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gdandscompserv
02-07-2007, 08:28 PM
This comment:
Most of these 'martial artists' would be stunned to have someone physically call them out for loose lips. ;)got me wondering how many of you have been 'called out' by another martial artist. I'm not really sure what Mike meant by this but I think it's worth discussion. I have trained with people who have been very non-cooperative and I consider that somewhat of a 'calling out,' but I haven't had another martial artist openly challenge me to a physical contest of sorts to determine who's stuff works the best. I do wonder how I would react to such a 'calling out.' I'm pretty sure I would simply decline the challenge so don't get no funny ideas Mike. :p
Please share your thoughts/experiences in this regard.

eyrie
02-07-2007, 08:38 PM
Being "called out" means that what you say, or what you say you can do, is not in reality what you actually know or can do. Make sense? If you have no idea what people are talking about, but make out like you do, sometimes the words you use will betray your level of knowledge.

Sometimes, all a person has to do is "touch" you to know if you have the "goods" - i.e. the ability to do what you say you can do...

So... consider yourself "called out"... :p

David Orange
02-07-2007, 08:55 PM
Being "called out" means that what you say, or what you say you can do, is not in reality what you actually know or can do. Make sense?

eyrie,

In the US, calling someone out means literally to challenge them, like standing outside their home and calling them to come out and fight. That's what Mike was talking about. You claim you can do something and someone will "call you out," meaning, literally, to challenge you to prove it in a physical bout.

If you have no idea what people are talking about, but make out like you do, sometimes the words you use will betray your level of knowledge.

This is true, but only to a degree.

David

Mike Sigman
02-07-2007, 09:28 PM
Change the imaginary scenario, Ricky. You come out and make a flippant, disparaging remark to a martial artist and you're suddenly surprised at the idea that it could ever come back and haunt you? Isn't that sort of a puzzling perspective? I can see it if we were on a poetry list and someone just got careless with the gratuitous remarks.... take it as a compliment that I assume someone on a martial arts list is a martial artist and is "calling out" a person when they make insulting remarks.

Surely, an experienced martial artist knows enough to be polite and not pick a fight they won't follow up on... at least that would be my reasoning.

See the compliment? ;) You pick a fight and someone takes you seriously.... what could be better than that, Ricky? Someone is taking you for what you say you are. Any serious martial artist who didn't want to get into an altercation would keep his personal comments to himself. That's why most martial artists tend to be fairly polite.

Regards,

Mike Sigman

gdandscompserv
02-07-2007, 09:55 PM
Change the imaginary scenario, Ricky. You come out and make a flippant, disparaging remark to a martial artist and you're suddenly surprised at the idea that it could ever come back and haunt you?
Would you be so kind as to point out the 'flippant, disparaging remark' that I made? It doesn't really surprise me that you might want to "call me out," since your on-line personna strikes me as somewhat of a bully. It's all good though.
Since you are under the impression that I am 'picking a fight,' let me assure you it's only a cyber fight that I desire to pick with you. I'm confident that a physical altercation would be unpleasant for both of us and would be contrary to everything I believe in. But regarding this forum, I offer the following advise; If you can't take the heat, get out of the kitchen. :p
Now, back on topic.
Your experiences and/or anecdotes on being called out, challenged, etc., would be appreciated.

DonMagee
02-07-2007, 10:16 PM
I've never been called out, I have called people out though. Never another martial artist though. Just wannabe's. I'm lucky enough to have a natural gift in figuring out who can kick my butt, and who can't.

Cyrijl
02-08-2007, 07:46 AM
I think Don has it right.

There are power structures in every aspect of life. The key is being able to figure out when you can win and when you can't. And along with this, the times where doing what is right outweights the previous decision.

At any rate, I have been thinking alot of "calling people out". I am not a great fighter. I might not even be a good fighter. But I know I am alot better than some of those people out there claiming extraordinary skill. But I have decided it serves no purpose to go to these schools and call them out. If i go alone i risk being jumped, if I go with a group of people they will fear being mobbed. I just generally decide to keep my mouth shut. I grin and bear it everytime someone tells me they do kung fu, aikido, etc. and explain to me their great tricks...oops i mean techniques.

I understand you do not like confrontation Ricky, but being unwilling to take a stand does not excuse you from your responsibility in the world. It does not make oyu right or superior. Just thought I'd share that with you. The idea that a physical confrontation is somehow worse than some half-baked cyber one is pretty telling on your part.

Ron Tisdale
02-08-2007, 07:49 AM
Hmm...If I did get around to having to call someone out, whether I would win or lose shouldn't be part of the equation I think. If it's worth fighting for, it's worth fighting for even if I lose. Any other perspective to me is...kind of playground, I think...

Best,
Ron

Mike Sigman
02-08-2007, 07:50 AM
It doesn't really surprise me that you might want to "call me out," since your on-line personna strikes me as somewhat of a bully. It's all good though. Really? Have you ever thought about what your personna comes across as to me? And not just in the last thread. Notice that I try to stick to the issues, more or less, but that I'll respond to someone making a personal remark to see what sort of person they are. You contribute nothing. You have constantly wanted to slip in your "feelings". You post touchy-feely sigs like that justifies you for who you are. In short, you're not really my idea of a martial artist. You'd be an embarrassment as a representative of Ueshiba's dojo, for example. Your best comeback to that comment of mine is that "you're just having fun" and so on, which leads us straight back to the same idea..... you're not much of a martial artist. You're a slight embarrassment to the whole idea of martial arts because you're more of a role-player.

It's very easy to spot the people who are serious martial artists. The ones who choose not to act like martial artists while among martial artists have no beef when somone wants to check their oil. ..let me assure you it's only a cyber fight that I desire to pick with you. I'm confident that a physical altercation would be unpleasant for both of us and would be contrary to everything I believe in. So you're a Keyboard Kommando, then. How much respect do you think a Keyboard Kommand rates when he talks to martial artists?

You see the best solution. If you have personal remarks (and you've accumulated a few by now) do what most others do and keep them to yourself. If you have a personal problem, take it to private mail or go see the guy. Don't embarrass your art. Don't act upset when wannabe martial artists making off-topic comments get an (unsurprising) negative reaction.

You want stories? I've seen every variety you can think of, even down to someone getting shot dead and some people getting maimed for life. That's why I'm always surprised when some idiot goes up to someone they don't really know and starts screwing with them like "this is safe because I'm behind my keyboard." You're used to dealing with kids, if that's your attitude.

I remember having a few beers with my old buddy Frankie Salerno (Boston guy... runner for the mob after he left the service... screwed with the wrong guy and got killed). We were in a bar on Okinawa and 2 Air Force guys came in. Ultimately one of them started jacking with Frankie and after about 10 minutes Frankie and I just shook our heads and stood up. When Frankie took off his leather jacket and the one guy saw how huge Frankie's arms were, the guy suddenly fell on the floor and started crying, begging Frankie "Oh god, oh god, don't kill me!". It was pretty funny. These two clowns had their own idea of having some "fun" that evening, but they didn't stop to think that it wasn't fun for other people who might not enjoy being made a part of their game.

You want respect, Ricky? Debate the issues with me... not personalities. You wanna play? You need to play with your pals. You want me to respect you? Act like a thoughtful and serious martial artist. Then I'll treat you like one and you'll find, voila', we get along. ;)

Regards,

Mike Sigman

SeiserL
02-08-2007, 08:07 AM
I have been called out by name.
I have shown up.

I have never called anybody out.
Its a waste of time.

I do agree.
Don't say it if you don't want to be called on it.
Talk and walk what you do know.
Listen and learn to what you don't.

Mike Sigman
02-08-2007, 09:06 AM
I do agree.
Don't say it if you don't want to be called on it.
Talk and walk what you do know.
Listen and learn to what you don't.

