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mornmd
02-14-2002, 11:27 AM
This is a touchy subject, but one that absolutely deserves to be examined. I have noticed that on several message boards, students of aiki arts other than O'Sensei's aikido are ridiculed as "not being real aikido," or "copycats." Of course this is usually done by those in aikido dojos who are not aware that there are aiki arts that preceeded O'Sensei, (some of which he studied, such as Daito ryu).

I am currently a student in a dojo where we train in Nihon Goshin Aikido (NGA), an art created by Shodo Morita, a contemporary of O'Sensei who studied Daito ryu, among other arts. The name "Nihon Goshin Aikido" was created by Sensei Morita and used officially in the 1940s in his dojo, and continues in the United States today. While NGA may have similarities to Ueshiba's aikido, it is quite different, and all who practice it are very upfront about it.

Frequently, I have seen negative posts about NGA and other aiki arts that are not derived from O'Sensei. As far as I'm concerned, those posting are uninformed and intolerant. I know this is not the way of most enlightened aikidoka, and it is clear that other aiki arts are appreciated by the highest levels in the organizations of O'Sensei's aikido. As an example, the Aiki Expo this year will feature as one of its teachers a phenomenal Sensei, Don Angier of Shidare Yanagi ryu, Aikijujitsu.

I am interested in hearing what others have to say on this issue. Personally, I believe we have more to gain by observing each other and our similarities, rather than disparaging another's art as inferior or not "true" aiki.

Matthew

Sid
02-15-2002, 12:02 PM
Mornmd-san (;), could you perhaps give us some more info on your style?

Thanks,
sid

Steve
02-15-2002, 02:24 PM
Originally posted by mornmd
SNIP

Frequently, I have seen negative posts about NGA and other aiki arts that are not derived from O'Sensei. As far as I'm concerned, those posting are uninformed and intolerant. I know this is not the way of most enlightened aikidoka, and it is clear that other aiki arts are appreciated by the highest levels in the organizations of O'Sensei's aikido. As an example, the Aiki Expo this year will feature as one of its teachers a phenomenal Sensei, Don Angier of Shidare Yanagi ryu, Aikijujitsu.

SNIP

Matthew

Get over it. If aiki-centricism causes you this much anxiety, you need a new hobby.

mornmd
02-15-2002, 03:58 PM
To answer Steve first - I have no anxiety about this issue, in fact I am quite serene in my enjoyment of NGA and the principles of aiki. I brought up this thread because I think it is an important issue (namely bringing other aiki arts together with O'Sensei's aikido to exchange ideas), and I was interested in seeing the responses. To say "get over it or take up another hobby," is ridiculous.

To Sid, Nihon Goshin Aikido was founded by Shodo Morita, a contemporary of O'Sensei who trained under Yoshida Kitaro in Daito Ryu as well as several other arts. There are many similar techniques to O'Sensei's aikido in NGA which can also be found in Daito ryu. The concept of aiki, blending, are all there. There are also techniques added from Judo and several other arts. There is an emphasis on atemi, punches, strikes and kicks as an integral part of the system for self defense. Sensei Walter Kopitov who has contributed to this forum along with other's in the NGA Association can give you a more detailed explanation about NGA.

Matthew

guest1234
02-15-2002, 05:06 PM
Hi Matthew,

If it is any consolation, those who are intolerant of "aiki arts other than O Sensei's" are usually equally intolerant of styles of Aikido descended from O Sensei, but not their own particular one. Intolerant people are unfortuanately in abundance these days....

I spent a month in a Nihon Goshin Aikido dojo in the south, and loved every minute of it (it is also the first place I got the hang of koshinage, even if it was 'mugger's throw' there:D ). Thanks for sharing about your style. Maybe that would make an interesting series for us, having a senior sensei from different styles discuss the positives of his particular branch.

deepsoup
02-15-2002, 07:33 PM
Originally posted by mornmd
To answer Steve first - I have no anxiety about this issue, in fact I am quite serene in my enjoyment of NGA and the principles of aiki. I brought up this thread because I think it is an important issue (namely bringing other aiki arts together with O'Sensei's aikido to exchange ideas), and I was interested in seeing the responses. To say "get over it or take up another hobby," is ridiculous.


Methinks the lady doth protest too much.

Or, in other words:
I haven't seen Nihon Goshin Aikido (nor Hapkido nor any other art that happens to have a very similar name to Aikido) coming under attack on this forum. (Nor indeed on the newsgroup thread you are so willfully misunderstanding at the moment.)

You seem extraordinarily defensive for someone whom nobody is actually attacking. Are you sure the chip isn't on your own shoulder?

Sean
x

Sid
02-15-2002, 10:56 PM
Someone needs to send steve a nice aikidcard, showing osensei blending, methinks.

No need to go crazy on a forum - it is Aikiweb. Why the heck do we need to fight?

Sid

Edward
02-15-2002, 11:14 PM
This might be off-topic, but I would like to point out 2 points:

1. There are definitely many common techniques between Aikido and other Aiki-Jutsu arts for the simple reason that they have common origins. However, the application of these techniques and the way they are inintiated, and the purpose of learning the art altogether are different. I know several Aikidoka who practiced Aiki-Jutsu styles in the US and Canada, and their style can be described at least as "brutal" (they agree and are proud of this description..., Aikidoka are usually described as sissies by Aiki-Jutsuka... :D ) .

2. Aikido and all other Aiki- and Ju-Jutsu arts would have been long forgotten were it not for the "marketing" genius of 2 extraordinary men: Gozo Shioda Sensei at first and then Kisshomaru Doshu who get the credit for making Aikido known worldwide. We see now that even Daito-Ryu give the credit to Aikido for keeping the tradition alive, and their latest book is titled: "The origin of Aikido". The florishing of so many Aiki-Jutsu schools nowadays wouldn't have been thinkable were it not for Aikido.

I am sure all practitioners of Aiki-Jutsu and Ju-Jutsu are welcome in this forum by all members. No one has ever discriminated, but you have to admit these are different arts. It's like having Kung-Fu practitioners blaming Karate members for discriminating against them in their forum even though both are striking arts and Karate came from China and probably was developed from Kung-Fu originally.

Cheers,
Edward

shihonage
02-16-2002, 03:13 AM
Originally posted by ca
(it is also the first place I got the hang of koshinage, even if it was 'mugger's throw' there:D ).

As in, a way to throw a mugger, or a way to be thrown by one ?

guest1234
02-16-2002, 06:12 AM
Hmmm, I was having so much trouble keeping all the 'new' names straight, I didn't even recognise that possibility...I guess it is mugger's throw as in dog's leash...not something they want used on them, but it is what gets used nonetheless. Once I got the hang of getting uke over my hips there, it easily translated back to koshinage.

