PDA

View Full Version : "The goal is not to throw"


Pages : [1] 2

Please visit our sponsor:
 

AikiWeb Sponsored Links - Place your Aikido link here for only $10!


Mario Tobias
01-20-2012, 02:56 AM
I have my own personal interpretation about this statement but just want to "throw" it out there to see what others think.

cheers,

SeiserL
01-20-2012, 04:51 AM
I was once taught to "blend, take balance, and let them fall."

Another said "connect, extend, and move".

"Throwing" implies muscle.

Thoughts?

batemanb
01-20-2012, 05:11 AM
I believe that Aikido should be done with your uke, not to your uke. So in agreement with Lynn, once you've connected, you move with them to disturb their balance and then let them fall whichever way they are going. If you work with the aim of trying to throw them, you will invariably jam yourself up as you try to make the throw work, trying to put uke in a place that his body doesn't want to or can't go.

I also believe that this is so for any technique, be it a throw, pin or lock. The more you try to do it, the less it will work.

I guess that means I'm in the "goal is not to throw" camp. :)

graham christian
01-20-2012, 07:43 AM
Goal TO throw, no. Not for me. A skill to learn that I put under the term 'projection', yes.

Goal not to throw? I would never have to or not to as goals, merely choices.

Regards.G.

chillzATL
01-20-2012, 07:52 AM
If I take their balance and control it/them through to completion, have I thrown them or simply let them fall?

IMO, simply letting them fall would indicate giving up that control at some point.

Mary Eastland
01-20-2012, 07:56 AM
I am not seeking to control....only to receive and blend...the fall will present itself as I pay attention to what is.

lbb
01-20-2012, 08:49 AM
The goal is not to throw.
The goal is to not throw.

Close, but not the same. Which is it?

phitruong
01-20-2012, 09:25 AM
i thought the goal is not to throw up but more of a let down :D

Keith Larman
01-20-2012, 10:29 AM
I honestly think people make this way too complicated and often way too "mystical" sounding when it really doesn't need to be.

As we learn something new we will tend to focus on details of a movement. As we start to focus on those details we tend to start to over utilize aspects of our bodies. So a nikyo where the students shoulder raise up and they start trying to power through it. Rather than keeping that connected feeling and simply moving through the entire body to cause the nikyo to happen. That connected body allows nage (or fill in your favorite term here) to "feel" what's going on in the other person's structure and applying the nikyo becomes rather simple (unless the other person is doing the same thing back with their own connected body and then you have a problem). So the idea of tensing, or "trying" to "make" it happen involve localized tension and a destruction of the smooth connections. Or as our late sensei used to say "when you try to throw you cut off the flow of ki. Let your ki flow." The interesting part for me is that after some years I now understand that much better (I think) in that now I can intend to throw without mucking it up. I just keep my focus on maintaining that relaxed structure which allows me to feel what's going on in the "aiki" of me and the attacker. It is both simultaneously very soft but potentially very powerful because, well, at that point I have them. And I can throw. Or not. So for me the focus is not so much not "trying" to throw, but more about getting that connection, getting the "feedback" started, and working within that to do what I want to do. Which might include a throw.

Just fwiw.

Lyle Laizure
01-20-2012, 11:25 AM
I always thought the goal was to be able to go home after the enconter. :)

kewms
01-20-2012, 11:27 AM
The goal is continuous, uninterrupted movement. No stops, no edges. How uke responds to that is partly up to him.

Katherine

n.puertollano
01-20-2012, 11:52 AM
Something that stuck with me during practice... It was explained to me that if you focus on the throw/throwing then it's not aikido. My understanding of that statement is that focusing on throwing or taking someone down you focus to much on the end and you forget the basics of blending, and getting your partner off balance. Anyone that is strong can push anyone and throw them around.
It's about connecting, getting them off balance because at the end of it is the throw not because you threw them but because you did the steps right and they will naturally end up in a throw.

My other understanding of it deals with awareness. Focusing on the end then you don't get the experience all the elements that led to the end. The closest metaphor I can think of is in the movie Enter the dragon when Bruce Lee tells the young kid not to focus on the finger or he will miss all that heavenly glory.

DH
01-20-2012, 12:57 PM
Interesting

I have never once seen a judo guy voluntarily over extend and leave his other hand behind and half launch himself at someone. Everyone I have met had to be thrown.
Ueshiba went to the Kodokan in his old age, post war, fully developed Aikido days and he had to throw people.
He built his reputation on uncooperative non-participating opponents during the post war years who had to be thrown.
Shirata, Shioda, Tomiki, Mochizuki, and many many others were incredibly damning of it. To the point of saying cooperative aikido was not aikido in the first place.
Apparently many in aikido are totally un-impressed by cooperative Aikido.
Come to think of it...other than a certain sub-group within aikido that most other people in aikido call dive bunnies... I have never met anyone in aikido who was overly impressed by cooperative training.
If someone can't throw a non co-operative person intent on keeping his center or effectively stop a motivated attacker how and why and by what standard should that be considered a budo?

Dan

DH
01-20-2012, 01:11 PM
I am not seeking to control....only to receive and blend...the fall will present itself as I pay attention to what is.
No...it will not. That will only happen if the person attacking is dissconected, cooperating and offering their center out from themselves. Which on the whole is a fairly unique way to do any sort of budo. I've only seen it in Aikido and Daito ryu. Everyone else in Budo keeps their center as the attacker. So in any other case you will have to throw them by actively taking their center...against their will. Thus they will have to be thrown. Why would a fall...happen...to someone NOT launching their center at someone, but retaining it while they attack, like most budo-ka do?
Aren't you guys really talking about a certain sub-group within aikido? It seems most dissaprove of this type of practice.
Dan

kewms
01-20-2012, 01:11 PM
If someone can't throw a non co-operative person intent on keeping his center or effectively stop a motivated attacker how and why and by what standard should that be considered a budo?


I agree that it is reasonable to judge the effectiveness of a budo by its ability to achieve this outcome.

However, I don't think it is helpful to think of aikido as something you DO TO another person. That is, I don't think "I must throw him" is the right way to look at it.

In this, as in many such conversations, I think it's important to differentiate between the externally visible outcome -- resisting attacker falls down -- and the internal thought process that achieves that result. The evidence seems to suggest, for instance, that Ueshiba Sensei spent a lot more time worrying about his alignment relative to the universe than the precise angle of torque applied to his attacker's wrist.

Katherine

mathewjgano
01-20-2012, 01:22 PM
I have my own personal interpretation about this statement but just want to "throw" it out there to see what others think.

cheers,

Hmmm...the goal is self-improvement in as many ways as possible? Keiko involves the goal of throwing. As both uke and nage I've been told I should try to throw: as uke to provide nage with something to work with as well as to "shape" my ukemi properly; as nage to learn the essence of the waza/form we're working on.

lbb
01-20-2012, 01:23 PM
I honestly think people make this way too complicated and often way too "mystical" sounding when it really doesn't need to be.

...and then he proceeds to get a wee bit "mystical" himself with talk about "connection". Come on, Keith! :D

Back to what I said before: is it "The goal is not to throw", implying that while throwing isn't the goal, it could happen....or "The goal is to not throw"? Big difference.

If the former, perhaps a better word than "goal" is "focus". Focus on the throw, or the ending, and you're likely to trip up while trying to get there. As my sensei says, you can't bake the cake until you've assembled the ingredients.

Mary Eastland
01-20-2012, 01:28 PM
@ Dan:
I understand that you don't understand. There is nothing mystical about it. It is just different than what you do. That doesn't make it bad or wrong. Just different.
Best,
Mary

Demetrio Cereijo
01-20-2012, 01:35 PM
Interesting
...
If someone can't throw a non co-operative person intent on keeping his center or effectively stop a motivated attacker how and why and by what standard should that be considered a budo?

Dan

Kahō budō, a long standing tradition.

graham christian
01-20-2012, 01:36 PM
If you are doing to then you have already lost your center I would say.

Regards.G.

Keith Larman
01-20-2012, 02:04 PM
...and then he proceeds to get a wee bit "mystical" himself with talk about "connection". Come on, Keith! :D .

Well, the difference I suppose is that I don't think "connection" is at all a mystical concept. It is a function of proper body structure, movement and mechanics. Nothing complicated, confusing, or even remotely magical. Shrug.

DH
01-20-2012, 02:09 PM
@ Dan:
I understand that you don't understand. There is nothing mystical about it. It is just different than what you do. That doesn't make it bad or wrong. Just different.
Best,
Mary
Hi Mary
Well okay then. I don't think right or wrong is the question. Anyone can do whatever they want. What's wrong with that? But we all carry the weight of clarity in our choices.
Leaving me out of this... why would a fall...happen...to someone NOT launching their center at someone, but retaining it while they attack?
How, where, and why would they fall down?
Do they want to fall down?
Are they trying to help you let them fall down?
If we are agreeing that the person attacking is cooperating and offering their center out from themselves, than that's fine. But it does open those observations:
1. It is a fairly unique way to do any sort of budo. As I said, I've only seen it in Aikido and Daito ryu.
2. It appears from reading, and meeting people all over the world that, that level of cooperation is certainly not the most popular method.
3. So it certainly expands on the question of what it takes to throw someone both in aikido and from someone you would have to use aikido on outside of the art.

Dan

chillzATL
01-20-2012, 02:27 PM
Interesting

I have never once seen a judo guy voluntarily over extend and leave his other hand behind and half launch himself at someone. Everyone I have met had to be thrown.
Ueshiba went to the Kodokan in his old age, post war, fully developed Aikido days and he had to throw people.
He built his reputation on uncooperative non-participating opponents during the post war years who had to be thrown.
Shirata, Shioda, Tomiki, Mochizuki, and many many others were incredibly damning of it. To the point of saying cooperative aikido was not aikido in the first place.
Apparently many in aikido are totally un-impressed by cooperative Aikido.
Come to think of it...other than a certain sub-group within aikido that most other people in aikido call dive bunnies... I have never met anyone in aikido who was overly impressed by cooperative training.
If someone can't throw a non co-operative person intent on keeping his center or effectively stop a motivated attacker how and why and by what standard should that be considered a budo?

Dan

It's amazing how modern aikido has created a mindset that taking control of another person and making things happen is somehow not good aikido or not aikido at all. I'd rather be stiff and muscly, but know that I was really getting something done, than just go through the motions in the name of enlightenment.

jonreading
01-20-2012, 02:46 PM
I am on the fence about this one, mostly because the way this is explained by seniors and the way it is interpreted by juniors is sometimes not the same. This is one of those concepts that is generally introduced too early and the result is... different than the intent.

The goal should be to throw until you know how to throw and can do it with competency. Dan is spot on in saying throwing someone who is not cooperating is a different experience than throwing someone who is actively participating in their own compromise. For those who can competently throw tori with or without tori's participation, talk all you want about the mundane of focusing on throwing our partners. As a competent practitioner, ideally your movement transitions such that you do not focus on moving your partner; you focus on moving yourself after assimilating your partner onto your center.

I'd also add a few observations:

1. Aikido is about control. The fact that you are trying to alter your partner's response to your own design inherently defines your actions as "controlling". That said, I do not think there is anything wrong asserting control over your partner; the magic lies in [I]why you are asserting control...
2. Aikido in many respects seeks to accelerate the experience of throwing by generally repressing uke's natural responses to preserve his center. I think we call those who do not willfully fall for us "jerks with bad energy"...

My instructor used to describe this transition as analogous to when we learned to drive. Both hands on the wheel, full stops, no radio, turn signals when we think we are changing lanes and absolute terror merging onto the highway. 10 years later... listening to the radio, driving with one hand while (gulp) texting and absolute terror merging onto the highway. We need to let our bodies absorb the movements before we are ready to decide what we do and don't need. And we certainly should be questioning anyone who has decided to tell us what we don't need or won't teach...

sorokod
01-20-2012, 02:48 PM
Ms. Eastman provides a link to her dojo's web site with a link to a collection of videos on YouTube

http://www.miron-enterprises.com/berkshirehillsaikido/html/video_clips.html also http://www.youtube.com/user/thermopile85/videos

Picture worth a thousand words and all that...

DH
01-20-2012, 02:48 PM
It's amazing how modern aikido has created a mindset that taking control of another person and making things happen is somehow not good aikido or not aikido at all. I'd rather be stiff and muscly, but know that I was really getting something done, than just go through the motions in the name of enlightenment.
Yup. Not the least of which is considering Ueshiba saying that one of the results of aiki was exerting your will on your opponent making them do what you want.
Though I don't assign that to just aikido.
Budo is definitive. If you cannot control the outcome, you are simply not doing a budo...but someting else. Which is fine-have fun.
But again, that's why I talked about clarity in our choices. We can't dream and imagine our way into being a part of a bigger picture we really have no place in when we did not do the work required or suffer the process to gain a deeper understanding and true competency without doing the work. It goes back to me saying not everyone gets an "A." Outcome matters. Trying to make everyone equal lifts the ones not qualified and who cannot perform (and who never seem to object) and unfairly reduces the superior work of those who have.
Sort of like saying everyone's efforts are equal to Musashi just because they do Iai and bought an outfit.
Dan

Mary Eastland
01-20-2012, 02:53 PM
I think it is best understood on the mat.

mathewjgano
01-20-2012, 03:27 PM
It's amazing how modern aikido has created a mindset that taking control of another person and making things happen is somehow not good aikido or not aikido at all. I'd rather be stiff and muscly, but know that I was really getting something done, than just go through the motions in the name of enlightenment.

Do you think this has to do with a misapplication of zanshin? I might be misremembering the meaning, but when I've been told I shouldn't think of throwing aite so much it was to get me thinking about how to move with a strong structure (establishing proper vertical and horizontal musubi): instead of looking only at moving aite, to feel the space around me in all directions while having strong vertical connection ("8" directional intent, possibly?).
In short: to gather up "all" rather than focus on "some," if that makes sense.

Maarten De Queecker
01-20-2012, 04:57 PM
Interesting

I have never once seen a judo guy voluntarily over extend and leave his other hand behind and half launch himself at someone. Everyone I have met had to be thrown.
Ueshiba went to the Kodokan in his old age, post war, fully developed Aikido days and he had to throw people.
He built his reputation on uncooperative non-participating opponents during the post war years who had to be thrown.
Shirata, Shioda, Tomiki, Mochizuki, and many many others were incredibly damning of it. To the point of saying cooperative aikido was not aikido in the first place.
Apparently many in aikido are totally un-impressed by cooperative Aikido.
Come to think of it...other than a certain sub-group within aikido that most other people in aikido call dive bunnies... I have never met anyone in aikido who was overly impressed by cooperative training.
If someone can't throw a non co-operative person intent on keeping his center or effectively stop a motivated attacker how and why and by what standard should that be considered a budo?

Dan
I'm in this camp. Most aikido seems to consist of a single, generally overextended attack followed by Uke gracefully following Tori's lead instead of doing what an Uke is supposed to be doing: trying to regain his balance in order to attack again and again until he is on the floor. Working like that creates a way more interesting dynamic, in which tori can never be ahead of uke but has to be aware of and respond to uke's every move and improvise accordingly. Trying to regain balance (and thus potentially breaking free of a technique) also allows uke to find holes in a technique which he can then try to avoid when he's Tori. I find being a good uke way more difficult than being a good tori.

lbb
01-20-2012, 05:30 PM
Well, the difference I suppose is that I don't think "connection" is at all a mystical concept. It is a function of proper body structure, movement and mechanics. Nothing complicated, confusing, or even remotely magical. Shrug.

Sure it's mystical. You know what you mean by connection, but surely you don't believe that everyone shares your understanding of it. Do you really feel that someone with no prior experience, walking into the dojo, has your understanding of the word "connection" to mean "a function of proper body structure, movement and mechanics"? To that person, simply talking about "connection" without explaining what you mean by that term (using the words of a common language together with demonstration and practice), is absolutely mystical.

Keith Larman
01-20-2012, 06:21 PM
Sure it's mystical. You know what you mean by connection, but surely you don't believe that everyone shares your understanding of it. Do you really feel that someone with no prior experience, walking into the dojo, has your understanding of the word "connection" to mean "a function of proper body structure, movement and mechanics"? To that person, simply talking about "connection" without explaining what you mean by that term (using the words of a common language together with demonstration and practice), is absolutely mystical.

No, that's why when I teach I spend the time trying to explain the notion in detail as part of what I'm getting at rather than just leaving it at the word. That's why I will often start with so-called "ki exercises" then try to explain what I think is going on in terms that they might be able to understand. And not just settle for "let your ki flow". Then I will move on to a technique that I think instantiates that particular skill and hopefully get them to better understand what I'm getting at. Connection is a common underlying theme in most of the classes I've taught lately. I'm a little baffled as to how you can tell me how I've been using the word in my classes.

So getting back to my original comment, I try to avoid saying "don't try to throw" because I think it is often misunderstood. I will instead talk about trying to use the entire body as a whole and work on their basics of movement. Then if it does come down to that I already have a context within which to explain what I mean.

graham christian
01-21-2012, 02:01 AM
Ms. Eastman provides a link to her dojo's web site with a link to a collection of videos on YouTube

http://www.miron-enterprises.com/berkshirehillsaikido/html/video_clips.html also http://www.youtube.com/user/thermopile85/videos

Picture worth a thousand words and all that...

Can you do it like that?

Regards.G,

graham christian
01-21-2012, 02:41 AM
I am on the fence about this one, mostly because the way this is explained by seniors and the way it is interpreted by juniors is sometimes not the same. This is one of those concepts that is generally introduced too early and the result is... different than the intent.

The goal should be to throw until you know how to throw and can do it with competency. Dan is spot on in saying throwing someone who is not cooperating is a different experience than throwing someone who is actively participating in their own compromise. For those who can competently throw tori with or without tori's participation, talk all you want about the mundane of focusing on throwing our partners. As a competent practitioner, ideally your movement transitions such that you do not focus on moving your partner; you focus on moving yourself after assimilating your partner onto your center.

I'd also add a few observations:

1. Aikido is about control. The fact that you are trying to alter your partner's response to your own design inherently defines your actions as "controlling". That said, I do not think there is anything wrong asserting control over your partner; the magic lies in [I]why you are asserting control...
2. Aikido in many respects seeks to accelerate the experience of throwing by generally repressing uke's natural responses to preserve his center. I think we call those who do not willfully fall for us "jerks with bad energy"...

My instructor used to describe this transition as analogous to when we learned to drive. Both hands on the wheel, full stops, no radio, turn signals when we think we are changing lanes and absolute terror merging onto the highway. 10 years later... listening to the radio, driving with one hand while (gulp) texting and absolute terror merging onto the highway. We need to let our bodies absorb the movements before we are ready to decide what we do and don't need. And we certainly should be questioning anyone who has decided to tell us what we don't need or won't teach...

Hi Jon.
I know it's the norm to think Aikido is about control and that may be so for a while but in truth it's about quite the opposite of such. A very hard concept to understand and as I observe even those here 'certain' of their 'expertise' still hold on to this concept of control.

Ueshiba actually pointed this out but others find that hard to believe. When you watch someone and the ukes are flying about, or crumpling on the mat then it seems 'obvious' they are being controlled to the observer and the observer then wants to learn how to do that.

However, when he is told by the 'master' that he himself is not trying to control at all then the observer would find that hard to accept.

Anyway, that was just to let you know so that if you ever feel like that in Aikido, that you weren't 'trying to do anything' then you will remember what has been said and not get too confused.

Being somewhat 'controversial' in my views when comparing them to the 'norm' I will add something on the second point, throwing. Look at it as receiving, taking, projecting. This I would say is the first differentiation needed rather than the lazy use of the word throw.

Now, center? Nothing to do once again with anyone extending center or not really. If we use center as the point to focus on regarding projections then it would be connecting, receiving, taking and projecting. As you can see from this breakdown that takes quite an amount of skill.

Add to that the fact that you could take someones center and project, direct them straight into the wall.....smash!!! (or pavement for that matter) but then to see why that wouldn't be Aikido for Aikido is Harmony. Thus the practiced of projecting them into a circle, for their own safety....harmony.

It's a useful exercise, just like learning the sword is a useful exercise and both take great discipline and study and practice. Therefore it boils down to have you learned to do it yet? or can you do it? That's all really. Not whether it should or shouldn't be done.

Then of course there is doing the same thing, projections, where the focus is not on center and for instance on leading or even taking and leading the mind. Just as effective, looks exactly the same, however, different skill. Different study.

Regards.G.

sorokod
01-21-2012, 03:33 AM
Can you do it like that?


I probably could if I put in the training hours but why would I want to?
All martial arts have in common the ability to stop physical violence directed at you. There are different meanings to "stop" and different strategies to achieve that, but this is the base to everything else a martial art may have to offer. Without this base, everything else has a quality of a fake town in a western movie; buildings tend to collapse if you lean on them since nothing supports the walls.