I've got enough of a background, including some fairly hard times in combat, that most "martial arts" appears to be a nice hobby, sort of like wood-working, with some occasionally interesting (or even fascinating) aspects imbedded in them. Talking about real martial arts stuff is, to me, like sitting around the woodworking shop with a bunch of pals, discussing what's the best way to route out a dovetail joint. I.e., it's a very clinical thing with a lot of fine details.

Where I get dumbfounded in martial-arts is when I run into the people who are role-playing and who have been so involved in role-playing for so many years that they genuinely believe in the fantasy world they have built up and which a number of their friends play along with them.

Think about it. Everything is there for some serious mind-shenanigans. Uniforms. A "leader" and pecking-order hierarchy. Exotic rituals. Foreign words that must be used as part of the ritual. Cooperative training that helps confirm that the play is "real" as long as it's kept within the secret meeting hall (the dojo). And so on. Bear in mind that there is a huge difference in the symbolism of all these things in the minds of a Japanese from the mind of a westerner.

What I'm slowly getting around to is that the role-playing (sure some of it is good stuff; it's not all junk, so don't get me wrong) leads into a world with its own values. When I take my "woodworking", practical mentality and try to have a discussion with someone who believes (to some degree) in a fantasy world with exotic rituals, leaders who must be "respected" for their belt color, and so on.... there can quite often be a big disconnect and even some friction from the "true believers" who sense a heretic in their midst.

The real problem is that a lot of the fantasy martial artists (not everyone in western martial arts is one of these, let me stipulate.... just too many of them) don't seem to realize that in their fantasy they are usurping a lot of the terminology and then insisting that their way is the correct view. Just to mention a quick example, most of the "Tai Chi" in the US is fantasy-based, but it uses all the original Tai Chi (Taiji is the preferred spelling, nowadays, and more accurately shows that the correct pronunciation is "Tai Jee", not "Tai Chee"). When member of a lot of the western Taiji community saw some of the real Taiji experts from China in the early 1980's, they were dumbfounded. Real Taiji is a powerful martial art, not a fantasy role. The "exotic words" don't mean what some of the westerners thought. So many of the westerners simply refused to go and learn real Taiji.... it would mean that they would have to lose "face" and become beginners again, rather than be allowed to continue in their fantasies as knowledgeable Chinese sages.

I.e., there is a resistance to letting one's fantasy-bubbles get popped. And there is a lot of anger directed, by the fantasy believers, at anyone who doesn't "respect" the current game and its rules.

The point being that there is a huge difference between someone looking to find out everything possible about martial arts and someone whose goal is more oriented at protecting the status quo where they are "somebody".

Most of these "frictions" and "getting called out" that I see the real martial arts types get into on a lot of martial arts forums is the friction between the "non-fantasy-world" types and the "fantasy-world" types who are more interested in protecting the game than in penetrating the core.

My opinion, FWIW

Regards,

Mike Sigman

gdandscompserv
02-08-2007, 09:22 AM
Well, this seems like an interesting topic. As you can see everyone has there own idea of what "calling out" means. To some it means showing up at a dojo and arranging some type of match that I'm assuming would include some arbitrary rules. Those rules would inherently favor some types of martial artists while putting others at a disadvantage. Let me illustrate. Let's say I called out an iaido practitioner. Would he fight me empty handed? Would I fight him weaponless? Well that would all depend on the rules. Without these prearranged rules, whatever took place would surely end up in the court systems. If I were to accept a calling out from someone, what would be the ground rules? Would it be a duel to the death? Would we be using weapons? That would certainly get ugly. And who would be the judge of the outcome. If you broke my arm and I broke your wrist, who would be the winner?
I am not looking for anyone's "respect." I think a forum is a bad place to seek out that respect. If someone has a problem with the way I express myself, they are certainly free to express their displeasure. A forum is a good place for doing just that.
I certainly don't mind being "called out." Just don't expect me to show up. I have nothing to prove. :D

Dennis Hooker
02-08-2007, 09:28 AM
There are real people behind the words. The words mean honor for some and just words for other. The cyber world is just a plain ride away from the real world. I have told this story in other forums so I will just bare bone it here. When Aikido-l was very young in the 80ís and hosted by a university a fellow took exception with me and lunched a personal attack. Me, being naive and perhaps stupid, took it personally and real. My wife and I could barely pay our bills yet I bought a airplane ticket and showed up at a manís door. It turns out it was his 13 year old son using his account to attack me. I use a little more tact nowadays but underneath I am still the same guy. Words hold different value for some people.

senshincenter
02-08-2007, 09:29 AM
I feel that the tendency to be called out is directly related to the propensity one feels to be insulting to another - for reasons of "saving the truth," "upholding the right," "defending the worthy,". There are ways of being that can keep one professional and/or cordial without the deluded fantasy of defending what HAS TO BE DEFENDED at all costs. These ways of being are directly related to not having a need to affront the honor of another. It's not that hard to not be called out, nor is it difficult to not feel the need to call someone out. Both are only as difficult as one has a difficult time being who he/she is without needing to lower or degrade the Other to be or remain that person. If you can't do this, everyone and everything is a threat to you - to your way of living, to your way of thinking, to your way of doing. When we hit this point, we're probably sick, maybe insane - probably trying to self-medicate in one form or another, etc. That should be a clue for us - the possibility of a turning point, where we can and should ask, "Why does this always happen to me?" and where we stop believing our usual answer of, "Because folks are afraid of the truth."

gdandscompserv
02-08-2007, 09:41 AM
David,
Once again you strike to the heart of the matter.
Thank You.

George S. Ledyard
02-08-2007, 09:43 AM
This comment:
got me wondering how many of you have been 'called out' by another martial artist. I'm not really sure what Mike meant by this but I think it's worth discussion. I have trained with people who have been very non-cooperative and I consider that somewhat of a 'calling out,' but I haven't had another martial artist openly challenge me to a physical contest of sorts to determine who's stuff works the best. I do wonder how I would react to such a 'calling out.' I'm pretty sure I would simply decline the challenge so don't get no funny ideas Mike. :p
Please share your thoughts/experiences in this regard.

To paraphrase Funakoshi Sensei, "If it is not important enough for you or the other guy to die for you shouldn't be fighting". There's almost always a way to avoid the fight if you don't care about your own self importance.

Mike Sigman
02-08-2007, 09:48 AM
I feel that the tendency to be called out is directly related to the propensity one feels to be insulting to another - for reasons of "saving the truth," "upholding the right," "defending the worthy,". There are ways of being that can keep one professional and/or cordial without the deluded fantasy of defending what HAS TO BE DEFENDED at all costs. These ways of being are directly related to not having a need to affront the honor of another. It's not that hard to not be called out, nor is it difficult to not feel the need to call someone out. Both are only as difficult as one has a difficult time being who he/she is without needing to lower or degrade the Other to be or remain that person. If you can't do this, everyone and everything is a threat to you - to your way of living, to your way of thinking, to your way of doing. When we hit this point, we're probably sick, maybe insane - probably trying to self-medicate in one form or another, etc. That should be a clue for us - the possibility of a turning point, where we can and should ask, "Why does this always happen to me?" and where we stop believing our usual answer of, "Because folks are afraid of the truth."Oh, that sounds a little like projection to me. Think of it more as the ante in a poker game... you wanna play, you gotta pay. If someone does "Martial Art A" and it's really focused on self-help, role-playing, a few "sensei's" selling themselves, and so on, it should be called something else than a "martial art". The one big glob of info I've been mulling for over a month is that *apparently* Tohei Sensei stepped up and said that his Aikido style is not a martial art. If all of Aikido is not a martial art, and everyone admits/accepts that, then what you say *may* be true, David. However, each sentence that I write this, I keep picturing some of the demo's I saw hosted on your website a year or so ago .... I have some reservations about the motivations behind your comments.