But after a few throws, one student, a rather large male, attacked really quickly (it was kind of a bear hug from behind attack) and yanked me up off my feet. He was laughing, holding me up and standing in a horse stance...in fact, laughing so much I guess he didn't feel the heel of my foot tapping him where most men notice...the instructor noticed, however, and warned him he'd better put me down or get ready to feel really sick. So I guess you could say it was there I also learned the value of atemi when dealing with really large partners.:eek:

deepsoup
02-16-2002, 09:32 AM
Originally posted by Sid
Someone needs to send steve a nice aikidcard, showing osensei blending, methinks.

No need to go crazy on a forum - it is Aikiweb. Why the heck do we need to fight?


Sorry to wander away off topic here, but..

Steve's response wasn't in any way abusive, he just got straight to the point in a refreshingly direct, pithy kind of a way. Let me add my "me too" to Steves post here, and furthermore..

--rant begins--

It really gets up my nose when people bleat "Aikido is all about blending, so why aren't you just meekly agreeing with everything thats said."

Utter bollocks.

This is a forum for discussion, and if you can't handle a discussion in which people express their point of view then stay away.

Theres a distinct whiff of hipocrasy about levelling an entirely unneccessary personal criticism against someone because you feel they are too confrontational. If you can't tell the difference between an exchange of views on an internet forum and a bar-room brawl you have serious problems with reality.

Aikido has atemi as well as blending, and a slap in the mush can also be 'aiki'. If my harsh words hurt you, GET A GRIP! Its just a bunch of text on a computer screen for goodness sake.

--rant ends--

Have a nice day. :)

Sean
x

mornmd
02-16-2002, 11:13 AM
Steve, I don't protest too much, and as you are no doubt aware, I am no lady (Shakespeare aside). I could take you to the threads on other forums that disparage NGA or aikijitsu arts, but what point does that serve? Any who know about O'Sensei and his aikijitsu roots and training would think those comments uninformed and absurd.

The techniques of aiki have been evolving over centuries in Japan; O'Sensei's genius was to put together a coherent system based on principles and yes, philosophy. My main point is that it is meaningless to argue about who is using the name aikido in their art.

It is far more intersting when we compare principles, exchange ideas and better our movement and techniques as a result of that exchange. Colleen's experience is one example of that.

Matthew

Gene McGloin
02-16-2002, 12:18 PM
My guess would be that many American aikidoka simply equate the generic term "aiki do" with Morihei Ueshiba osensei's expression of an art he applied that moniker to. I don't believe he was the first to match up those two kanji with relation to a martial art.

I'd heard Daito-ryu aiki-jutsu referred to as "aikido" while in Japan a couple of years ago. I recall that the reactions to this fact ranged from confusion to outright anger among a few of my fellow Ueshiba-ryu aikidoka upon my return to the States! Pretty silly when you think about it!

Gene McGloin

PeterR
02-16-2002, 12:36 PM
Mathew;

I come from the style founded by Kenji Tomiki and believe me I have felt the need to deal with a certain amount of ignorance and even hostility directed toward the style. Mostly though they are honest questions.

All you can do is calmly answer questions, refute inaccuracies and explain your view. The bulk of people on this forum, and most others, are reasonable people and get as annoyed as you would with the more rabid of whatever persusion.

So here is a bit of advice from someone oft bloodied in the style wars (sorry discussions).

Your original post started very well but ended up pressing the wrong buttons. Basically approaching a problem as victim does not go down well in a Budo forum. Deal with present slights rather than what may have been posted by some neophyte with a false sense of mission in the past. Read Sean's (deepsoup) post again remembering that he too comes from a "misunderstood" style.

Mathew introduces his style.
Ignorant Neophyte says NGA is not true Aiki because O'sensei did not invent it.
Mathew has fun using intelligence and greater knowledge to not only refute the fool but to further expand on the wonders of what he does.

If these forums were all about peace love and happiness - I wouldn't be here.

Sid
02-16-2002, 01:04 PM
/quote
It really gets up my nose when people bleat "Aikido is all about blending, so why aren't you just meekly agreeing with everything thats said."

Utter bollocks.

This is a forum for discussion, and if you can't handle a discussion in which people express their point of view then stay away.

Theres a distinct whiff of hipocrasy about levelling an entirely unneccessary personal criticism against someone because you feel they are too confrontational. If you can't tell the difference between an exchange of views on an internet forum and a bar-room brawl you have serious problems with reality.

Aikido has atemi as well as blending, and a slap in the mush can also be 'aiki'. If my harsh words hurt you, GET A GRIP! Its just a bunch of text on a computer screen for goodness sake.

--rant ends--

Have a nice day.
/quote

Point about atemi taken - I agree with it. It *is* a forum for discussion, and I aplogise profusely if what I said was taken personally.

Unfortunately, in my "flawed reality", I don't think that one needs to "slap" someone who is trying to make an honest point.

"Hypocritical personal criticism" - need I say more?

Have a nice day to you too. :D

Sid

guest1234
02-16-2002, 05:27 PM
Is Shodokan synonomous with Tomiki Aikido then, or is one a particular type of the other? I've only been to one Tomiki dojo, and really don't know that much about it...

akiy
02-16-2002, 05:55 PM
Originally posted by Edward
2. Aikido and all other Aiki- and Ju-Jutsu arts would have been long forgotten were it not for the "marketing" genius of 2 extraordinary men: Gozo Shioda Sensei at first and then Kisshomaru Doshu who get the credit for making Aikido known worldwide.
Let's not forget Koichi Tohei sensei who has already been airbrushed out of much of aikido history.

As far as the "spirit" of these Forums goes, I'm always glad when differences are expressed! Without such and the ensuing discussions, there wouldn't be much need for a place like this, huh?

But, please do remember the first Forum Rule that you can see under every post and reply that you make: "Treat your fellow AikiWeb Forums members with respect"...

Thanks, folks.

-- Jun

John Carter
02-16-2002, 06:03 PM
I am the sensei from the Nihon Goshin dojo Colleen visited. I do remember the work out when she was lifted and the attacker forgot a heel to the groin or a rear head butt might slow him down a little. As far as how Nihon Goshin Aikido is perceived, well I have heard positive and negative. Our art is not well known, so a person may see one practicioner or one video and then make a judement from that. Personally, I have heard great things from Aikido-ka from many different styles (Colleen for example) who have visited my school while traveling and have left with new information and a positive take on our system. However am I a small part of our association and the only influence I have are over my students and a handful of occasional visitors. My advice is to support your dojo and sensei and ensure you do everything possible to make Nihon Goshin Aikido an effective, positive, and well received martial art.

Sincerely,

John Carter

guest1234
02-16-2002, 06:38 PM
:eek: Uh oh, haven't changed the names enough to maintain my anonimity. Sensei, so good to hear your dojo is still there, almost had another trip back last year and I wondered... everytime I do koshinage I think of you and your great kindness in working to get me to 'get' it, and in letting a 'passing through' person join for a month. And how nice you and your senior students were in working with me. And i still can't do that flip-fall thing you all did for warm-up...maybe someday:rolleyes:

guest1234
02-16-2002, 06:42 PM
PS if any of you are ever down his way, you'd want to check out the class just for the randori alone...having only a couple of months of training before I was there, I just watched... not so sure I'd be up to more than watching now, but for all you Aiki supermen out there, it looked quite challenging.