The physical practice demonstrated in those videos lacks that basic quality and as such doesnt justify the " martial" adjective.

graham christian
01-21-2012, 05:50 AM
I probably could if I put in the training hours but why would I want to?
All martial arts have in common the ability to stop physical violence directed at you. There are different meanings to "stop" and different strategies to achieve that, but this is the base to everything else a martial art may have to offer. Without this base, everything else has a quality of a fake town in a western movie; buildings tend to collapse if you lean on them since nothing supports the walls.

The physical practice demonstrated in those videos lacks that basic quality and as such doesnt justify the " martial" adjective.

Such is your view but alas it is based on what? If you cannot do as on the video then you cannot understand what it involves and therefore you will be totally oblivious to the fact that it handles violence and probably even more effectively than you may think.

Regards.G.

Demetrio Cereijo
01-21-2012, 05:58 AM
Such is your view but alas it is based on what? If you cannot do as on the video then you cannot understand what it involves and therefore you will be totally oblivious to the fact that it handles violence and probably even more effectively than you may think.

Regards.G.

I'd say you can't tell an opinion from a fact.

gregstec
01-21-2012, 08:12 AM
I have my own personal interpretation about this statement but just want to "throw" it out there to see what others think.

cheers,

There has been a lot of talk about control in this thread - this is not a complicated topic - in all martial interactions, the goal is to control in some fashion - after all, why would someone attack you without the intention of controlling you; or if attacked, why would you not want to control your attacker so they stop attacking you.

So logically the goal is to control - and how you do that can vary from the purely overt physical overpowering to the covert and subtle taking of the other's center while you keep yours - bottom line is you are in control, and once you are in control, it is your choice as to throw, drop, or disengage.

All very simple really.

Greg

DH
01-21-2012, 09:05 AM
Hi Greg
I agree, but the issue is only brought home when you have a real attacker. None of the bliss bunnies and have ever demonstrated their effectiveness a) outside their own dojo b) up against real trained resistance and will not accept requests to do so.

It is incredible that the people who continue to display these highly cooperative movements have never been challenged within their own communities to display a standard of credibility and show them with real attackers. Within Aikido, when the discussion is narrowed down to them having to defend against a boxer or jujutsu-ka, they all of sudden default to..."That isn't aikido. You don't understand aikido."
I am the first one to say that those who love the energy exchange (I call it catching air) should be left alone to enjoy themselves and not be criticized for it. There is no requirement that they have to be able to fight. The only time issues arise are when they become deluded into thinking any portion of that is real and will work under stress with trained people.

None of this is new or peculiar to Aikido. All martial arts have been plagued by bliss bunnies trying to equate their meager unearned efforts to truly capable men and women-without having to have suffered the same injuries and sweat to actually become capable yourself. It's a twice told tale, going on for ages. It's a cheap, weasely way to try and equate yourself without the cost. Worse when your own delusion now gets passed down and taught to others. Suffice to say, that in the era and culture where you had to put your body where your mouth was, we had endless stories of these people showing up and either getting killed, maimed or just put in their place.

It is to their benefit that modern budo-ka now think that challenges are rude, and testing of people's theories are an affront to the sensibilities of good people. Remove that modern governor of everyone is qual and everyone gets and "A" and you would be right back to people getting killed, maimed, and/or put in their place for some pretty whacky theories of what actually works. In fact today, trying to define traditional budo with a parameter of it working or not...is actually an insult to many people in budo.

To me that mindset, a modern invention in our generations hands, is responsible for the gutting and eventual death, of the traditional arts-and rightly so. And we... are the generation who is doing it.
Dan

Mary Eastland
01-21-2012, 09:42 AM
I probably could if I put in the training hours but why would I want to?
All martial arts have in common the ability to stop physical violence directed at you. There are different meanings to "stop" and different strategies to achieve that, but this is the base to everything else a martial art may have to offer. Without this base, everything else has a quality of a fake town in a western movie; buildings tend to collapse if you lean on them since nothing supports the walls.

The physical practice demonstrated in those videos lacks that basic quality and as such doesn't justify the " martial" adjective.

Hi David:

Thank you for posting the link to our website and videos. My name is Eastland not Eastman.

The training it takes to do what we do is fun. We have a good group of people that train together regularly.

I feel safer than I used to before I started training 24 years ago. That is what matters to me.

DH
01-21-2012, 09:47 AM
I am currently reading a series of stories of duals and battles with noted sword and spear adepts that highlight some of the same issues of people with "theories" showing up and actually being deluded enough to challenge men with serious experience and acknowledged skills. It is interesting to take it out of the context of simple issues of whether you need to actualy throw someone who is sustaining their balance or think you can actually move and they will fall down, and bring it into a question of life or death. The men in these stories would not face experts, without experience and skill. They would not even consider it. I wonder what they would think of some of us today.

Imagine if you will, some person in the mid 1600's never having fought a real duel, never having faced an acknowledged expert who has, never having faced your own death, and some how, some way, being so deluded that they actually dismissed the cost of all of the knowledge and experience of their accomplished foe and convincing themself that they...had a deeper understanding, of something they themsevles had never done or faced...and marched out to face him.
It sounds almost insane doesn't it?
Dan

sorokod
01-21-2012, 09:56 AM
Such is your view but alas it is based on what?

Based on the videos (I watched those with "randori" in the title) the nages consistently creates openings which the ukes consistently no taking advantage. That is not martial, as a matter of fact. As a matter of opinion that teaches sloppy waza and unrealistic movements, but this is a reasonable opinion.

As to not being able to that, I am not able to waltz as well, this down not reflect on my ability to do martial arts in any way.

DH
01-21-2012, 10:00 AM
Hi David:

Thank you for posting the link to our website and videos. My name is Eastland not Eastman.

The training it takes to do what we do is fun. We have a good group of people that train together regularly.

I feel safer than I used to before I started training 24 years ago. That is what matters to me.
That's all that needs to matter, Mary. What's wrong with that?
Most people are rational and up front about what they do and see it in a greater context. That is what defines our practice. Sometimes we can't, and that is where others step in and define it for us. It is only those who fool themselves and others and demonstrate no ability to see their practice as part of a larger picture that draws fire from those in and outside their art. It isn't just Aikido. It's all over the place.
Dan

sorokod
01-21-2012, 10:04 AM
Hi David:

Thank you for posting the link to our website and videos. My name is Eastland not Eastman.

The training it takes to do what we do is fun. We have a good group of people that train together regularly.

I feel safer than I used to before I started training 24 years ago. That is what matters to me.

Very sorry for mangling your name. Its excellent that you enjoy the physical activity and the like minded people who come along. On your website you write that Aikido is "a journey" but not mention the martial aspect which is fair enough but then, why Aikido?

DH
01-21-2012, 10:18 AM
Based on the videos (I watched those with "randori" in the title) the nages consistently creates openings which the ukes consistently no taking advantage. That is not martial, as a matter of fact. As a matter of opinion that teaches sloppy waza and unrealistic movements, but this is a reasonable opinion.

As to not being able to that, I am not able to waltz as well, this down not reflect on my ability to do martial arts in any way.
That is a critical component. You would have to have the experience to see your many failures... in order to see your many failures. Usually you needed to have those pointed out to you by a good teacher...otherwise they will be clearly shown to you...by a worthy opponent.

This is yet another example of why when we read people talking about moving from center, saying they understand Ueshiba, writing books and being teachers (including top Japanese shihan) and you watch their videos and they sway to and fro and disconnect from Uke, disconnect in themselves, use their shoulders etc., you just dismiss their opinions on the subject entirely. As one Bagua guy wrote after twenty years of practice "I didn't know...that I didn't know."
For many of us who do know it's a constant struggle to be polite knowing that in one minute of actual contact, all their presupposed understanding comes crashing down as they finally get to meet someone who actually does move from center, and understands connection and what that feels like in the real world.
Now, just imagine, experiencing that with a host of teachers in the JMA and ICMA....for over a decade.....with no exceptions. It's very peculiar and odd for all parties concerned and sort of changes your view of Budo and what people thought they knew and where we all fit. It's sort of like turning it all on its head for some of us.
Dan

DH
01-21-2012, 10:46 AM
Very sorry for mangling your name. Its excellent that you enjoy the physical activity and the like minded people who come along. On your website you write that Aikido is "a journey" but not mention the martial aspect which is fair enough but then, why Aikido?

Aikido doesn't have to be martial. I know some otherwse very capable people who were drawn to the type of aikido that was cooperative and less stressful in nature. They will look you right in the eye and tell you they don't give a rip about effective anymore. They wanted that feeling of the ride and having to give in and give up to fit, because it was changing them on the inside in ways they enjoyed. That is a portion of Aikido (and Daito ryu) that is not written about enough in my view. Yet there it is-a strength that isn't stressed because people think they will be dismissed if it isn't always about the martial attributes. Even koryu isn't all about the martial attributes.
Once again, you can have discussion about a bigger picture that includes everyone.
Dan

gregstec
01-21-2012, 10:49 AM
I am the first one to say that those who love the energy exchange (I call it catching air) should be left alone to enjoy themselves and not be criticized for it. There is no requirement that they have to be able to fight. The only time issues arise are when they become deluded into thinking any portion of that is real and will work under stress with trained people........

Dan

Agreed, IMO, I believe there is some good stuff going on at the subconscious, and even atomic level, with those cooperative types of interactions; it can really make you feel good afterwards (think along qigong lines here :) ) We do that with certain Aikido techniques simply as an exercise to help with awareness of movement and timing in the interaction - we do not consider it training of a martial skill; it is simply an exercise. There is absolutely nothing wrong with this type of activity as long as everyone is aware of what it really is and does not consider it martially effective.

However, for those that would like to test the effectiveness of their skills and techniques, it is fairly easy (and safe as long as uke has good ukemi and knows when to stop) to actually attack with real intentional grabs and continue the attack until either uke stops nage or nage stops uke - of course, this approach can be tricky with striking attacks. Anyway, the only way to actually know if your skills are martially effective is to take on a real attack - any other type of test, regardless of your style, is simply delusion.

Greg

ChrisHein
01-21-2012, 01:26 PM
I can be regularly quoted as saying "who cares if I do kotegaeshi". When I read "the goal is not to throw", it struck the same chord with me. When "using" Aikido; that is to say when an Aikidoka is forced to defend himself. He shouldn't care about throwing, or applying any technique. He should only worry himself with returning the situation to a calm state, that is to say bringing the conflict back into accord. Maybe one could use a throw to do this, or a kotegaeshi, but that's not the goal. The goal is to make the conflict come back to a harmonious state.

When training, don't work to master throws, work to resolve conflict. Strong awareness, and a calm mind do this much better than any throw (or kotegaeshi), ever could.

graham christian
01-21-2012, 01:55 PM
I'd say you can't tell an opinion from a fact.

Nice opinion.

graham christian
01-21-2012, 02:01 PM
There has been a lot of talk about control in this thread - this is not a complicated topic - in all martial interactions, the goal is to control in some fashion - after all, why would someone attack you without the intention of controlling you; or if attacked, why would you not want to control your attacker so they stop attacking you.

So logically the goal is to control - and how you do that can vary from the purely overt physical overpowering to the covert and subtle taking of the other's center while you keep yours - bottom line is you are in control, and once you are in control, it is your choice as to throw, drop, or disengage.

All very simple really.

Greg

Yo. We've been here before. Beyond control grasshopper. You are right though, it is logical. That's why most couldn't understand O'Sensei.

Regards.G.

graham christian
01-21-2012, 02:08 PM
Based on the videos (I watched those with "randori" in the title) the nages consistently creates openings which the ukes consistently no taking advantage. That is not martial, as a matter of fact. As a matter of opinion that teaches sloppy waza and unrealistic movements, but this is a reasonable opinion.

As to not being able to that, I am not able to waltz as well, this down not reflect on my ability to do martial arts in any way.

Not talking 'martial arts' I'm talking Aikido as shown. What is 'martial' in your opinion?

If you knew how to do it you wouldn't call it sloppy or unrealistic.

If you can't waltz by the way maybe you need more iriminage...

Regards.G.

sorokod
01-21-2012, 02:34 PM
Not just irirminage, all the nage :)

Videos you posted on YouTube for comparison: http://www.youtube.com/user/humblegee#g/u

gregstec
01-21-2012, 02:54 PM
Yo. We've been here before. Beyond control grasshopper. You are right though, it is logical. That's why most couldn't understand O'Sensei.

Regards.G.

There you go with that wacky stuff again - and the beat goes on.....:D

Greg

graham christian
01-21-2012, 02:56 PM
Not just irirminage, all the nage :)

Videos you posted on YouTube for comparison: http://www.youtube.com/user/humblegee#g/u

Same applies. Why watch something you can't do and think you understand?

Regards.G.

graham christian
01-21-2012, 02:58 PM
There you go with that wacky stuff again - and the beat goes on.....:D

Greg

It all seems wacky till you understand.

Regards.G.

mathewjgano
01-21-2012, 03:04 PM
When training, don't work to master throws, work to resolve conflict. Strong awareness, and a calm mind do this much better than any throw (or kotegaeshi), ever could.
Just some thoughts from a bored (and somewhat distracted, sorry if my train jumps tracks a bit) papa trying to get his baby to sleep:
I'm guessing this is to say don't only work to master throws? Most of what I've seen on the dojo mat involves a lot more training for throws/etc. than other forms of conflict resolution. Spacial awareness and a relaxed mind are invaluable, and certainly constitute major aspects of training, but once they are established some action still must be performed.
In the education process there is explicit and implicit learning. The explicit lessons tend to be easier to pick up on since they tend to take center stage. This is why so many people, perhaps, are so focused on accumulating waza/forms at the expense of principle...and perhaps why the admonition to not focus on throws/waza, but rather to open the attention/awareness to other, possibly more important, factors. Where I see the greatest thrust of conflict resolution being learned is in the implicit side of things (which, being not explicit, makes it generally harder to learn): seeing how different people interact with each other; figuring out how to reconcile interactions with people we don't readily get along with.
This is why in the past I've described the physical potency as being less important and why I agree with your idea that the ability to throw isn't generally all that crucial. In the few mildly dangerous situations I've been in (few thanks largely to foresight), it was calm(ish) awareness that allowed me to take steps in the right direction. Of course, had they come to blows, that's when the need for competent throwing would have been undeniable.
So as I read these posts I can't help but notice different emphases on different points along the conflict continuum. Some folks look to physical competency as a way of creating confidence as a way of creating calm while others look to being calm to foster fluidity of thought to foster creativity in application. If we're to have the whole package, at some point we have to test the different parts...but then again, our personal goals determine our sense of that "whole."
...And considering the odds of being attacked, I can certainly understand why physical potency might be less a goal than mental well-being.

sorokod
01-21-2012, 03:05 PM
Same applies. Why watch something you can't do and think you understand?

Regards.G.

Thought you would be happy, spread the word so to speak :D

graham christian
01-21-2012, 03:07 PM
Thought you would be happy, spread the word so to speak :D

You're well behind in those stakes I'm afraid. But yes, I'm always happy.

Regards.G.

akiy
01-21-2012, 03:16 PM
Watch your tone, folks.

-- Jun

sorokod
01-21-2012, 03:42 PM
Aikido doesn't have to be martial. Thats right, there is also biru waza

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-xLahIaaMnU

:)

Mary Eastland
01-21-2012, 04:59 PM
http://www.bing.com/videos/browse?mkt=en-us&vid=5e67b9c2-fc9e-4d9f-87b5-5c8af76345ea&from=sharepermalink&src=v5:share:sharepermalink:
This is self defense. Whatever works. Aikido is like that. It is not about fighting or winning. It is about being safe and strong.

DH
01-21-2012, 05:47 PM
http://www.bing.com/videos/browse?mkt=en-us&vid=5e67b9c2-fc9e-4d9f-87b5-5c8af76345ea&from=sharepermalink&src=v5:share:sharepermalink:
This is self defense. Whatever works. Aikido is like that. It is not about fighting or winning. It is about being safe and strong.

This is not an accurate statement, Mary. Your aikido may not be like that. Most everyone else I meet has different concerns.
Note that while Ueshiba was talking about spirituality..he was traveling about defeating people and talking about exerting his will. We can argue about meaning all day long but planting someone and concussing them before the Emperor and tossing them directly in opposition to their entry angle of attack ....is....exerting your will.
I think you have got it all wrong about what blending really means, and his own words support my view. But we never get anywhere with that and I know we never will, so I want to disagree nicely. :D
Dan

gregstec
01-21-2012, 05:53 PM
It all seems wacky till you understand.

Regards.G.

Yo, Graham buddy, do you take offense when I call your stuff wacky? If so, I will stop - no offense intended; just a little friendly jab, that is all...

Best

Greg

gregstec
01-21-2012, 06:05 PM
Thats right, there is also biru waza

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-xLahIaaMnU

:)
That is my ultimate training objective - it is true enlightenment :D

Greg

graham christian
01-21-2012, 06:12 PM
Yo, Graham buddy, do you take offense when I call your stuff wacky? If so, I will stop - no offense intended; just a little friendly jab, that is all...

Best

Greg

Wacky would be considered offensive by most but no I'm not offended. Bemused maybe.

Regards.G.

gregstec
01-21-2012, 06:55 PM
Wacky would be considered offensive by most but no I'm not offended. Bemused maybe.

Regards.G.

Well, I am sorry to have bemused you - first of all, I am not calling you wacky, just some of the stuff you post - different thing altogether :) Of course, you could very well be wacky, but so are a lot of us at various times - I know I am often; it is what makes us human :)

You and I are at different ends of the spectrum on most of this stuff, but as I have said in other posts, I will defend your right to say it; I just don't have to agree with it and I may just call it wacky on occasion; that is my freedom of speech right - I have never intentionally posted any attack to an individual and I deplore those that do - you can attack an argument, but never the individual.

I received a PM from Jun warning me of my tone in this thread, and I appreciate his concern to try and keep things civil in the forum without demeaning any individual, but I think he over reacted in this case - I never called you wacky, just some of your stuff, IMO :sorry:

Greg

Mary Eastland
01-21-2012, 08:17 PM
This is not an accurate statement, Mary. Your aikido may not be like that. Most everyone else I meet has different concerns.
Note that while Ueshiba was talking about spirituality..he was traveling about defeating people and talking about exerting his will. We can argue about meaning all day long but planting someone and concussing them before the Emperor and tossing them directly in opposition to their entry angle of attack ....is....exerting your will.
I think you have got it all wrong about what blending really means, and his own words support my view. But we never get anywhere with that and I know we never will, so I want to disagree nicely. :D
Dan

Right or wrong. Who cares? That young girl is alive today because of her own courage. She probably can't throw you either but she sure did defend herself.
I give her a big A+.

Lyle Laizure
01-21-2012, 08:39 PM
Hi Greg
I agree, but the issue is only brought home when you have a real attacker. None of the bliss bunnies and have ever demonstrated their effectiveness a) outside their own dojo b) up against real trained resistance and will not accept requests to do so.

It is incredible that the people who continue to display these highly cooperative movements have never been challenged within their own communities to display a standard of credibility and show them with real attackers. Within Aikido, when the discussion is narrowed down to them having to defend against a boxer or jujutsu-ka, they all of sudden default to..."That isn't aikido. You don't understand aikido."
Dan

Those same people have a narrow way of defining what Aikido is as well. You can't punch, kick, bite etc. The fact is if you are in a confontation there are no rules. If you can't put away your thoughts of benevolence you are already defeated.

Lyle Laizure
01-21-2012, 08:48 PM
http://www.bing.com/videos/browse?mkt=en-us&vid=5e67b9c2-fc9e-4d9f-87b5-5c8af76345ea&from=sharepermalink&src=v5:share:sharepermalink:
This is self defense. Whatever works. Aikido is like that. It is not about fighting or winning. It is about being safe and strong.

I agree and would add, that it is doing what is necessary.

Lyle Laizure
01-21-2012, 08:52 PM
This is not an accurate statement, Mary. Your aikido may not be like that. Most everyone else I meet has different concerns.
Note that while Ueshiba was talking about spirituality..he was traveling about defeating people and talking about exerting his will. We can argue about meaning all day long but planting someone and concussing them before the Emperor and tossing them directly in opposition to their entry angle of attack ....is....exerting your will.
I think you have got it all wrong about what blending really means, and his own words support my view. But we never get anywhere with that and I know we never will, so I want to disagree nicely. :D
Dan

I agree it is about imposing your will upon another, from the standpoint that the other person wants to cause me harm and I don't want them too, so I will exert my will in a manner that is sufficient to exert my will over their will, doing whatever is necessary.

kewms
01-22-2012, 12:06 AM
In the education process there is explicit and implicit learning. The explicit lessons tend to be easier to pick up on since they tend to take center stage. This is why so many people, perhaps, are so focused on accumulating waza/forms at the expense of principle...and perhaps why the admonition to not focus on throws/waza, but rather to open the attention/awareness to other, possibly more important, factors.

