are interested in are the specific training methods to achieve this. People like Mike Sigman and others have not forgotten about heaven, if you read the many posts on these topics. I am sure your point of view based on your experience is very interesting especially in as far as the methods Ueshiba used relate to practices you are familiar with in yoga. So we should be able to enjoy a good discussion on this topic. A happy new year to you too. Regards, Gernot

Upyu
01-01-2007, 06:53 AM
<snip>
But, you have not mentioned anything about the inner "spiritual forces" acting.
<snip>
So what happened to heaven?
<snip>
One cannot convince me that he is practicing a practical martial technique.
No, In my humble opinion, he is piercing the heavens, to start a flow. He may be piercing (energetically speaking) his own crown chakra from that perspective, who knows.
<snip>



Thought I'd comment on this...
I'd wouldn't say your explanation is wrong (from my own experiences, it's definitely one "way" of looking at it,) but I would say that Mike hasn't forgotten the "spiritual" component, it's just that that perspective goes hand in hand with doing these skills.

As for the "what happened to heaven", portion I think you mean "what happened to man". Since "man" is united between Heaven and Earth (conceptually speaking)

As for Ueshiba practicing Martial Technique.
Dude, that qiqong he's doing IS the martial technique, and it's what Mike, Dan etc have been saying for quite awhile now.

I myself don't necessarily practice "martial technique", but simply different ways of conditioning/connecting the body properly and I find the techniques present themselves in a pretty straightforward manner. Practicing those qiqong/body skill developmental exercises whether in single exercises or in Kata practice hardwire the body skill into your body which then create "real technique" or "Jutsu." That kind of practice necessarily requires that you develop all the "spiritual" junk that you claimed Mike "missed."

Mike Sigman
01-01-2007, 10:39 AM
You have described the forces from the earth, essentially gravitational. Correct? But, you have not mentioned anything about the inner "spiritual forces" acting.
If one views only the body and its relation to the earth, one neglects the essential dynamic which Usheiba emphasized. That is that we, as practitioners of his art, are creating heaven on earth, and uniting human beings as one family, right? Hi Mike:

No, just to be clear, I have mentioned the forces of both heaven and earth, since those are the dichotomy of forces we have to work with. You either power a movement from pushing off the ground in some direction or by using gravity. Yin-Yang. (By the way, this ultimate Yin-Yang for all things is considered the primordial beginning, the "grand ultimate" of all things.... it is called the "Tai Chi"). Before "Tai Chi" there was a great nothingness called "Wuji". "Wuji" is the basis for the "Way" of all things harmonized.

Without going any further, consider just Wuji which becomes Tai Chi. How many of the Asian arts and philosophies refer to making all things One again, of creating a "harmony" rather than a divisiveness? Most of the philosophies and religions have to do essentially with trying to remove the line that divides Yin and Yang and making all things One again. Movement returns to stillness and all things come together as One. Heard that before? Notice that this basic line of thought recurs in almost all the Asian religions and philosophies. And it is also the basis for what you're calling "spiritual".

From Wuji comes Tai Chi (also spelled "Taiji" in Pinyin). The Tao te Ching says, "Tao gives birth to one, one creates two, and two creates three. Three gives birth to the ten thousand things." From nothing comes the dichotomy, like the basic forces of the earth and gravity, and from those basic forces all other things evolve. In the case of Aikido, Taiji, Xingyi, and many other martial arts, all the techniques are considered to be just a manifestation of the basic forces which we are in the middle of and which we manipulate.

We either manipulate forces with our limbs and normal forces in the joints to do "many Aikido techniques" or we utilize these "natural" forces of the universe to blend with the forces of an opponent in a way which makes his forces simply a part of the forces we spontaneously generate. The second method is the desired method of "Aiki" and it conforms with the idea of resolving a dichotomy of forces back into One. That is harmony. Is it no "spiritual" enough for you?

