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frankdraper
04-21-2008, 11:25 AM
I stumbled across this site while surfing the net and reading The Art Of Peace. I have studied various Martial Arts, over the years and continue to do so. Karate for 8yrs,Kempo 3yrs,BJJ 2 yr, MAA 2yrs and counting and nowTKD mostly for the high flying kicks. Aikido is what keeps coming back to me either through books or friends. I am fortunate to life just an hour or so from a Shinto Temple in Granite Falls Wa, and have visited it a few times. With my work load and time or lack of its hard to commit and be there twice a week. I do hope to visit again soon and or find another Dojo in Bellingham Wa. I am very aware of Peace as I am a practising Hare Krishna, with strong Christian and Buddhist belief's. Hence the mixed up part, and have my very extreme parents to thank for that, and I do thank them. My question is would an Aikido instructor, take me on as a student. Would he or she, do some light sparing so I could face an Aikido person, not for harm or fame just to see and feel the difference in a practical application. I don't claim to be anything but a martial arts student and have no Black Belt in any art(BROWNS YES). I am 42 and slim to med.built. No real threat to anyone. Should I even search and seek out a Sensei in Aikido for this experience? Or leave it alone? I have seen many videos and read many books on the founder of Aikido the late but always present Morihei Ueshiba. Thanks for your time and any input will be helpful. Hare Krishna Hare Rama Chant and be Happy!!

Frank Draper

Kevin Leavitt
04-21-2008, 11:37 AM
You might want to consult Barrish Sensei from what you wrote. He is a reverend for the Shrine and an Aikidoka. From what it sounds like he is probably the guy you need to talk to and seek advice from.

Good luck!

Ron Tisdale
04-21-2008, 11:46 AM
Why do you need to "face" anyone? Why not just go by a school and ask if you might join a class or two, and see how you like it?

I know a certain san dan in aikido who was ranked in shodokan, and he tried your method. Didn't feel too good. D: Didn't exactly float the teacher's boat either. :D

Just show up and train. If you like it, keep going. If you don't, step.

Best,
Ron

frankdraper
04-21-2008, 12:10 PM
Thank you sir for your input, I also am from Va. Born in Newport News, lived all over. Have a wonderful day.

frankdraper
04-21-2008, 12:23 PM
Maybe face was to harsh, while I try to walk a path of Peace, others we encounter are not there yet. Some will be lead, others will follow, even a four legged cow stumbles and falls at times, what to think of my two legs. Thats why I have learned to roll right, get up with life and continue. While I hope my intelligence is higher than the cow, some days wonder. Thanks for your input. Will take your advice and search.

Chris Parkerson
04-23-2008, 06:40 AM
Maybe face was to harsh, while I try to walk a path of Peace, others we encounter are not there yet. Some will be lead, others will follow, even a four legged cow stumbles and falls at times, what to think of my two legs.

I feel your pain good buddy. Conflicting cultures and symbols. Crossroads with signs pointing in opposite directions. Bakhti yoga is about "love and devotional service" as taught by A. C. Bakhtivedanta (Prabuhpad). Christianity, in today's American culture is less mystical, more dualistic ( focussing on righ/wrong; good/bad; evil/sanctified) and apocalyptic. Buddhism just lets it be. How to blend the conflict without losing your footing? The western mind wants to say, either this is right and that is wrong or vice versa. The ISKON mind says , just transcend it all and chant the Upanishads. Om purnam adaha purnam idam. The buddhist mind tosses any visions of angels or Gopis out the door. Focus on the void and accept what is.

In martial arts, the messages can be mixed as well. In kenpi, there is no right or wrong....only effect. Karate is today a mishmash of many inherited philosophies. Aikido most often avoids freeform sparring, preferring to train in more controlled paths.

You are walking the path of Gurdyiev. It is easy to step in cultural and doctrinal potholes. Be the sacred cow that allows everyone their space in the karmic cycle. Aikido is a wonderful place for those who gather there and play by its cultural and philosophical rules.

Kevin Leavitt
04-23-2008, 10:35 AM
You bring up some very good points Chris, not sure if this is what you intended, but....

Stereotypes abound if we only look at the philosophies you mention superficially.

I think whatever your path, it requires that you look introspectively to discover you and your relationship to the world.

Each individual will have a different spin on the same thing, therefore it is possible to have a mishmash of philosophies in everything we do, organized religion, Martial arts, and philosophy.

It is when we begin to stereotype and say "I know", or "the book says"...we stop thinking and things become fundamental.