As I said up-thread, threads like this one really have both explicit and implicit (omote and ura? Hmm...) content as well.

On the one hand, we have (again) the argument about what "good aikido" should be able to accomplish.

But on the other hand, there's the question of what teaching methodology best accomplishes that goal.

(IMO, much of the disagreement among schools is really an argument about methodology. Different paths, same mountain.)

I absolutely understand -- and in fact agree with -- the point that effective martial arts should be able to deal with resisting attackers.

But in my experience, new students have no difficulty whatsoever "getting" that. They walk in the door their first day on the mat and they are completely committed to the idea that they MUST be able to throw people. If, for whatever reason, you don't want people to think that way, it can take *years* to change their attitude.

The hard part is getting them to realize that before they can throw someone else, they need to develop better structure, better balance, better movement patterns... even, dare I say it, aiki. Without those things, our hypothetical resisting attacker will be completely unaffected and will unceremoniously drop them on the mat. And you're never going to develop those skills as long as you remain committed to the idea that you MUST throw your partner every. single. time.

Katherine

graham christian
01-22-2012, 04:30 AM
Well, I am sorry to have bemused you - first of all, I am not calling you wacky, just some of the stuff you post - different thing altogether :) Of course, you could very well be wacky, but so are a lot of us at various times - I know I am often; it is what makes us human :)

You and I are at different ends of the spectrum on most of this stuff, but as I have said in other posts, I will defend your right to say it; I just don't have to agree with it and I may just call it wacky on occasion; that is my freedom of speech right - I have never intentionally posted any attack to an individual and I deplore those that do - you can attack an argument, but never the individual.

I received a PM from Jun warning me of my tone in this thread, and I appreciate his concern to try and keep things civil in the forum without demeaning any individual, but I think he over reacted in this case - I never called you wacky, just some of your stuff, IMO :sorry:

Greg

Don't worry about it, It's the referees interpretation of the rules. I got one too.

You ever seen Wacky Races? I often feel like Mutley laughing at Dick Dastardly....Lol.

Regards.G.

DH
01-22-2012, 07:47 AM
I had some conversations about this recently. A couple at a private seminar at Popkins place with a group of Aikido-ka, one at a dinner with a senior practitioner, and then later out of the blue the exact same comment-all the same- from my son yesterday who sometimes read these pages. He was spot on when he said "It's really obvious that they don't understand aiki and connection just by what they write. If they did they wouldn't say what they say."

As was mentioned a few posts back, looking at people move and seeing all the slack in them as they sway to and fro and watching their shoulders and bodies react to grabs, removes them from any meaningful discussion. If you do not know how to connect yourself, your opinion and advice on connection with others is pretty much a waste of time. Aiki begins at home. There must be a unity -aiki- in yourself before you will ever make connection with others meaningful.

If getting out of the way by a timed lead were all there was to it...any kid at the mall would be doing aiki. It is no wonder it remains a mystery to people. It will forever remain a mystery if every time someone stresses you to tense up and use shoulders or your body disconnects as you evade- as demonstrated by so many Japanese Shihan that it is pointless to even point them out. This makes aiki all but impossible to attain.

The question of throwing becomes far more interesting when your movement...your movement...as in within yourself...is so connected that anything you do becomes a compelling shift -to them. One of the tests I do is to touch people and see if no movement-then barely any movement in them can cause a shift in me. Also whether they can totaly cancel out force...standing there.
Then I go on to movement. With a connected body and in/ yo in balance in during movement:
With ukemi it is a throw that happens
With resistance a quick Kuzushi
With fighting, the guy knows he's got nothing and you get quick 1/2 second leads over and over so he is always behind you and you are leading and he can't figure out why.

None of that...none of it..is from timing-IT CAUSES TIMING. Nor is it the type of external evading movement that so many think is aiki. Were you to just understand that you need to work on connection within yourself; your chances and ability to create a compelling aiki connection would improve dramatically, your interactions would be far more fun and most seniors in your own art-even shihan- would look at you as some sort of freak that takes their balance every time you engage. Discussions of throwing would take on new meaning as they would be asking you what the hell you just did to them.

To me all the rest is amateur hour, almost meaningless, outer trappings. More importantly is that it is full speed...in the wrong direction.
"O sensei, why is that no one can do what you do?"
"Because, you do not understand in yo ho."
Dan

gregstec
01-22-2012, 08:31 AM
Don't worry about it, It's the referees interpretation of the rules. I got one too.

You ever seen Wacky Races? I often feel like Mutley laughing at Dick Dastardly....Lol.

Regards.G.

Well, I am not worried about it - however, I am somewhat 'bemused' by it ;) I enjoy going tit to tat with you on occasion and I like to throw out a good nature jab every once in a while for fun - in this case, I feel like I got reprimanded for calling a school yard friend a goof ball for saying something I thought was way out there - no disrespect intended and apparently none taken; in my book, I see it as no harm, no foul. :crazy:

I feel like I have been treated like a child in school and now I have a permanent 'Infraction' record that will follow me through life - I wonder if I can get a lawyer and get my record expunged - Lol.

Best

Greg

To all: sorry about the thread drift :sorry:

graham christian
01-22-2012, 08:46 AM
O.K. Dan. Nice explanation about what you do and thus understandable how you 'equate' that with what you consider Aikido but relate to Daito Ryu.

That's exactly what I have called Aikijutsu in the past, rightly or wrongly, as I come across charachters doing such things or even explaining such. I suppose nowadays I may call that Daito Ryo. A world of difference to my Aikido or Aikido in my view.

I can give an equally clear explanation of what I look for and how and what I test which I am sure you cannot, by what you say, be aware of. That doesn't make what you do ineffective or wrong but just not Aikido as done by me, which you think you understand.(correct me if you do, but your past explanations of what I do haven't even been close so far)

Sounds like what you used to say about others opinions of what you do doesn't it?

Regards.G.

NathanMishler
01-22-2012, 11:33 AM
Lot's of interesting discussions here, much of which - I admit - go a bit over my head!

I feel I am a bit in the middle of these two camps here in this thread. I used to sit around thinking "My Aikido is so powerful, I can stop anything. I am so great."

I am not so great. I'm on a path that has no end, and at the end of it I will have progressed as far as I have gone. Maybe I will have a grand revelation. Maybe I will be great, or somewhere along the lines of my teachers. But then I train with my teachers, and what do I hear so often?

"I don't know. I don't know. Maybe tomorrow I will have progressed. Maybe tomorrow I will figure it out."

I think that's a lot of us here. Groping around in this mystery, trying to figure things out. And I think more of us need to admit that. A lot of people saying "Well YOU don't understand. Or those people over THERE don't understand." So much ego! And I've seen it in myself of course, so I don't want to be seen as telling people not to throw stones while I throw stones.

I think a lot of us would be better served with "I don't understand. Help me understand."

Anyway... to the topic at hand.

It's funny - I know I am not good enough yet. Usually when I get into a position where I think "Now is when I must throw" I realize I have messed up somewhere and am in the wrong position to do just that! I'm not talking in kihon waza - I know how to do a "typical" koshinage, but if a technique breaks down, in our dojo we try to complete SOMETHING. And when I try that, often I realize it's broken down so much that I can't throw!

I end up with two problems there, I've realized. One is that things have broken down because I did NOT take center. And if I have not taken center - good luck throwing! It's a lot like the earth trying to throw the sun at that point! ( Also assume that the Earth has also tensed it's muscles somehow. )

The other is that often "throw" means to us that we're projecting someone out somewhere. I am starting to suspect that is a false conception. Sensei is always railing at me to try to understand what Nage is doing, not what uke looks like they're doing. They go flying, so I must throw them! I think the mechanics are much more subtle than that. Often nage is projecting down, and uke must go out to avoid something like landing on their head!

robin_jet_alt
01-22-2012, 06:00 PM
I'm with Nathan on this one I think. I always understood this statement as "don't focus on the outcome, focus on the process". This may be stating the obvious, but when doing a throw, the goal is obviously to throw. What would be the point otherwise? Is everyone out there accidentally doing throws when they don't really mean to? The thing is, the best way to throw someone is not necessarily to focus on the outcome but to do the process correctly. My sensei tells me not to get too caught up in where you want uke to go. Rather, focus on what you know you have to do. If you are doing it correctly, then uke will go in the right place. Anyway, that's my take on this.

Gary David
01-22-2012, 10:51 PM
.............The question of throwing becomes far more interesting when your movement...your movement...as in within yourself...is so connected that anything you do becomes a compelling shift -to them...............

Folks
This is the essence of it.....this is the center of it .........when your movement is so connected within yourself that anything (everything) you do cause shifts, irresistible shifts in the other that are not explainable, that may never rise to the level of awareness. These shifts result in destabilization, imbalances.....and don't require the other to be cooperative in anyway. Isn't this a goal of Aikido? It is of mine.

Gary

Robert Cowham
01-23-2012, 08:18 AM
I try and work with the "attack", be that strike, punch, grasp etc. A focus on the desired result tends to mean things are forced. I agree that you need to maintain your own structure(s), and feel for what is happening in your body and uke's body. So sometimes for a very similar looking grasp (e.g. katatedori) a good response is shihonage, sometimes a kokyunage. Makes life more interesting when you are trying to demonstrate a particular technique of course - need good uke to make the technique appropriate to the attack!

Thalib
01-23-2012, 08:37 AM
Do not worry about throwing... Just move...

Your practice partner falls when everything is done correctly...

If you worry too much about the result, you will then forget about the process and start looking for shortcuts which will be more damaging to the training process...

Mary Eastland
01-23-2012, 09:14 AM
I agree it is about imposing your will upon another, from the standpoint that the other person wants to cause me harm and I don't want them too, so I will exert my will in a manner that is sufficient to exert my will over their will, doing whatever is necessary.

If we define will as thoughts...then there would be no will imposed because Aikido requires no thought.

If someone is really trying to cause another harm; my interpretation of Aikido is what ever works is the response. The right or wrong may be discussed by others afterward.

Preying on people's fear by making oneself seem omnipotent could be misleading. Sometimes we are alone and it doesn't matter how much aiki we have. The best response comes from within as we pay attention to now.

No matter how many times or ways it is said there are many paths and all are valuable.

sorokod
01-23-2012, 10:20 AM
If someone is really trying to cause another harm; my interpretation of Aikido is what ever works is the response. The right or wrong may be discussed by others afterward.

Lashing out hysterically at the assailant trying to gauge her eyes out because you are overcome with fear and terror and you have nothing else left? This would be valid Aikido? This would be valuable?

jonreading
01-23-2012, 10:31 AM
I have a little more time so I would like to clarify my earlier post...

My belief is that the thread concept is not complicated, nor is it specific to aikido. The idea is that if you practice [correctly] the proper movement enough times you should internalize the movement, thereby allowing you freedom not to explicitly focus on the action. "Not throwing your partner" and "Not focusing on the throw" are two different things.

I believe the problem with the concept arises when we:
1. Apply the concept of internalization before we are competent in the movement. Throwing someone wrong 100 times because you are "trying not to think about throwing your partner" is bad. To this problem, I advocate that the concept should be reserved for discussion amongst [more] senior students who already know the movement.
2. Apply the concept as a crutch for excusing failure. Your intention needs to match your action; if you want to throw someone but cannot, then your actions are inconsistent with your intent. To this problem, I advocate that you need evaluate your ideology and match your actions to your intentions (not redefine your ideology to match your incorrect action).

When I play golf, I do not "try to hit the ball." I use swing mechanics and if my swing is proper I will correctly hit the ball. When I play baseball, I do not "try to catch the ball." If I see the ball and let my body align the glove with the trajectory of the ball and close the glove when I feel the impact, I will catch the ball. If I shoot a basket, I do not "try to throw the basketball into the hoop." If I visualize the proper trajectory and align my body to throw the ball allow that trajectory I will make a basket. Judo uses the term "fitting" to describe the importance of proper positioning before attempting the throw. I like this term because I think it reminds us that there are important components to a throw necessary to the proper execution of the throw. I think in aikido we can sometimes get sloppy and rely on our "ki" to fix everything (and by "ki" I mean a partner who falls at the drop of a hat).

If I were to teach t-ball camp and explain to the kids, "Okay kids, don't try to hit the ball. Instead, try not to hit the ball." It just sounds weird and inappropriate. But, in aikido we have no problem saying "Okay, don't try to throw your partner. Instead, try not to throw your partner." In fact, after throwing out that drabble we'll strut back to kamiza and revel in our superiority.

Towards the end of his career, Michael Jordan would shoot free throws with his eyes closed. Later, Jordan admitted several reasons for the feat but he insisted the act was not that difficult after shooting a lifetime of free throws.

Ted Williams used to say that he would count the seams on the baseball as he followed the pitch. While most hitters simply trying to see the ball, Ted Williams would count the seams on the ball...

Tiger Woods would bounce a ball on the face of a club and then hit the ball to a green (he stopped once it became a parlor trick).

I use these sports illustrations because the are easy to find, fun to view and help take the "godly" atmosphere away from a simple correctional gesture our seniors give us to let us refocus our attention to where it needs to be (usually, on our poor structure or position... ).

Mary Eastland
01-23-2012, 10:39 AM
Lashing out hysterically at the assailant trying to gauge her eyes out because you are overcome with fear and terror and you have nothing else left? This would be valid Aikido? This would be valuable?

Why not, David? Would you be calm and perfectrly cool if someone was trying to rape or kill you?

sorokod
01-23-2012, 10:49 AM
If I was 6th dan with over 20 years of experiencing in Aikido and a dojo owner? Yes, I would expect to remain calm.

lbb
01-23-2012, 11:58 AM
If I was 6th dan with over 20 years of experiencing in Aikido and a dojo owner? Yes, I would expect to remain calm.

Have you been in this situation, then?

DH
01-23-2012, 12:03 PM
Have you been in this situation, then?
I have ...four times, although once was talking someone else out of doing something very violent. And...being calm is what got me out with only a few scars. Those were life threatening affairs, and do not count fighting.

Calm..is a very powerful tool. It also can realy screw with the mind of others who have lost it...even those with murderous intentions. Being a 6th dan is no reasonable qualification I can see. It might even be a disqualification. Martial artists do not necessarily make good fighters or are good in life threatening situations. I have seen LEO and EMT's lose it at scenes, with bystanders demonstraitng more calm control. It happens.

As for Martial arts-all paths and all methods were never and will never, all be equal. Were it so, Takeda and Ueshiba would have been nobodies, that did not stand out from the budo wallpaper....and we would not be here today.
Dan

sorokod
01-23-2012, 12:04 PM
6th dan, 20 years of experiencing and all that? No.

Demetrio Cereijo
01-23-2012, 01:29 PM
No matter how many times or ways it is said there are many paths and all are valuable.
Does all of them have the same value?

kewms
01-23-2012, 01:43 PM
Does all of them have the same value?

Who gets to decide? You and I are different people, and probably value different things. Society as a whole places no particular value on martial skill -- even professional soldiers are not particularly well-rewarded compared to entertainers or financiers. Who, other than the practitioner, is in a position to say that one path is more valuable than another?

Katherine

sorokod
01-23-2012, 01:58 PM
Who, other than the practitioner, is in a position to say that one path is more valuable than another?

The attacker

RuteMendes
01-23-2012, 02:16 PM
I believe that Aikido should be done with your uke, not to your uke.

I completley agree!:)

Demetrio Cereijo
01-23-2012, 02:16 PM
Society as a whole places no particular value on martial skill
Sure, but martial arts/budo subculture has a different set of values, and martial skill is appreciated.

Who, other than the practitioner, is in a position to say that one path is more valuable than another?
I'll going to pursue "the path of theoretical physics", even if I can't tell a sqare root from a potato... who other than me would be in a position to say my "path of theoretical physics" lacks value?

DH
01-23-2012, 03:17 PM
Bryan Bateman wrote:
I believe that Aikido should be done with your uke, not to your uke.
I completley agree!:)
You are discussing one version of Modern Aikido spread by modern teachers. Many of the old guard Japanese Shihan were openly derisive of that idea; many times calling it nonsense and specifically stating that it was not aikido. It's in interview after interview. Morihei Ueshiba explicitly stated in no uncertain terms, that aiki allows you to exert your will on your opponent. And he also constantly talked about control.

You can have fun with that idea, many do. The important thing is to know the difference and make a healthy choice that you enjoy. Just be careful out there in doing too much cooperative work or when you meet people who may actually know how to exert their will on you and control your every effort, you will more than likely be unable to do anything about it.

You can always find a way to do both, many do that as well.
Dan

kewms
01-23-2012, 04:14 PM
The attacker

But what if someone explicitly disavows any interest in martial effectiveness? Tea ceremony is probably not particularly effective in a martial encounter, but does that make tea ceremony invalid as a Way? What about iaido or other solo forms?

Katherine

kewms
01-23-2012, 04:16 PM
I'll going to pursue "the path of theoretical physics", even if I can't tell a sqare root from a potato... who other than me would be in a position to say my "path of theoretical physics" lacks value?

Physics is testable against real world experiments. If your model adequately explains the experimental evidence, then it has value. That's why people still study Newtonian physics, even though it fails at quantum dimensions and/or relativistic speeds.

But how do you "test" a purely spiritual pursuit?

Katherine

graham christian
01-23-2012, 04:20 PM
Morihei Ueshiba explicitly stated in no uncertain terms, that aiki allows you to exert your will on your opponent. And he also constantly talked about control.

That's a new one on me.

Regards.G.

DH
01-23-2012, 05:19 PM
Dan wrote:
Morihei Ueshiba explicitly stated in no uncertain terms, that aiki allows you to exert your will on your opponent. And he also constantly talked about control.
That's a new one on me.
Regards.G.

I know

sorokod
01-23-2012, 05:39 PM
But what if someone explicitly disavows any interest in martial effectiveness? Tea ceremony is probably not particularly effective in a martial encounter, but does that make tea ceremony invalid as a Way? What about iaido or other solo forms?

Katherine

Then surely that persons interests are best served by practicing the art of tea ceremony. How obvious is that?

Chris Li
01-23-2012, 05:42 PM
I know

:D

Best,

Chris

kewms
01-23-2012, 05:56 PM
Then surely that persons interests are best served by practicing the art of tea ceremony. How obvious is that?

Again, who are you to decide?

For my own practice, I stand firmly with those who argue that aikido is a budo, and as such it must, by definition, be martially valid.

But my own practice keeps me far too busy to pass judgment on how anyone else chooses to spend their time.

Katherine

DH
01-23-2012, 06:17 PM
Folks
This is the essence of it.....this is the center of it .........when your movement is so connected within yourself that anything (everything) you do cause shifts, irresistible shifts in the other that are not explainable, that may never rise to the level of awareness. These shifts result in destabilization, imbalances.....and don't require the other to be cooperative in anyway. Isn't this a goal of Aikido? It is of mine.
Gary
Hi Gary
So very true isn't it?
It is the reason the heretofore mistranslated and nontranslated material will be made known. In direct contrast to so much of the poor teaching put out by the Japanese, Ueshiba himself is a beacon; stating that the source of aiki is in connection inside of you. Over and over his caveate to some pretty important commentary on internal principles begin with:
"In this thing called aiki...The mystery aiki is revealed... Aiki is created by..."
Then he proceeds to talk about connecting you to you, inside yourself, the union of opposites as the source of aiki-In yo ho.
The senior Japanese teachers in aikido we all counted on?
Crickets.

Here we read...do we throw? how to throw and what makes a throw.. all spelled out in blazing, intricate, detail without a single word of what is thee...most important practice, in all of aikido...the pracitce that changes everything..everything...according to the guy who created the art.! :rolleyes:

No wonder no one gets it including so many of the Japanese Shihan everyone keeps woo wooing about. . At least some of the leadership- including Japanese Shihan- are out there trying to figure out how to do it and teach it.

Cheers
Dan

hughrbeyer
01-23-2012, 10:31 PM
But bringing this back to the point of the thread.... If I "try to throw" uke, inevitably I'll reach out of myself to make them go down. I'll compromise my structure trying to disrupt theirs. If I think I am "doing to uke" rather than "doing with uke" I'm inevitably going to start trying to manipulate them. In fact, "now you're trying to manipulate me" is rather common feedback for me to give partners who have given up on finding the internal connection and are ... just trying to throw. :)

So I don't think the advice is bad as such. I just think it's been totally misinterpreted. Of course you're imposing your will on the situation. How else do you improve it? But how you improve it is not by running around with your hair on fire but by being the most connected and centered person in the room. Then other people conform to you without even being aware of it.