John Carter
02-16-2002, 09:02 PM
You are more than welcome to drop in when in town. That goes for any Aikido practioner who find themselved going through the Columbia, SC area. Be sure to check the website, or yellow pages first for the new location.

John Carter

guest1234
02-17-2002, 07:10 AM
And just so no one misinterprets my comment on the large student in Carter Sensei's class (oh, never on this forum :rolleyes: ), the student was not being obnoxious to me. While I consider myself of AVERAGE height:grr: , at 110 pounds many of the larger males, in every dojo I've been to, have at one time or another realized they can pick me up and use me as a shield, or even a weapon:eek: , often in randori. Even in the kindest, most gentle dojos, there seems to be something funny in doing this...and it is often a great 'E' ticket ride for me.

Carl Simard
02-17-2002, 10:42 AM
By the way, the "ki" principle is somewhat universal in all martial arts. They may not put it in their name, but the "ki" is an important part of other martial arts as well. They may call it other names, but once you know what it is, you know they talk about the "ki"... The way of using it or to transform it in a physical, martial, discipline is different, depending on the origin, the "vision" of the founder, etc... But the "ki" principle is simply not exclusive to aikido.

PeterR
02-17-2002, 12:02 PM
Originally posted by ca
Is Shodokan synonomous with Tomiki Aikido then, or is one a particular type of the other? I've only been to one Tomiki dojo, and really don't know that much about it...

Shodokan is what Kenji Tomiki named his style.

If you are interested please read the following two short articles.

http://homepage2.nifty.com/shodokan/shihan/kosyo_e.html

http://homepage2.nifty.com/shodokan/shodokan/kyokai_e.html

deepsoup
02-17-2002, 12:46 PM
Originally posted by mornmd

The techniques of aiki have been evolving over centuries in Japan; O'Sensei's genius was to put together a coherent system based on principles and yes, philosophy. My main point is that it is meaningless to argue about who is using the name aikido in their art.

It is far more intersting when we compare principles, exchange ideas and better our movement and techniques as a result of that exchange. Colleen's experience is one example of that.


Now that we get down to the meat and bones of it, your point is a good one, and I find I agree entirely.


Originally posted by Colleen
Is Shodokan synonomous with Tomiki Aikido then, or is one a particular type of the other?

Yes it is, kind of. When Kenji Tomiki founded his honbu dojo (in Osaka), he called it the Shodokan and the name also applies to his style of Aikido (it works the same way it does with Yoshinkan). I think it was only then that he even considered that his style of aikido had a name.

Tomiki Sensei himself disapproved of the term 'Tomiki style' aikido. Before the Shodokan dojo was founded and named, I dont think he considered that 'his' style of aikido had a name. (Or was a separate style from 'Aikikai' aikido anyway. Most of the time he was teaching aikido and developing his ideas, he did so as an Aikikai Shihan after all.)

Theres a short article by Nariyama Shihan about this, called "The Name of Our Aikido" (http://homepage2.nifty.com/shodokan/shihan/kosyo_e.html) on the Shodokan honbu (http://homepage2.nifty.com/shodokan/index_e.html) website, for anyone who's interested.

Sean
x

guest1234
02-17-2002, 04:15 PM
Thank you, Sean and Rehse Sensei...does the preference for Shodokan (rather than Tomiki) Aikido apply in the US as well? I ask only because the dojos I called or visited called themselves Tomiki Aikido...or do some places so this just because the rest of us ignorant fools don't know what Shodokan is?

PeterR
02-17-2002, 04:43 PM
Originally posted by ca
Thank you, Sean and Rehse Sensei...does the preference for Shobokan (rather than Tomiki) Aikido apply in the US as well? I ask only because the dojos I called or visited called themselves Tomiki Aikido...or do some places so this just because the rest of us ignorant fools don't know what Shodokan is?
Hi Colleen;

The Japan Aikido Association (USA) refer to themselves as Shodokan (http://www.tomiki.org). For historical, fragmental, or other reasons there are groups which consider themselves Tomiki groups rather than Shodokan and others which say there were influenced by Tomiki. A lot of this is due to when Shodokan Honbu was created - Tomiki's ideas having some history before that point. I would say that the Shodokan term is the correct one but that no one is going to get beat over the head if they say Tomiki Aikido. In fact the international body contains the word Tomiki rather than Shodokan. Easier that way in the search for wa (harmony).

shihonage
02-17-2002, 06:18 PM
Originally posted by ca
And just so no one misinterprets my comment on the large student in Carter Sensei's class (oh, never on this forum :rolleyes: ), the student was not being obnoxious to me. While I consider myself of AVERAGE height:grr: , at 110 pounds many of the larger males, in every dojo I've been to, have at one time or another realized they can pick me up and use me as a shield, or even a weapon:eek: , often in randori. Even in the kindest, most gentle dojos, there seems to be something funny in doing this...and it is often a great 'E' ticket ride for me.

The above paragraph had me laughing for a while. That's pretty funny.
No offense.

Dean H.
02-17-2002, 08:50 PM
[QUOTE]Originally posted by ca
[B]Hi Matthew,

If it is any consolation, those who are intolerant of "aiki arts other than O Sensei's" are usually equally intolerant of styles of Aikido descended from O Sensei, but not their own particular one. Intolerant people are unfortuanately in abundance these days....

Thank you for your tolerant, experienced,
and even-handed responses here.:)

guest1234
02-17-2002, 09:14 PM
Originally posted by shihonage


The above paragraph had me laughing for a while. That's pretty funny.
No offense.

Yeah, luckily they are kind enough to usually just swing me around to keep other ukes at bay, or hold me in front to adsorb the shinai wacks, and have never actually tossed me into the pack. One of my favorite partners, when he feels he's messed up the technique past recovery, just sighs and throws me over his shoulders. It's more embarassing:blush: when I'm nage and get lifted up (rats, so much for weight underside...sigh).

MikeE
02-18-2002, 09:25 AM
Wow. Good Thread.

I really think there is tolerance in most aikido groups for other aikido groups, but, it is a tolerance born from believing what you do is "best" (in quotes because it is open for interpretation by the knit-pickers out there :). Face it, deep down inside if you thought another style of Aikido was superior to your own...would you not pursue it?

I was Aikikai affiliated for 10 years, then I did the unthinkable. I became a student of one of Tohei Koichi Sensei's former students (though not Ki Society). Because I believe it is the best for me.

I guess another possible example of Aikido Elitism would be the Aiki-Expo. Besides a few people from other arts (i.e. karate, kobudo, jujutsu) everyone is either Aikikai affiliated or Yoshinkan. I asked Stan Pranin about this and he said he did invite ONE high ranking Ki Society instructor who declined.