BTW.... bear this in mind, too. I have several friends that go back in Aikido many, many years. They don't come to this forum or others simply because they've visited before and got the impression that most of the posters are not really representative of the ideals they hold for Aikido. They've publicly said as much. I.e., they don't agree with a lot of the people that have had the upper hand in posting on some of the forums. And it happened more than once. They disagree and it kept happening..... does that imply to you that there was something wrong with them, David? I'd bet not. So maybe you were just trying to take a jab of your own, disguising it as a moralism.... leading us back to the type of people who post again.

Regards,

Mike Sigman

ChrisHein
02-08-2007, 09:52 AM
I think "calling out" belongs in the catigory that I would call Macho bullshit. It belongs to the class of things that 15-24 year old males need to do on a regular basis to find out if they are strong, and where they belong in the pack. That being said, I've been on both sides of a calling out too many times. The sucky thing about Aikido is, I believe it's a weapon system, and it's techniques don't work well empty handed. You don't want to use weapons in a calling out (often considerd cheating, you're only trying to establish dominance not kill someone), which puts the Aikidoka at a disadvantage in a "calling out".

Mike Sigman
02-08-2007, 09:54 AM
To paraphrase Funakoshi Sensei, "If it is not important enough for you or the other guy to die for you shouldn't be fighting". There's almost always a way to avoid the fight if you don't care about your own self importance. There was a saying that my old geometry teacher used to tell us and make us repeat..... " when you're well off, stay well off and keep your mouth shut". There's plenty to be learned from other martial artists without having to get into a discussion of individual personalities. If I let the personalities divert my focus, I'd never get any information.

;)

Mike

Mike Sigman
02-08-2007, 10:03 AM
Far more fun to show up at a seminar that someone is at and prove to them then and there what you are talking about.So how does that work, Chris? This has always been an intriguing question to me when someone says something like, "Oh, if you want to get trashed, go to the next seminar with Ohuku Sensei and watch what he does to you." So I have this picture where I do a nice Tsuki or Yokomenuchi and he breaks my arm. Or I give him katatetori and he nikkyo's me into agony. Is that how you "prove" something on the mat, Chris? ;)

Of if some judo guy wants to kick my butt on the mat.... do I put on a gi and to get in the approved stance/grip and wait for the "Hajime!"?

Let's get the conversation back .... read a few of the responses that essentially are trying to say, "well if someone provokes you, you shouldn't do anything because that proves a character flaw on the respondent's point". It's very interesting to read the dichotomy. I'm afraid I'm on the side of "don't bet on the guy you piss off being of such noble character that he won't swat you down". And I'd add.... anyone who thinks the character flaw is on the side of the respondent, not the original smart-mouth, those people need to re-think their whole lives. What the respondent does may or may not be the right thing, but that's beside the point.

My 2 cents.

Mike

Dazzler
02-08-2007, 10:14 AM
There are real people behind the words. The words mean honor for some and just words for other. The cyber world is just a plain ride away from the real world. I have told this story in other forums so I will just bare bone it here. When Aikido-l was very young in the 80's and hosted by a university a fellow took exception with me and lunched a personal attack. Me, being naive and perhaps stupid, took it personally and real. My wife and I could barely pay our bills yet I bought a airplane ticket and showed up at a man's door. It turns out it was his 13 year old son using his account to attack me. I use a little more tact nowadays but underneath I am still the same guy. Words hold different value for some people.

This makes me smile Dennis. I've made similar mistakes but not gone to such impressive lengths to right a perceived wrong.

I see something in the underlying attitude though that applies across the board to me - if the wrong person is disrespected then expect a fight.

Doesn't matter if he's done aikido, BJJ TKD or nothing at all.

Some people have thresholds which when they are crossed prevent them from living with themselves.

And this to me is why effectiveness comes down to the individual everytime and to me overrides many of the arguments over which training method is superior.

Perhaps its more about what someone is prepared to do rather than what he has trained to do and the training method chosen is a personal thing to polish whatever they have.

Personally - I've found Aikido has helped me move my threshold up many levels - Looking at the short fuses of many of my oldest friends and family I don't think this is just the process of growing older.

Anyway - thanks for the story - It is a good one.

Regards

D

gdandscompserv
02-08-2007, 10:18 AM
Another reason that I believe "call outs" are a bad idea.
In American society, it is illegal to respond to a verbal attack with a physical attack. That will land you in jail almost everytime; character flaw or not. The courts will likely hold a "martial artist" to a higher standard. So look at it from a consequences point of view. Expressing myself verbally in this forum will not likely land me in jail, but a physical response to those expressions probably will.

Esaemann
02-08-2007, 10:22 AM
Quote:
I remember having a few beers with my old buddy Frankie Salerno (Boston guy... runner for the mob after he left the service... screwed with the wrong guy and got killed). We were in a bar on Okinawa and 2 Air Force guys came in. Ultimately one of them started jacking with Frankie and after about 10 minutes Frankie and I just shook our heads and stood up. When Frankie took off his leather jacket and the one guy saw how huge Frankie's arms were, the guy suddenly fell on the floor and started crying, begging Frankie "Oh god, oh god, don't kill me!". It was pretty funny. These two clowns had their own idea of having some "fun" that evening, but they didn't stop to think that it wasn't fun for other people who might not enjoy being made a part of their game.

Mike, I'm splitting a gut with this story. Too bad I'm at work.

Dennis Hooker
02-08-2007, 10:26 AM
Daren I do believe we are a product of environment and upbringing. Seeds planted early root deep. I have had some people raised with privilege (comparatively speaking) ridicule me for being such a base person even though I have three university degrees and have been trying to civilize myself with Aikido (and other budo) for 40 years. When one is raised in a place of extreme poverty by proud people honor is sometimes the only bread on the table. One does not forget that easily. I can now appreciate how others react to stimuli but I see it as no more valid than my reaction with my core values.

Avery Jenkins
02-08-2007, 10:30 AM
When used correctly, rather than as a form of paleolithic breast-beating, calling someone out is actually a useful strategy. I've done it three times in my life, all three times ended with my objective accomplished. Even in retrospect, with the opportunity and knowledge to consider alternative strategies, what I did was ok. Maybe not the best in terms of risk avoidance, but ethically sound and, as I said, the objective was achieved.

On the other side of the fence, nobody's ever called me out, and I can't imagine someone would, I'm a nice guy.

Avery

Alec Corper
02-08-2007, 10:31 AM
Wow, its finally come to this, and on Aiki Web as well!
I am obviously contradicted on this point. I definitely agree with Mike that if you cant or wont put your money where your mouth is, then keep it shut. However I personally try to do that out of respect and not fear of being "called out". I don't like the idea that I can insult people I'm not afraid of and be careful of others who maybe could "swat me down." I grew up in London and when I was a kid there was no such thing as a fair fight, and even if you won you could expect to be ambushed, "mob handed" as we used to say, so it was a last resort.
I also absolutely agree with George when he quotes, "If it is not important enough for you or the other guy to die for you shouldn't be fighting". So for me, when people choose to express their personal opinions too strongly I would rather back off and let life be the teaching instrument not me.

"So how does that work, Chris? This has always been an intriguing question to me when someone says something like, "Oh, if you want to get trashed, go to the next seminar with Ohuku Sensei and watch what he does to you." So I have this picture where I do a nice Tsuki or Yokomenuchi and he breaks my arm. Or I give him katatetori and he nikkyo's me into agony. Is that how you "prove" something on the mat, Chris?"
Again I agree with you Mike, I think your point is correct, the misuse of the way aikido is trained can lead to some funny ideas but it sounds to me like you are bashing aikido in general, when I know you are not. You state that you are fed up with people role playing. Well if that's what us poor aikido fools are doing stop wasting so much energy trying to save us. If you feel there are a few of us out here who are serious then ignore the comments of the rest and they will get bored and fade away, which is what I will do now.