DH
01-23-2012, 10:46 PM
But bringing this back to the point of the thread.... If I "try to throw" uke, inevitably I'll reach out of myself to make them go down. I'll compromise my structure trying to disrupt theirs. If I think I am "doing to uke" rather than "doing with uke" I'm inevitably going to start trying to manipulate them. In fact, "now you're trying to manipulate me" is rather common feedback for me to give partners who have given up on finding the internal connection and are ... just trying to throw. :)

So I don't think the advice is bad as such. I just think it's been totally misinterpreted. Of course you're imposing your will on the situation. How else do you improve it? But how you improve it is not by running around with your hair on fire but by being the most connected and centered person in the room. Then other people conform to you without even being aware of it.
High Hugh
I'm sorry but that is a fundemental fallicy. If I "try to throw" uke, inevitably I'll reach out of myself to make them go down. I'll compromise my structure trying to disrupt theirs.
There is no need to give up or extend out of...your center to take theirs. It doesn't work that way. Your sphere of influence -when properly trained-is huge. I extend my center- out to the end of a twelve foot spear. As you have seen and felt with a nine foot naginata crushing your sword down; did you think that the naginata guy's center had to be compromised or extended out from him, to do that?
It is the retaining of you center...that takes theirs in a different way than is normally felt or seen.

As I said earlier it is very difficult to have a conversation, when people who think they are doing aiki...are functioning on a foundationally different operating model. They are truly not the same, and it is the reason that internal people doing aiki (well those who are not full of shit anyway) truly are functioning different than you guys.
External movement without aiki-which is the majority of aikido- is fine no problem....just different.
Dan

sorokod
01-24-2012, 02:28 AM
Again, who are you to decide?

Anyone one can, this is not value judgement, this is as factual as carpentry. If one takes out the martial out the martial art, something essential is lost. If one is tea intolerant and can't touch or smell the stuff one can't do chado. One could go through the motions of the tea ceremony with say Rooibos, but something essential will be missing ad in no way this will be a "Way".

Anyone can see that.

AlexF
01-24-2012, 03:31 AM
Ive recently been reading a little about Neuroplasticity.
In brief, for many years it was believed that our brain was fixed (ie one part is linked to the movement of one finger, another the elbow, etc.)_I think its called Body mapping. Through research it was proven that this was not the case, the brain is not fixed its more like plasticine/clay (not sure the US equivalent) ie moldable.

Other parts of the brain can be retrained to take over an injured area.
What I found interesting as a martial artist is that our brain not only maps our body parts but also the area in space around us which our limbs move through (explains the feeling of sensing somebody creeping up behind you).

They have also shown that this body mapping of space aroung the body [B]increases when using a tool/B]. So now when Im told or read "the weapon is an extension of you" or as Dan wrote "I extend my center- out to the end of a twelve foot spear", in my mind, western science seems to be agreeing with something thats been accepted in Asia for many years.

I want to add that similarly to the recent accepted research on fascia, intellectually understanding this information absolutely does not mean you can do it.
Sorry for the derail.

George S. Ledyard
01-24-2012, 05:46 AM
Ive recently been reading a little about Neuroplasticity.
In brief, for many years it was believed that our brain was fixed (ie one part is linked to the movement of one finger, another the elbow, etc.)_I think its called Body mapping. Through research it was proven that this was not the case, the brain is not fixed its more like plasticine/clay (not sure the US equivalent) ie moldable.

Other parts of the brain can be retrained to take over an injured area.
What I found interesting as a martial artist is that our brain not only maps our body parts but also the area in space around us which our limbs move through (explains the feeling of sensing somebody creeping up behind you).

They have also shown that this body mapping of space aroung the body [B]increases when using a tool/B]. So now when Im told or read "the weapon is an extension of you" or as Dan wrote "I extend my center- out to the end of a twelve foot spear", in my mind, western science seems to be agreeing with something thats been accepted in Asia for many years.

I want to add that similarly to the recent accepted research on fascia, intellectually understanding this information absolutely does not mean you can do it.
Sorry for the derail.
There's an excellent book on how body mapping, the nuero system, proprioception etc works called The Body Has a Mind of Its Own by by Sandra Blakeslee and Matthew Blakeslee. I highly recommend it. It really helps one understand why some of the "aiki" work that seems too soft to do what ot does actually works.

Mary Eastland
01-24-2012, 06:59 AM
High Hugh
I'm sorry but that is a fundemental fallicy. If I "try to throw" uke, inevitably I'll reach out of myself to make them go down. I'll compromise my structure trying to disrupt theirs.
There is no need to give up or extend out of...your center to take theirs. It doesn't work that way. Your sphere of influence -when properly trained-is huge. I extend my center- out to the end of a twelve foot spear. As you have seen and felt with a nine foot naginata crushing your sword down; did you think that the naginata guy's center had to be compromised or extended out from him, to do that?
It is the retaining of you center...that takes theirs in a different way than is normally felt or seen.

As I said earlier it is very difficult to have a conversation, when people who think they are doing aiki...are functioning on a foundationally different operating model. They are truly not the same, and it is the reason that internal people doing aiki (well those who are not full of shit anyway) truly are functioning different than you guys.
External movement without aiki-which is the majority of aikido- is fine no problem....just different.
Dan

I totally agree, Dan, Anytime someone tries to do something they are setting themselves up for failure. We really must just do it. I

AlexF
01-24-2012, 07:09 AM
There's an excellent book on how body mapping, the nuero system, proprioception etc works called The Body Has a Mind of Its Own by by Sandra Blakeslee and Matthew Blakeslee. I highly recommend it. It really helps one understand why some of the "aiki" work that seems too soft to do what ot does actually works.

Thanks Mr Ledyard, thats one of the books Ive read I just couldnt recall the title. For those interested in this topic there are some really interested free podcasts online by Sandra Blakeslee.

DH
01-24-2012, 07:24 AM
I am just kidding I know you think I don't have a clue and that is okay.
Nope. I don't think that at all. And actually I think most of us would get along great in person. Most budo people (well we might find that it is an overwhelming majority) are really nice. I think those who survive what it takes to remain in budo are of a type. Sure there are the oddballs and weirdos, but I am willing to betcha they are extremely small in number. It takes tenacity, humility, perseverance, working with and taking guidance from..others, facing your own failures, over and over seemingly without end, and a host of other indicators, that mold, define and shape the people of budo.

Person to person communicating is completely different. You get a feel, you read people; everyone gets to flesh out views in a much better manner than the net. Case in point you getting a sense that our interactions are based on me thinking you don't have a clue..is totally false. BTW, both you and Ron were -not surprisingly-spoken well of by some mutual friends.
Dan

graham christian
01-24-2012, 07:27 AM
Retaining center? Is that something new? I thought it was standard procedure.

Tohei will be smiling.

Throws or projections are natural paths when you know what those natural paths are and therefore there is no exerting will on anyone. Circles.

The power is in the circle already, why interfere with will?

Regards.G.

DH
01-24-2012, 07:36 AM
Retaining center? Is that something new? I thought it was standard procedure.
Tohei will be smiling.

Throws or projections are natural paths when you know what those natural paths are and therefore there is no exerting will on anyone. Circles.

The power is in the circle already, why interfere with will?

Regards.G.
Tohei was good but limited in his understanding in contrast to the larger picture.
Concepts are all over the place in Budo, Graham. It is watching, and feeling people in person where you and they get to reach an inescapable understanding of just who truly understands what comes out of their mouths and off their keyboards and who doesn't.
Which is why in budo certain people seek out contact /and others avoid it at all costs.
Overall this remains a very vibrant period in budo as so many of us are meeting and training together.
Dan

Demetrio Cereijo
01-24-2012, 07:42 AM
Physics is testable against real world experiments. If your model adequately explains the experimental evidence, then it has value.
And if the results of real world experiments don't match my theories, I'll pull the "spiritual" card and declare said experimental evidence as wrong.

But how do you "test" a purely spiritual pursuit?

Define "purely spiritual pursuit".

Carsten Möllering
01-24-2012, 08:00 AM
Many of the old guard Japanese Shihan were openly derisive of that idea; many times calling it nonsense and specifically stating that it was not aikido.
This is also an important point Endo often makes if I understand him correctly.
He asks, why we should learn something that relies on uke helping us doing it? To where should this practice lead? How will we be able to improve if practicing this way?

Morihei Ueshiba explicitly stated in no uncertain terms, that aiki allows you to exert your will on your opponent. And he also constantly talked about control. That's a new one on me.
Well, but this is the essence of what is to learn and do? Taking the center of the opponent, controlling him this way and "moving" his body using one's own center.

How do you mean this is new to you? What do you practice if not this?

graham christian
01-24-2012, 08:04 AM
Tohei was good but limited in his understanding in contrast to the larger picture.
Concepts are all over the place in Budo, Graham. It is watching, and feeling people in person where you and they get to reach an inescapable understanding of just who truly understands what comes out of their mouths and off their keyboards and who doesn't.
Which is why in budo certain people seek out contact /and others avoid it at all costs.
Overall this remains a very vibrant period in budo as so many of us are meeting and training together.
Dan

No doubt concepts are all over the place, what's new?

Telling me watching and feeling people in person is like telling a fish how to swim.

Tohei limited? Good jokes.

I've never met any budo person who avoids meeting others at all costs so you lose me with such assertions. It's always been a vibrant period for those into it too, it's vibrant so long as you the individual is vibrant and that's about all really I would say.

Regards.G.

phitruong
01-24-2012, 08:06 AM
to throw or not to throw. what was the question again? are we not throw the throw? or are we throw not the throw? or are we throw not the not throw? ok, i think i just confused meself. i think i got slam too many times and a few marbles got loose. question, are we suppose to throw up or throw down? :)

graham christian
01-24-2012, 08:20 AM
Many of the old guard Japanese Shihan were openly derisive of that idea; many times calling it nonsense and specifically stating that it was not aikido.

That just about sums it up. They couldn't accept Aikido, Ueshibas Aikido, still holding on to the idea of winning, exerting will, etc. etc.

That's a phase of Aikido training that you describe above, yes. I see many here who think the perfection of such is therefore ultimate Aikido. It's new to many and quite rewarding so who am I to put it down? It's not ultimate or the 'secret' of Aikido though, just part of the journey. Enjoy it.

What's new to me is people believing Ueshiba saying you must exert your will on the opponent. I find that hilarious. Hardly universal or spiritual, more old school.

When you ask how do I do it then? Well let's just say I can do it how you do and you describe, was doing such twenty years ago. Self imposed will works up until it doesn't, then you move to the next phase.

Regards.G.

graham christian
01-24-2012, 08:23 AM
to throw or not to throw. what was the question again? are we not throw the throw? or are we throw not the throw? or are we throw not the not throw? ok, i think i just confused meself. i think i got slam too many times and a few marbles got loose. question, are we suppose to throw up or throw down? :)

If you're feeling down then throw up.....

Regards.G.

gregstec
01-24-2012, 08:23 AM
to throw or not to throw. what was the question again? are we not throw the throw? or are we throw not the throw? or are we throw not the not throw? ok, i think i just confused meself. i think i got slam too many times and a few marbles got loose. question, are we suppose to throw up or throw down? :)


Gee, I guess it depends on the person - when I think of your jokes, I have a tendency to throw up :D

Greg

gregstec
01-24-2012, 08:24 AM
There's an excellent book on how body mapping, the nuero system, proprioception etc works called The Body Has a Mind of Its Own by by Sandra Blakeslee and Matthew Blakeslee. I highly recommend it. It really helps one understand why some of the "aiki" work that seems too soft to do what ot does actually works.

Very interesting book - somewhat of a 'dry' read, but interesting nonetheless.

Greg

Demetrio Cereijo
01-24-2012, 08:31 AM
There's an excellent book on how body mapping, the nuero system, proprioception etc works called The Body Has a Mind of Its Own by by Sandra Blakeslee and Matthew Blakeslee. I highly recommend it. It really helps one understand why some of the "aiki" work that seems too soft to do what ot does actually works.

Not everybody liked it

How are we, as readers, to know when the science ends and the guessing begins?

Certainly not by looking up the Blakeslee's sources: they don't cite them. Sure, they quote neuroscientists, psychologists, and doctors in the text, but they don't ever explain when a quotation is backed by peer-reviewed research and when it's merely a hunch.
...
Much of the science in The Body Has a Mind of Its Own is rock-solid, but much of it is speculation. This book doesn't give readers enough information to appreciate the difference—that's not good science, and it's certainly not good science writing.
http://quarterlyconversation.com/the-body-has-a-mind-of-its-own-by-sandra-and-matthew-blakeslee-review

hughrbeyer
01-24-2012, 08:44 AM
I'm sorry but that is a fundemental fallicy. If I "try to throw" uke, inevitably I'll reach out of myself to make them go down. I'll compromise my structure trying to disrupt theirs. There is no need to give up or extend out of...your center to take theirs.

Right, I understand that. I can even do it on alternate Thursdays. I was really thinking about how to communicate this to someone who doesn't have the concepts or the body-feel to do it correctly. When I said "inevitably" I really meant "inevitably for a new guy who hasn't got the concepts". (And when I said "I" I really meant "that guy." This English stuffs iz hard.)

So this hypothetical new guy/gal thinks they're supposed to be throwing and puts a bunch of muscle into it and loses their own balance in the process. Telling them "stop trying to throw" at least pulls them back from what they're doing wrong. What you really mean is "stop trying to throw THAT WAY," but that's too complicated.

And then they go off and years later tell people "You're not supposed to try to throw, uke just falls down when the time is right." Or something.

phitruong
01-24-2012, 08:53 AM
[/I][/B]

Gee, I guess it depends on the person - when I think of your jokes, I have a tendency to throw up :D

Greg

hey, that meant the aikiage stuffs i picked up from howie popkin actually worked over the internet! imagine that, his koshernage actually worked!

Mary Eastland
01-24-2012, 08:55 AM
@ Dan..Thank you....but how did you see what I deleted? Do you have magical mad computer skills? :)

DH
01-24-2012, 09:04 AM
That just about sums it up. They couldn't accept Aikido, Ueshibas Aikido, still holding on to the idea of winning, exerting will, etc. etc.

That's a phase of Aikido training that you describe above, yes. I see many here who think the perfection of such is therefore ultimate Aikido. It's new to many and quite rewarding so who am I to put it down? It's not ultimate or the 'secret' of Aikido though, just part of the journey. Enjoy it.

What's new to me is people believing Ueshiba saying you must exert your will on the opponent. I find that hilarious. Hardly universal or spiritual, more old school.

When you ask how do I do it then? Well let's just say I can do it how you do and you describe, was doing such twenty years ago. Self imposed will works up until it doesn't, then you move to the next phase.

Regards.G.
You continue to make these claims that you can do what we do (I do) and aikijujutsu people can do and that you understand it. All I have asked, is what the Aikiweb community asked of me, Mike and Ark. Prove it. You have never written anything coherent about it. Or showed up anywhere, or accepted us to test your claims. I think that speaks volumes. You would be wiser not to say these things, because they lead to obvious questions you could avoid.

Credibility
Ueshiba...with his new vision, could and did still move people against their will, and opposite to their line of attack, even harming them occasionally. He also moved connectedly and differently from normal movement. I think the greater aikido community does not understand what Ueshiabs meant by blending and I can point it out in his writing, discuss it, and show it. Again it is the reason the entire discussion of throwing is so skewed in favor of normal movement like judo or jujutsu.

Anyone who makes claims that they can do his aikido. Should feel different and be able to do things that very accomplished budoka consider unusual. Strangely, when I see or feel people who make these claims they cannot even move me (a complete nobody) and they feel like any other person I would find at the mall.

All things being equal, if someone claims they are doing Ueshiba's aikido and they are all but functionally useless and ineffectual...and when they move they sway to and fro, tip, send their own weight outside of their center and in general are just like everyone else... then something is drastically wrong with their logic and self awareness.

Person to person contact makes these things clear. That's why I advocate it with people who disagree. Some seek it out, others avoid it, because their claims of understanding and their voice, will last about one minute (if it takes that long) in a room with everyone watching.
Anyone can offer an opinion of the internet... and everyone gets an "A."
In person....everyone is sized up and graded and everyone knows the truth. With some it doesn't even take that, it is so obvious on video.
Dan

DH
01-24-2012, 09:06 AM
@ Dan..Thank you....but how did you see what I deleted? Do you have magical mad computer skills? :)
Drafting at home...doing a code review, bored out of my mind, Aikiweb running in the background. You can tell when I am working at home. Did I mess up and use something you wanted deleted?:o
Dan

phitruong
01-24-2012, 09:07 AM
If you're feeling down then throw up.....

Regards.G.

i thought you suppose to feel them up and throw them down, which is a guruma koshinage which is similar to the way aikido approach. :D

gregstec
01-24-2012, 09:21 AM
hey, that meant the aikiage stuffs i picked up from howie popkin actually worked over the internet! imagine that, his koshernage actually worked!

:D

DH
01-24-2012, 09:21 AM
i thought you're suppose to feel them up and throw them down, which is a guruma koshinage which is similar to the way aikido approach. :D
Or a very fun night with a feisty friend who likes that sort of thing. :cool:

Carsten Möllering
01-24-2012, 10:15 AM
What's new to me is people believing Ueshiba saying you must exert your will on the opponent. I find that hilarious. Hardly universal or spiritual, more old school.
In which way do you contrast "spiritual" and "old school"? The "old schools" / koryu I know are spiritual and are related to a shinto jingu.
Then what does "universal" mean in this context?

Well let's just say I can do it how you do and you describe, ...
Well affecting and controlling the structure of someone else's body against his will is something I want to learn, I aim for. It is not something I can do.
And to be honest I know only very few persons who can do this what I understand as using aiki.
So if you can do this, you are much more advanced than most people in aikido I know.

Mark Freeman
01-24-2012, 10:48 AM
Well affecting and controlling the structure of someone else's body against his will is something I want to learn, I aim for. It is not something I can do.
And to be honest I know only very few persons who can do this what I understand as using aiki.
So if you can do this, you are much more advanced than most people in aikido I know.

Hi Carsten,

Maybe Dan is correct in his supposition that most people in aikido don't use 'aiki' correctly, so it may be that many people don't know those who can. I'm not sure, as I haven't felt enough people outside of my own practice to make a real informed statement.

However, I have recently been out in India where I practiced with an aikikai group who had little concept of what I was able to do (move them without them realising how I was doing it), so I ended up teaching their sessions for the time I was there.

On the same trip I was lucky enough to practice with some Salimbam guys, who were mighty strong, there was no way of 'blending' or 'flowing' with these chaps. However, by setting up myself correctly ('aiki in me' - thanks Dan;) ) I was able to move them with relative ease. They were impressed, and so was I :cool:

The truth is out there, you just have to find it.

regards

Mark

DH
01-24-2012, 11:12 AM
Hi Carsten,

Maybe Dan is correct in his supposition that most people in aikido don't use 'aiki' correctly, so it may be that many people don't know those who can. I'm not sure, as I haven't felt enough people outside of my own practice to make a real informed statement.

However, I have recently been out in India where I practiced with an aikikai group who had little concept of what I was able to do (move them without them realising how I was doing it), so I ended up teaching their sessions for the time I was there.

On the same trip I was lucky enough to practice with some Salimbam guys, who were mighty strong, there was no way of 'blending' or 'flowing' with these chaps. However, by setting up myself correctly ('aiki in me' - thanks Dan;) ) I was able to move them with relative ease. They were impressed, and so was I :cool:

The truth is out there, you just have to find it.

regards

Mark
You're welcome Mark
Pretty much speaks for itself doesn't it. You can B.S. people on the net, but you can't B.S. this stuff in person.
Imagine ten years from now?
Most budo people-including-aikido have never encountered a methodology that changes them so rapidly and has them doing things they only have read about against resistence. It's why I prefer to train seniors. They already know the drill on the waza stuff, and many are bored. Now they can work on the real deal and in turn, help others.
The fun part is hearing the reaction from the Japanese and Chinese Master teachers over them...
"What the ______ happened to you? You're finally getting it!"
And as one senior aikido teacher said to his Japanese Shihan
"Yeah...no thanks to you."

Dan

graham christian
01-24-2012, 11:13 AM
Many of the old guard Japanese Shihan were openly derisive of that idea; many times calling it nonsense and specifically stating that it was not aikido.
You continue to make these claims that you can do what we do (I do) and aikijujutsu people can do and that you understand it. All I have asked, is what the Aikiweb community asked of me, Mike and Ark. Prove it. You have never written anything coherent about it. Or showed up anywhere, or accepted us to test your claims. I think that speaks volumes. You would be wiser not to say these things, because they lead to obvious questions you could avoid.