The many conversations we've been having about these ki/kokyu skills is really a discussion about whether Aikido should be based on the "natural" skills/forces of ki/kokyu or whether it's really a compendium of "techniques" with a subtle "philosophy" of avoiding conflict. I say it's the much deeper art based on the famous natural powers of the cosmos. God help me if I am being presumptuous Hey.... who's more spiritual than you??? ;)

Regards,

Mike Sigman

Mike Galante
01-01-2007, 11:03 AM
:cool: Agreed,
Let us become nothing. In the stillness all things are born, including Aikido "techniques".

Of course the term spiritual is an inadequate term. My astrology teacher said that spiritual practice was a misnomer, and that evolution of the soul was a better term. The "soul" being less perfect than the spirit. But that is another system altogether.

My Kundalini teacher said that we are becoming nothing.

Nakazono said the sound I (eeee) resonates with the "highest achievement" the level of the world teacher. He emphasized Izanami and Izanagi, again as you said, the spiral, dual, nature of the manifest life force itself bridging between uke and nage.
We could go on and on. And on and on .........''

I just like to stimulate talk of these things. I am tired of hearing only about the physical world of self preservation called self-defense. My only point was there are other centers, the human centers above the waist which should be active as well. You understand.

Nice post,

Happy New Year and all the best to you and yours,
Mike

DH
01-01-2007, 12:32 PM
Well I consider myself to be a spiritual man. Even seriously so.
and it does affect my budo on every level.
But is has nothing to do with the rationale of body training in heaven/man/earth as I see it.
On one level I will tell you that
Earth represents use of earth-in re-bound, projection and ground strength
On another I'd say
Heaven is meant to represent the gravitational effects of heavy weighting, compressing and down-power
All of these created, driven and controlled by?
Man representing the mind turning my body, rotational sprialing within my body, compressing and projecting the breath and a control of in/out... up/down...draw and expand forces.

Sorry to be so practical, but I believe that it was indeed what Ueshiba was doing and his own "vision" took off from there.
But don't be fooled.....
It was Takeda's Budo which allowed Ueshiba his vision. Which is why Ueshiba said "Takeda opened my eyes to true Budo."
Without Takeda no Aikido
WIthout AIkido we may never have heard of Takeda

I've said it before I'll say it again.
Takeda, Sagawa, Kodo, and Ueshiba were all power houses
Their power enabled them to realize they could be, for all practical purposes, unstoppable by the training methods and attack styles of their day. It made a light bulb go off only in Ueshiba that this could somehow be so joyous an experience (well it is allot of fun) that it would help unit people of the world.
I'll leave that vision alone, but I understand why these skills can power that type of vision. Personally I think there are better ways to serve mankind.
In the end no one really has to worry about it getting out there and being revealed to the world. Its placed in the hands of thousands of men...who still can't use it. Why? They don't train it they just want to fight.
In the end.
No AIki age no Daito ryu
No Peng jin no Taiji
No Kokyu no AIkido
And as Sagawa said.
"Think!!"

Happy new year
Dan
cheers
Dan

Mike Galante
01-01-2007, 01:50 PM
In the end no one really has to worry about it getting out there and being revealed to the world. Its placed in the hands of thousands of men...who still can't use it. Why? They don't train it they just want to fight.
In the end.
No Aiki age no Daito ryu
No Peng jin no Taiji
No Kokyu no Aikido
And as Sagawa said.
"Think!!"

Nicely put, Dan.

I guess you are right, the mars people can't give up fighting, and I (jupiter) can't seem to give up preaching!

All the very best, happy new year,
Mike
Maybe we can practice together sometime.

Cady Goldfield
01-01-2007, 01:57 PM
Nicely put, Dan.

I guess you are right, the mars people can't give up fighting, and I (jupiter) can't seem to give up preaching!

All the very best, happy new year,
Mike

Personally, I'm more concerned about those of youse guys who have yer head up (uranus).