Once this happens, you cease to "wake up" and will stay asleep as Gurdjieff would say.

Tharis
04-23-2008, 12:14 PM
I feel your pain good buddy. Conflicting cultures and symbols. Crossroads with signs pointing in opposite directions. Bakhti yoga is about "love and devotional service" as taught by A. C. Bakhtivedanta (Prabuhpad). Christianity, in today's American culture is less mystical, more dualistic ( focussing on righ/wrong; good/bad; evil/sanctified) and apocalyptic. Buddhism just lets it be. How to blend the conflict without losing your footing? The western mind wants to say, either this is right and that is wrong or vice versa. The ISKON mind says , just transcend it all and chant the Upanishads. Om purnam adaha purnam idam. The buddhist mind tosses any visions of angels or Gopis out the door. Focus on the void and accept what is.(FWIW, as a Methodist Seminarian, I will admit to having a definite horse in htis race. That said...)

I think Christianity places a huge emphasis on "love and devotional service." Even if you get into the brutally dualistic narrative about "sheep and goats," the mark of the sheep is that they care for the least among them, those who the "goats" ignore. Love God, love your neighbor. If you truly want to be great, set yourself at the lowest position at the table and serve. Blessed are the meek, etc.

Not to knock respected yogis that reach the same basic conclusion, but I don't think they have a monopoly on holy ethics anymore than Christianity does.

As for Buddhism, the notion that you have to discard all of those "angels and Gopis" seems to imply that they are wrong and this "void and accept what is" is a right thing. It puts the good/evil dichotomy in a different trajectory, perhaps, but I don't think they've really discarded it. They just think that being above good versus evil is fundamentally good.

As for American Christianity, it's a much more mixed bag of nuts than I think your example implies (and the same may be true of other religions, though I don't know them as intimately). There are definitely modern Christian mystics (Bonhoeffer, Tillich, and others), and I don't think it gets more transcendent than the full incarnation of God into and through humanity. To me, notions of prevenient, justifying, and sanctifying grace are very transcendent sorts of concept. With God, whatever happens, it will be for the greater good.

I agree that there's a lot of wrestling that goes on for folks who receive multiple traditions (and I do...I sincerely hope not to be disrespectful of other traditions even though I have a natural desire to speak through and for my own), but I don't know that it's necessarily so hard as you seem to portray.

Chris Parkerson
04-23-2008, 12:15 PM
Hi Ken,

Now I am off my I-phone and can google and spell check as well as respond. I-phones just cannot multitask.

My script to Frank was more pastoral than theological or as an exegete. Perhaps more easily said, "when in Rome, do as the Romans do."

But as a matter of history, I did drop out of high school to live with the Hare Krishnas. I left my body often during devotions, visited other planets, danced with the Gopis. Quite exhilirating. Little sleep, early morning ceremonies around the Tulsi plant, feeding it with a silver spoonful of water. Hi starch vegetarian food etc. I can still sing my chants, even to country music tunes.

My uncle "rescued me" and put me in a Jesuit College Preparatory in Dallas.

As far as fundamentalism goes, this is a social and even a political phenomenon as much as a theological or religious one. ISKON is a fundamentalist form of Hinduism. And I am sure that most of the outback cultures that Gurdjieff visited were fundamentalist in nature as well. Perhaps many of our Aikido dojos are fundamentalist in perspective (one leader who must be followed without question and be interpreted literally, having the only truth, etc.)

I am more in tune to Process Theology. My favorite teacher in seminary was Gibson Winter. He blended semiotics with Wittgenstein, Gadamer and a confessional Reformed Presbyterian faith. I also studied with Richard Shaull - the first inclings of a theology of revolution (predating Gustavo Gutierez's Roman Catholic form of Liberation Theology by a couple of years). U-Shaull got kicked out of Brazil for his rantings. And yes, I took a class from Cornell West as well - great guy. For my senior thesis, I went to Nicaragua (1983) to meet Ernesto Cardinal and see first hand what Daniel Ortega meant to the Nicaraguan evangelicals and catholics.

In this sense, I was a theological Gurdjieff.

Regards,

Chris Parkerson
B.A. Christian Education/Biblical Literature, Point Loma Nazarene University
M.A. Church History, Point Loma Nazarene University
M. Divinity: Princeton Theological Seminary

Tharis
04-23-2008, 12:24 PM
Nice credentials. I'll grab my coat...