Mike Sigman
02-08-2007, 10:38 AM
Again I agree with you Mike, I think your point is correct, the misuse of the way aikido is trained can lead to some funny ideas but it sounds to me like you are bashing aikido in general, when I know you are not. As a matter of fact, I even used a Judo analogy too, so that it would be clear that I wasn't singling out Aikido, Alec. You state that you are fed up with people role playing. Well if that's what us poor aikido fools are doing stop wasting so much energy trying to save us. If you feel there are a few of us out here who are serious then ignore the comments of the rest and they will get bored and fade away, which is what I will do now.I'm not trying to save anyone at all. I enter these discussions because overall I get enough data and leads to make it worthwhile. It also gives me a chance to hear the questions, comments, etc., about the subject I'm interested in so that it assists me in the thinking process for a book I'm writing. So my "motives" are probably well outside of what you're imagining.

Regards,

Mike Sigman

Alec Corper
02-08-2007, 10:46 AM
So my "motives" are probably well outside of what you're imagining.
Mike, I didn't realize we were part of a social study for you to collect material for a book. I can "imagine" that quite well. You are not intending to insult my intelligence are you?

As a matter of fact, I even used a Judo analogy too, so that it would be clear that I wasn't singling out Aikido, Alec.

Come on Mike, you mention Judo very occasionally, and in what I was quoting you were using aikido terminology specifically.

Mike Sigman
02-08-2007, 10:47 AM
Another reason that I believe "call outs" are a bad idea.
In American society, it is illegal to respond to a verbal attack with a physical attack. That will land you in jail almost everytime; character flaw or not. The courts will likely hold a "martial artist" to a higher standard. So look at it from a consequences point of view. Expressing myself verbally in this forum will not likely land me in jail, but a physical response to those expressions probably will.Ricky.... I need to introduce you to some people. You need to get out more. It'll change your perspective immensely to understand that the things you think will protect you are pretty flimsy indeed. I never forget a friend of mine, a notoriously bad bouncer in a bar that Hell's Angels frequented a lot... he listens to that stuff about "jail" for a second or two and then says, "My law starts after midnight".

Another big disconnect you seem to keep missing is that all of your justification about "saying what you want to say on a martial arts forum" is in direct contradiction with your cool sigs and web-pointers going to the "love" things. Do you see the contradiction? Is it the kind of contradiction that you think gives a good impression of Aikidoists? Or any martial art where there is this oft-babbled-about "Budo"? ;)

Regards,

Mike Sigman

clwk
02-08-2007, 10:50 AM
Ricky,

Another reason that I believe "call outs" are a bad idea.
In American society, it is illegal to respond to a verbal attack with a physical attack. That will land you in jail almost everytime; character flaw or not. The courts will likely hold a "martial artist" to a higher standard. So look at it from a consequences point of view. Expressing myself verbally in this forum will not likely land me in jail, but a physical response to those expressions probably will.
That line of reasoning sounds a lot to me like, "The bear is in a cage from which he cannot escape. As long as I stay at a safe distance on my side of the cage I am free to taunt him as much as I like." Whether or not that is true, it misses the point. The point is that it's generally a bad idea to provoke and taunt other creatures for sport. Playful exchange is not such a problem as long as the terms are relatively symmetrical. Provoking creatures which could maul you is a bad idea even if you have good reason to believe they will not. This is true for ethical *and* pragmatic reasons. Mutual respect *should* compel mature adults to communicate reasonably within the parameters of the medium; and common sense *should* compel martial artists to treat one another with respect.

Any discussion centering around exposition of a paradigm which everyone agrees is difficult or impossible to convey solely through words is implicitly part of a continuum involving eventual face-to-face and hands-on contact. It seems that most if not all active participants in these discussions are at least theoretically interested in and open to such meetings -- for the purpose of ameliorating the shortcomings of a forum like this. If your part of the discourse presupposes that physical clarification would be problematic and best avoided then you disqualify yourself as a participant in good faith of the actual discussion at hand.

Regards,
Chhi'mŤd

Mike Sigman
02-08-2007, 10:55 AM
Mike, I didn't realize we were part of a social study for you to collect material for a book. I can "imagine" that quite well. You are not intending to insult my intelligence are you? Er, no.... Who said anything about a "social study"? I'm doing a book on internal strength skills. You're losing me with your assumptions and whatever logic they're leading you toward. Come on Mike, you mention Judo very occasionally, and in what I was quoting you were using aikido terminology specifically.Same post, next sentence below what you quoted.

Regards,

Mike Sigman

Avery Jenkins
02-08-2007, 11:02 AM
I enter these discussions because overall I get enough data and leads to make it worthwhile. It also gives me a chance to hear the questions, comments, etc., about the subject I'm interested in so that it assists me in the thinking process for a book I'm writing. So my "motives" are probably well outside of what you're imagining.

Dear lord. What kind of book are you writing that the random musings of otherwise bored aikidoka could possibly be a stimulant?

My suggestion is: Use lots of color pictures. That can compensate for a lot of shortcomings.

Avery

gdandscompserv
02-08-2007, 11:06 AM
Mike,
There was a time in my life that I did hang around with the type of people you are talking about and most of them are now in jail. You see my point.

Mike Sigman
02-08-2007, 11:10 AM
Dear lord. What kind of book are you writing that the random musings of otherwise bored aikidoka could possibly be a stimulant?

My suggestion is: Use lots of color pictures. That can compensate for a lot of shortcomings.Well, go back and look at some of the answers to specific ki and kokyu questions, as an example. Forcing me to formulate and articulate ideas helps me clarify things greatly. Questions about things I think are obvious already remind me to go back and fill in the gaps of my logic, repeatedly. Extraneous comments, suggestions, critiques, questions, challenges, etc., force me to think even more. Suggestions or addenda often add to what I already know or point me in the direction of a new information source I didn't previously know about.

The Japanese arts represent a repository of the ancient standardized Buddhist approaches to internal-strength development. That's why I'm here.... it's productive.... and that's also why I read other forums, too. The personality issues and any discussion thereof is simply one of the biggest time-wasters I've ever seen. ;)

Best.

Mike

gdandscompserv
02-08-2007, 11:10 AM
Dear lord. What kind of book are you writing that the random musings of otherwise bored aikidoka could possibly be a stimulant?

My suggestion is: Use lots of color pictures. That can compensate for a lot of shortcomings.

Avery
Very funny Avery. :)

Avery Jenkins
02-08-2007, 11:10 AM
Er, no.... Who said anything about a "social study"? I'm doing a book on internal strength skills. You're losing me with your assumptions and whatever logic they're leading you toward. Same post, next sentence below what you quoted.


Cool. Skip the book though, you need to go direct to video. Put a teaser up on youtube, metacafe, etc. If you really want to do text, e-publish, your margins are higher and you can push-market your seminars.

Avery

Cady Goldfield
02-08-2007, 11:12 AM
It also gives me a chance to hear the questions, comments, etc., about the subject I'm interested in so that it assists me in the thinking process for a book I'm writing.

Ah. That explains all of the socio-political threads and sparring sessions with Neil, et al., in the "Open Discussions" forum. What chapter will that information comprise? :p Sorry. Couldn't resist. :D

Mike Sigman
02-08-2007, 11:17 AM
Cool. Skip the book though, you need to go direct to video. Put a teaser up on youtube, metacafe, etc. If you really want to do text, e-publish, your margins are higher and you can push-market your seminars. I did videos once. I wasn't happy with the results (people said they were great tapes but no one could demonstrate skills after watching them).... so I quit selling the tapes, even though they were making a lot of money. A book will just be a compendium for the next generation to use as one of many information sources. You can send me some pointers to info (in PM) about markets and margins and I'll be happy to read the info.

Seminars I've never done as anything more than an occasional hobby. I don't need the money and if I did, there are lots of things that make more money for the amount of invested time. I like my free time too much.