Sorry, couldn't resist... :D

DH
01-01-2007, 03:31 PM
Cady you never miss one do ya?

So, I was just talking with a friend of mine and I said something he tought was true.
Those of us who do MMA are frequently categorized as having "disrespect" for martial arts. Yet here is he and I ...IN very traditional arts. In fact many who do MMA were or are still "IN" traditional martial arts. Maybe we are the ones who have the highest respect for them after all. Loving them and training to ressurect them to their highest, tested levels.
Why is it that almost all of our Japanese greats were in fact?.......fighters who trained in several different styles and faught?
They were in fact
Mixed Martial Martists of THEIR day who founded their own styles.
Yet here we are with many in the Traditional arts openly slamming those who do the very same thing. You see and read it everwhere on many boards
What would those greats be doing were they alive?
I'd bet most would be looking at the mess we have made of their arts and walking out the door.


Also about body training and the point of the thread
Why is it you can talk about Body building and how it increases ways to lift more weight and everyone says ..Of course
Talk about body building to make a body that handles other loads by being relaxed and connected against horizontal loads most seen in fighting and ways to generate power and they have trouble grasping that concept? Even telling you you're nuts?

Worse yet how about a double whammy?
MMA and Internal Skills?
Disrespectful...and.... crazy
There is a small growing group of men interested in internal skills in MMA (who's been doing that for years?) and they....are getting slammed for that as well by some in the CMA. Weird, and inexplicable mindset for martial artists to have I think

Cheers
Dan

Ellis Amdur
01-01-2007, 05:00 PM
Belated response to M. Galante: Over on Aikido Journal, I posted something in my essay: "A Unified Field Theory - Aiki and Weapons - Il Crepuscolo degli dei" http://www.aikidojournal.com/?id=2384

It speaks for itself (heck, I speak for myself - I'm quoting myself!) but to add to this. Ueshiba's actions were multi-layered, I believe. That which generated spiritual power was different from yoga, per se, in that it was also explicitly martial. Not only could the moves take you to Heaven, but would empower you to fight your way in if they tried to block the door.

A little additional comment is in order. I just had a fine afternoon trading stories and information with Fred Little. Part one of what follows is his observation, part two is mine.

1. As some may know, Ueshiba saw himself as imbued by the kami Susano-o, the "wind god," who was a combination of a trickster and Prometheus. Rather than cite a particular myth twice, I'll paraphrase/quote Fred here. "When Ueshiba was doing the upward and downward spirals in his jo form, that upward thrust is like a tornado spirally up into heaven, like Susano-o using his spear to stab the repository of all the rice, hoarded by Heaven, and then the downward expanding spiral as he spreads it over the world. I don't think he was emulating this - he was, at that moment, Susano-o."

2. I think there is no doubt that Ueshiba practiced a kind of voodun - spirit possession. In Shingon mikkyo, one meditates on the image of a Buddha/diety, one takes it into oneself, one places it outside oneself - all with the goal of controlling the mind that manages that experience and images AND to see through to the emptiness of even this kind of phenomena - that divinity, even the Buddha, is a product of mind. However, Ueshiba's later practice was Chinkon-kishin, which is, Shingon in reverse. One creates and BECOMES the deity. Note the story by Takahashi Mariye, describing Ueshiba calling up/dealing with an unruly diety. Some readers may roll their eyes, thinking this some sort of mountebank show. I don't agree. Ueshiba was profoundly religious. I do think that the spiritual practice he inherited from Deguchi, where one is, in a sense, taken possession by the god or becomes them (is "ridden" as is said in Haiti), lends itself to grandiosity.

That commentary aside, I am very curious - though surely I will never have it answered - about what the rest of the jo form meant to Ueshiba, aside from the martial acts and internal training I've previously described. What symbolic import - what myth was he embodying after his liberation of the bounty of Heaven and spreading it all over the earth? Was he righteously "slaying" injustice or obstructions that would impede the unification of Heaven and Earth through man, or was he purifying himself internally - the internal training/shaking/etc., a kind of misogi that had a corollary of making him yet stronger?