And going back to the OP, I think this may be somewhat akin to what happens when the MMA practitioner walks up to sixth dan and "challenges" him. :D Whatever else happens, it'll be interesting.

Chris Parkerson
04-23-2008, 01:33 PM
Nice credentials. I'll grab my coat...

And going back to the OP, I think this may be somewhat akin to what happens when the MMA practitioner walks up to sixth dan and "challenges" him. :D Whatever else happens, it'll be interesting.

For me, it is n ot really a competition or a race,but horses are cool. Perhaps Frank, Kevin, you and I could ride a common path for a while and smell a few flowers.

One of the greatest heretics was Origen. While he saw the sufferings of the early church fathers and suffered himself at the hands of Rome, he had the audacity to say the Love trumped intellectual doctrine. Oh my God, they (The Roman Church) killed Kenny.(Origen's theology became heterodoxy).

Harvey Cox in the 1960's challenged us with his book "The Secular City". He was saying the same thing. Get out of your box (the chapel) and get out among the masses.

My pathy is really about loving folks (Origen) as I meander along the way (Cox). My Process is to accept that words and intellect too often get in the way of effective communications. Deep down, most of us just want the same thing-harmony and peace. Aikido is a great place to find this harmony in motion and is a door (one of many) to finding peace.

Tharis
04-23-2008, 02:15 PM
For me, it is n ot really a competition or a race,but horses are cool. Perhaps Frank, Kevin, you and I could ride a common path for a while and smell a few flowers.

One of the greatest heretics was Origen. While he saw the sufferings of the early church fathers and suffered himself at the hands of Rome, he had the audacity to say the Love trumped intellectual doctrine. Oh my God, they (The Roman Church) killed Kenny.(Origen's theology became heterodoxy).

Harvey Cox in the 1960's challenged us with his book "The Secular City". He was saying the same thing. Get out of your box (the chapel) and get out among the masses.

My pathy is really about loving folks (Origen) as I meander along the way (Cox). My Process is to accept that words and intellect too often get in the way of effective communications. Deep down, most of us just want the same thing-harmony and peace. Aikido is a great place to find this harmony in motion and is a door (one of many) to finding peace.I was told in History I that the question of whether or not Origen was a heretic depended on who you asked and at what point in history. Personally, I kind of liked the guy.

Strongly agreed about getting out of the box. Frankly, I think of the church spends any more time in its little socially constructed box said box will turn, for better or worse, into a coffin. Fortunately, survival can be a pretty forceful imperative.

And yeah. Aikido is great for this kind of thing.

Chris Parkerson
04-23-2008, 02:28 PM
My greatest concern is what I would call Armageddonomics.

Go ahead Punk, make my Armageddon.

Three big players playing this same fiddle.

Kevin Leavitt
04-23-2008, 02:31 PM
Thomas wrote:

As for Buddhism, the notion that you have to discard all of those "angels and Gopis" seems to imply that they are wrong and this "void and accept what is" is a right thing. It puts the good/evil dichotomy in a different trajectory, perhaps, but I don't think they've really discarded it. They just think that being above good versus evil is fundamentally good.


I am not much of a theologian really, never been to any schools or done much indepth study on the breadth of the subject. I do try to follow and have an affinity for buddhism though, and it does list it as my religion on my dog tags...so that is the extent of my qualifications...so take my comments for what they are worth....

I don't think buddhism for many really discards the notion of angels, at least as an allegory. Tibetan Buddhism in particular, as you guys know, has many of the same concepts within the various realms or stages of life from "below earth", "on earth", and "above earth".

Spiritually I think angels or the concept of angels, deities etc are important to mankind as we grapple with the concept of "I".

People will reach varying degrees of understanding, relationships, symbology, and meaning to the same basic phenomena.

This is true, as is pointed out, in Aikido to.

I agree that there's a lot of wrestling that goes on for folks who receive multiple traditions (and I do...I sincerely hope not to be disrespectful of other traditions even though I have a natural desire to speak through and for my own), but I don't know that it's necessarily so hard as you seem to portray.

I think wrestling is good, conflict is good...it can be healthy. What is not healthy is no pain, no suffering...or at least that which is born out of delusion. (I also have a natural desire to speak through my own :)).

I think also that pain and suffering can be unhealthy as well. Anything taken to an extreme can be bad.

What is bad is ignoring it, pretending it is not there.

I think Aikido is about this process.

And I agree, no one has a monopoly on this process. I think the same endstate can be reached through many paths, interpretations, and perspectives of God.