Is this elitism in your eyes? Or am I just an over-sensitive?

Jun, way to extend positive ki :)

cbrf4zr2
02-18-2002, 10:08 AM
Originally posted by ca
And just so no one misinterprets my comment on the large student in Carter Sensei's class (oh, never on this forum :rolleyes: ), the student was not being obnoxious to me. While I consider myself of AVERAGE height:grr: , at 110 pounds many of the larger males, in every dojo I've been to, have at one time or another realized they can pick me up and use me as a shield, or even a weapon:eek: , often in randori. Even in the kindest, most gentle dojos, there seems to be something funny in doing this...and it is often a great 'E' ticket ride for me.

Colleen -

Don't worry, or get upset about being used that way in randori. I've used people (literally) over twice your weight as weapons/shields in randori. When you can lock on sankyo, with someone who's 6-7 and 240, and brandish him as a giant bokken, it's amazing how much easier randori becomes. Isn't that right Magma? :D

andrew
02-18-2002, 10:19 AM
Originally posted by mornmd
Frequently, I have seen negative posts about NGA

I'm afraid I haven't had time to read most of this thread, but I think I understand where this may come from.
The first time I heard about NGA, the explanation given of the style implied that other styles of aikido were deficient with regards to atemi or whatever, and sort of glibly implied that mixing in other arts "fixed" this. (I've seen many descriptions that sound like the art was derived by somebody sticking pins into technique lists from aikido, karate or whatever.)
So taking this (bad) description into account and that it's apparently not done outside the US (ie in Japan), I was a bit sceptical for awhile.

When I discovered more about the guy who started NGA than that he was "a contemporary for O'Sensei" (so was my grandad), the scepticism was replaced by being quite impressed. Or at least respecting it.
andrew

PeterR
02-18-2002, 10:39 AM
Originally posted by andrew
When I discovered more about the guy who started NGA than that he was "a contemporary for O'Sensei" ....

I was a bit curuious about that. In one of the above posts it states that
Morita, a contemporary of O'Sensei who trained under Yoshida Kitaro in Daito Ryu as well as several other arts. There are many similar techniques to O'Sensei's aikido in NGA which can....
I'm assuming like Ueshiba M., Yoshida Kitaro was an advanced student of Takeda? Really like to know what comtempory actually means.

Is there a web site which outlines the history of these people?

Sorry found it - god I love Google.
http://nihongoshinaikido.com/page2.html

Magma
02-18-2002, 11:27 AM
Yes, I have been bokken for cbrf4zr2's randori before.

But then again, I have sent him tumbling into an uke pile with one of his fellow attackers when it was my turn in the barrel.:eek:

From what I've been hearing and reading, NG Aikido is in very lean years (if not declining). Personally, I think it's sad when any martial system is lost for lack of people to practice it and transmit it to the next generation... even if that art is a copy-cat art that uses the name of "Aikido" without actually being Aikido.

Just kidding. Wow, am I just kidding.:D
Or am I? :confused:
No, really, I am.:D


...:confused:...

guest1234
02-18-2002, 12:05 PM
It's not the being thrown, or made to move on my tippy toes in sankyo, it's the realization as I'm picked up off my feet altogether, and then carried around the mat and swung at the other ukes like a wet towel that makes me admit I may not be quite as tall as I think I am... :D But I still maintain that 5'5" is AVERAGE:grr: , it's just that everyone else seems to be overtall...

guest1234
02-18-2002, 12:29 PM
Oh, and about the Expo...I wouldn't call it elitist as long as the non-represented styles are not put down by the Expo organizers. I would have prefered a bit more variation, having signed up early I thought others would be added later and that the early names just reflected Mr Pranin's style preference (understandable and not unexpected). Now I know that it not going to be the case, but I'm still excited about it. And considering his roots, and the strong belief from that style that they are keepers of the flame...well, in that light it is remarkable in the variation of those styles that will be there. I am glad to hear he invited a Ki Society instructor (I hadn't heard that before), sad that they declined, it would have added to the event, I think. And a Shodokan ( ;) ) instructor, that would have been fun to try as well...as it is, I have no idea where he is going to put everyone at UNLV...very ambitious.

I can't think of any event where you get some of everything, and the Expo looks to be no different. Some variation, but not something from EVERY column, still a good list to choose from. Speaking of a fun mix, it looks like Summer Camp in the Rockies will also offer a nice variety this year.

Erik
02-18-2002, 03:14 PM
Now just to be me and not directed towards anyone, more or less. Definitely not directed towards NGA.

Suppose a dojo called itself Aikido of XXXXXX and was made up of a bunch of folks who spent most of their class time preparing for the inevitable confrontation with the Nenaurians from Neptune. Class time was spent doing stuff that any self-respecting Aikido practitioner would at best describe as

a bunch of Fruit Loops got spilled on the mat, more came along, and that is the result.

Oh well, all Aikido is good aikido, and they've got Aiki or Aikido in the name so therefore it must be good Aikido.

guest1234
02-18-2002, 04:22 PM
I'm not sure how much experience one needs in order to declare any Aikido not good or real Aikido. I am slow, admittedly, but it took several visits to each dojo I considered joining to decide if I fit in, and I know that my not fitting in is no indication of the quality of Aikido there... it is just an indication on how I felt there. Gosh, how much longer would it take to know if the Aikido was good?

Other dojos I attended much longer, to be sure if it was a way I could be comfortable growing in---and the instructors I cannot follow, it does not mean theirs is not good or real Aikido, it is just not for me. It takes a great deal of--- what is the word I'm searching for?-- to be so certain you would know what constitutes real and good as an absolute standard. Just how long does it take to know what is real? How long would you train in the Neptunian (or whatever) dojo before you could declare it unfit, or are you able to do that without even a visit?

If the use of Aiki in the Neptune dojo name is bothersome, well, which came first, Aiki jujitsu or Aikido? good thing they didn't trademark then...

I know you are just being you, and don't mean this against NGA, but for any who might want to apply it to them, why not try it first? Take a look at some of the photos on their webpages...see anything you recognise? The names were in English, and numbered, so I don't recall them now, but ikkyo was similar to what I've seen in several styles, as was nikyo and sankyo (and koshinage:D ) and kotegaeshi... shihonage was, as I recall, more like a jujitsu version I've since seen, but it was a while ago and my memory is not the best (and it was shown to me after class by a junior student, wasn't one of the things taught while I was there)...anyway, if I hadn't been warned before starting, I would have figured it was no different than the Aikido we all know and love (whatever that good and true version is)... but with blocking drills that I just figured was something I hadn't learned yet back home, and which were kind of fun, and a very spirited randori...

Erik
02-18-2002, 04:52 PM
So politically correct.