Best
Ellis Amdur

Cady Goldfield
01-01-2007, 05:03 PM
Vision is restricted when you're in a box. ;)

How are MMArtists disrespectful to traditional systems? With the exception of the "Master of 10-arts-in-1" boobs, serious MMArtists all seem to have come from traditional roots, and that's where they received the very discipline and values that urged them to explore the world beyond.

To assume that only one system, from one tradition, possesses all of the answers, is to deny a basic human principle: that the spirit of inquiry transcends cultures and individual disciplines. I don't expect to get all of my knowledge from a single art. I would rather have access to the body of human knowledge that spans continents and eras. If there is stuff we can pick up from Kundalini, or taiji, or an ancient Japanese koryu that makes my skills more powerful, efficient and effective, then let us at it. Make a long, deep study -- not a quick riffling through of the prospectus -- of each and find not only what we need, but how it complements and ties in to what we already have and know. It's not piecemeal, it's the intelligent assembly of a body of knowledge that ultimately will be greater than the sum of its parts.

No artist arrived at his pinnacle from a vaccum. He built his skills and foundation on the shoulders of his traditional predecessors, and received his structure and sense of discipline from them, then transcended their visions as he followed his own. Think about Picasso (who mastered traditional portraiture and rendering before entering the abstract) and Stravinsky (whose music was once considered obscene), both of whom fought within the constraints of their traditional artistic upbringings, ultimately breaking free with their own unique styles while always respecting and never damning the classical roots from which they came. After the public's initial shock at the unorthodox new visions, yesterday's iconoclasts have since become today's accepted mainstream.

I see the visionaries of "our" arts -- Takeda, Ueshiba, Sagawa, et al. -- in the same light. They were the MMArtists of their day, as was noted. They were driven by their own burning curiosity, beliefs and desires to pursue their own unique visions for how they wanted themselves, and their arts, to be, but never damned the traditional foundations from which they came.

Kevin Leavitt
01-01-2007, 05:09 PM
I wonder how much crap and criticism they did take for going out side the box. As the years pass they are heroes and innovators, but in the time that they were doing it they were crackpots and hippocrits.

Mike Sigman
01-01-2007, 06:07 PM
On the other hand, while I think that more of this information needs to be out there, I think there is a point of rightful discrimination, too. The idea is "if you show everyone, then everyone will know your methods of defense". And it's a thought worth mulling over.

At the moment, I'm having trouble reconciling Dan's multiple personalities. First he can't tell anyone because he's sworn to secrecy, then he can show you but only if you come to his house, and now he wants to get it on with doing this stuff in the MMA's and on TV. That Dan.... he's a caution. ;)

Of course, if you have the skills they're yours to do what you want with them, but it needs to be noted that in the long-extant Asian cultures there was a reason for a certain amount of caution. You need to give to charity but you don't need to bankrupt your family.... there is a nice medium balance. :)

FWIW

Mike

DH
01-01-2007, 06:49 PM
On the other hand, while I think that more of this information needs to be out there, I think there is a point of rightful discrimination, too. The idea is "if you show everyone, then everyone will know your methods of defense". And it's a thought worth mulling over.
At the moment, I'm having trouble reconciling Dan's multiple personalities. First he can't tell anyone because he's sworn to secrecy, then he can show you but only if you come to his house, and now he wants to get it on with doing this stuff in the MMA's and on TV. That Dan.... he's a caution. ;) FWIW
Mike
Well, I'll take that apart. Hopefully in the spirit in which it was given
Your note of rightful dscrinimination? Am I exempted? If not than I assume I can do what I want without a need for your approval?