Credibility
Ueshiba...with his new vision, could and did still move people against their will, and opposite to their line of attack, even harming them occasionally. He also moved connectedly and differently from normal movement. I think the greater aikido community does not understand what Ueshiabs meant by blending and I can point it out in his writing, discuss it, and show it. Again it is the reason the entire discussion of throwing is so skewed in favor of normal movement like judo or jujutsu.

Anyone who makes claims that they can do his aikido. Should feel different and be able to do things that very accomplished budoka consider unusual. Strangely, when I see or feel people who make these claims they cannot even move me (a complete nobody) and they feel like any other person I would find at the mall.

All things being equal, if someone claims they are doing Ueshiba's aikido and they are all but functionally useless and ineffectual...and when they move they sway to and fro, tip, send their own weight outside of their center and in general are just like everyone else... then something is drastically wrong with their logic and self awareness.

Person to person contact makes these things clear. That's why I advocate it with people who disagree. Some seek it out, others avoid it, because their claims of understanding and their voice, will last about one minute (if it takes that long) in a room with everyone watching.
Anyone can offer an opinion of the internet... and everyone gets an "A."
In person....everyone is sized up and graded and everyone knows the truth. With some it doesn't even take that, it is so obvious on video.
Dan

So you see and feel people who make these claims? Everyone sees and meet people who make all kind of claims, that's nothing new, nothing out of the ordinary. I remember many on here from George to others saying similar, it's normal.

If someone, and I mean you in this case, watches a video and thinks they know what the person just did then that is their opinion. It's based on their understanding. When they however are wrong they wouldn't know it would they. They know only it doesn't fit with their concept. I notice you are quite open to say how such and such is wrong, how it's sway and weight moving outside of center yet at the same time unaware of how come it works then?

Everyone with something worthwhile to say on the internet gets an 'A' and deserves it.

Meeting others to make things clear? To prove? Ha, that may be your way but not mine. Trained with all kinds of people from Judoka, kung fu, wing chun, tai chi, karate, etc. etc. so don't give me the go out and meet others line. Been there, done that, met challenges, all a past phase for me.

Every single Aikidoka or otherwise I have ever met has gone away having learned what else there is to Aikido. Not one budoka ever has been other than surprised and sure found it unusual and more than that, enlightening.

I am not like you Dan, I am like one person only, me. I need to prove nothing now. I need not to be in some grading system. I work on the basis that when the student is ready he or she will come. Very simple. If no one comes, I'm happy, if ten thousand come, I'm happy.

Ha, ha, I've met so many who sum up what's what in a minute or so. They come, they go, theyre always there.

They come, I teach, they realize, they improve. That about sums me up. Nothing special.

Regards.G.

Carsten Möllering
01-24-2012, 11:18 AM
The truth is out there, you just have to find it.
I'm on my way ... ;)

... step by step. :)

graham christian
01-24-2012, 12:03 PM
I'm on my way ... ;)

... step by step. :)

Carsten, if you want to impose your will and make others move as per 'aiki' then go for it.

Old school? Basically, fear based. Most past martial arts are and koryu etc. Such is history.

Universal? Moving and doing and being in alignment with universal principles where there is no exrtion of will, no intention to control, no against. Quite a contrast wouldn't you say?

Anyway, you'll get a taste of it when you do the 'aiki' so don't let me put you off.

More advanced than many you know? Probably yes. Does it matter? No.

Regards.G.

Gary David
01-24-2012, 12:39 PM
If someone, and I mean you in this case, watches a video and thinks they know what the person just did then that is their opinion. It's based on their understanding. When they however are wrong they wouldn't know it would they. They know only it doesn't fit with their concept. I notice you are quite open to say how such and such is wrong, how it's sway and weight moving outside of center yet at the same time unaware of how come it works then? .

Graham
In my limited understanding of it all, I know that the body works in certain ways, with alignments in place to allow the work to happen. You can look and if those alignments are not in play then the other stuff is not happening or is happening at such a reduced level that things happen only through cooperation.

Generally for the body of be stable the center needs to be held within the base, spine is held straight, the parallels running across the body.... like through the eyes, across the chest, center/hips and the like remain perpendicular to the spine. Turning is around the the spine from the center with the hips following....and a bunch of other things that I know are in play but I don't have a handle on. So how do you destabilize someone prepping them for falling, and then drop yourself (could be only inches or not even visible) leading them to imbalance and the fall before they realize they are destabilized and recover? Well you move their center outside their base, you tweak the spine, maybe by bending the head, you put some of the parallels out of perpendicular with the spine, raise there center, things like that. Double weighting to one side is another indicator that the destabilization may be a function of what is happening.

So if you look at a video and see these same conditions in the nage you have an idea that the individual is operating at some level below optimum with regards to being fully integrated and moving as one.

just my thoughts
Gary

DH
01-24-2012, 01:16 PM
Hi Gary
I can think of a virtual laundry list of tell tale markers when it comes to the subject of throwing non cooperative people with aiki and what Nage's body should look like if he were connected and how it would and should effect an uke. And all that with or without alignment.
But Grahams post to me shows a disinterest in corrections. As he said in answer to a review of his movement:
"How can you explain why it works then?"
My answer is; it doesn't....without cooperation.
There is no power
There is no aiki
There is no displacement
There is no connection within yourself much less to another person.

I said this before when he openly asked for a review of his video then I got nowhere in answering his question other than I was the one who didn't understand. So...I asked to come feel. Got nowhere there as well. Oh well.

I do like the fact that Graham and I can disagree-even strongly-without all the vituperation. As George said, "Do we really need to lay waste to someone who disagrees?"

I still think a one-on-one would be informative, funny (you know me-I just can't take this stuff seriously) and answer questions on both sides. I know he cannot do what he thinks he can...and he says I can't do what he does. How much fun would that be? Hell, we could charge admission and all go to dinner after!
Anyway. There isn't much to be resolved on the net, and when someone refuses to meet and demonstrate their claimed understanding. It's sort of it's own answer. It is worth noting that you guys were no where near as polite to me. Good Grief! Nor did anyone acknowledge how terribly wrong ya'll were. :D :D :D
Dan

graham christian
01-24-2012, 01:43 PM
Graham
In my limited understanding of it all, I know that the body works in certain ways, with alignments in place to allow the work to happen. You can look and if those alignments are not in play then the other stuff is not happening or is happening at such a reduced level that things happen only through cooperation.

Generally for the body of be stable the center needs to be held within the base, spine is held straight, the parallels running across the body.... like through the eyes, across the chest, center/hips and the like remain perpendicular to the spine. Turning is around the the spine from the center with the hips following....and a bunch of other things that I know are in play but I don't have a handle on. So how do you destabilize someone prepping them for falling, and then drop yourself (could be only inches or not even visible) leading them to imbalance and the fall before they realize they are destabilized and recover? Well you move their center outside their base, you tweak the spine, maybe by bending the head, you put some of the parallels out of perpendicular with the spine, raise there center, things like that. Double weighting to one side is another indicator that the destabilization may be a function of what is happening.

So if you look at a video and see these same conditions in the nage you have an idea that the individual is operating at some level below optimum with regards to being fully integrated and moving as one.

just my thoughts
Gary

Yes. From that viewpoint you would come to such conclusions. However, then you would have to know what it is the person was actually doing. Physically speaking what you say is correct.

Let's take center. Center of what? If you are limited to the view of center of the body and thus need to always work from that then you wouldn't be able to see how someone keeps centered even when the body is apparently not.

I teach people to keep centered when falling, breakfalling, when twisted up in knots, whatever.

Lets add to that center line shall we.(vertical line) Physically speaking this leads to correct posture and moving whilst maintaining this correct posture and facing with correct posture etc.

Low and behold it of itself is not physical. You can sit crouched over and yet maintain center line.

Only the other day I met a neighbor who had a bad back. I listened to all his reasons why and how his work didn't help so he was mentioning posture and what this person said and that person said and what he was trying to do.

I gave him a simple exercise and he liked it. I had him imagining a vertical line running through his body and asked what happened when he bent over or leaned over in different ways. He enthusiastically told me how that's it, he loses balance or has to strain the wrong places to keep balance and that's why this and that's why that. However he was wondering why I was smiling.

I then got him to repeat the exercise but this time have the center line staying vertical independent of the body and how he was moving it. He found that freeing somehow. He found that fascinating.

I then told him how to get correct posture or check for it. All you do is Allow your body to join center line. (allow it to, don't make it)

As with all the lines and circles etc. they are all actually real and indeed moveable. I can have center line behind me or in front of me depending.

So all this yeah but the body has this and the body has that is one realm but one only. Lokking at body motion from that limited view gives limited understanding. That's all really

Regards.G.

graham christian
01-24-2012, 01:54 PM
Hi Gary
I can think of a virtual laundry list of tell tale markers when it comes to the subject of throwing non cooperative people with aiki and what Nage's body should look like if he were connected and how it would and should effect an uke. And all that with or without alignment.
But Grahams post to me shows a disinterest in corrections. As he said in answer to a review of his movement:
"How can you explain why it works then?"
My answer is; it doesn't....without cooperation.
There is no power
There is no aiki
There is no displacement
There is no connection within yourself much less to another person.

I said this before when he openly asked for a review of his video then I got nowhere in answering his question other than I was the one who didn't understand. So...I asked to come feel. Got nowhere there as well. Oh well.

I do like the fact that Graham and I can disagree-even strongly-without all the vituperation. As George said, "Do we really need to lay waste to someone who disagrees?"

I still think a one-on-one would be informative, funny (you know me-I just can't take this stuff seriously) and answer questions on both sides. I know he cannot do what he thinks he can...and he says I can't do what he does. How much fun would that be? Hell, we could charge admission and all go to dinner after!
Anyway. There isn't much to be resolved on the net, and when someone refuses to meet and demonstrate their claimed understanding. It's sort of it's own answer. It is worth noting that you guys were no where near as polite to me. Good Grief! Nor did anyone acknowledge how terribly wrong ya'll were. :D :D :D
Dan

Dan. Your answer is that it doesn't work other than on co operative ukes. Thus, as I am the one doing it I can tell you that is an incorrect statement.

Did I ask for you to review any video? No. Did I ask anyone to? No. I merely put it up for orientation on what I do but found it's what people do anyway, review and criticize that is. Oh well, so be it.

Did you ask to come feel? No. What a strange thing to say.

Care to explain?

Regards.G.

DH
01-24-2012, 02:00 PM
Dan. Your answer is that it doesn't work other than on co operative ukes. Thus, as I am the one doing it I can tell you that is an incorrect statement.

Did I ask for you to review any video? No. Did I ask anyone to? No. I merely put it up for orientation on what I do but found it's what people do anyway, review and criticize that is. Oh well, so be it.

Did you ask to come feel? No. What a strange thing to say.

Care to explain?

Regards.G.
1. You've never shown your skills except on highly cooperative and apparently new uke's. Your remarks about understanding center-particularly in regards to throwing don't pan out, so we looked back at your videos and Mary. Note I was not the one who first did so. Critiques are cristisisms.
Another example is you reply to Gary. What you say would be true accept the criticial points that you can't pull off; Someone who is connected and move very loosely, but the result of their movement has a marked effect on uke that has other tell tale markers on you and uke that I am not going to mention. But they are missing. There are maybe a couple hundred people here who have watched them and discussed them along with many, many, others they just never bring up. Some of them with very famous teachers..


2. You put up videos on sword and talked about them, then you did on your aikido and talked about them
3. I asked you to come as my guest to a seminar or failing that if I could drop by. You told me you were uninterested. I thought it would be a blast. I specifically remember telling you we would probably laugh our asses off and have fun. I even offered to take you to dinner. It's here somewhere on one of the threads. I will be in England probably twice this year and the offer still stands. Every time people meet up here ...it turns into a lot of fun and people make friends. It's better than arguing or debating over physical skills best demonstrated one on one.
And if you note.....The results of these meet ups are usually pretty quiet and friendly and they continue. Why? It goes back to what I think about all of us as budo-ka. We are of a type.
Dan

graham christian
01-24-2012, 02:18 PM
Sure
1.you put up videos on sword and talked about them, then you did on your aikido and talked about them
2. I asked you to come as my guest to a seminar or failing that if I could drop by. You told me you were uninterested. I thought it would be a blast. I specifically remember telling you we would probably laugh our asses off and have fun. I even offered to take you to dinner. It's here somewhere on one of the threads.
Dan

The videos and my assumptions have been stated.

Being asked to come as your guest? Even you dropping by? No. Never happened or I never read it. I definitely didn't refuse therefore.

As I recall on the London visit I offered a few examples of places you could visit or might find interesting.

I do remember in a private message you saying how what you say above (laughing etc) would be the case but hardly an invitation to your seminar as a guest.

I even remember telling my co-teacher friend Bob about you and that you were coming to London and that according to what you had said was looking for somewhere to stay possibly. He said that If I hear you were stuck that he would willingly put you up, no problem. It seems to me you had it all sorted so didn't need to in the end.

Anyway, believe it or not I would probably have politely declined the offer.

I had so many private messages from various sources saying I should go it all seemed a bit weird. Like some kind of show.

Regards.G.

akiy
01-24-2012, 02:41 PM
Hi folks,

Please turn your discussion back to the topic rather than towards each other.

-- Jun

kewms
01-24-2012, 03:27 PM
Anyone one can, this is not value judgement, this is as factual as carpentry. If one takes out the martial out the martial art, something essential is lost. If one is tea intolerant and can't touch or smell the stuff one can't do chado. One could go through the motions of the tea ceremony with say Rooibos, but something essential will be missing ad in no way this will be a "Way".

Anyone can see that.

No, actually my point is that it isn't nearly so obvious as you suggest.

To use your example, why exactly *can't* you have a tea ceremony with Rooibos? True, it isn't "authentic," but what does that matter?

I'm not pushing on this just for the sake of stirring the pot, but because I think it's problematic to equate "not what I do" with "wrong."

Katherine

DH
01-24-2012, 03:35 PM
Throwing and connection
The thing that is supposed to separate aiki people from the normal mechanics of throwing is first and foremost what Ueshiba discussed as in yo... in us. Within us. It not only changes the way you feel its changes the way someone interacts with you. Without it there is no aiki. Period. Without that every person who discusses throws ends up talking about things predicated on normal jujutsu throws.

The person -with aiki- will have their own set of dilemmas of fitting in for a throw and interacting with the straights in budo (those untrained in IP/aiki). There are things a person with aiki will have to throttle back on, relearn, along with other things they can do that normal people cannot. Your interactions with the straights in budo will continue to change as your internal connections strengthen inside you.

Something as simple as "When one thing moves....everything moves" is difficult, and has a marked effect on people. And it is not al the same. Tohei was not Ueshiba. In several areas they were doing different things. Ueshiba talked about things Tohei never addressed and did not have in his movement. You can see it in them, and once you train certian things you can see it on your partner...on contact.
Which brings up the more critical aspects of kuzushi on contact. In and of itself it is obvious instantly whether someone has aiki or not. Sagawa used to say all he had to do was watch you do aiki age and it was over...he knew. That creates it's own challenges to overcome when someone cannot put any force into you any more and you have to alter your practice. Case in point is I launch people to a standing postion-sometimes higher than their own feet and they comes back down...all from Kokyu dosa. That messes up things up. So you learn to throttle way back. Think of what that would do to Tenchi nage or any other throw...
I can go into a process about shoulders but from what I have seen people have a loooong way to go to overcome those issues and move from their centers for the first time. They acknowledge it and discuss it and then go right back to shoulder use.
Then you can discuss all the additives; issuing power, absorbing each on its own separately or at the same time-often used by Ueshiba and not Tohei. There are many dilemmas fitting in and training that are faced by someone with aiki that I have never even seen discussed on aikiweb.

On a very simple level of figuring out who is full of it and full of themselves? We can look at the interaction in any manner of levels, but there is clear evidence available for us all in an example offered by O sensei:

Leave budo out of it, leave waza untouched and walk up to someone and do the Ueshiba test.
Every person who so much as grabbed him to try something all said he felt different and they knew right away.
Go lay hands on someone.
If they don't feel different than normal people?
They don't know what Ueshiba was talking about
They don't know what they are talking about when it comes to aiki.
Everything else is judo or jujutsu.

When none of the above is displayed...or discussed, it pretty much speaks about the aikido-ka's power and skills. Their dilemmas are the same as the TKD guy at the mall or a judo guys.
Dan

kewms
01-24-2012, 03:41 PM
Define "purely spiritual pursuit".

An activity engaged in for the purpose of spiritual self-development. For purposes of this discussion, an activity engaged in because the participant finds it helps them, and in which the participant has chosen not to concern themselves with externally measurable results.

To take things out of the highly charged martial arts realm, lots of people run. Some runners compete. Is the 3-hour marathoner who wants to run in Boston "better" than the person who shuffles their way through a 5K fun run? Or someone who just likes going for a run in the park with their dog and doesn't even carry a watch?

He's faster, sure, but he's not all *that* fast. It's not like a 3-hour marathon is anything special in the grand scheme of things. They're both going to get comparable physical health benefits, although the park runner is probably less susceptible to overuse injuries and might actually be more "fit" on measures other than cardiovascular endurance.

The park runner will tell you that he runs because he enjoys the sunshine and the quiet time with his dog. He knows he can't compete with marathon guy, but he doesn't care. Who are we to tell him that he's wrong?

Katherine

mathewjgano
01-24-2012, 04:35 PM
No, actually my point is that it isn't nearly so obvious as you suggest.

To use your example, why exactly *can't* you have a tea ceremony with Rooibos? True, it isn't "authentic," but what does that matter?

I'm not pushing on this just for the sake of stirring the pot, but because I think it's problematic to equate "not what I do" with "wrong."

Katherine

I agee with this idea...and I would go so far as to suggest the idea of "wrong" is rarely usefull when talking to strangers. For the sake of discussions with people we're not very familiar with (and often even with people we are), I think it's usually better to couch the language in the "not what I do" manner...even when we are absolutely confident they're wrong.
Most people I've met who practiced the "way of tea" liked tea, but that was't the point of the practice. "The" point wasn't to make tea...because there are much quicker ways of doing that, particularly for the newer student of tea-making. "Martial" arts are similar with regard to actual martial encounters; most of us will never have a martial-like encounter, let alone an actual one.
The "tea-making" is the medium through which other traits are developed; very similar to the so-called "martial" arts. The goal is not to throw...so much as to use the activity to develop other desirable traits (too)...and that will vary based on the leadership of the school.

Demetrio Cereijo
01-24-2012, 04:48 PM
The park runner will tell you that he runs because he enjoys the sunshine and the quiet time with his dog. He knows he can't compete with marathon guy, but he doesn't care.

Does he call himself "marathon runner" and says people who runs marathons don't understand what "marathon running" is?

Who are we to tell him that he's wrong?
People who train for actual marathon running? People who think 5K are not 42K? People who run 42K in less than 3 hours for fun, or for money, or for glory, or for taking himself physically and mentally to his limits and learn from the experience?

Gary David
01-24-2012, 06:01 PM
Let's take center. Center of what? If you are limited to the view of center of the body and thus need to always work from that then you wouldn't be able to see how someone keeps centered even when the body is apparently not.

I teach people to keep centered when falling, breakfalling, when twisted up in knots, whatever.

Lets add to that center line shall we.(vertical line) Physically speaking this leads to correct posture and moving whilst maintaining this correct posture and facing with correct posture etc.

Low and behold it of itself is not physical. You can sit crouched over and yet maintain center line..

Graham
There are some constants that we all have to deal with in the realms that I am aware of.....one of these is gravity.. When your physical center gets to far outside of your base gravity takes over and you fall.....there is no getting around this. One can bend at the waist...at some point one starts to destabilize followed by imbalance and the fall... You can not get away from this...it just is. With this levels of stabilization can be seen in the movement of others Now maybe this constant does not hold true with Buckaroo Bonzai in the 8th Demension, in Asgard, or some other place/state, but here in the 4th world it does.

If by centered you are talking to a state where one keeps it all together..........even here gravity can have an effect....toss someone off the building they can remained centered until the hit they ground.....the fall will be completed.

just go with it
Gary

graham christian
01-24-2012, 06:24 PM
Graham
There are some constants that we all have to deal with in the realms that I am aware of.....one of these is gravity.. When your physical center gets to far outside of your base gravity takes over and you fall.....there is no getting around this. One can bend at the waist...at some point one starts to destabilize followed by imbalance and the fall... You can not get away from this...it just is. With this levels of stabilization can be seen in the movement of others Now maybe this constant does not hold true with Buckaroo Bonzai in the 8th Demension, in Asgard, or some other place/state, but here in the 4th world it does.