Regards,

Mike Sigman

Neil Mick
02-08-2007, 11:19 AM
What chapter will that information comprise? :p Sorry. Couldn't resist. :D

"Chapter 10: Pseudo-Patriotic Virtual Pissing Matches, for Dummies." :D

Mike Sigman
02-08-2007, 11:20 AM
Ah. That explains all of the socio-political threads and sparring sessions with Neil, et al., in the "Open Discussions" forum. What chapter will that information comprise? :p Sorry. Couldn't resist. :DNah.... I just enjoy watching (OK, there's a lot of deliberate manipulation, but I've never tried to hide that fact) people and seeing what makes them work.

It's like when I was young and I met a friend of mine's brother who was "crazy". He seemed superficially normal to me and I was always trying to see what it took to establish a rapport of common sensibilities that would allow communication. In the long term, I've learned that there are more crazy people out there than I want to know about. ;)

But yeah.... there's a part of me that is fascinated at watching what people do and why they do it. And you know just as well as I do that there are some bona fide whack-jobs (that's the technical term) on this forum. One of them posted right near this post. :)

Mike

David Orange
02-08-2007, 11:42 AM
Another reason that I believe "call outs" are a bad idea.
In American society, it is illegal to respond to a verbal attack with a physical attack. That will land you in jail almost everytime;

Another important point is that "challenges" are usually prohibited by the rules of the forum. Of course, that isn't always the case, but where it is, a challenge should get you booted from the board right away.

However, that doesn't mean that, if you insult someone, he won't suddenly show up at your door. We can prevent much of this by not being insulting, but then there are people who just don't like your way of talking about things and decide to show up just because they don't like the image they get of you from what you post. And I don't think there is any way to prevent that.

David

David Orange
02-08-2007, 11:45 AM
On the other side of the fence, nobody's ever called me out, and I can't imagine someone would, I'm a nice guy.

You are, huh? I see you live in CT, pal. I can drive up there on ONE DIAPER! Don't make me put my DIAPER on!!!!! :p

(I'm keeding!!)

David

Dennis Hooker
02-08-2007, 11:51 AM
but then there are people who just don't like your way of talking about things and decide to show up just because they don't like the image they get of you from what you post. And I don't think there is any way to prevent that.

David


Now that would be a sick puppy that did that.

We should all be able to take the banter but letís leave personal attacks out. If you go so far as to start with private email to an individual don't expect that to be treated as if on an open forum. I am getting extremely uncomfortable with the personal repartee I see starting here so I will leave. Even if I am not involved I am the type of person that becomes uncomfortable reading such stuff. So Long.

Mike Sigman
02-08-2007, 11:54 AM
However, that doesn't mean that, if you insult someone, he won't suddenly show up at your door. We can prevent much of this by not being insulting, but then there are people who just don't like your way of talking about things and decide to show up just because they don't like the image they get of you from what you post. And I don't think there is any way to prevent that.Well, maybe, maybe not. Think of it like this: There is a lot of discussion about "steroid rage", the idea that one of the side-effects to weight-lifters who use roids is that the drugs induce some sort of loss of emotional control. But there are people who dispute that idea and nothing has been totally proven one way or the other.... and there's another theory. In that theory comes the idea that a lot of people who become very strong, martially capable, etc., turn into "bad people". I.e., they sort of become bullies. Because they can. And in my experiences, I've seen this happen a lot. A guy who gets a little power keeps less control on the asshole side of his personality, in too many cases.

Same thing with a keyboard. Suddenly there's this power to say all sorts of obnoxious things (often in passive-aggressive ways, too) and the a-hole side comes out.

Now the curious thing to me has been to personally meet some of these people and I've done by happenstance and/or design over the years. To make a long story short, most of them are suddenly quite polite.... but also I've never left with a different idea than this: someone who initiates asshole behavior and personal jabs on the internet is usually a person of "bad heart", no matter what 'sage' role they think they're playing, even in person. They're invariably phonies and the way they do things on the internet is a remarkably good indicator. Personally, I admit that I have an aversion to potential bullies in the martial arts... so I tend to hound them just a little bit. ;)

So that's an alternative to your comments, David.

Mike Sigman

Mike Sigman
02-08-2007, 11:58 AM
You are, huh? I see you live in CT, pal. I can drive up there on ONE DIAPER! Don't make me put my DIAPER on!!!!! :p I was kind of stunned to see the number of "political cartoons" poking fun at this obviously unhinged lady astronaut. It's one thing when something that silly and incoherent is done by a deliberative process; when it's done by a mentally/emotionally unbalanced person, the jokes are normal and fine, but for the papers to mock someone like that seems odd and misplaced to me.

Sorry for off topic.

Mike

dhebert
02-08-2007, 12:00 PM
I am always fascinated by the level interest that this forum has in this topic. I myself have enjoyed reading all the comments, so its pull is manifest. However, I am also very interested in the idea of the warrior as a servant and keeper of the boundaries. In this context I would like to think I would fight when it is my duty do so. This includes such things as defending my family from harm, protecting children from abuse, self-defense, etc. From this point of view "calling someone out" or responding to such challenges for no particular reason simply seems to be selfish and counter to the values of encouraging good human relations. There is a lot of violence in our communities and it happens all to easily. Creating a civil society is hard work.

Respectfully,

Don Hebert

Neil Mick
02-08-2007, 12:08 PM
I think "calling out" belongs in the catigory that I would call Macho bullshit. It belongs to the class of things that 15-24 year old males need to do on a regular basis to find out if they are strong, and where they belong in the pack. That being said, I've been on both sides of a calling out too many times. The sucky thing about Aikido is, I believe it's a weapon system, and it's techniques don't work well empty handed.

Yes, but also remember that some ppl do not regard Aikido as a fighting art. They use it for other things. So, are these ppl "less" of MA's than the 15-24y.o. yahoo's that regard the Art as a chest beating exercise?

Is, say, Molly Hale less of a MA because she is confined to a wheelchair, some of the time? No, of course not. Aikido can be used for all sorts of ends. Self-protection is only one way.

And, this idea of "calling someone out" to prove your "martial capability" is immature, unless it's done in a noncompetitive spirit.

Just, IMO.

Mike Sigman
02-08-2007, 12:20 PM
From this point of view "calling someone out" or responding to such challenges for no particular reason simply seems to be selfish and counter to the values of encouraging good human relations. There is a lot of violence in our communities and it happens all to easily. Creating a civil society is hard work.
Theoretically, I agree with your point, Don. However, it becomes apparent time after time that when you don't respond to "attackers" and "call them out" (in any mode of society), they simply get worse, not better. In other words, a certain amount of normalized social deterrence of bad behaviour happens when the "bad guys" understand that they can't just do things at whim.

One of the interesting things I noted over the years in both the Aikido and Taiji communities was that the "peace and love" crowd actually became almost fascist in the way they controlled what was proper to say and think. Many ideals, for instance, were ascribed to O-Sensei that he neither meant nor obeyed in his own actions. But all sorts of coincidentally trendy cultural-behavior modes were imprinted with "Aiki" this and "Aiki" that. It's a fascinating subject. We should do another thread on it somewhere.

Best.

Mike

Mike Sigman
02-08-2007, 12:31 PM
Yes, but also remember that some ppl do not regard Aikido as a fighting art. They use it for other things. I've seen this same argument in a few other instances, notably some of the Taiji factions. There's a common-sense approach where you just shrug it off and let Aikido mean whatever someone wants it to mean. "Martial art" also seems to mean whatever people want it to mean, all too often.

But let's use Taiji as an example for a minute because I can make the broader point with it. Some people teach "Tai Chi" to health and sell lessons to it. Some people teach it as a "manifestation of the Tao" and they sell it as "Tai Chi". Some people talk about the power of Tai Chi and they sell all sorts of versions and approaches. And so on. Not all of these things that are being sold as Tai Chi do what real Tai Chi can do. In fact, damned few of them do much in comparison to real Tai Chi because the "secrets" are still fairly closely held. So an element of fraud is allowed to creep in when nobody points out to a neophyte that not all Tai Chi is the real stuff. I.e., it's worthwhile to say what real Tai Chi is, what real Aikido is, and so forth. Allowing anything to be Aikido is to allow the art to dilute..... yet if someone really "loves" their art, how could they willingly allow it to dilute?