Would you all agree to the fact that in the end that whatever it is, it must be unified, not duality, but One? This is being discussed on another thread, but salient to the subject.

Good discussion. Thanks

Single traditions or limited exposure might seem safe and comfortable, but is it always? maybe, maybe not..it is not for me to say.

Kevin Leavitt
04-23-2008, 02:38 PM
Thomas wrote:

Strongly agreed about getting out of the box. Frankly, I think of the church spends any more time in its little socially constructed box said box will turn, for better or worse, into a coffin. Fortunately, survival can be a pretty forceful imperative.

I agree. Same critcism is made concerning many practices of buddhism as well. buddhism practice by nature can be very personal as it should, however, it tends to not extend outward.

I like engaged Buddhism as a concept as it reaches outwards to help others without expectation of return.

The key to any religion,I think, is to extend outward without expectation, or with our an agenda other than to do good (Altruism).

Extend outward...hmmmmm makes me think of.....

Erick Mead
04-23-2008, 02:49 PM
... emphasis on "love and devotional service." ... Not to knock respected yogis that reach the same basic conclusion, but I don't think they have a monopoly on holy ethics anymore than Christianity does. Whether planted by Francis Xavier or the fruit of some other semina verbi or an indigenous revelation in Japan, the self-conscious parallels between Christianity and O Sensei's take on Shinto and its Oomoto offshoot deserve long contemplation and study by any one who takes both Aikido and Christianity seriously. Rich fare.

There are definitely modern Christian mystics (Bonhoeffer, Tillich, and others)... Less modernly but accessible without much linguistic divide are the contemplative Julian of Norwich and the anonymous author of The Cloud of Unknowing. Between them they are the most sublime mystics in the English language. Julian famously said that "... All shall be well, and all shall be well, and all manner of thing shall be well."

I agree that there's a lot of wrestling that goes on for folks who receive multiple traditions (and I do...I sincerely hope not to be disrespectful of other traditions even though I have a natural desire to speak through and for my own)...
I take a page from Paul -- and the unknown god. In whatever circumstance I find people's interest and devotion, even in very harmful things, there, in some measure, is found what they seek but do not know. And for them at that time, perhaps it is nowhere else to be found -- until they do know it -- and then, of course, they may find it wherever they may look for it. From a miniscule seed of truth in a mountain of doubtful excrement grows a mighty tree of hope. You may not find that seed right off, but if you tend the manure pile patiently -- the tree will find you.

A most moving image of this in a sermon struck me as directly exemplified in a slightly different way in the movie Castaway. Watch the movie. The homily spoke of the castaway so lost to himself that he was preparing to commit suicide that very day, when he spies a bottle on the beach and finds a message in it -- saying only this:

"I know you are lost. I will find you. I am coming."

Chris Parkerson
04-23-2008, 03:05 PM
I like engaged Buddhism as a concept as it reaches outwards to help others without expectation of return.

The key to any religion,I think, is to extend outward without expectation, or with our an agenda other than to do good (Altruism).

Extend outward...hmmmmm makes me think of.....

I respect your depth (without degree yet fully engaged in introspection and devotion to duty). I can also respect the engagement of the monks in Myanmar and the Rimpoches of Tibet.

My own current engagement comes from a few visions I have had that relate to upcoming events (potentialities - if you prefer). A regional Middle East war is not the way unless we are ready for massive (global) death, destruction, famine and pestilence. The four horsemen are a powerful metaphor that will radically change Israel, Iran, Europe and the U.S. I pray for the U.S. Navy in the Strait of Hormouz, theirs is a very scary future.

Tharis
04-23-2008, 03:29 PM
My greatest concern is what I would call Armageddonomics.

Go ahead Punk, make my Armageddon.

Three big players playing this same fiddle.Yeah. That's not really what we'd call a healthy eschatology, to put it mildly.

Tharis
04-23-2008, 03:47 PM
Thomas wrote:

I agree. Same critcism is made concerning many practices of buddhism as well. buddhism practice by nature can be very personal as it should, however, it tends to not extend outward.

I like engaged Buddhism as a concept as it reaches outwards to help others without expectation of return.

The key to any religion,I think, is to extend outward without expectation, or with our an agenda other than to do good (Altruism).

Extend outward...hmmmmm makes me think of.....

Thomas wrote:

I am not much of a theologian really, never been to any schools or done much indepth study on the breadth of the subject. I do try to follow and have an affinity for buddhism though, and it does list it as my religion on my dog tags...so that is the extent of my qualifications...so take my comments for what they are worth....