Second ......my "personality?" Now I know your kidding. Is this the guy who repeats like a mantra ...Leave personality out of it, Leave personality out of it?...did I miss the ....."unless Mike says its OK to comment on anyone's personality part?"

Well, hmf......agitated mumbling and grumbling......
1. I still won't talk about how to do these things in public.
2. I still won't go travel and do seminars. I reserve what time I have to go be a student of a koryu I belong too.. And no I don't really care if it meets anyones approval.
3. I didn't say anything about MMA and T.V. Where did ya get that?
Just in case we're pretending to care what I actually said.
I said there is a small group of guys starting to look at IS in MMA.
Three of the ones I met were from CMA, and they told me of others. One is fighting internationally. They don't know me, one knows me now but didn't when we met. Another is writing and doing seminars. I have nothing to do with their choices. Further, for those who don't know, most MMA work is being done by thousands in gyms and fight clubs all over the world. Who have nothing to do with professionals on T.V.
Thats just more presumption. Something Mike cautions others about often.

Last, why did I change my mind about helping? Now that IS an interesting question

Now which part ... do you want to "not get personal" about first. :D

[QUOTE=Mike Sigman]Of course, if you have the skills they're yours to do what you want with them, :)

Hmmmm
Dan

Cady Goldfield
01-01-2007, 06:57 PM
The fact that skills are something you have to sweat for, to shugyo, eliminates 99.99% of those who say they want them. The remaining small number, by dint of the work they have to go through to excel, are not so likely to broadcast their knowledge.

Besides, in the Real World (TM), do the pursuers of esoteric martial skills really worry about facing a foe who is more powerful in his skills? Unless you're a professional assassin or mercenary (who lost his automatic weapon or radioactive polonium), it's more academic to say that you want to be at the top of the fightin' arts food chain. ;)

And if someone does surpass you in skill, bully for them. They have earned it. I sometimes wonder whether Sagawa found it lonely at the top, and wished there were someone he could vie against and fail, so that the flames of failure would temper and force him to work his way up to an even higher level.

Mike Sigman
01-01-2007, 07:14 PM
Well, I'll take that apart. Hopefully in the spirit in which it was given
Your note of rightful dscrinimination? Am I exempted? If not than I assume I can do what I want without a need for your approval? Of course. You do what you want to do, Dan. But rest assured that if you develop a reputation for telling everyone stuff that other people show you, you won't get shown very much. :cool: Second ......my "personality?" Now I know your kidding. Is this the guy who repeats like a mantra ...Leave personality out of it, Leave personality out of it?...did I miss the ....."unless Mike says its OK to comment on anyone's personality part?" No, you may have missed Reading Comprehension 101, though. I'm not questioning your personality, just things you've said in the past. Your choices and public comments are not your personality, Dan.

FWIW

Mike

DH
01-01-2007, 07:14 PM
I sometimes wonder whether Sagawa found it lonely at the top, and wished there were someone he could vie against and fail, so that the flames of failure would temper and force him to work his way up to an even higher level.
Well Sagawa wrote and was interviewed and quoted but refused to do seminars. And you had to go to him to learn and he refused many ansd turned them away.Some very famous men.
Others did seminars all the time.
Some taught but only prvately.
Weird huh?
People acting like...well individuals. We need to stop that.
Why can't we get people to behave like we want them too
Doggone it.
Cheers
Dan

Mike Sigman
01-01-2007, 07:20 PM
The fact that skills are something you have to sweat for, to shugyo, eliminates 99.99% of those who say they want them. The remaining small number, by dint of the work they have to go through to excel, are not so likely to broadcast their knowledge. [[snip]]And if someone does surpass you in skill, bully for them. They have earned it. I sometimes wonder whether Sagawa found it lonely at the top, and wished there were someone he could vie against and fail, so that the flames of failure would temper and force him to work his way up to an even higher level.Well, I dunno, Cady.... each to his own, I guess. I know from my own teachers in the last 30 years of looking for info on "internal strength" that most people will only turn loose rudimentary information and if they think you'll just go blab it, they won't tell you at all. I tend to be open to the right people and closed to the ones who only want attention... but each to his own. ;)

Regards,

Mike

DH
01-01-2007, 07:35 PM
Of course. You do what you want to do, Dan. But rest assured that if you develop a reputation for telling everyone stuff that other people show you, you won't get shown very much.
FWIW

Mike
How about you stick to -a- topic and leave the "me" out of it.
Give it a try.