If someone is doing a martially ineffective version of Aikido, they should have the courage to step up and say so. Pretending all things called "Aikido" are equally valid is a fairly silly bit of post-modernism relevancy. (Incidentally, Neil, I'm just stump-orating, not pointing any fingers. ;) ).

Mike

Cady Goldfield
02-08-2007, 12:32 PM
Along the vein of "calling out," I remember the days of dojo/kwoon storming when I was much younger. Who'da thunk that here in the civilized US of A, martial arts people would be calling each other out from their hole-in-the-wall schools in New York, LA, Boston, elsewhere? Before I saw it with my own eyes in the dojang where I trained (a respected, "legit above-ground school"), I thought it was the stuff of Hong Kong chop-sockey movies I used to sneak out to see in Boston's Chinatown. ;)

But I think that in these cases, the purpose was as much economic and "politically" driven as it might have been ego-driven, usually on the part of the individual(s) doing the calling-out or storming. Students might dojo storm to see who is the "bestest, toughest, baddest" art and school in town, while their teachers might encourage it to win students and dollars at the bottom line. The reputation becomes a marketing tool that functions the same way in the "underworld" of MA as Yellow Pages ads do in the "legitimate" MA world.

Conversely, I've seen honorable-type martial artists send students out to storm schools that they perceived to be trashing the good reputation of an art or style. They'd send a friendly warning first that the offending school/instructor needed to clean up his act, and if that didn't work, they sent a squad to "close the school down."

Interesting stuff, but better mused about from outside the fray.

senshincenter
02-08-2007, 12:40 PM
Hi All,

My point of view is wondering why things have to be considered "jabs" at all. For me they are not. They are not because they do not have to be. If we keep seeing and feeling jabs all the time, in this forum (for example), my opinion is that such a person should start asking "why?," no longer feeling that it's just self-evident that someone is jabbing at them.

If I am pushing this point here, it is because, yes, all the times we are feeling attacked, all the times we are feeling insulted, all the put-downs we feel, all the challenges we make or sense, all the accusations of ignorance and/or lack of experience we snap out only to silence another, etc., make this site much less than it can be. Yes, I wish that were not so here. It makes the site suck - for me. Personally, I feel this is being disrespectful to Jun - because everything he has shown me of his person is that he is not of this kind. And if I would not try or support this stuff in Jun's home, I wouldn't think it's appropriate here. This is how I feel.

For me, from my own perspective, being a martial artist is not about stepping up at every challenge against our "honor" or our "skill", etc. For me, true honor and true skill are best demonstrated when they are shared, not when they out to compete in order to exist. And they can only be shared when they are not so press-able into a challenge. For me, a huge part of martial arts training is about discovering why we feel so thusly challenged and how we can stop that. Thus, I do not think we have to stop being a martial artist and/or stop seeking to be martially effective before we seek or if we seek to cultivate an ego that is not so easily threatened. A person can defend himself, defend another, make an arrest against an aggressive or resistant criminal, etc., without possessing the kind of ego that is getting "challenged" left and right. In my experience, this is the kind of martial artist I have looked up to - and am aiming toward.

I agree, what is said on this or any site does not jive with many folks that do not post or even visit. Yet, since I am of the opinion, for better or for worse, that Aikido is many things to many people, I am not surprised at that, nor does it say much to me personally. I try to have my Aikido. I don't try to have everyone else's Aikido or to have everyone else have my Aikido. This does not mean I do not have strong opinions, directions, leanings, etc. I do, but I do not seek to enforce them - that would be silly to me, counter-productive, etc. Any pressure I have accompanying these things I save for myself and for those that have sought to train under me. I assume, always, everyone here is doing the same - even when they openly say otherwise (this is because there is no real capacity to affect anyone in such manner here).

Additionally, I can see that this site has a plethora of opinions - so it's a bit of a stretch then for me to see anything in the fact that a lot of different folks - old timers or otherwise - don't agree with a lot of the different opinions readable on this site. I see only variation - and I'm fine with that though I try to be as distinct as I can with my own stuff for my own self. Sure, I enter into debates and disagreements, but if I able to remember that variation is here to stay, that that is all there is, that I have no reason nor power to change anyone's Aikido into mine, that my Aikido is not threatened by anyone's point of view, that I am not vulnerable to thoughts and words, etc., I tend to have a better chance of not taking such debates into areas away from what I consider a very integral part of martial arts training - the reconciliation of ego.

I do not see some folks as having an upper hand in posting. Aikiweb.com is not an area to be conquered for me. I assume everyone's mouse button has the same level of resistance to it. I have developed some friendships through this site and I continue to try and do that with everyone I meet up with here. Toward that end, I look to appreciate all opinions. That is possible, I feel, because I do not degrade some under others. With no one being under anyone else, for me, no one is on top either.

Some folks might find this point of view relevant to this thread. Some folks might find this point of view irrelevant. Some might say its truthful, some might say it's full of crap. In the end, it's only my opinion - a very small thing that should remain small for others here.

Kevin Leavitt
02-08-2007, 12:41 PM
Mike,

aikido is essentially martially ineffective the way it is trained. so is tai chi. It is practiced for other reasons than martial arts. Budo is an element of martial training, but it is not complete or really concerned with martial effectiveness.


It has become something else, and there is nothing wrong with that.

Ron Tisdale
02-08-2007, 01:01 PM
I really liked David V.'s post, and it is consistent with other things I've seen him write, so I'm not really surprised.

I think there are many valid points here, but I wish there was a bottom line.

For me, I think the bottom line is...treat people with respect. There was a time when if you didn't, you got beat, or else you were tough enough to stop the beating.

Ok, fine...but that time is (hopefully) passing. Are we children that we need the threat of a beating to enforce politeness?? We can't just be polite without any threat to ourselves?

I think as good as this board is (and it's one of the best out there in many ways), we all still have some growing up to do. Or humanizing. Or something.

Best,
Ron

Neil Mick
02-08-2007, 01:02 PM
Mike,

aikido is essentially martially ineffective the way it is trained.

Well, I wouldn't go that far...that's too blanket a statement.

Not far from where I live, there's a dojo that has a Thai kickboxing Sensei come in every week and give some MA pointers to the aikido dojo.

so is tai chi. It is practiced for other reasons than martial arts. Budo is an element of martial training, but it is not complete or really concerned with martial effectiveness.


It has become something else, and there is nothing wrong with that.

But yeah, a lot of aikido dojo's aren't practicing MA as a fighting art, and you're right...that's perfectly OK.

Mike Sigman
02-08-2007, 01:04 PM
aikido is essentially martially ineffective the way it is trained. so is tai chi. Well, I dunno. Think of it like this. Ueshiba was not martially ineffective. A lot of his top students were not martially ineffective. Their efforts and skills made "Aikido" a famous name. Someone using the name "Aikido" for something entirely different (despite the hakam and other trappings) is in a sense stealing from the works of others in order to glorify the different thing that they do. See the point?

Same with Taiji. Go to Chen Village (Chenjiagou) and see what happens when you state that Taiji is "martially ineffective". Some of those guys are so good you can't believe it.

What you're justifying from appears to be the idea that real Aikido is no longer around now that Ueshiba is dead and a lot of people have been allowed to dilute the art.... and those people are martially ineffective. Based on that second-generation of people, you now feel free to assert (debate-wise) that Aikido is martially ineffective so it is not open-season and anyone should be able to call anything they want as "Aikido". And a lot of people will agree with you. But not someone who does Aikido aproximating the original Aikido. The people who agree to the dilution don't really love the original Aikido (IMO, debate-wise), even though they claim to do so and probably even have a bobble-head Ueshiba doll on a table at the front of their dojo. ;)

Best.