I don't think buddhism for many really discards the notion of angels, at least as an allegory. Tibetan Buddhism in particular, as you guys know, has many of the same concepts within the various realms or stages of life from "below earth", "on earth", and "above earth".

Spiritually I think angels or the concept of angels, deities etc are important to mankind as we grapple with the concept of "I".

People will reach varying degrees of understanding, relationships, symbology, and meaning to the same basic phenomena.

This is true, as is pointed out, in Aikido to.

I think wrestling is good, conflict is good...it can be healthy. What is not healthy is no pain, no suffering...or at least that which is born out of delusion. (I also have a natural desire to speak through my own :)).

I think also that pain and suffering can be unhealthy as well. Anything taken to an extreme can be bad.

What is bad is ignoring it, pretending it is not there.

I think Aikido is about this process.

And I agree, no one has a monopoly on this process. I think the same endstate can be reached through many paths, interpretations, and perspectives of God.

Would you all agree to the fact that in the end that whatever it is, it must be unified, not duality, but One? This is being discussed on another thread, but salient to the subject.

Good discussion. Thanks

Single traditions or limited exposure might seem safe and comfortable, but is it always? maybe, maybe not..it is not for me to say.Eh, if I were to belt myself on theology, I'm probably like one of those 4th kyus who knows just enough to get himself into serious trouble. That said...

Yeah, reaching out and doing good seems to be the bread and butter of most organized religions. Doctrine can be fun to play with, but ultimately it's recognized by what it produces. If the fruits are bitter, why cultivate the vine?

I've picked up a lot from Buddhism. Really, as far as religious practice goes, I'm kind of a thief. If I see something that appears to have value and doesn't clash too much with what I do or believe, I have little fear of trying it. Really, I think, when the church or temple grows healthily, that's how it has done so. While I wouldn't call myself a Zen Buddhist, some of my approaches to prayer and meditation are very similar. At the same time, I'd be lying if I said I was more than an amateur at zazen.

I think a lot of modern Christians also read the angels and spirits stuff as allegory. Some people think that's basically the same as saying they don't exist. I tend to ride the fence on that one, somewhere between mere symbolism and holy mystery.

I don't think Protestant Christianity has stages (and the Catholics basically have one big in-between, as far as I can tell). Generally, you either are or you aren't. I think there's a wariness of spiritual elitism behind that.

And pain can be good, and pain can be bad, and sometimes it can be both. Extremism tends to be unhealthy, but is there such a thing as extreme moderation?

I think that ultimately reality is monotheistic, that there is an essential oneness about things.

Erick Mead
04-23-2008, 04:20 PM
Really, as far as religious practice goes, I'm kind of a thief. If I see something that appears to have value and doesn't clash too much with what I do or believe, I have little fear of trying it. You are in excellent company. "All that is true, by whomsoever it has been said, is from the Holy Spirit."
St. Ambrose, commentary to 1 Cor. 12:4-6 (This was also quoted by St. Thomas Aquinas.)

And pain can be good, and pain can be bad, and sometimes it can be both. ... I think that ultimately reality is monotheistic, that there is an essential oneness about things.And still in good company:

I have been told there is only one Creator in this world. I assimilate myself with this Creator. Always. Then I perform ascetic practices every morning and evening. I don't mean pouring water over my head. I pray to the eastern sky for harmony, salute all creation and divine spirit. I would like to live a good life as a man and a Japanese. Then when I look back, I would like to send a message to everyone, although I don't know if it is possible, and pray for the peace of world.

Kevin Leavitt
04-23-2008, 04:58 PM
Thomas wrote:

While I wouldn't call myself a Zen Buddhist, some of my approaches to prayer and meditation are very similar. At the same time, I'd be lying if I said I was more than an amateur at zazen.

From my on philosophical standpoint, I don't think you can "BE" a Zen Buddhist...practice Zen Buddhism, yes, but "BE" it is an oddity to me philosophically as much of the whole practice centers around letting go of attachments!

Along the same lines, I don't think you can "BE" a Christian either. You can practice the tenants of Christianity, follow the path, bible, what not, but you ARE a human.

So, why cannot the various paths be followed together? That is how I see it!

I think trying to BE something that we are not is what causes much of the trouble in the world.

Aikibu
04-23-2008, 05:39 PM
Thomas wrote:

From my on philosophical standpoint, I don't think you can "BE" a Zen Buddhist...practice Zen Buddhism, yes, but "BE" it is an oddity to me philosophically as much of the whole practice centers around letting go of attachments!