I have my own commitments, obligations and propriety.
I don't really need the help or advice.
Thanks anyway .
Dan

Cady Goldfield
01-01-2007, 07:38 PM
Well, ya know Mike, stuff has been around for probably a couple thousand years at least, and even with the Internet now, it still can't be learned by "blabbing," but has to be shown and felt. So, if you allow for the proportionally larger population now, I'd hazard a guess that still the same percent of Earth's human population knows any of these skills, or would be willing to dedicate a sizable chunk of their lives to gaining them.

I wouldn't lose sleep over it. The sun is still gonna go red giant in 5 or 6 billion years, and humans will be long gone before then anyway, according to most religious and scientific belief modes. ;)

Mike Sigman
01-01-2007, 07:50 PM
Are you talking to me?
Any reason you feel obligated to talk down to me and try to help explain things to me...yet again? It's not always about you, Dan. You're the one who dragged Wang Hai Jun's name into the mud as a source. I know the kind of strictures those guys are under, even if you don't. As I said, you can do what you want, but I thought you might not be aware that people like Wang Hai Jun should not be both presented as a source and be expected to follow your whimsical decisions of what to show and not to show. Assuming of course, that you don't already know everything and that you're only going to his workshops as a social affair, chat, be friendly, hobnob with your equals, etc. You have no detailed understanding of certain restrictions I'm under or not. A fact to which -one person- here has replied
"People are holding back progress due to antiquated notions of secrecy."
And now
"If you develop a reptuation for sharing you wont be shown....."
Which personality are -we- talking too, Sybil? :D

I have my own commitments, obligations and propriety.
I don't really need the help or advice.Thanks anyway .
Dan You're welcome. Who, by the way, do you think I feel more obligated to... people like Chen Xiao Wang, his cousins and their students, etc., or to you? I.e., would I honor the traditions of Chenjiagou or some hamlet in Massachusetts? ;) Sure you have your own commitments, etc..... but I was giving you good advice, hotshot.

Mike Sigman

DH
01-01-2007, 08:08 PM
Dragged through the mud? Other than paying the man a compliment? What ever could you mean? And then watching as you drew upon Tohie's guys and reviewed YOUR experiences and named names and details, and then listened as you judged others movements from video footage

Once again doing what you tell everyone else not to do.
This is why you need your own forum where you can make up this crap as you go along and boot those who dissagree.
After being banned from several places.

stan baker
01-01-2007, 08:13 PM
Hi Mike

When are you coming to mass. to meet dan

stan

DH
01-01-2007, 08:16 PM
Hey.....
What are -you- doing here?
Take a minute and read the thread. Well ok ok more than a minute Everyone going along talking......
WHAM!! mike bite.
What was that?
A mike bite
Oh well.
Dan

Mike Sigman
01-01-2007, 08:23 PM
When are you coming to mass. to meet dan
Stan.... when are you "coming to meet" anyone at all? Your reputation is simply to instigate and backstab..... throughout the Taiji world. Instead of talking about other people, always, let's hear some of what you've done.

Regards,

Mike Sigman

DH
01-01-2007, 08:29 PM
This is where it turns to another poison pill thread ender from Mike. Don't bother answering Stan. He really isn't worth the trouble
Jun's pretty good. He'll dump the whole personal attack thing in time and make a new thread.