Mike

Roman Kremianski
02-08-2007, 01:05 PM
/ignore

Mike Sigman
02-08-2007, 01:07 PM
Are we children that we need the threat of a beating to enforce politeness?? We can't just be polite without any threat to ourselves?Ron, even though they teach sex education, gender sensitivity, and have sexual harrassment laws all over the books..... you better believe that 16 year-old date out with your daughter is going to try and get into her pants. It's part of human nature and it can't be legislated or polite-ed away. ;)

Best.

Mike

Ron Tisdale
02-08-2007, 01:29 PM
Hmmm...that is possibly a valid point, and I don't even have a daughter. But I still dread the thought of my young great niece reaching dating age. yuck.

I know on some level you are right...but I also know that I don't have to live that way myself. If someone want's to be rude, I should learn to let them. Some OTHER bully will bring them back into line...but it doesn't have to be me. ;)

Best,
Ron (trying so hard to live up to these words...still failing...)

Kevin Leavitt
02-08-2007, 01:44 PM
I think that O'sensei and many of his senior students were well rounded and effective martial artist, because they had quite a bit of depth in their training. Aikido was essentially an art that rounded them out and helped them see new things and reach a higher understanding of martial arts, budo, and things such as kokyu.

I guess all I am saying is that it is possible to understand kokyu, be able to demonstrate it quite well, and yet, still be a freshman when it comes to true martial effectiveness.

If aikido were concerned with martial effectiveness, it would be practiced much, much more different as a system than the way it is commonly practiced.

It would include much of the full spectrum of all that encompasses jiujitsu, and not simply the DO that Ueshiba distilled out of the art to concentrate and focus on budo. reserving what we commonly practice in aikido for those that have demonstrated the skills necessary to move on to higher levels of training.

I am sure there are many skilled tai chi artist in China. I bet they also do not practice the way I saw the old people in Nanchung, or Guangzhou that I saw in the parks.

Kevin Leavitt
02-08-2007, 01:49 PM
No, I don't think that people have diluted the art at all Mike.

Ueshiba simply distilled the points out of the SU arts that he felt represented what he felt was necessary to teach his philosophy.

He basically said, I have done the hard work so you don't have to!

Nothing wrong with that at all, heck it must be worth something if we have all these people around the world practicing it.

I think it is not so much about dillution, but about a lack of understanding among people that are essentially novices when it comes to understanding martial arts as a whole.

Most of us today did not grow up in a martial culture so it is hard for us to interpret and understand much of what is beng taught. We tend to over generalize and to mis label what is being taught.

I think this is where we end up with trying to transmit the concept of effectiveness and aliveness onto the art, when it has been intentionally filtered out by Ueshiba to help people improve in the essence of Budo.

It is not so much about dillution, but misunderstanding concerrning budo.

Mike Sigman
02-08-2007, 02:02 PM
I guess all I am saying is that it is possible to understand kokyu, be able to demonstrate it quite well, and yet, still be a freshman when it comes to true martial effectiveness. Well that's true, but I was speaking more to the overall art. [/QUOTE] If aikido were concerned with martial effectiveness, it would be practiced much, much more different as a system than the way it is commonly practiced.[/QUOTE] True, but Aikido has been allowed to deteriorate down to some of the abysmal levels you see today. And you can't say "your Aikido sucks" because too many of the Aikidoists that have been allowed to develop and teach have been allowed to say "anything is Aikido" for too long. Stan Pranin has a number of nice interviews of Aikido experts that contradict the idea that anything is acceptable as Aikido..... yet here is a major western forum where the idea "Aikido is what you want it to be" is considered a "valid view". It supports the dilution process.I am sure there are many skilled tai chi artist in China. I bet they also do not practice the way I saw the old people in Nanchung, or Guangzhou that I saw in the parks.Slightly different case, but it could be argued that the "for health" crowd represents a dilution of the original famous Taiji.... which got its fame from being an extremely powerful martial art.

Actually, it wouldn't be hard to convert some version of Aikido into a "health and strength" version, come to think of it. However, to be honest, it would have to clarify that it was a "health and strength variant" of Aikido... it couldn't claim to really be Aikido without making an oblique insult to O-Sensei and all he worked for, IMO.

Regards,

Mike

Kevin Leavitt
02-08-2007, 02:21 PM
Maybe I simply haven't been exposed to what I would consider bad aikido. I do belong to a great organization with Shihans like Saotome Sensei and Ikeda Sensei that have oversight.

So, maybe I can't fathom or understand it.

I suppose "sucks" is a realitive term.

I mean when I sparred my first MMA/BJJ guy NHB a couple of years ago with my aikido background..yea, I would say that I sucked and I suppose you could draw a very clear conclusion that aikido sucks from that perspective. Frankly I would agree with you in this case!

I am not sure, however, how you can judge dillution of aikido etc.

I'd probably say from an ASU perspective that KI Aikido sucked because they have filtered out a bunch of things that we would consider to be salient points of tactical timing and effectiveness in order to reach a deeper understanding of KI. They might say ASU sucks because we are too hard in our approach to really understand the essence of KI.

An iaido or kendo expert might say that Aikido sword work sucked from an iaido perspective as it is not tactically effective in training sword work from a iaido/kendo perspective.

again, I think it is all a matter of perspective. I don't train aikido to win in BJJ, nor do I train in BJJ to understand aikido. However there are elements in both systems that help me better understand myself and what I am learning in both arts.

If aikido helps someone understand a concept that they are trying to better understand, then they have accomplished what they came to the art to understand.

If the leaders of aikido feel that they are overall successful in helping people understand peace, harmony, and the nature of conflict through the methods that we employ to do these things, then they are being successful.

I don't think there is anyone person out there that can categorically judge the art or various subsets of the art as lacking or sucking.

From the years I have been reading your post, it seems to me that you have discovered somethings that you feel are very valuable and might be a critical piece to aikido or helping those who study aikido better understand some core concepts. I applaud that and appreciate your eagerness and williness to share that knowledge with the community. I hope someday to catch up with you and train.

To be honest too...I feel I have learned a few things that I think aikidoka could benefit from in my studies of grappling and MMA, and I will share them with anyone that wants to work with me!

I would though not say that because I come at aikido or martial effectiveness from a different perspective and judgement of how to train than many or most in aikido that the art is somehow lacking or been diluted.

Hope this makes sense!

I mean it does suck if you are training in it for the wrong reasons and you are not gettng out of it what you think you should. However, that is a personal judgement based on your own values and judgements that apply to you.

Mike Sigman
02-08-2007, 02:39 PM
Maybe I simply haven't been exposed to what I would consider bad aikido. I do belong to a great organization with Shihans like Saotome Sensei and Ikeda Sensei that have oversight.

So, maybe I can't fathom or understand it.

I suppose "sucks" is a realitive term. "Sucks" is indeed a relative term, but I in now way used it, just to clarify. And for god's sake be careful or you'll get the thread diverted to some of the horrible Aikido we've all seen. ;) I'd probably say from an ASU perspective that KI Aikido sucked because they have filtered out a bunch of things that we would consider to be salient points of tactical timing and effectiveness in order to reach a deeper understanding of KI. They might say ASU sucks because we are too hard in our approach to really understand the essence of KI. See.... a mature observation. You saw it first right here on AikiWeb, Folks. Kevin, you are now banned from list. :D From the years I have been reading your post, it seems to me that you have discovered somethings that you feel are very valuable and might be a critical piece to aikido or helping those who study aikido better understand some core concepts. I applaud that and appreciate your eagerness and williness to share that knowledge with the community. I hope someday to catch up with you and train.