Along the same lines, I don't think you can "BE" a Christian either. You can practice the tenants of Christianity, follow the path, bible, what not, but you ARE a human.

So, why cannot the various paths be followed together? That is how I see it!

I think trying to BE something that we are not is what causes much of the trouble in the world.

To put it simply...

"DO BE DO BE DO!" Frank Sinatra

William Hazen

Chris Parkerson
04-23-2008, 06:43 PM
Yeah, reaching out and doing good seems to be the bread and butter of most organized religions. Doctrine can be fun to play with, but ultimately it's recognized by what it produces. If the fruits are bitter, why cultivate the vine? QUOTE]

I like to call this praxis. It blends the issue between "to be is to do" and "to do is to be". Most importantly, it challenges tghe arm chair philosophers to act rather than just think great thoughts.

[QUOTE]If I see something that appears to have value and doesn't clash too much with what I do or believe, I have little fear of trying it.

Herein lies Frank's rub. It is really impossible to throw out ontology, teleology and epistemology. Deep inside our subconscious we know that there is a conflict in the building blocks of each faith we incorporate. There is a place for academic thought or we so popularize the great faiths that we lose their distinctive qualities. We can end up fragmented and confused in MMA.

I don't think Protestant Christianity has stages (and the Catholics basically have one big in-between, as far as I can tell). Generally, you either are or you aren't.

There seems to me to be a historiccal tension between being "in Christ" or rather To Be a Christian. Best seen in the tension between Armenian/Weslayans and their older brother John Calvin.

The Calvinist says you are saved from sin with one confession "eternal security" and transformed by confessional faith.
But of course, some do not act it and therefore, Calvinists wonder if the person really made the confession for real - and being luke warm in confession, will be spewed out of God's mouth.

The Weslayan says you can fall from grace through sin. Thus the weekly sawdust trail has believers reconfessing (internal security).
Of course, sin is defined as a conscious act against a known law of God. At Point Loma Nazarene, I met many folks (foul in action and thought) who claimed that they had not sinned in years, they only made mistakes. They either acted unconsciously or they simply did not know about the law they broke.

Either way, that historical tension is there and Kevin's words are profound as the argument. Can I be a Christian or just practice Christianity???

Tharis
04-24-2008, 09:17 AM
=Chris Parkerson;204304][QUOTE=Thomas Harris;204287]Yeah, reaching out and doing good seems to be the bread and butter of most organized religions. Doctrine can be fun to play with, but ultimately it's recognized by what it produces. If the fruits are bitter, why cultivate the vine? [QUOTE]

I like to call this praxis. It blends the issue between "to be is to do" and "to do is to be". Most importantly, it challenges the arm chair philosophers to act rather than just think great thoughts.

Herein lies Frank's rub. It is really impossible to throw out ontology, teleology and epistemology. Deep inside our subconscious we know that there is a conflict in the building blocks of each faith we incorporate. There is a place for academic thought or we so popularize the great faiths that we lose their distinctive qualities. We can end up fragmented and confused in MMA.

There seems to me to be a historical tension between being "in Christ" or rather To Be a Christian. Best seen in the tension between Armenian/Weslayans and their older brother John Calvin.

The Calvinist says you are saved from sin with one confession "eternal security" and transformed by confessional faith.
But of course, some do not act it and therefore, Calvinists wonder if the person really made the confession for real - and being luke warm in confession, will be spewed out of God's mouth.

The Weslayan says you can fall from grace through sin. Thus the weekly sawdust trail has believers reconfessing (internal security).
Of course, sin is defined as a conscious act against a known law of God. At Point Loma Nazarene, I met many folks (foul in action and thought) who claimed that they had not sinned in years, they only made mistakes. They either acted unconsciously or they simply did not know about the law they broke.

Either way, that historical tension is there and Kevin's words are profound as the argument. Can I be a Christian or just practice Christianity???I'm also big on praxis. It's one thing that keeps me training. Too much abstraction is dangerous.

You're right there's a certain danger in MMA approaches, and I have wandered across it, I was probably being a bit hasty in my first post here, in that there are tensions between them. I think I've gotten pretty far along in working these things out myself, but it is something best done with some caution. There's a balancing point between embracing diversity and dissolving in syncretism.

Given my choice of nightmares, I'm mostly Wesleyan (though I think even Wesley believed in a sort of predestination and continual growth in faith). Maybe I'm a sucker for free will. Sinning as I see it is basically a theological word for making mistakes, so to say "I merely make mistakes, I don't sin" is kind of strange to me. Probably shows the dangers of treating theological language like it's something special.