Jun
Can you remove this crap and leave the thread a good read? You can just throw my replies in the dumper and put all of mikes smack talk in open discussions unanswered by me.
Thanks
Dan

mjchip
01-01-2007, 08:31 PM
This very interesting thread is starting to get polluted...... :(

Mark

P.S. Hi Stan.

DH
01-01-2007, 08:40 PM
Again I'd caution to just wait a minute.
Jun's usually on the money. If its not on topic wait till tomm.
Then the thread will stay clean.

Dan

stan baker
01-01-2007, 08:40 PM
Hi Mike,
what are you talking about I did not know I had reputation , who have i backstabbed.

stan

mjchip
01-01-2007, 08:43 PM
Again I'd caution to just wait a minute. Don't let tempers flair. Jun's usually on the money. If its not on topic wait till tomm.
Then the thread will stay clean.
How was everones New year
Did you learn how to R-E-L-A-X any better?
Dan

Hi Dan,

Had a nice New Year's with the family in CT. Just got back. How about you?

Mark

Cady Goldfield
01-01-2007, 08:45 PM
Again I'd caution to just wait a minute.
Jun's usually on the money. If its not on topic wait till tomm.
Then the thread will stay clean.

Dan

lol
I'd say that about 98% of this thread has not been on topic if we want to be picky about what constitutes "how to teach and train relaxation." That would leave, oh, maybe 1.5 pages of posts. :freaky: :D

We need daycare staff in this sandbox. ;)

Mark Jakabcsin
01-01-2007, 08:51 PM
Mark, you started the thread --- do you believe that you have received sufficient answers to these questions?



Sorry I checked out for a few days. Jim, when I posted the thread I was never under the misconception that I would or could receive a sufficient answer. I do not believe a sufficient answer can be shared solely via a written medium. I have been active on various forums for about 10 years, hence I have few false illusions of what information can be affectively shared. My intent was merely to start a thread about a topic I find interesting and see where the discussion led. IMO, there have been several interesting posts and side discussions. As always there is also lots of noise. I have gotten much better at simply scrolling past posts full of useless noise and mining the information I find interesting. This thread has also allowed me to better understand several of the posters here, which is helpful in understanding where their comments are coming from. Overall, my opinion is this has been a decent thread.

Happy New Year,

Mark J.

PS. Centeredness is far more than a physical state. Often when a thread gets heated we can see who is centered and who is not.

DH
01-01-2007, 08:53 PM
Hi Dan,

Had a nice New Year's with the family in CT. Just got back. How about you?

Mark

Work. Thanks for asking
I'll be emailing this week with a schedule

Happy New years
Dan

Cady Goldfield
01-01-2007, 08:55 PM
Mark Jakabcsin ROCKS. :cool:
Oops. That was not on topic...

Cady Goldfield
01-01-2007, 08:57 PM
Confidential to Dan who edited his post:
Wow! And I was amazed when Mary had a little lamb, and old MacDonald had a farm... :eek:

Seriously, BIG congrats to him et ux. Give him a huge hug for me if he trains tomm.

Mike Sigman
01-01-2007, 09:28 PM
My intent was merely to start a thread about a topic I find interesting and see where the discussion led. IMO, there have been several interesting posts and side discussions. As always there is also lots of noise. Actually, the thread has been helpful in getting me to mull over more the Ki Society approach and compare it the various approaches I know of, the probable logic based on how things work, etc. This afternoon I sporadically wrote a fairly long post (more in response to Jim Sorrentino's comments, but in answer to your original question) about how to teach and train relaxation. It was turning into a pretty good post when for some reason my spam filter triggered something that deleted the post and put me back to the start with just Jim's quotes. I hate it when that happens. :grr:

Regardless, I've recreated a lot of it and decided it would go well with some of the other stuff I'm writing on another forum on the same topic. The overriding point is that you can't get much from the internet because of the noise and because you can't feel it... so most of these things seem to work best not as communications, but as thought starters.

Just a thought.

Mike