Time to slap on the old 7th dan (I'm a modest fellow), declare myself to be a practitioner of Karategata Aikido founded by Warui Fuka in the late 16th century. Fuka sensei discovered his art while meditating on the depth of caves. It puzzled him greatly that there were, well, such a thing as caves. After much meditation, deliberation, and no small quantity of sake, he declared himself to have mastered kouki. From there it was a mere baby-step to the mastery of aiki which grew into new meaning and achieved new depths under Fuka Sensei's guidance. And so, Karategata Aikido was formed.

Our motto: If it has the name, it must be good!

PS: I'm assuming I butchered my attempt to butcher the Japanese language.

Erik
02-18-2002, 05:07 PM
One more thing. The secrets of Karategata Aikido are more quickly learned through cash payments. Fuka Sensei understands that spreading the essence of your being in $499 increments is one of the hidden secrets of the caves.

PeterR
02-18-2002, 05:16 PM
Some one mentioned that several Daito Ryu schools in Japan refer to themselves as Aikido - I really don't think that the inheritors of Ueshiba M. have exclusive domain to the the name. It is a little bit too generic. On one hand I wish they could since it would help make things clearer, yet on the other hand holders of the name could declare that only approved styles could be called Aikido which would make things more unclear.

Before we get to carried away with Nenaurians Goshin Aikido please remember that there is some pretty poor Aikido out there that do trace their lineage through Ueshiba M.

shihonage
02-18-2002, 06:12 PM
Originally posted by ca
But I still maintain that 5'5" is AVERAGE:grr: , it's just that everyone else seems to be overtall...

Your usage of that evil smiley keeps cracking me up.
Haha.

Erik
02-18-2002, 06:18 PM
Originally posted by PeterR
Before we get to carried away with Nenaurians Goshin Aikido please remember that there is some pretty poor Aikido out there that do trace their lineage through Ueshiba M.

Yup!

The point I'm attempting to make, and you appear to as well, is that just because it calls itself Aikido don't necessarily make it good.

I've heard it said, and more than once, that all Aikido is good.

So sorry, that is incorrect.

guest1234
02-18-2002, 09:55 PM
And those that decide someone's Aikido is bad before experiencing it demonstrate prejudice, which is also incorrect.

Those that merely repeat prejudiced views they've heard others before them say, without any attempt at evaluation, waste the mind they were given.

Those that refuse to experience things that are new, because it may be uncomfortable, never grow.

Oh, and Shihonage, those who've trained with me know there is only one way to rile me up more than call me short (:grr: AVERAGE!!!)--- and that is to make fun of another Aikido style within hearing distance--- hence the face that so amuses you...

Erik
02-19-2002, 08:10 PM
Originally posted by ca
And those that decide someone's Aikido is bad before experiencing it demonstrate prejudice, which is also incorrect.

All Aikido is bad!

or

All Aikido is good!

Which one is prejudice?

Those that merely repeat prejudiced views they've heard others before them say, without any attempt at evaluation, waste the mind they were given.

If I'm attempting to evaluate unbiasedly, then some Aikido is going to be bad Aikido and some Aikido is going to be good Aikido based on whatever my criteria are.

Those that refuse to experience things that are new, because it may be uncomfortable, never grow.

There's a big orange red bridge not too far from me. It would be a seriously new thing for me to jump off it mid-span. Rumor has it that the landing can be really uncomfortable. Honestly, I've never talked to anyone that has tried it, nor even someone who has seen someone try it. I guess I just have a bias against jumping off tall things or more accurately landing.

It's a growth opportunity which I'm going to pass on.

:grr:

Hey! I want more smiley things and it won't let me use them. I've been restricted.

guest1234
02-20-2002, 06:31 AM
Statements with 'all' or 'never' or 'always' tend to be incorrect, as any college student will tell you...why I personally try to avoid them. What makes either statement prejudiced, however, is not the 'all' but the willingness to judge the Aikido as good or bad without actually 'meeting' it, based on preconcieved absolutes. A belief that one group or race makes great doctors or athletes is as prejudiced as believing another is lazy. Once you see 'those people' as individuals, you realize an 'all' statement cannot apply. So hopefully, you do not judge someone based on incorrect absolutes.

Some Aikido will be good for you, some bad for you. But what you consider bad could very well by a more experienced person, or by a vast majority of people, be considered good. Your criteria are for you. So unless you consider the kind of Aikido that you do makes you and your fellow students like Fruit Loops on a mat, then it is disrespectful to say another's is. And very possibly just as incorrect.

During my lifetime, it was said it was too dangerous for women to fly in fighters. It would be dangerous and foolish to even try. Scientists and doctors said it. Generals and congressmen said it. I was the third woman to 'fly' a full syllabus in the centrifuge at Brooks, and my hours in F-16s and F-15s were briefed before Congress during the debate that led to women in combat roles. Sometimes things that 'they' say are not true, but just plain stupid. Even very high ranking, senior people can be wrong.

Opening your mind to a style of Aikido other than your own, rather than laughing at it for no good reason, should not feel to you like jumping off the Golden Gate. Or in some ways it might be, but like jumping with wings.

Erik
02-20-2002, 12:37 PM
But what you consider bad could very well by a more experienced person,

Or it could really be BAD but alas we're not allowed to evaluate and think are we? By the way, that is an A-grade cop out.

or by a vast majority of people, be considered good.

Which does not presuppose that they are correct.

Your criteria are for you. So unless you consider the kind of Aikido that you do makes you and your fellow students like Fruit Loops on a mat, then it is disrespectful to say another's is.

John Edwards keeps filling up the studio and has what some would call a successful program. Supposedly he talks to dead people but frankly he's a fraud, and not even very good at what he does, capitalizing on people when they are at their weakest. I should be respectful of what he does? What exactly is respect in this case? I suspect that even if you laid out what he does in clinical terms many would find it disrespectful but making it clear to everyone does have a positive value. I wonder how Miss Cleo is doing now that she's gone high profile in a good kind of way in my opinion.

What about the guy selling a miracle cancer cure that has been proven to have no value whatsoever other than to the person selling it? Should we be respectful of them and allow them to peddle their snake oil? What if it's actually harmful to them or even to other's? A classic example are those folks that refuse to be immunized against certain diseases which not only puts them at risk but their children and others as well.

The classic operating design of respectful in these cases could get someone killed.

Or, is it somehow different when we walk into an Aikido dojo because it has the name on the door? I didn't know the word Aikido was a free pass.

guest1234
02-20-2002, 01:45 PM
Calling Miss Cleo a fraud does nothing towards stopping those who would give her money from doing so; putting her in jail/shutting her down stops her from harming others, if that is what she does.

But this forum is not discussing Miss Cleo's advice, it is discussing Aikido. The fact that she may be dishonest does not in any way lessen the disrespect you show a style different from yours by refering to it's students as Fruit Loops (which again, if that is how you refer to your own style, then fine, I stand corrected, but it sounds disrespectful to me). Disrespect is compounded by prejudice if that statement is not based on actually training in that dojo and meeting the students, but just on a belief that all students of a particular style are Fruit Loops. If you are offended that they have Aiki in their name, keep in mind O Sensei was not the first to use the word, either.