I think I'd answer your last question with your first paragraph. To be Christian is to practice, and to practice is to be Christian. It's like Aikido. You can't just do it in your head, but at the same time you can't really separate what you do from what you believe anyway. If you practice sincerely, whatever you practice, I think it will begin to condition the way you think (perhaps going back to the dualist''s thread).

And I really hope I'm not dragging this thread too far off its intended OP.

David Paul
04-24-2008, 10:46 AM
MMA and relgion. Who woulda thought those things could be connected...

Kevin Leavitt
04-24-2008, 01:44 PM
You tend to get real religious when your opponent has you in the mount with 4lb gloves on. "Oh God!"...comes to mind.

pre-destination and free will is always a fascinating discussion. I really grew a distain for Calvinism and have trouble with it....but, the more you think about it, free will has many issues as well.

Free will can imply that we are separate from the whole and freely make our own choices in isolation or without regard for anything else.

It can ignore the fact that we are products of our environment, we face delusion through our own perception of the world, and that we in no way depend on others, the air we breath, the food we eat, or the force that created us and to that which we will return.

interesting...not sure what it has to do with the original topic here, but a good discussion for sure.

David Paul
04-24-2008, 02:14 PM
You tend to get real religious when your opponent has you in the mount with 4lb gloves on. "Oh God!"...comes to mind.

Very good point. AMEN!

Erick Mead
04-24-2008, 03:01 PM
You tend to get real religious when your opponent has you in the mount with 4lb gloves on. "Oh God!"...comes to mind.Ah .. It is is a Hungarian church, I think -- The Chapel of Our Lady of Uurhed-handedtuya.

pre-destination and free will is always a fascinating discussion. I really grew a distain for Calvinism and have trouble with it....but, the more you think about it, free will has many issues as well.

Free will can imply that we are separate from the whole and freely make our own choices in isolation or without regard for anything else.If nothing else, training in budo teaches at a deep level and in very immediate terms, that free will is exercised only in the context of many, many things that are already predetermined at the time of engagement or were never ours to determine at all.

phitruong
04-24-2008, 03:03 PM
You tend to get real religious when your opponent has you in the mount with 4lb gloves on. "Oh God!"...comes to mind.



I don't get religious in those sort of situations. It's more like "Oh S****t! black and blue aren't my colors"

all these religious discussions went right over my head. I feel so ignorance, maybe because I am a barbarian farm boy. I think I'll just go back to aikido and get my head pound into the mat more so things can sip into the crack (head crack, not the other crack). :)

To the OP, sounded like your cup is full.

Kevin Leavitt
04-24-2008, 04:41 PM
Funny you should mention Hungary...I am all over Eastern Europe this week...right now in Bulgaria!

Chris Parkerson
04-24-2008, 09:02 PM
You tend to get real religious when your opponent has you in the mount with 4lb gloves on. "Oh God!"...comes to mind. pre-destination and free will is always a fascinating discussion.

I love to go to movies. They are a great study in cultural symbols and metaphors. In "The Last Samurai" right before the final suicide charge, Dai Saigo asks his fictional partner (Tom Cruise), "Can a man change his destiny?" Cruise says, "A man must do what he can."

I guess we all think about it, no matter what culture or religious preference, right before you may have your head handedtoya.

Michael Douglas
04-25-2008, 06:14 AM
You tend to get real religious when your opponent has you in the mount with 4lb gloves on. "Oh God!"...comes to mind..
Shrek comes to mind ... 4lb?
I'm sure you meant 4oz.

frankdraper
04-28-2008, 01:14 PM
WOW, I would have never thought to get so much response. I could learn a ton of information here. Thanks to all who responded,and I am glad that there are others who have and are traveling down this road, questioning things,and addressing the questions properly. While I missed temple worship yesterday with fellow devotees, I did get to see an Aikido demo in Oak Harbor, Wa. I attended the Holland Happenings on Sunday. Great demo. There was also a tent set up(street fair) with a TKD school. When I mentioned to them that there was a demo at the main stage, I got no response, just a hum from a kid. The adults seemed very uninterested, one saying to the other that they paid good money to have there TKD tent at this venue, at they were under the impression that other Martial Arts could not be there. I knew I should have but on my tilak Dhoties and brought my drum to chant Hare Krishna near the Catholic booth. Cant we all just learn and love. Ending here I will Quote, We can no longer rely on the external teachings of the Buddha,Confucius or Christ. The ere of organized religion controlling every aspecgt of life is over. No singely religion has all the answers. Construction of shrine and temple buildings is not enough. Establish yourself as a living buddha image. We all should be transformed into goddesses of compassio or victorious buddhas.