To be honest too...I feel I have learned a few things that I think aikidoka could benefit from in my studies of grappling and MMA, and I will share them with anyone that wants to work with me!

I would though not say that because I come at aikido or martial effectiveness from a different perspective and judgement of how to train than many or most in aikido that the art is somehow lacking or been diluted.Well, I don't fully agree. I have not "discovered" anything.... I "learned how to do something" that is in traditional Aikido and all Asian martial arts and which is very hard to get useable information about. That is quite different from skills and techniques which might benefit Aikido by the addition of them. Heck, I know some cute things that probably BJJ, Aikido, Karate, etc., could all benefit from adding to the curricula (don't we all?).... but that's a different topic entirely from a basic concept that has gone missing. ;)

Best.

Mike

Avery Jenkins
02-08-2007, 02:46 PM
yet here is a major western forum where the idea "Aikido is what you want it to be" is considered a "valid view". It supports the dilution process

Mike, I think you need to post less and listen more, or alternatively, take the colored glasses off. You mistake the capacity of the individual to derive multiple benefits from a single, albeit complex, activity. I suppose Aikido is what you want it to be (martial training, spiritual development, fitness), but from that standpoint, so is drinking a beer, so what's the point; it's rather silly to go about stamping your feet about it.

The variety of threads represent the differing emphasis individuals have at different points in their training. Over the past 6 years on the forum, I have also seen the same individuals change their emphasis, which is likely to be representative of their development in the art, a much more tenable hypothesis than the dilution of the entire 80-year-old art (give or take a few years) during little more than half a decade.

And you have my permission to quote me in your book. Go ahead, I know you want to...

Avery

Kevin Leavitt
02-08-2007, 03:06 PM
Thanks for the clarification Mike.

When I said discovery...I really meant self discovery...not to imply that you were implying that you discovered something new!

Mike Sigman
02-08-2007, 03:36 PM
Mike, I think you need to post less and listen more, or alternatively, take the colored glasses off. Just debate the point, Avery; don't make gratuitous comments. You mistake the capacity of the individual to derive multiple benefits from a single, albeit complex, activity. I see. So if someone uses a piano as a boat, they are "playing the piano". I hope you see the logical futility of your argument. The logical error you're making is based on the argument that goes like "All ways of doing X are valid and there is no such thing as a wrong way". If that is true, then Aikido is also a nuclear explosion, depending on whatever whimsical definition you want to apply.

Mike

gdandscompserv
02-08-2007, 03:59 PM
If that is true, then Aikido is also a nuclear explosion
Only if you grab Arikawa sensei, or so I've heard. :D

ChrisHein
02-08-2007, 05:25 PM
It's very telling about the Aikido community that this thread took off the way it did. When I went to work this morning there was only one page. Now ther are 3!

Mike I don't know how you get time to train with all the posting you do.

Mike Sigman
02-08-2007, 05:43 PM
Mike I don't know how you get time to train with all the posting you do.Don't worry, there's a train that goes right by my house (across the river, actually), so train time is easy.

Actually, I got about 2.5 hours of workout in today, not to mention a fair amount of writing. The little sound goes off telling me when things come in on the computer, I switch screens and knock off a reply if I feel like it, and continue on with my other writing. Not a problem. ;)

I think this is a necessary thread, for a change, BTW. The "role-playing" aspect of any martial art needs to be faced squarely.

Best.

Mike

statisticool
02-08-2007, 06:42 PM
Notice that I try to stick to the issues, more or less,


I'll vote for "less".


If you have personal remarks (and you've accumulated a few by now) do what most others do and keep them to yourself.


Does anybody else think that it doesn't make much of a point to tell somebody to keep personal insults to themself after one rattles out personal insults at that person for for several paragraphs?

statisticool
02-08-2007, 06:50 PM
Dear lord. What kind of book are you writing that the random musings of otherwise bored aikidoka could possibly be a stimulant?

My suggestion is: Use lots of color pictures. That can compensate for a lot of shortcomings.

Avery

My suggestions are:

1) make sure well-known expert MAs read and critique your book before you publish

2) try to not self publish

3) try to get it reviewed in leading MA mags

4) actually have references that others can find, not just 'some Chinese guy', 'some book', type of stuff

5) try to not use too many words in quotes like "grounding", etc. and/or use only accepted scientific terms from a physics class, for example.

That's a short list.

statisticool
02-08-2007, 06:52 PM
And you know just as well as I do that there are some bona fide whack-jobs (that's the technical term) on this forum. One of them posted right near this post. :)


Some are probably wondering if your own post counts as "near this post" ?

statisticool
02-08-2007, 06:55 PM
Well, I wouldn't go that far...that's too blanket a statement.

Not far from where I live, there's a dojo that has a Thai kickboxing Sensei come in every week and give some MA pointers to the aikido dojo.


I agree Neil. There's a place a few miles away from me that I visited where it was clear to any observer that their techniques and mode of practicing were very martial.

Of course, I've seen others that were basically kiddie classes, with no martial anything; more like a day care. :P

I believe the first category to be the norm, however.

Cady Goldfield
02-08-2007, 07:00 PM
Sorry to be off topic, but if an aikido dojo incorporates kickboxing into its practice, doesn't that make it not aikido anymore, but a form of MMA?

Avery Jenkins
02-08-2007, 08:06 PM
Sorry to be off topic, but if an aikido dojo incorporates kickboxing into its practice, doesn't that make it not aikido anymore, but a form of MMA?

Nope, it's called "playing the piano." At least in Mikey's world.

Avery

Mike Sigman
02-08-2007, 08:32 PM
Sorry to be off topic, but if an aikido dojo incorporates kickboxing into its practice, doesn't that make it not aikido anymore, but a form of MMA?
Nope, it's called "playing the piano." At least in Mikey's world.Nah.... it's called "Ueshiba was too dumb to include kickboxing into Aikido" in Avery's world. It's not "Mikey's" fault, it's OOOoooosheeeba's fault. Ask name-player Avery.

Actually, I just looked back at Avery's last posts. It's fairly obvious that he's taking shots and is used to getting away with it. Fairly low-life, and obviously trying to pick at fight, although not in the league as Justin Smith. Whaddya think, Ricky? This is the kind of guy that makes almost all other martial artists in other disciplines snicker about the art you claim to value. Think someone like Avery should be representing you and Ueshiba's art? In fact, do you think Avery is representative of what you think an Aikidoist should be, as opposed to the people you try to display in your sig? Do you think anyone should say something to clowns like Avery, or should they be allowed to represent what Ueshiba spent his life perfecting? Makes a good debate, doesn't it? See if you can deal with the issue itself and give it a clinical dissection. Pretend I'm the Ghost of Ueshiba and argue to me how Avery is representative of Aikido. ;)

Mike

gdandscompserv
02-08-2007, 09:24 PM
Mike,
I think a forum is a poor place to attempt identifying representatives of aikido.
I learned aikido in one dojo, from one sensei, in the most beautiful place in the world. My 'representative' of aikido is Iwao Yamaguchi. Everyone's aikido experience is different. I had the very highest quality aikido, and aikidoka at my doorstep for 8 magnificent years.
Sadly, that is gone for me so I muddle around practicing and teaching the things I learned. I don't know what else to do.

Now, what was that issue you wanted me to dissect again?
Oh yeah,
Pretend I'm the Ghost of Ueshiba
You sure don't look like him. (http://www.flickr.com/photos/drift-words/1446037/) ;)

raul rodrigo
02-08-2007, 09:45 PM
this thread is going nowhere.

gdandscompserv
02-08-2007, 10:05 PM
this thread is going nowhere.
I don't know about that. It got me reading this. (http://www.iay.org.uk/internal-strength/peng-index.htm)
I kinda like it. :D

akiy
02-08-2007, 10:58 PM
Thread closed due to, yet once again, too many attacks of a personal nature.

Can we please, please, please try to restrain ourselves in the future?

-- Jun