Nothing is gained by tearing down different styles on this forum. If you are proud of what you do, start a thread and tell everyone. Your particular style is not diminished because there are others out there, and it is not enhanced when you ridicule them.

Erik
02-20-2002, 02:50 PM
Originally posted by ca
But this forum is not discussing Miss Cleo's advice, it is discussing Aikido.

Sigh! And it provides such a good example of the obvious.

Disrespect is compounded by prejudice if that statement is not based on actually training in that dojo and meeting the students, but just on a belief that all students of a particular style are Fruit Loops. If you are offended that they have Aiki in their name, keep in mind O Sensei was not the first to use the word, either.

Well, what happens when the Neptunian's don't show and the whole dojo commits suicide over it? Are we going to all associate our Aikido with them?

Yes, they did indeed do Aikido. Well, yes, yes of course it was good Aikido. All Aikido is good Aikido. Well, no we don't advocate suicide as a normal practice but it was good aikido all the same. I mean they didn't exactly blend but they didn't really resist either.... Blah! Blah! Blah!

We may not call them fruit loops but we are going to run from them towards the nearest thing we can find to differentiate ourselves from them.

Nothing is gained by tearing down different styles on this forum.

Did I advocate that? The point being made is that all Aikido is not good Aikido. That is all! But it seems as if that is a statement which is not allowed. Besides, we would miss out on our monthly posting of "Competition sucks! Tomiki Aikido sucks!" if we did that.

We've seen examples here of bad Aikido where teachers had fraudulent lineage. What about them? Or, when someone writes say a truly atrocious book and calls it Aikido should I sit back and say "must be good Aikido."

By the way, the reverse actually happens. Often when someone is proven fraudulent or that their idea didn't work their followers or supporters go into rationalization mode. "I couldn't be that stupid", they think, and so they rationalize some answer to support their beliefs. Often they become even more entrenched. Human psychology is a very interesting thing.

One last thing. Prejudice will always exist. It's a good thing in certain cases, and much less so in others. It depends on where and how it's applied which, admittedly, is the tricky part.

shihonage
02-20-2002, 03:19 PM
Hey, easy there on John Edward.
Just because you don't believe in psychic stuff, does not mean that he is a fraud.

Just because you turn on his show for 30 seconds and see him saying generic remarks like "I get something in the chest area" or "a female above you", does not mean that you can judge.

Watch a FEW of his shows, and see.
See if people act, and if he only gives them generic details.
See the skeptics, the celebrities, even the cameramen being talked to.
Think about the Oscar-winning acting skills that those regular people must possess in order to be fake, or the total lack of brains they must have in order to be easily fooled (which many are not).

Then judge.

Erik
02-20-2002, 03:59 PM
I think that testing him would be really easy. Answer his leading questions incorrectly and see what he tells you about your dead Uncle Max who didn't exist. Wait, that would be bad psychic energy and his stuff doesn't work under those conditions but wouldn't he know you are lying?

Of course, Uncle Max might be a liar too. Maybe that isn't your Uncle Max behind you but someone else's Uncle Max who died from something in the chest area. Maybe he stayed around from the prior show?

And surely, Mr. Edward would be able to make a fortune finding hidden treasure. Just have him dial up the pirates on his secret wave length and they would lead him right to it. And why all the missing people? If Uncle Max has nothing better to do than follow me into a studio for a tv show then certainly someone who disappeared under mysterious circumstances could make an appearance to help convict their killer.

shihonage
02-20-2002, 04:27 PM
I wrote a longish reply in here but then...:grr: uh... hey... good weather today. :eek:

Erik
02-20-2002, 05:05 PM
Originally posted by shihonage
I wrote a longish reply in here but then...:grr: uh... hey... good weather today. :eek:

evileyes

PeterR
02-20-2002, 07:10 PM
Just my opinion, for the little its worth, but if you can not discuss what is good or bad Aikido here, where can you discuss it? Or more to the point, this is a discussion forum not a support group.

The great thing about a public list is that any opinion is subject to refute.

As a Tomiki thug evileyes (finally got to use that smiley) I have taken a lot of indirect critism usually by people who have not seen the practice, or even bothered to explore what's available on the internet. Never have I said opinions can not be expressed but I have the right to express my own.

I have my own ideas what makes good Aikido and there are styles and teacher out there, that I think are good examples of it.

There are also many examples of poor Aikido, again in my view, and I can usually come up with styles and sensei which are examples of that. It rarely suits me to name names in this regard but why not?

Again if I do express an opinion I open myself up to refute. If I go so far as to name names then I open myself up still further.

Just for the record:

Good Aikido: strong adherence to principles, good fluidity, convertable into effective if the need arises (martial).

Poor Aikido: excess movement, ukes flying off before techniques are executed (worse case the magical no touch throws), more talk than action, and the lack of what makes Good Aikido (see above).

Reason: Aikido is first and foremost a Budo.

Refute away

Peter Goldsbury
02-20-2002, 09:09 PM
Peter R.

I see from your dojo profile that you have finally made it back here. ようきんさったね, as they say around here.

This thread reminds me of a joke about heaven. St Peter was showing a few new arrivals around and they came across a large wall. Someone asked what lay behind the wall. St Peter replied, "Oh, behind the wall are the xxxxxxx." (insert appropriate aikido group). "They think they're the only ones here."

Personally, I think the way aikido is often taught encourages a kind of elitism. There is the vertical structure and you are taught to believe that your own Sensei has all the answers, especially if he has a direct link with the Founder. For the Aikikai, the person who is supposed to "have all the answers" is Moriteru Doshu, which is a singularly unfortunate position to be in. However, I suggest you look at the references to SHU - HA- RI in the "O Sensei's aikido" thread, for a way to go beyond this tendency.

Anti-elitism is one of the main values of forums such as this one.

Sincerely,

JJF
02-21-2002, 03:12 AM
Strange.... I allways concidered myself and my fellow aikido-practicioners fruit-loops. It's one of those things I really like about it ;)

Anyway - on the matter of bad vs. good aikido, I agree with a lot of the statements above eg. that aikido should have a martial intent, the uke should attack with sincereity etc. However I believe that all styles of Aiki-whatever has qualities - otherwise it probably wouldn't exist anymore, and before putting it down, I would have to study it for a while. I haven't got the time for that, so currently I'm just happy to practice a form of Aikido that is great for me.

I recently read about the tai-chi style my mother practices, and they talked about how it enhanced balance, massaged the inner organs and created harmony. They didn't mention the martial aspect at all. For me that probably wouldn't be a good MA, but if somebody enjoys it, and benefits from the practice then it's not for me to state that it is a BAD martial art (except for the fact that the Aikido outfit is by far better looking than the oversized pajamas'es of tai chi ;))

By the way. I don't know the tv-shows your referring to. Could we get back to talking Aikido please... :D

Tim Griffiths
02-21-2002, 04:27 AM
Originally posted by Erik

The point being made is that all Aikido is not good Aikido.