If by centered you are talking to a state where one keeps it all together..........even here gravity can have an effect....toss someone off the building they can remained centered until the hit they ground.....the fall will be completed.

just go with it
Gary

Yes there is a constant. Center is a constant. But as I said, center of what? Read todays Doka as an example.

Center gives stability so if you are connected, aware of your own center you will be that much more stable. If you are aware of what center can do and allow it to do it you will be even more stable.

You will also be able to trust center rather than shape of body.

Then we come to balance, as in kuzushi, as in taking someones in order to throw them.

Balance and center. Are they the same? For me no. There is stability and there is balance. They work together as do all principles but are not the same.

Case in point being your reference to gravity. Fall over and you have lost your balance but keep centered and relaxed and it will be unharmful, no problem, even enjoyable.

I think you will recall the thread on break falls and my assertion that how you harmonize with the ground is the breakfall. Once again, keeping centered and relaxed.

So balance is different.

Regards.G.

David Orange
01-24-2012, 07:55 PM
Carsten, if you want to impose your will and make others move as per 'aiki' then go for it.

Graham, haven't you ever seen the quote by Ueshiba where he says something like "Aiki is the power to make people do what I want them to do."?

I've seen it and I keep expecting someone to post it again.

Aikido is not supposed to be "accidentally" effective, but intentionally very effective.

Someone please post that quote by Ueshiba.

Thanks.

David

kewms
01-24-2012, 08:42 PM
Does he call himself "marathon runner" and says people who runs marathons don't understand what "marathon running" is?

Nope. Although he might suggest that marathon runners are so focused on their times that they miss some of the pleasures of the journey.


People who train for actual marathon running? People who think 5K are not 42K? People who run 42K in less than 3 hours for fun, or for money, or for glory, or for taking himself physically and mentally to his limits and learn from the experience?

Also a valid practice. But not "better" or "worse," just different.

Katherine

graham christian
01-25-2012, 03:45 AM
Graham, haven't you ever seen the quote by Ueshiba where he says something like "Aiki is the power to make people do what I want them to do."?

I've seen it and I keep expecting someone to post it again.

Aikido is not supposed to be "accidentally" effective, but intentionally very effective.

Someone please post that quote by Ueshiba.

Thanks.

David

No. Seen plenty of quotes though. None imply asserting will or intention, in fact quite the opposite. You are quite right though in saying Aikido is not 'accidentally effective' for the truths and principles of the universe are real.

Do you intend your love on another? Do you impose your compassion on another? It's not a matter of intention or will, it's coming to terms with and harmonizing with those natural universal resources all around you.

Regards.G.

Demetrio Cereijo
01-25-2012, 03:55 AM
Graham, haven't you ever seen the quote by Ueshiba where he says something like "Aiki is the power to make people do what I want them to do."?


Maybe you mean this one:

to equip your inner-self with the power to move the enemy according to your own will is the true Way of the Gods

You can find it in http://www.aikidojournal.com/article?articleID=676 (last paragraph).

Demetrio Cereijo
01-25-2012, 03:58 AM
Nope. Although he might suggest that marathon runners are so focused on their times that they miss some of the pleasures of the journey.

Also a valid practice. But not "better" or "worse," just different.

Katherine

Different enough to not be called "marathon running"?

graham christian
01-25-2012, 07:08 AM
Maybe you mean this one:

to equip your inner-self with the power to move the enemy according to your own will is the true Way of the Gods

You can find it in http://www.aikidojournal.com/article?articleID=676 (last paragraph).

Nice article. Expressed as the way of the Gods and merely the tip of the iceberg. I agree. The rest of the article, especially how he feels sad when seeing all this physical Aikido I relate to as well.

Nice one.

Regards.G.

David Orange
01-25-2012, 07:11 AM
No. Seen plenty of quotes though. None imply asserting will or intention, in fact quite the opposite.

Someone will post it. Ueshiba made it very clear that he could "make people do" what he wanted them to do. It's unfortunate that so many aikido people have lost touch with that basic reality of training. Ueshiba's original interest in budo was from seeing his father roughed up by a crowed over his political beliefs. He didn't want a "martial art" that depended on accidental functioning. And when he met Takeda, he found someone who could show him how to be sure his methods always worked. He had his religious beliefs just as I have mine. I don't go out and seek to control people. I just want to be sure that other people can't obstruct my freedom of movement, can't move me if I don't want to move, and can't prevent me from moving if I want to.

You are quite right though in saying Aikido is not 'accidentally effective' for the truths and principles of the universe are real.

And one of those truths and principles is "human nature," which is why budo methods must be unquestionalbly effective and real, and they must work by intention or they are fraudulent methods that will only lead to trouble and failure when the truth shows up.

Do you intend your love on another? Do you impose your compassion on another? It's not a matter of intention or will, it's coming to terms with and harmonizing with those natural universal resources all around you.

Normally, what I intend is to go to work and come home, buy groceries and take care of my garden. And if someone, for some misguided reason, wants to obstruct me in that or even attack me, I fully and consciously intend to eliminate their ability to do so. So far, every one who has thought to attack me has backed off without my ever having to touch them. I take that back: I did touch one guy, one time. He put himself into position for a beautiful hiza garuma (judo), but I didn't apply it because my intention was not to throw him, but just to mind my own business. On the other hand, I was certainly willing to throw him with intention if necessary. I can't say I was fully "in control" of the situation. There were two of them and we had a stand-off in the middle of the street. But there was never a moment when I felt that I could put both of them on the ground in pain. I was very comfortable with the situation--more so than they were.

So...my "goal" was not to throw, but my intent and ability was to throw if necessary. And because of that clarity, throwing wasn't necessary. Nor was atemi.

Best to you.

David

Regards.G.[/QUOTE]

David Orange
01-25-2012, 07:12 AM
Maybe you mean this one:

to equip your inner-self with the power to move the enemy according to your own will is the true Way of the Gods

You can find it in http://www.aikidojournal.com/article?articleID=676 (last paragraph).

Thanks, Demetrio. That's not "the one" I had in mind, but it says basically the same thing.

Best to you.

David

sorokod
01-25-2012, 07:21 AM
No, actually my point is that it isn't nearly so obvious as you suggest.

To use your example, why exactly *can't* you have a tea ceremony with Rooibos? True, it isn't "authentic," but what does that matter?

I'm not pushing on this just for the sake of stirring the pot, but because I think it's problematic to equate "not what I do" with "wrong."

Katherine

I think that two distinct things get entangled here. One is what sort of personal, subjective satisfaction one can derive from specific activity, the other is what objective value can be assigned to that activity in the real world.

As far a subjective aspect goes one can be satisfied with the full mastery of the tea ceremony, with performing a tea ceremony without tea or by simply imagining performing a tea ceremony in their mind. In a way all these are equally valid, at least on the subjective playground. In the objective reality, a well executing tea ceremony is aesthetically nourishing to all participants while an imaginary one is useless.

graham christian
01-25-2012, 07:26 AM
Someone will post it. Ueshiba made it very clear that he could "make people do" what he wanted them to do. It's unfortunate that so many aikido people have lost touch with that basic reality of training. Ueshiba's original interest in budo was from seeing his father roughed up by a crowed over his political beliefs. He didn't want a "martial art" that depended on accidental functioning. And when he met Takeda, he found someone who could show him how to be sure his methods always worked. He had his religious beliefs just as I have mine. I don't go out and seek to control people. I just want to be sure that other people can't obstruct my freedom of movement, can't move me if I don't want to move, and can't prevent me from moving if I want to.

And one of those truths and principles is "human nature," which is why budo methods must be unquestionalbly effective and real, and they must work by intention or they are fraudulent methods that will only lead to trouble and failure when the truth shows up.

Normally, what I intend is to go to work and come home, buy groceries and take care of my garden. And if someone, for some misguided reason, wants to obstruct me in that or even attack me, I fully and consciously intend to eliminate their ability to do so. So far, every one who has thought to attack me has backed off without my ever having to touch them. I take that back: I did touch one guy, one time. He put himself into position for a beautiful hiza garuma (judo), but I didn't apply it because my intention was not to throw him, but just to mind my own business. On the other hand, I was certainly willing to throw him with intention if necessary. I can't say I was fully "in control" of the situation. There were two of them and we had a stand-off in the middle of the street. But there was never a moment when I felt that I could put both of them on the ground in pain. I was very comfortable with the situation--more so than they were.

So...my "goal" was not to throw, but my intent and ability was to throw if necessary. And because of that clarity, throwing wasn't necessary. Nor was atemi.

Best to you.

David

Regards.G.

Quite so David. As I said to Carsten, I can do that too. You're examples I quite believe. I don't see them contradicting what I say though. In fact I see them as validation.

As I pointed out, my view is that it's a phase of Aikido practice, now I can say after reading the article Demetrio pointed out, it's a tip of the iceberg.

You see most people think that the discipline of love and harmony and it's application means the willingness to do otherwise is missing. Not true, far from the truth. In fact the person who can do such with love and compassion and harmony for real is also capable of doing whatever is necessary. Sometimes we must draw the sword of correction.

You on the other hand showed willingness to do what was necessary, comfortable within yourself, and thus saw no need for giving pain etc. You actually acted from compassion there. Well done.

Regards.G.

chillzATL
01-25-2012, 07:45 AM
Thanks, Demetrio. That's not "the one" I had in mind, but it says basically the same thing.

Best to you.

David

I think the specific quote you're referencing came from Takeshita Isamu, but that's neither here nor there. Though there are some similar things from Ueshiba, I believe in the radio interview he did. Some people say why, I say why bother. Let him do whatever it is he wants to do. You're never going to change the opinion of someone who constantly asserts that he's already doing whatever it is you're talking about when all evidence points to the contrary.

phitruong
01-25-2012, 07:57 AM
Ueshiba made it very clear that he could "make people do" what he wanted them to do.


folks who believed in love and harmony and compassionate and so on, don't want to hear about that of their idol/founder of the art that they devoted a good chunk of their lives. so in order to deal with that sort of conflict, selective reading and remembering are needed, i.e. read and remember the things that you like and throw out the things that you don't. so the goal here is to throw things you don't like and keep things that you do. it's human nature. :)

David Orange
01-25-2012, 08:25 AM
I think that two distinct things get entangled here. One is what sort of personal, subjective satisfaction one can derive from specific activity, the other is what objective value can be assigned to that activity in the real world.

Yes, when something has an established identity and someone else, doing something very different, wants to appropriate that identity and the reputation that goes with it, it matters.

As far a subjective aspect goes one can be satisfied with the full mastery of the tea ceremony, with performing a tea ceremony without tea or by simply imagining performing a tea ceremony in their mind. In a way all these are equally valid, at least on the subjective playground. In the objective reality, a well executing tea ceremony is aesthetically nourishing to all participants while an imaginary one is useless.

On the other hand, a master of tea ceremony could effect the purpose of the tea (harmonizing two or more people who attend the ceremony) using Earl Grey or even soda. A pretender would just make a mess of it, but wouldn't even know they'd made a mess.

Cheers.

David

David Orange
01-25-2012, 08:39 AM
Quite so David. As I said to Carsten, I can do that too. You're examples I quite believe. I don't see them contradicting what I say though. In fact I see them as validation.

How could that be, Graham. You said that Ueshiba didn't operate by "will" or "intention," yet here he is saying that he did: "...to equip your inner-self with the power to move the enemy according to your own will is the true Way of the Gods..."

Power. Will. Intention.

How did those things get neutered out of aikido?

Why have they become such anathema to people who "follow" Morihei Ueshiba when they were so important to him?

Power is not bad. If you have to chop down a tree, do you want a butter knife or a heft axe? Will the tree somehow accidentally cut itself down?

It's just like money. Do I want only enough aikido to buy penny candies (protect myself against idiots who can't walk and talk at the same time)? Or do I want aikido that can handle a sumo champion?

Sadly, so many people willfully misread these ideas and think "Oh, he wants big muscles and he's mad with the quest for power."

But the secret of aiki does not rely on big muscles. That's why so many truly tiny Japanese are immoveable and irresistible. That's how Ueshiba was able to stop Tenryu with virtually no effort.

You don't get those kinds of results by not reaching for them, or by not intending to get them.

You see most people think that the discipline of love and harmony and it's application means the willingness to do otherwise is missing. Not true, far from the truth. In fact the person who can do such with love and compassion and harmony for real is also capable of doing whatever is necessary. Sometimes we must draw the sword of correction.

You on the other hand showed willingness to do what was necessary, comfortable within yourself, and thus saw no need for giving pain etc. You actually acted from compassion there. Well done.

"Love" does not mean to ill-equip yourself for life. I was able to act intentionally with compassion only because I had the physical and technical training to take control of the situation. In fact, through the whole encounter (and others like it), I was "in control" of the situation but did not "exert" any effort to control it. There was nothing they could have done because I had the upper hand.

But what if both of those guys had been well-trained soldiers or cage fighters?

To go out in the "Emperor's clothes" and actually believe you're in good shape is a sad state to be in.

Best to you.

David

Tengu859
01-25-2012, 10:22 AM
 "Aiki is a means of achieving harmony with another person so that you can make then do what you want." Ueshiba, from Takeshita's diary.

From Dueling with O' Sensei by Amdur

ChrisW

Janet Rosen
01-25-2012, 10:41 AM
"Aiki is a means of achieving harmony with another person so that you can make then do what you want." Ueshiba, from Takeshita's diary.

From Dueling with O' Sensei by Amdur

ChrisW

Excellent. Now I have to say, after following this thread for days and days, I don't actually see an inherent contradiction.

If I may be permitted to go a bit afield to tell a non aikido story of two approaches to hospital discharge planning. In each case, a discharge planning nurse has already received written orders to start getting a patient transferred out of the hospital to a skilled nursing facility for ongoing rehab - maybe after a mild stroke or heart attack, matters not. So each of us (yes I'm one of the two) has the very same end goal or intent: to get the person transferred out of the hospital.

I watched a peer go about it this way: "Mr. Smith, I'm the discharge planner. The doctor wants us to transfer you to a rehab facility today." Mr. Smith, three days after having been suddenly hospitalized and feeling very vulnerable, looked shocked and dismayed. You could see his family members' hackles rise immediately. It ended up being a very very long and contentious process, creating stress for everybody.
My typical way of going about it: "Mr. Smith, I'm Janet, a discharge planning nurse. May I sit down? Thank you...I'm wondering what your doctor told you to expect in terms of how long you will be here and where you will be going? ..... uh huh.....uh huh..... ok, well, good....sometimes folks need that extra care before they go home, and your doctor has told us that she thinks you are doing well enough for us to arrange to make that transfer." Took more time upfront but saved a ton of time and aggro - especially when repeating this scenario up to 4 times a day every work day.

This would have been part of my professonal repertoire for years before I ever set foot in a dojo. You don't walk in with your agenda flashing like a neon sign above your head.

"Aiki is a means of achieving harmony with another person so that you can make then do what you want." I have no problem with this statement because I understand that listening to what the other person wants is HOW I achieve getting them to do what I want.

Mary Eastland
01-25-2012, 10:43 AM
When a small nage tries to throw a larger uke using muscle and brute force the throw is ineffective. Uke knows what is happening every moment and never loses balance. Actually, uke finds better balance because there is so much to lean on. When the same nage relaxes, blends with and lets the throw reveal itself...uke loses balance and is thrown.

Same uke, same amount of resistance; yet because of connection, blending and attention to now, uke loses balance and falls.

The goal is to throw or not throw depending on the circimstance...sometimes the parameters of class call for a throw, sometimes not.

Aikido as I know it involves falling throwing, blending and connection with the understanding that what happens in the dojo might not look so pretty in the world. Yet the decision to defend oneself has been made and once that decision is made we are safer because of the decision.

Mary Eastland
01-25-2012, 10:48 AM
@ Janet..I really like your story.

For me it is not about making uke do what I want....because I don't know what I want...I am seeing in the moment what is good for both of us. I don't go into technique with a plan...that would put me in my brain...I enter into technique with commitment to see what happens. I accept the gift of attack and blend to become....whatever.

graham christian
01-25-2012, 10:48 AM
How could that be, Graham. You said that Ueshiba didn't operate by "will" or "intention," yet here he is saying that he did: "...to equip your inner-self with the power to move the enemy according to your own will is the true Way of the Gods..."

Power. Will. Intention.

How did those things get neutered out of aikido?

Why have they become such anathema to people who "follow" Morihei Ueshiba when they were so important to him?

Power is not bad. If you have to chop down a tree, do you want a butter knife or a heft axe? Will the tree somehow accidentally cut itself down?

It's just like money. Do I want only enough aikido to buy penny candies (protect myself against idiots who can't walk and talk at the same time)? Or do I want aikido that can handle a sumo champion?

Sadly, so many people willfully misread these ideas and think "Oh, he wants big muscles and he's mad with the quest for power."

But the secret of aiki does not rely on big muscles. That's why so many truly tiny Japanese are immoveable and irresistible. That's how Ueshiba was able to stop Tenryu with virtually no effort.

You don't get those kinds of results by not reaching for them, or by not intending to get them.

"Love" does not mean to ill-equip yourself for life. I was able to act intentionally with compassion only because I had the physical and technical training to take control of the situation. In fact, through the whole encounter (and others like it), I was "in control" of the situation but did not "exert" any effort to control it. There was nothing they could have done because I had the upper hand.

But what if both of those guys had been well-trained soldiers or cage fighters?

To go out in the "Emperor's clothes" and actually believe you're in good shape is a sad state to be in.

Best to you.

David

I would 'neuter them out of Aikido because I know how the egotistical nature will mistranslate it.

Your own will is not the will of ego or greed or fear or selfishness etc. Many people have intentions by the way but when they think it's all a matter of intention I can but smile. There's much more powerful things than intention.

Regards.G.

Demetrio Cereijo
01-25-2012, 11:23 AM
 "Aiki is a means of achieving harmony with another person so that you can make them do what you want."
So if you want them to throw themselves like the uke of the (in)famous Kiai Master (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gEDaCIDvj6I), and they obey you then you are doing aiki?

kewms
01-25-2012, 11:35 AM
Different enough to not be called "marathon running"?

Probably. But still "running."

Which, I realize, is part of the issue in the martial arts case. It's all very well for those fluffy bunnies/uncivilized brutes to do what they do, but do they have to call it "aikido?"

That's fundamentally a question for the heads of the various styles, though. The Aikikai allows a very wide range of things to be taught under its umbrella, and that's probably beyond the ability of anyone on this forum to change. Nor would such a change necessarily benefit any particular group of "purists." Past splits have not really had much to do with technical merit, so there's no reason to assume that the "best" aikido would "win" in any future upheaval.

Which is a roundabout way of saying that as long as a dojo is an affiliate in good standing with a recognized organization, they are entitled to call what they do "aikido." Likewise unaffiliated dojos with traceable lineage to Ueshiba Sensei.

Katherine

kewms
01-25-2012, 11:39 AM
As far a subjective aspect goes one can be satisfied with the full mastery of the tea ceremony, with performing a tea ceremony without tea or by simply imagining performing a tea ceremony in their mind. In a way all these are equally valid, at least on the subjective playground. In the objective reality, a well executing tea ceremony is aesthetically nourishing to all participants while an imaginary one is useless.

But at what point is the "essence" of tea ceremony lost? If the person performing the tea ceremony is truly a master, wouldn't they be able to produce the same aesthetic nourishment using black tea or rooibos instead of matcha? (On the other hand, perhaps coffee would be a bridge too far, because the preparation method is too different.)

Katherine

kewms
01-25-2012, 11:53 AM
I think that two distinct things get entangled here. One is what sort of personal, subjective satisfaction one can derive from specific activity, the other is what objective value can be assigned to that activity in the real world.

The objective value the real world assigns to tea ceremony, or to martial arts, is approximately zero. That's my point. That for the vast majority of people, the subjective satisfaction is really the only reason to practice, and so why should it bother others if they don't care about making their art more objectively valuable.

Katherine

kewms
01-25-2012, 12:01 PM
Yes, when something has an established identity and someone else, doing something very different, wants to appropriate that identity and the reputation that goes with it, it matters.

As I pointed out in another post, the "identity and reputation" of aikido are "owned" by the Aikikai. (Leaving the other organizations aside for the moment, as Aikikai was Ueshiba Sensei's designated successor organization.) They have chosen to define "aikido" fairly broadly, as is their right, however misguided you believe that decision to be.

Katherine

Tengu859
01-25-2012, 12:01 PM
Demetrio,

No. That's how you get knocked out(I'm sure you have seen that vid on YouTube as well)...!!! I have the feeling YOU know it's more complicated than that...!!! :0)

ChrisW

Janet Rosen
01-25-2012, 12:16 PM
@ Janet..I really like your story.