Morihei Ueshiba THE ART OF PEACE

Chris Parkerson
04-28-2008, 01:21 PM
WOW, I would have never thought to get so much response. I could learn a ton of information here. Thanks to all who responded,and I am glad that there are others who have and are traveling down this road, questioning things,and addressing the questions properly. While I missed temple worship yesterday with fellow devotees, I did get to see an Aikido demo in Oak Harbor, Wa. I attended the Holland Happenings on Sunday. Great demo. There was also a tent set up(street fair) with a TKD school. When I mentioned to them that there was a demo at the main stage, I got no response, just a hum from a kid. The adults seemed very uninterested, one saying to the other that they paid good money to have there TKD tent at this venue, at they were under the impression that other Martial Arts could not be there. I knew I should have but on my tilak Dhoties and brought my drum to chant Hare Krishna near the Catholic booth. Cant we all just learn and love. Ending here I will Quote, We can no longer rely on the external teachings of the Buddha,Confucius or Christ. The ere of organized religion controlling every aspecgt of life is over. No singely religion has all the answers. Construction of shrine and temple buildings is not enough. Establish yourself as a living buddha image. We all should be transformed into goddesses of compassio or victorious buddhas.

Morihei Ueshiba THE ART OF PEACE

Hare Bol Frank,

I too see the potential of an end to organized church, synagogue,mosque traditions.... especially if we go nulcear in the names of these organizations.

As saint tharesa of Avilla once said, "Oh Lord, protect me from your followers.."

frankdraper
04-28-2008, 02:14 PM
Hare Bol to you sir. Glad to have met you through this site. While the name Aikido forum seems to all over the place. I would like to hear more of your days as a Devotee of Krishna, and your experience of that if you don't mind. I am sending my email as another way to contact me. frank-n-style@hotmail.com. I am also a hairstylist, my wife and i work in the same shop with 15 others. Dont get to cut many Krishna Devotees, only at the big events such as Lord Krishna's appearance day and so on. Thursday I am going to check out an Aikido school in Bellingham Wa.

Chris Parkerson
04-28-2008, 02:55 PM
Hare Bol to you sir. Glad to have met you through this site. While the name Aikido forum seems to all over the place. I would like to hear more of your days as a Devotee of Krishna, and your experience of that if you don't mind. I am sending my email as another way to contact me. frank-n-style@hotmail.com. I am also a hairstylist, my wife and i work in the same shop with 15 others. Dont get to cut many Krishna Devotees, only at the big events such as Lord Krishna's appearance day and so on. Thursday I am going to check out an Aikido school in Bellingham Wa.

happy to talk off line.

Chris

eventus
06-24-2008, 03:37 PM
"You tend to get real religious when your opponent has you in the mount with 4lb gloves on. "Oh God!"...comes to mind.."

I respectfully object to your sarcasm. MMA is a discipline. Its practitioners devote themselves to the practice of MMA that the discipline becomes not just an act of physical aggression exacted on another human being.... rather, it becomes a crucible through which their hearts, minds, and souls are put to the ultimate test: the test of will, the test of ..... faith.

You should read this if you doubt the place of religion in MMA:
http://www.nationalgeographic.com/adventure/john-falk/brazil-fight-club.html

Don't judge what you don't understand.... lest someone who doesn't understand Aikido pass bitter, sarcastic judgments about your art.

Kevin Leavitt
06-24-2008, 05:53 PM
John,

I am a MMA practitioner. Purple Belt in BJJ under Carlos Gracie Jr., Modern Army Combatives Instructor, as well as a Shodan in Aikido...that is just my martial arts background, does not cover my military background and experience.

I understand the whole "forging" and "crucible" thing, it is what I do for my profession.

eventus
06-25-2008, 01:47 AM
Kevin,

I apologize to you and everyone else whom I assumed were talking out of their asses when referring to MMA. It's hard, it's a real spirit-breaker, and I hate it when people dismiss it or adapt that superior dismissive position against it, which you weren't.

It was my bad to assume. And that reflects back on me.

Kevin Leavitt
06-25-2008, 04:47 AM
No problem....I understand where you are coming from. Have a nice day!