Don't you mean 'that not all aikido is good aikido' - or have you given up on us completely, Erik? :D

The first 10 years or so of my aikido life I spent in a Ki-style dojo which, although not in direct contact with Neptune, was certainly on the Christmas-card list (make that the Wicca winter solstice list). Yes, I was that Fruit Loop (I belive the technical aikido-l term is aiki-fruity). Who cares that you couldn't move big people unless they wanted to go? Who cares that there were ten gadzillion openings in every technique (I may be exaggerating)? That wasn't the point of the training, but to be soft, and flow, and if uke didn't want to, that was too bad for him - he'd get told to relax more.

Was it bad aikido? Yes - terrible. Was it worthless? No - I was able to take that ten years of relaxation practice and use it when I started doing aikido (as in real Ueshiba-ryu aikijujitsu aikido).
A lot of people got a lot more out of it than they would of got from a traditional aikikai dojo.

I've been to a dojo where they don't throw shihonage - they assume the 'shihonage position' and then tori lets go and nage sits down. Terrible aikido.

For these not to be bad aikido, you have to broaden you definition of aikido so much that it becomes useless.

When you visit a dojo, it really doesn't take long to find out the quality of the aikido. When you talk to someone, it really doesn't take long to feel the quality of their aikido. Think of all these shihan, with very different styles of aikido, all talking about the same things, saying the same things are important in practice. This is aikido. When someone says "Don't worry about posture, just be relaxed (limp) and imagine yourself as a giant avacado" - this isn't aikido anymore. Not as we know it, Jim.

There's a lot of terible aikido out there. There's a lot of terrible karate, terrible TKD and terrible ninjitsu. Thank God for Tae Bo.

Tim

PeterR
02-21-2002, 08:28 AM
Originally posted by Peter Goldsbury
I see from your dojo profile that you have finally made it back here.
Got a bit a head of myself - this time next week I will be airborn. My name has always been on the board so it isn't that much of a stretch.
However, I suggest you look at the references to SHU - HA- RI in the "O Sensei's aikido" thread, for a way to go beyond this tendency.The idea of Shu Ha Ri is very important to how I see my Aikido practice. Still very much in the Shu with occaisional brief forays into Ha.

I do look forward to meeting you once I've settled and yes I read your post in the O'sensei's Aikido thread.

guest1234
02-21-2002, 09:04 AM
Everyone has a right to decide if a particular type of Aikido is good or bad for them. They can decide something is bad without even knowing what it is or trying it, it is their loss, and it it by definition a prejudiced decision, but if that is how they live life, fine. They can even proclaim their decisions, however incorrect or prejudiced.

But they should refrain from derisive, disrespectful names (wimp, fluffy bunny, aiki-fruity, fruit loops are just a few used recently)--- not only because it reflects poorly on them, and their sensei, but because it is against the forum rules. Sad we have to have a rule telling us to treat each other with respect, even worse that it gets violated.

Personally, I think a good solution to this would be to change the bulletin board name of any individual using a disrespectful name to that name, a month for each time it happens.

JJF
02-22-2002, 03:59 AM
Originally posted by ca
Personally, I think a good solution to this would be to change the bulletin board name of any individual using a disrespectful name to that name, a month for each time it happens.
Good one Colleen... I wouldn't mind being 'Mr. fruit-loop' for a while though :D

Anyway I'm going to stop posting on this forum soon, since every time I do you allways expres my thoughts better than my limited english can do... manage... say... explain... ahem.... you get the picture ;)

Chocolateuke
02-25-2002, 12:37 PM
Originally posted by PeterR




Just for the record:

Good Aikido: strong adherence to principles, good fluidity, convertable into effective if the need arises (martial).

Poor Aikido: excess movement, ukes flying off before techniques are executed (worse case the magical no touch throws), more talk than action, and the lack of what makes Good Aikido (see above).

Reason: Aikido is first and foremost a Budo.

Refute away

Does this mean that O-Senseiss Aikido is bad?? he would throw people withought or barely touching them. just a little question.

PeterR
02-25-2002, 04:01 PM
Originally posted by Chocolateuke Does this mean that O-Senseiss Aikido is bad?? he would throw people withought or barely touching them. just a little question.

Read what I said

ukes flying off before techniques are executed (worse case the magical no touch throws)

The magical no touch throw being a subset of ukes flying off before the technique is executed. Emphasize magic.

If Ueshiba M. was relying on the gymnastics of his trained uke to make a show of a no touch throw then he was doing poor budo and by implication poor Aikido. Excuse the qualifiers but demonstrations of Ueshiba M. relied on trained ukes, that is the main function of the deshi. Doesn't mean he could not handle a real attack just that if you want to look good you don't want some shmoe off the street. There is a biography of Ohba that describes the annoyance of Ueshiba M. when the former decided to attack for real. Ueshiba M. by the way did an outstanding job of it.

I have no trouble with the concept of a no touch throw. The threat of contact is nearly as powerful as the contact itself. The closest I came to performing one is where a student overanticipated what was coming. I didn't touch him, he went down, I got annoyed. Now if I could do the same with an unexpected technique - then I would be impressed with myself.

Not everything that Ueshiba M. did was outstanding. A highly skilled martial artist but human none the less.

Chuck Clark
02-25-2002, 06:43 PM
Hi Peter,

You understand, of course, that there's a special place in Aiki Hell for those of us that aren't "Hero Worshipers" and believers in the "One True Way." (TM)

No matter, though ... we'll get some great training done in that "Hell Dojo." ;)

Best of luck in your upcoming move.

PeterR
02-25-2002, 07:13 PM
Originally posted by Chuck Clark No matter, though ... we'll get some great training done in that "Hell Dojo." ;)


Shades of Dante's Inferno. Choice between the first level and heaven - I'll take the former.

2 more days.

Chocolateuke
02-25-2002, 09:46 PM
[QUOTE]Originally posted by Chuck Clark
[B]Hi Peter,

You understand, of course, that there's a special place in Aiki Hell for those of us that aren't "Hero Worshipers" and believers in the "One True Way." (TM)


I do Been there done that. I do not worship heros only God. and there is no one true way. if there was then only like 3 percent of the people would go to heaven and the rest to hell. I believe that there are many paths up the same mountain. But I also belive that everybody has the potentail to do feats that Jesus or O-Sensei did of course I also think that life it self is a Miracle and not something to be thrown away.

Bruce Baker
03-26-2002, 10:42 AM
You know, there have been thousands of systems of fighting, if you begin to include the different styles named by individuals who have struck out on their own? And ... only the test of time and tide has provided for their immortality when all they wanted was a way to protect themselves in combat from others, or to be equal with other fighters?

Don't get all bound up that others do not appreciate the art you practice or where it comes from ... that is so much trite. A moot point to be discussed by old men and women in the fading days of life, not by the time and effort of today, your day.