For me it is not about making uke do what I want....because I don't know what I want...I am seeing in the moment what is good for both of us. I don't go into technique with a plan...that would put me in my brain...I enter into technique with commitment to see what happens. I accept the gift of attack and blend to become....whatever.

You want to have a good outcome, however you define it.

sorokod
01-25-2012, 12:18 PM
If the person performing the tea ceremony is truly a master, wouldn't they be able to produce the same aesthetic nourishment using black tea or rooibos instead of matcha?

Maybe, or maybe not. One thing is sure, you can't run without knowing how to walk. You can't become a chado master without being chado novice. Maybe you can become something else, maybe there will be a lot of satisfaction when you walk the way (Way?) of rooibos but that walk leads to a different place.

But at what point is the "essence" of tea ceremony lost?

Don't know, perhaps there is a point (when it turns out that the water temperature for matcha is radically different then for rooibos ), or perhaps like many things its a process (at what point does a child becomes a grown up). Either way, the end result is different.

sorokod
01-25-2012, 12:22 PM
The objective value the real world assigns to tea ceremony, or to martial arts, is approximately zero. That's my point.

I assumed that we both agree that Aikido has an objective value. Without this, we have no common ground for a discussion.

kewms
01-25-2012, 12:39 PM
I assumed that we both agree that Aikido has an objective value. Without this, we have no common ground for a discussion.

I would like to think it does. I'm just not sure the "real world" agrees.

Katherine

Demetrio Cereijo
01-25-2012, 12:55 PM
If we go into everything is subjective (and valid at the same time) any subjective statement, made by anyone, in the line of "what you are doing is not aikido" is valid, valuable and true.

Of course, any statement in the line of "what you are doing is aikido" is also valid, valuable and true.

All (and nothing, and everything) is good...and bad....and right....and wrong... at the same time.

Chtulu be praised. :)

David Orange
01-25-2012, 01:09 PM
I would 'neuter them out of Aikido because I know how the egotistical nature will mistranslate it.

Strange that Morihei didn't feel that need.

Neutered aikido is neutered...and it's not really aikido anymore.

David

David Orange
01-25-2012, 01:18 PM
As I pointed out in another post, the "identity and reputation" of aikido are "owned" by the Aikikai. (Leaving the other organizations aside for the moment, as Aikikai was Ueshiba Sensei's designated successor organization.) They have chosen to define "aikido" fairly broadly, as is their right, however misguided you believe that decision to be.


No...I don't see any reason to say that aikikai "owns" aikido. It's like saying, "Except for Sony, Panasonic, etc., TV is really "owned" by RCA.

You can't disregard the "other organizations." They were doing aikido before there was an aikikai. And as far as its being the "designated successor organization," don't forget that Morihei tried to get Mochizuki to become his successor and Mochizuki declined. Morihei also tried to get Tohei to be his successor and Tohei married Morihei's daughter. But that didn't work out. So, again, what became the aikikai was based on a later generation, when much of the original essence had been forgotten (or never learned).

I've been at aikido for about 40 years now and I have never belonged to or had anything to do with aikikai. All I know is based on my teacher's personal realtionship with Morihei Ueshiba and the aikido Morihei transmitted to him (with a scroll). And Kisshomaru was at the 60th Anniversary of my teacher's dojo, so no one would say that what my teacher taught was not aikido.

Again, saying that aikikai "owns" aikido is like saying you can sell Mt. Dew as CocaCola because the CocaCola company owns both brands. They could drop Coke and declare Mt. Dew "the real coca cola". It wouldn't work any better than aikikai trying to neuter out the likes of Mochizuki, Shioda and Saito (among others) and calling the small remainder "the real aikido".

The essence of aikido was established between Morihei Ueshiba and his students before there was an aikikai. Those were the people and theirs was the training by which Morihei developed his art and the power of it. There's a reason all those people disregarded the stuff that trickled down later.

Cheers.

David

David Orange
01-25-2012, 01:35 PM
Maybe, or maybe not. One thing is sure, you can't run without knowing how to walk. You can't become a chado master without being chado novice. Maybe you can become something else, maybe there will be a lot of satisfaction when you walk the way (Way?) of rooibos but that walk leads to a different place.

Don't know, perhaps there is a point (when it turns out that the water temperature for matcha is radically different then for rooibos ), or perhaps like many things its a process (at what point does a child becomes a grown up). Either way, the end result is different.

It reminds me of Japanese calligraphy. My teacher had a very strong and clear style of shodo. Anyone who could read Japanese could recognize his characters (even if they couldn't understand what he was saying with them). And if you learned calligraphy from him, anyone would be able to recognize your kanji.

But there is also a "fast brush" kind of kanji that rather blurs the fundamental strokes and blends from one to the next, to produce a character that is very flowing and pretty. I understand that Saotome Sensei is a master of this kind of writing. And while shodo masters would applaud his writing, most people, looking at that, would not be able to figure out his characters. You have to understand the basics to understand the fash-brush style. Now imagine if he teaches that to someone who has not yet learned the eight basic strokes of shodo, and the eight variations of each. All they could do is swish their brush around on the paper in imitation of something they didn't understand to begin with. And even people with advanced knowledge of kanji probably could not recognize the characters such a person would produce.

To me, aikido technique is very similar. Their are fundamentals to be understood before they can be used to build techniques. But a lot of what is being taught now skips over the real fundamentals (like martial effectiveness) in favor of imitative shape-making. It looks pretty, but it will be meaningless to anyone with real skill and it will not move them.

From the likes of George Ledyard, I have to believe that Saotome does not teach his aikido in that way...though I have met other black belts from Saotome's style who were worse than incompetent. It is possible, after all, for a student to miss the point entirely.

Unfortunately, we hear a lot of preaching today, from just such people.

Best wishes.

David

kewms
01-25-2012, 01:38 PM
I really really don't want to drag organizational politics into this thread. I'm sorry for inadvertently stepping on non-Aikikai toes. (And, for the record, I completely agree that legitimate aikido exists outside the Aikikai.)

As a legal matter, yes, Coca-Cola Inc. absolutely could sell the Mountain Dew formulation in Coca Cola bottles if they wanted. As the trademark owner, that is their right.

While the term "aikido" is not trademarked, the same logic holds. Aikido is "owned" by Ueshiba Sensei's direct students. Those students disagree among themselves about who is or is not "really" doing aikido, and the man himself is not available to resolve the argument. So I think it's very difficult to say that the "identity and reputation" of aikido are threatened by this or that variant.

Katherine

David Orange
01-25-2012, 02:00 PM
As a legal matter, yes, Coca-Cola Inc. absolutely could sell the Mountain Dew formulation in Coca Cola bottles if they wanted. As the trademark owner, that is their right.

While the term "aikido" is not trademarked, the same logic holds. Aikido is "owned" by Ueshiba Sensei's direct students. Those students disagree among themselves about who is or is not "really" doing aikido, and the man himself is not available to resolve the argument. So I think it's very difficult to say that the "identity and reputation" of aikido are threatened by this or that variant.

History will not be so kind.

In several years' time, the effectiveness of the brand name will have diminished further and further and it will be easy to show the timeline of the decline, which began well before Morihei's death.

David

kewms
01-25-2012, 02:24 PM
History will not be so kind.

In several years' time, the effectiveness of the brand name will have diminished further and further and it will be easy to show the timeline of the decline, which began well before Morihei's death.

David

As I see it, there are several groups of people:

* Those who don't know the difference between aikido and kung fu, and don't care.
* Those who think the only "effective" martial arts are the ones they see in UFC championships, and won't be impressed by any other arts.

(The vast majority fall into one of these first two groups.)

* Those who are interested in studying martial arts, but without an external reference point will judge an individual dojo by whether they "feel comfortable" there, for however the individual defines that.

* Those who know enough about martial arts to differentiate between schools based on the quality of what is taught, and who also know that good and bad exists within any style and any art.

This last group is the only one that will have any understanding of whether a particular dojo is studying "real" aikido or not.

Katherine

Demetrio Cereijo
01-25-2012, 03:03 PM
BTW,

Throw versus Release: The Effect of Language and Intention on Aikido Practice (http://scholar.googleusercontent.com/scholar?q=cache:qylo3-CSe3IJ:scholar.google.com/&hl=es&as_sdt=0&as_vis=1)

chillzATL
01-25-2012, 03:14 PM
BTW,

Throw versus Release: The Effect of Language and Intention on Aikido Practice (http://scholar.googleusercontent.com/scholar?q=cache:qylo3-CSe3IJ:scholar.google.com/&hl=es&as_sdt=0&as_vis=1)

I'd still rather throw..

phitruong
01-25-2012, 03:59 PM
I'd still rather throw..

me too. nobody said "release a party". that's just strange. "throwing a party" now that is something to consider. "throw a throwing party", that would be even more interesting. "release" is just an after-action-report kind of thing which doesn't even fit into the party scheme, at all! :)

chillzATL
01-25-2012, 04:11 PM
me too. nobody said "release a party". that's just strange. "throwing a party" now that is something to consider. "throw a throwing party", that would be even more interesting. "release" is just an after-action-report kind of thing which doesn't even fit into the party scheme, at all! :)

I was expecting something far more NSFW considering it was a Phi post about release parties... :)

SeiserL
01-25-2012, 04:37 PM
Throw versus Release: The Effect of Language and Intention on Aikido Practice (http://scholar.googleusercontent.com/scholar?q=cache:qylo3-CSe3IJ:scholar.google.com/&hl=es&as_sdt=0&as_vis=1)
Yes agreed.

Language matters and has implied (and direct) suggestions, directions, and commands to the body (and anything attached to it, like your mind and another person).

OTOH, if you connect, take balance, and "release": they fall down and your threw them.

IMHO, so much depends on how we idiocyncratically interpret the wording/language.

Thoughts?

Demetrio Cereijo
01-25-2012, 04:48 PM
IMHO, so much depends on how we idiocyncratically interpret the wording/language.
And how idiosyncratic interpretations lead to changing/modifiying the art to accomodate it to said interpretations.

David Orange
01-25-2012, 04:49 PM
* Those who know enough about martial arts to differentiate between schools based on the quality of what is taught, and who also know that good and bad exists within any style and any art.

This last group is the only one that will have any understanding of whether a particular dojo is studying "real" aikido or not.

Yes, but...what's the point?

How many people know they've got a real Versace purse or whatever?

It isn't about who knows it. The truth alone is truth alone.

Going back to the coke/mt. dew comparison, the company could rightfully change the name of Mt. Dew to Coca Cola. That would be within their rights. But to claim that Coca Cola was always green, always tasted like citrus and was never dark and cola flavored would be false and they don't have the right to do that. It goes back to the daito ryu aiki jujutsu scroll in Ueshiba's photo.

It really doesn't matter who knows it. It's simply fact and opinion has nothing to do with it.

As with the runner, it's fine if he says he's a runner, but wrong if he says he's a marathon runner.

So with aikikai, to claim that the current aikido is the only aikido that has ever been is false and it doesn't matter who is aware of it or not. It's still 100% false.

David

David Orange
01-25-2012, 04:57 PM
I have my own personal interpretation about this statement but just want to "throw" it out there to see what others think.

I just realized that, after 8 pages of discussion, I haven't noticed anyone's mentioning that, often, aikido movement results in a hold, such as yonkyo or what judo calls waki gatame (yoseikan term is hiji kudaki--elbow breaking). So there's no throw at all. So it would be kind of crazy to enter with an intention to throw when you don't know what his movement will give you. That's why I don't have any particular intention at all when I face an aggressor. I might have some idea about what's to come, but I'm not married to it and I don't try to get to that outcome if a different thing will work better.

But my prime intention is to come through unscathed and with the attacker having lost all interest in attacking me. If he loses interest because of loss of consciousness....

But usually, aggressors just back away and let it go.

FWIW

David

Robert Cowham
01-25-2012, 05:14 PM
me too. nobody said "release a party". that's just strange. "throwing a party" now that is something to consider. "throw a throwing party", that would be even more interesting. "release" is just an after-action-report kind of thing which doesn't even fit into the party scheme, at all! :)
Coming from a software background, what about "deploying" a party?!

David Orange
01-25-2012, 05:23 PM
BTW,

Throw versus Release: The Effect of Language and Intention on Aikido Practice (http://scholar.googleusercontent.com/scholar?q=cache:qylo3-CSe3IJ:scholar.google.com/&hl=es&as_sdt=0&as_vis=1)

To me, this is the crux of the problem:

"The conflict comes not from aikido being a martial art but from the mismatch between aikido's goal of harmony and the action of throwing one's partner."

From my perspective (which I got from Mochizuki and his students), this kind of "harmony" is a crucial mistake. It implies (and seems to assume) that "harmony" means something other than "balance and proportion." Ueshiba used it to describe a balance that comes from being in the right relationship to the entire universe. It doesn't mean you constantly have to be sweet to everyone. But that is the only sense in which a "mismatch" is created between being in right relation to the universe and throwing someone.

Certainly, in aikido training, no one is hurt by ordinary throws. We don't throw our training partners to hurt them. In fact, it's usually fun to be thrown. So where is the "mismatch"?

And I understand the idea that we don't go into an encounter with the set intention to throw the other guy. But the article implies that there is something wrong with having the intention to "take care of business" when the "business" involves subduing someone who is way out of order and has become violent. To me, it's this kind of over-intellectualization of some fairly simple concepts that has given aikido a name as weak, ineffective and full of baloney.

I never met many individuals as impressive and, ultimately, as harmonious as Minoru Mochizuki, yet he never minced words on the subject. He said, "Throw them for good!" and, of course, his signature technique, sutemi waza, means "to throw away". It's the same word they use for "throwing away trash." (suteru).

It's one thing to grow out from the roots, but to lose connection with the roots is to die. Fortunately, not all aikido has lost that root.

David

graham christian
01-26-2012, 04:20 AM
Strange that Morihei didn't feel that need.

Neutered aikido is neutered...and it's not really aikido anymore.

David

A neutered cat is still a cat.

Regards.G.

robin_jet_alt
01-26-2012, 05:09 AM
To me, this is the crux of the problem:

He said, "Throw them for good!" and, of course, his signature technique, sutemi waza, means "to throw away". It's the same word they use for "throwing away trash." (suteru).



Hi David,

I actually agree with the point you are making, but I just wanted to point out that sutemi-waza is called what it is, because you throw yourself away (suteru) in order to execute the technique.

David Orange
01-26-2012, 06:39 AM
A neutered cat is still a cat.

Yeah...but he's the end of his line.

David Orange
01-26-2012, 06:44 AM
Hi David,

I actually agree with the point you are making, but I just wanted to point out that sutemi-waza is called what it is, because you throw yourself away (suteru) in order to execute the technique.

Yeah, there's some of that, but uke is the one who "goes away".

Mochizuki Sensei once took great pains to explain about sutemi to me. In nuance, it also means "to throw your life away," or "to run the risk of your life" and it isn't just about the techniques where nage falls to execute a throw. It's about facing a hopeless situation with everything you have.

The truth is, aikido was made for desperate situations and most people discussing it have never been in a more desperate situation than someone being rude to them.

Really, I think everyone needs to read (or re-read) Musashi's Book of Five Rings. Ueshiba was a lot closer to that than to fluffy neutered cats we find today.

Best to you.

David

phitruong
01-26-2012, 07:30 AM
Coming from a software background, what about "deploying" a party?!

nope. doesn't roll off the tongue. you don't deploying a party. you deploy troop. you deploy bodyguards. you deploy your mother-in-law, which is a scary maneuver. you deploy your ki silently around the room or in an elevator. you don't deploy your uke. you can throw your uke. you can even go as far as ejecting your uke (my favorite). you can WWE body slamming your uke and then making pose like the Rock (if you have the body which most of aikidoka don't have, and if you do you might ended up with lots of dollar bills in your hakama). nope, deploying doesn't work. :D

graham christian
01-26-2012, 07:45 AM
Yeah...but he's the end of his line.

What about the sisters and brothers? What about the previous kittens?

Plus what about the tree?

Regards.G.

David Orange
01-26-2012, 09:39 AM
What about the sisters and brothers? What about the previous kittens?

Those are irrelevant to the neutered cat. And if the neutering is done early enough, there will be no "previous kittens." Or if there are previous kittens, if they are not neutered, they will be more catlike than the neutered parent. In a neutered animal, a tremendous amount of the "nature" of the creature is eliminated. They lose many instincts that a natural creature has. Neutered cats are good for sitting on laps and making noise.

You might compare the sister and brother cat to other organizations of aikido, such as yoseikan, yoshinkan, tomiki, etc. Or you could compare them to karate, jujutsu, etc., which have not lost the martial root. They were never neutered and they can still pass on true "catness," whereas the neutered line will produce nothing more. And those who are in that line are simply going to get weaker and pass out of all future influence.

Plus what about the tree?


Let me know if you figure out how to neuter a tree. I think the only thing you can do to a tree is cut the root. Have you ever seen a tree continue to live after its roots have been severed?

I think you'd better give up on this line.

Cheers.

David

DH
01-26-2012, 10:33 AM
...... Some people say why, I say why bother. Let him do whatever it is he wants to do. You're never going to change the opinion of someone who constantly asserts that he's already doing whatever it is you're talking about when all evidence points to the contrary.

I have met black belts .... who were worse than incompetent. It is possible, after all, for a student to miss the point entirely.
Unfortunately, we hear a lot of preaching today, from just such people.
Best wishes.
David
The hypocrisy of martial artists is evident in all of their words. They consider challenges rude, yet they brag on capabilities of their teachers, their styles and their methods. Results do matter. The one solution to both of your observations is to put people through the standards their teachers went though...put them to the test. Here we are talking about what?
Throwing......people!!!
Like it or not, get it or not, we are all talking about them ending up on the ground and us standing. That...is a measurable result; levels of skill in attacking, levels of skills in resisting, ability to neutralize and control. The idea of letting a fall happen is amateurish, foolish and does not belong in a budo discussion. It is flawed and invented by modern people who are in fact not doing a budo at all, but a quasi-religeous, philosophical and highly cooperative drill-to the extent of the attacker throwing their own center... best called something else and not budo, It will not last one minute into meeting a competent opponent. It would be more honest if that during their reinvention of a new way...those doing this went all the way and also dumped the budo clothing, weapons and language and called it something else other than aikido or budo. Most I meet in Aikido are appalled by them as well.

Your incompetent black belts (who in my view extend from shodan to shihan) have no "voice" in person, on a mat they are nothing special. They "preach" on the internet -because it is the one venue they have a voice in- until they are exposed. Hence they avoid being tested at all costs. Putting them to the test, helps to sort and sift through and eliminate them, so we can spend valuable time with people who do know what they are doing, hence talking about.
Our answers are not always going to be found in the big shots either. Most of the big shot Budo teachers -including Japanese Shihan- who are out their (some now supposedly teaching internal power with little to show) would be in serious trouble being faced on two different levels; a) Being tested for IP/Aiki b) being tested for provable fighting skills identified as aiki instead of normal fighting. Sifting through them and putting them in their place (good or bad) benefits us all as well. Why? So we can move on to others and not waste so much of our time.
I am going to include once again the Ueshiba test. If these people claim to have aiki, then they should feel unusual and be able to do unusual things to a broad range of...NON-COOPERATVE people looking to see them undone. Not students standing their glassy eyed, and all but hypnotized, who attack and their bodies instantly go into ukemi mode! Good God what I wouldn't give to be allowed to do certain tests on some of these teachers. Including truly attacking some of these Japanese big shots and not have it be considered "rude." It would expose the sham and wee would be having a completely different discussion with a host of people who truly think some of these teachers are "on a different level."

Thankfully Budo is still home to a tough process, people who still honor the old ways and are smart enough to sift through the average, everyday masses of budo-ka and do just what Budo people have done for generations; listen to word of mouth from other competent people and go find those who are gifted and have produced vetted results.

Why did that help?
Think of it this way. Why did the greats appear at all? How did men with little or no formal training (there are many examples of this in budo) appear and decimated those in established budo? How could this happen?
It is because the vast majority of people in budo...aren't anything special or particularly gifted. Without an average...you have no greats. Budo, is the home of the average, no more than wallpaper out from among which, stood the greats. How did you get to train with them, or even meet them? It was tough to find them, tough to get an introduction, and even tougher to become a student. IME, one of the good things the internet has truly accomplished for budo is to save smart people from wasting so much of their precious time in sifting through the wallpaper to find the truly gifted and arranging introductions in ways not previously available.

We can all enjoy each other and our efforts. But it is an incredible fallacy to think all efforts are equal. They are not. People today want cheap validation and equality, unearned. No one wants to face the prospects of having strived and sweated and to have given their all, only to arrive at...average. Hence they set about creating new standards and definitions that require no real tests...so they can enjoy their practice. Okay. All is well....until they tell an international community, they both understand and can do things the greats did.
Then and only then, do they open themselves up for comparative scrutiny. As unwelcomed as that is, they bring it on themselves.