Eventually, your knowledge will extend itself to understand your need to learn what you need to learn to have a safe and healthy life, whether it be hand to hand, weapons, or who knows what the future-fighting may bring? Look at O'Sensei. He could have stopped training at any level of searching and been content to be of some other school of martial arts, but for some reason, he didn't. Did that constitute a fake martial art, or a poor second class art? His students proved that not to be so, didn't they?

So, don't be concerned about bad mouthing of your art, or practice. If it is valid for actual hand to hand, or weapons to hand ... then it will protect you in your everyday life, won't it? Take it from someone who has learned to point out differences and simularitys at the end of class, not during class, as to validity of other martial arts and validity of techniques?

If it works, it is valid. If others talk badly about your art, it either needs fixing, or you need to get out more and make more friends in the MA community so they know who you are and what you do? Your friendlyness, and execution of technique in practice will speak volumes .... It did for O'Sensei?

Take in a few seminars, that is a start.

erikmenzel
03-26-2002, 10:56 AM
IMHO training together might be more fruitful than argueing about words.
That is what is wrong in a lot of schools and organisations: too much talk.



And no question marks!

Bruce Baker
03-26-2002, 11:02 AM
I thought I had said enough until I saw the post of O'Sensei's gymnastic uke's throwing themselves?

O'Sensei was an exceptionally strong man for one, but isn't it easier to move an object in motion than a dead weight?

Simply, hit an object and see how far it goes? Take the same object, pick it up, and throw it ... how much further did it go? Was it magic?

Try throwing with your opposite hand, your not throwing hand ... how far did it go?

Watch the discus thrower, or the shot put thrower, then try it yourself ... was that gymnastics or superior strength and efficient use of strength?

As difficult as it may be to believe, O'Sensei applied superior strength with efficient use, and sometimes Ki/chi added like a nitrous-oxide mix, to enhance his throws. The human body remembers strength of youth even when it begins to atrophy and grow old ... muscles have a memory. If it is merely an introduction of adrenalin or hypnotism of the mind over body, it happens ... none the less.

When my grandfather was in the hospital bed dying, delirious, he threw the nurses and doctors across the room( about seven to ten feet) when they tried to restrain him without knowing it? When he awoke to normal conciousness, he was as weak as a kitten, not being able to walk, or even get out of bed?

Of course, how you interpret what you saw is like a hundred people describing what they saw, but that is where embellishment leads to disbelief, and here we are back to the beginning again? What did you see?

Kevin Lynch
07-24-2004, 11:10 PM
This is a touchy subject, but one that absolutely deserves to be examined. I have noticed that on several message boards, students of aiki arts other than O'Sensei's aikido are ridiculed as "not being real aikido," or "copycats." Of course this is usually done by those in aikido dojos who are not aware that there are aiki arts that preceeded O'Sensei, (some of which he studied, such as Daito ryu).

I am currently a student in a dojo where we train in Nihon Goshin Aikido (NGA), an art created by Shodo Morita, a contemporary of O'Sensei who studied Daito ryu, among other arts. The name "Nihon Goshin Aikido" was created by Sensei Morita and used officially in the 1940s in his dojo, and continues in the United States today. While NGA may have similarities to Ueshiba's aikido, it is quite different, and all who practice it are very upfront about it.

Frequently, I have seen negative posts about NGA and other aiki arts that are not derived from O'Sensei. As far as I'm concerned, those posting are uninformed and intolerant. I know this is not the way of most enlightened aikidoka, and it is clear that other aiki arts are appreciated by the highest levels in the organizations of O'Sensei's aikido. As an example, the Aiki Expo this year will feature as one of its teachers a phenomenal Sensei, Don Angier of Shidare Yanagi ryu, Aikijujitsu.

I am interested in hearing what others have to say on this issue. Personally, I believe we have more to gain by observing each other and our similarities, rather than disparaging another's art as inferior or not "true" aiki.

Matthew

I have seen the criticisms leveled against NGA on other message boards. It is a shame that what appears to be a perfectly good martial art takes such a beating. However at least some of the blame lies squarely at the door of the NGAA.

Most if not all credible martial arts organizations can provide good clear information about their founder. Where he trained, what he studied and who with. Unfortunately for the NGAA and NGA students, information on Shodo Morita, (NGAs founder), is patchy and inconsistent at best and almost non-existent at worst. This is where the criticisms begin.

The scenario works like this.

A newbie to martial arts, using the Internet researches possible options and finds various Aikido and NGA web sites. The NGA sites state NGA is totally separate from O Senseis Aikido but has similar techniques and principles.


The newbie finds a web site for an NGA dojo close by where they live. However since we live in an age where people are weary of being taken for a ride, the newbie wants more info on NGA and Shodo Morita. Where he trained, who with etc.


Failing to find sufficient information even on the NGAAs own web site the newbie heads for the discussion forums to get the low down and find out what's what.


Current Aikidoka posting on the discussion forums, most of whom will never have heard of NGA, do their best to help this newbie. However find themselves going round in the same circles as the newbie because the requested information is simply not available.


The Aikidoka then return a verdict that NGA is some strange fridge group or some sort of McDojo and should probably be avoided.


This catches the attention of an NGA practitioner who protests about the unfair treatment of their art and then continues to provide the same patchy information already found by both the newbie and Aikidoka.


The newbie gets bored and wonders off to join Kung Fu instead and the Aikidoka begin probing the NGA student for further information.


The NGA student replies with "I've told you all I know, I'm not discussing this anymore".


The Aikidoka in turn reply with "You're not even practicing Aikido. It's just Karate and Judo and some stuff thrown together. That's not Aikido". Which gets the attention of another NGA student.


NGA student 2 continues on with the same information everybody else has already provided and the thread goes nowhere.


If the NGAA would take the time to get it's history properly sorted and published in the same manner as every other credible martial arts organization, (i.e. dates, grades and instructors names with respect to the founder and current shihan), then NGA students would avoid most of the criticisms leveled at them.

I realize some of this information is available with respect to Daito Ryu Aikijitsu. However the home page claims Shodo Morita mastered a number of other martial arts. Including Aikido (not many people have publicly claimed to have mastered Aikido), Karate, Judo and "many weapon arts" (which ones?). But does not provide any details.

The man ultimately responsible for getting these details sorted is the head of your organisation. Shihan Bowe. If I were an NGA student I would get in touch with him and inform him of my concerns.

I hope this has been helpful. :D

kironin
07-25-2004, 09:27 PM
The man ultimately responsible for getting these details sorted is the head of your organisation. Shihan Bowe. If I were an NGA student I would get in touch with him and inform him of my concerns.

I hope this has been helpful. :D


Since "Shihan" Bowe was lectured about not calling what he did Aikido in the 1960's when he came to seminars by Koichi Tohei Sensei on the US East Coast, I wouldn't hold your breath on this one.