I suggest that in the end, we may find the best solution for all parties is to open the doors. Testing, as a community, helps everyone to truly understand the bigger picture, to know where we are each at and maybe to uncover some truths that will benefit us all. It is a vital dynamic; sought by some, avoided by many....and dismissed all together by those making excuses.
Cheers
Dan

DH
01-26-2012, 11:38 AM
Edit:
It is worth considering that when it comes to highly cooperative practice, specifically in regard to its limitations as a training model:
There is a learning curve in most arts that includes cooperation at lower levels. We all have it and have trained it. Worthy of note is it is only...at the lower level of learning. Most move on to active resistence.
One strident argument of the Aiki arts that I have never bought into is the so called "destructive" nature of their stuff were it used on resistenting ukes. That is of course true, but it is only partially true. Teaching better attacks and more active resistence and the sensitivity needed, both to do and to handle each role would seem more logical and benficial to me. Martial arts are best done as a fluid drill and not a static kata, which is part of aikido (one of many of it's potential strengths and an improvement over Daito ryu) but it does not explore more stressful attacks from what I have seen.
Dan

chillzATL
01-26-2012, 12:00 PM
Edit:
It is worth considering that when it comes to highly cooperative practice, specifically in regard to its limitations as a training model:
There is a learning curve in most arts that includes cooperation at lower levels. We all have it and have trained it. Worthy of note is it is only...at the lower level of learning. Most move on to active resistence.
One strident argument of the Aiki arts that I have never bought into is the so called "destructive" nature of their stuff were it used on resistenting ukes. That is of course true, but it is only partially true. Teaching better attacks and more active resistence and the sensitivity needed, both to do and to handle each role would seem more logical and benficial to me. Martial arts are best done as a fluid drill and not a static kata, which is part of aikido (one of many of it's potential strengths and an improvement over Daito ryu) but it does not explore more stressful attacks from what I have seen.
Dan

This really crosses over to what Ellis was saying about ukemi in the koshi thread. They almost feed each other. You have people that don't learn good ukemi for the sake of protecting themselves. It is, at best, to allow for prettier techniques. So if proper safe falling isn't a concern, why would actually throwing someone to the ground be either?

graham christian
01-26-2012, 12:14 PM
Those are irrelevant to the neutered cat. And if the neutering is done early enough, there will be no "previous kittens." Or if there are previous kittens, if they are not neutered, they will be more catlike than the neutered parent. In a neutered animal, a tremendous amount of the "nature" of the creature is eliminated. They lose many instincts that a natural creature has. Neutered cats are good for sitting on laps and making noise.

You might compare the sister and brother cat to other organizations of aikido, such as yoseikan, yoshinkan, tomiki, etc. Or you could compare them to karate, jujutsu, etc., which have not lost the martial root. They were never neutered and they can still pass on true "catness," whereas the neutered line will produce nothing more. And those who are in that line are simply going to get weaker and pass out of all future influence.

Let me know if you figure out how to neuter a tree. I think the only thing you can do to a tree is cut the root. Have you ever seen a tree continue to live after its roots have been severed?

I think you'd better give up on this line.

Cheers.

David

Nah, you prune the tree and it's roots get stronger.

By the way, with the example you give on cats it sounds like you think Aikido progression is genetic. Ha,ha.

Regards.G.

Marc Abrams
01-26-2012, 12:38 PM
The Aiki Expo's provided a remarkable opportunity for "truths" to be discovered. In the world of martial arts, words without the ability to act have no meaning, no virtue, no merit and should be accorded no meaningful place in this world. This debate about whether to throw or not is just another venue where some people talk and when asked to put their words to the test, find every reason to decline the offer. We have proverbial neutered cats who talk about being able to do things well that big figures in the Aikido world, like Tohei Sensei did and decline to prove that they can actually do what they claim! They can wax poetically until the moon turns to cheese and nothing of merit is ever accomplished. To Stanley Pranin's credit, Mark Tennenhouse, progenitor of "Short-Range Aikido" was given a venue to put his words to action. Obviously, he went down in flames, but at least he had the guts to show up and give it a try. That is far more than some other people on this forum are willing to do. Mr. Tennenhouse was not intentionally injured by anybody. He hurt his back by trying something foolish. He was treated with a level of respect that is rarely seen in other martial arts venues.

Jun does have to step in at times when tempers flare. Typically this occurs when people are asked to be held to task for what they say and claim to do. Just imagine what another round of Aiki Expos could accomplish. The first ones woke our world up and for some, placed them in a direction back to truth within budo that no organization can claim responsibility for or hide people from for that matter. It would be wonderful to get together with many of us, even those who we doubt have the ability to do what they claim to do. Wonderful friendships are always made and realities emerge from the multitude of claims of higher truths. This process is happening on smaller scales throughout our Aikido world. It is only for the betterment of our art that this happens. I am trying hard to simply stop engaging in debates with those people who proffer only talk and find every reason to decline ever having to publicly demonstrate some truth behind the words. I relish the opportunity to continue to reach out and meet and train with different people. This process use to lie at the heart of serious martial arts training. Those that are unwilling to publicly demonstrate their claimed truths will only continue to rack up large post numbers while dumbing down the quality of discussions that can be of great benefit to many. Sad to see, but this has become a too familiar pattern on this forum that has chased many experienced and truly knowledgeable martial artists away from discussions here. If we want to be responsible for this forum remaining as a great source of valuable information, I believe that unless we are willing to hold people accountable to put their words into demonstrable actions, we will continue to turn away talented people from being willing to engage in important discussions in this venue. I am not talking about dojo storming. I am simply talking about the respectful, getting-together of people to test alleged truths with the higher goal of helping everybody develop deeper and more meaningful realities in our Aikido community. In the process, we forge new friendships, deepen the ones we have, and help our community raise it's overall level of martial ability.

Marc Abrams

David Orange
01-26-2012, 12:42 PM
Nah, you prune the tree and it's roots get stronger.

Yeah...but the question is neutering, not pruning. The only real comparison to neutering in trees is cutting the root. Pruning is like having your fingernails and hair trimmed. Neutering cuts off something that won't grow back.

What's happened in aikido is a denial of its roots and serious attempts to sever its ties not only to Sokaku Takeda, but even its roots in Morihei Ueshiba's power.

Now, the talk is that "power" in its own right is bad. Strength is bad. Intention and will are bad. Only swirling around is good and aikido techniques are only good if they occur more or less accidentally.

By the way, with the example you give on cats it sounds like you think Aikido progression is genetic. Ha,ha.

Your frustration is showing Graham.

Like I said, you should let this line drop.

Have you ever visited Japan? Ever lived there?

One thing I found is that, regardless of all the talk, strength is revered in Japan. They'll be nice to you just as a social custom, even if you're weak, your technique is incompetent and you clearly don't know what you're doing. If you have good technique, they'll be nicer. But if you are strong, they will admire you. And that includes what I've seen of aikikai. But they tend to keep that in-house and let the rank and file go on believing that you can get the real thing by accident.

And as for a genetic progression in aikido...what do you think aikikai is, ruled as it was by Ueshiba's son (who was less skilled than many of Morihei's direct students) and as it is now by Morihei's grandson? Do you think aikido is in the Ueshiba genes and only his descendants can propagate it? Haven't you ever heard of learning "through the skin"? You can only get that by long-term direct association (in person) with a master. It's direct transmission--the kind of thing Mochizuki and Shioda got directly from Ueshiba. Those guys never trained under Ueshiba's students, but Mochizuki was supervisor of the uchi deshi when he lived at the Hell Gym and many of Ueshiba's students learned from him. In fact, after Mochizuki returned from Mongolia after the war, Morihei sent Kisshomaru to stay with Mochizuki and train with him. So if Morihei had his chosen successor train under Mochizuki, would you rather train with Mochizuki or Kisshomaru?

Do you think someone who never trained extensively and directly with a 1st generation student of Morihei Ueshiba can develop the same kind of aikido? It can't come through words and it can't come through books. It can only come one-on-one. Passing the essence of aikido in that way, then, is rather like passing the DNA code directly from person to person. I'd rather inherit Ueshiba's secrets than his genes.

Cheers.

David

mathewjgano
01-26-2012, 01:07 PM
Yeah...but the question is neutering, not pruning. The only real comparison to neutering in trees is cutting the root. Pruning is like having your fingernails and hair trimmed. Neutering cuts off something that won't grow back.
Or it might be like cutting off the stamen, which can grow back later if we choose to let them. Some "growers" like to keep their pollen sacks removed from the herd so as to achieve a...er...more heady effect.
And to be clear, I'm not commenting on anyone's aikido specifically; just playing with the metaphor.

phitruong
01-26-2012, 01:46 PM
cut it out you guys with these neutering stuffs! you folks give the creep. the topic is about throwing, not neutering. of course, if there are techniques that can neuter while throwing, then i would like to know. it could come in handy. wonder what such throw would be like. maybe involving a pull-up at the end of the throw as Ellis suggested in another thread. i meant you can just grab the other bugger's gi pants and pull up with a twist at the end, sort of an atomic wedgie koshinage. just thinking out loud on how to go about doing a neutering koshinage. which got me to think about neuter aikido. would such aikido style only have techniques for the purpose of neutering? and wondering if they have technique like yankyo? wonder what sort of warm-up routines such aikido style practice. :D

Marc Abrams
01-26-2012, 01:55 PM
cut it out you guys with these neutering stuffs! you folks give the creep. the topic is about throwing, not neutering. of course, if there are techniques that can neuter while throwing, then i would like to know. it could come in handy. wonder what such throw would be like. maybe involving a pull-up at the end of the throw as Ellis suggested in another thread. i meant you can just grab the other bugger's gi pants and pull up with a twist at the end, sort of an atomic wedgie koshinage. just thinking out loud on how to go about doing a neutering koshinage. which got me to think about neuter aikido. would such aikido style only have techniques for the purpose of neutering? and wondering if they have technique like yankyo? wonder what sort of warm-up routines such aikido style practice. :D

Phil:

You are coming dangerously close to discovering the secret technique of yankyourjohn !:eek:

Here is a link to the secret training to defend against that deadly technique:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=45hWbIy5Fkk :yuck:

Marc Abrams

Patrick Hutchinson
01-26-2012, 02:02 PM
I believe the correct term for an"atomic wedgie throw" is fundoshinage.

Demetrio Cereijo
01-26-2012, 02:06 PM
which got me to think about neuter aikido. would such aikido style only have techniques for the purpose of neutering? and wondering if they have technique like yankyo? wonder what sort of warm-up routines such aikido style practice. :D

You could ask Ashida Kim about "Monkey Steals the Peach (http://monkeystealsthepeach.com/monkey_steals_the_peach.jpg)" technique.

Looks legit.

Marc Abrams
01-26-2012, 02:09 PM
You could ask Ashida Kim about "Monkey Steals the Peach (http://monkeystealsthepeach.com/monkey_steals_the_peach.jpg)" technique.

Looks legit.

Demetrio:

They cut the worst pictures out! Ashida Kim eating the unwashed peaches.........:yuck:

Marc Abrams

DH
01-26-2012, 02:11 PM
This really crosses over to what Ellis was saying about ukemi in the koshi thread. They almost feed each other. You have people that don't learn good ukemi for the sake of protecting themselves. It is, at best, to allow for prettier techniques. So if proper safe falling isn't a concern, why would actually throwing someone to the ground be either?

It crosses over but is a step after that, on to going into a full on resistance model-which Ellis is very experienced in as well. He was only discussing the basics for training in that thread. So I was covering all my bases: cooperative kata to learn safely at the beginning (which is where many get stuck forever) gradual movement into learning to attack better and hence concurrently defend better, onto fluid drills, on to sparring. Ukemi is not the same in those three models. The chances of pulling off those throws is reduced dramatically and your body takes on a different feel when you are in full resistance throughout a drill then if you take ukemi. It changes the dynamic in ways that apparently only those cross train are even aware of.

The folks who still think Ueshiba was discussing harmonizing as uke partly throwing themselves and Nage partly throwing Uke, don't have Ueshiba's power or skill and will never understand his use of control, and how to train it. You are...NEVER...going to see them step onto a mat with those who do.
As Marc said, instead you will hear every excuse imaginable why they won't.
Dan

David Orange
01-26-2012, 02:37 PM
The folks who still think Ueshiba was discussing harmonizing as uke partly throwing themselves and Nage partly throwing Uke, don't have Ueshiba's power or skill and will never understand his use of control, and how to train it. You are...NEVER...going to see them step onto a mat with those who do.
As Marc said, instead you will hear every excuse imaginable why they won't.
Dan

Well, Jason's ready to meet you and I'm looking forward to meeting again...

But I'm not sure I'd tell Phi about it....

Unless he agrees to wear boxing gloves! :D

Cheers.

David

Mary Eastland
01-26-2012, 02:42 PM
What Dan and Marc are talking about is the essence of difference for me. If testing and competing with others is important to what you are doing, to me it makes it just like everything else. Why not just do Karate or kick boxing?
Aikido is different because it is not about winning.

DH
01-26-2012, 02:49 PM
Well, Jason's ready to meet you and I'm looking forward to meeting again...
But I'm not sure I'd tell Phi about it....
Unless he agrees to wear boxing gloves! :D
Cheers.
David
Well none of you guys are exactly practicing the type of bliss bunny Aikido we have been discussing though!!
I don't know what the hell I am going to do, I don't even want to turn on my email anymore. I have:
16 private seminars in the works most don't want newbies coming anymore
8 more I have to plan
6 requests for seminars with new people allowed
All this year, all over world...which I can only do if my normal business stays slow!!! :eek: :eek:
Dan

chillzATL
01-26-2012, 02:51 PM
What Dan and Marc are talking about is the essence of difference for me. If testing and competing with others is important to what you are doing, to me it makes it just like everything else. Why not just do Karate or kick boxing?
Aikido is different because it is not about winning.

testing and competing have similar goals but are very different. Aikido doesn't need competition, but it certainly needs a healthy dose of honest testing to be everything that it can be. I want to see it be everything it can be...for me.

David Orange
01-26-2012, 02:51 PM
What Dan and Marc are talking about is the essence of difference for me. If testing and competing with others is important to what you are doing, to me it makes it just like everything else. Why not just do Karate or kick boxing?

Competing?

Where did anyone mention competing?

Aikido is different because it is not about winning.

On the other hand, from my perspective, it looks to me like "ordinary" aikido people are all about "winning" every time: they never lose. They never experience what it is to lose, which is a vital lesson for human life.

To me, the "fact" that aikido people "always win" is one of the most corrupting influences in the activity (which at that point can no longer be called an art). In judo, you get humbled a lot and even though you win from time to time, you never forget that you can lose. And that represents death.

If aikido people really understood that they are playing against Death, they might start paying attention to some of the gaping holes in the technique and clean it up a bit.

Testing is also far different from competition. Do you want to drive across a bridge that no one has ever tested?

Testing is vital to real budo and when it's deleted from aikido, aikido ceases to be budo.

Richard Kim told a story about his Sensei, who tested his students (who were up for menkyo kaiden in that art) by laying a plank on the ground and having them walk from end to end. Of course, they all made it very well. Then he took them all up to a mountain pass and laid the plank across a gap above a long, shear drop. None of the students could walk across it then, but the Sensei strolled across as if the plan were still flat on the ground.

Testing of ability is far different from testing for rank.

Best wishes.

David

David Orange
01-26-2012, 02:55 PM
Well none of you guys are exactly practicing the type of bliss bunny Aikido we have been discussing though!!
I don't know what the hell I am going to do, I don't even want to turn on my email anymore. I have:
16 private seminars in the works most don't want newbies coming anymore
8 more I have to plan
6 requests for seminars with new people allowed
All this year, all over world...which I can only do if my normal business stays slow!!! :eek: :eek:
Dan

Well, if you find yourself down this way and want someone to work out with, let us know!

I'm trying to figure out how I can get back up to Boston.

Best to you.

David

graham christian
01-26-2012, 02:58 PM
Yeah...but the question is neutering, not pruning. The only real comparison to neutering in trees is cutting the root. Pruning is like having your fingernails and hair trimmed. Neutering cuts off something that won't grow back.

What's happened in aikido is a denial of its roots and serious attempts to sever its ties not only to Sokaku Takeda, but even its roots in Morihei Ueshiba's power.

Now, the talk is that "power" in its own right is bad. Strength is bad. Intention and will are bad. Only swirling around is good and aikido techniques are only good if they occur more or less accidentally.

Your frustration is showing Graham.

Like I said, you should let this line drop.

Have you ever visited Japan? Ever lived there?

One thing I found is that, regardless of all the talk, strength is revered in Japan. They'll be nice to you just as a social custom, even if you're weak, your technique is incompetent and you clearly don't know what you're doing. If you have good technique, they'll be nicer. But if you are strong, they will admire you. And that includes what I've seen of aikikai. But they tend to keep that in-house and let the rank and file go on believing that you can get the real thing by accident.

And as for a genetic progression in aikido...what do you think aikikai is, ruled as it was by Ueshiba's son (who was less skilled than many of Morihei's direct students) and as it is now by Morihei's grandson? Do you think aikido is in the Ueshiba genes and only his descendants can propagate it? Haven't you ever heard of learning "through the skin"? You can only get that by long-term direct association (in person) with a master. It's direct transmission--the kind of thing Mochizuki and Shioda got directly from Ueshiba. Those guys never trained under Ueshiba's students, but Mochizuki was supervisor of the uchi deshi when he lived at the Hell Gym and many of Ueshiba's students learned from him. In fact, after Mochizuki returned from Mongolia after the war, Morihei sent Kisshomaru to stay with Mochizuki and train with him. So if Morihei had his chosen successor train under Mochizuki, would you rather train with Mochizuki or Kisshomaru?

Do you think someone who never trained extensively and directly with a 1st generation student of Morihei Ueshiba can develop the same kind of aikido? It can't come through words and it can't come through books. It can only come one-on-one. Passing the essence of aikido in that way, then, is rather like passing the DNA code directly from person to person. I'd rather inherit Ueshiba's secrets than his genes.

Cheers.

David

The correct term may be editing. Pruning.

Anyway, thanks for the little history lesson (as if I didn't know already)

Why you're talking about the fellows you mention I don't know.

Why you mention it doesn't come through books etc, I don't know either.

As this thread is about throws I could safely say 'You've thrown me' Unfortunately it wasn't a nice circular one, more of a spiral.

Regards.G.

chillzATL
01-26-2012, 03:10 PM
Well none of you guys are exactly practicing the type of bliss bunny Aikido we have been discussing though!!
I don't know what the hell I am going to do, I don't even want to turn on my email anymore. I have:
16 private seminars in the works most don't want newbies coming anymore
8 more I have to plan
6 requests for seminars with new people allowed
All this year, all over world...which I can only do if my normal business stays slow!!! :eek: :eek:
Dan

Dan,

are our only choices:

1. Hope Dan's normal business picks up so that he has to cancel some of those other dates and can then get something going in the beautiful southeast US of A.

or

2. Hope Dan's normal business stays slow so that he has more time to plan something in the beautiful southeast US of A.

?? please clarify :)

graham christian
01-26-2012, 03:14 PM
What Dan and Marc are talking about is the essence of difference for me. If testing and competing with others is important to what you are doing, to me it makes it just like everything else. Why not just do Karate or kick boxing?
Aikido is different because it is not about winning.

True. Competing with is not good Aikido. The winning you talk about is to do with that it seems obvious to me. Competitive winning.

Testing? In that respect also is 'anti Aikido' from my perspective.

Testing for improvement I would say is done every week and for some nearly every day.

RegardsG.

Marc Abrams
01-26-2012, 03:16 PM
What Dan and Marc are talking about is the essence of difference for me. If testing and competing with others is important to what you are doing, to me it makes it just like everything else. Why not just do Karate or kick boxing?
Aikido is different because it is not about winning.

Mary:

Where did I say anything about winning and losing? Winning and losing is important to people who are too insecure with themselves to use testing as means of self-improvement. I am talking about empirical testing, which O'Sensei did and is the essential underpinning of martial arts. Religion seems to be the only major human endeavor where you are not allowed to test and question, NOT martial arts. Aikido is a martial art. If you want to reduce and significantly distort my message (and Dan's) to winning and losing & competition then own up to your own distortions placed upon us, or simply apologize to us for such a gross and inaccurate distortion.

Since when is Aikido suppose to be a shared delusional space? Cooperative practice is a modality of training and does not represent reality (at least not mine). Did you not take tests in your style of Aikido? Testing is not about winning and losing. Testing is about remaining anchored firmly within reality. Martial arts reality explicitly implies some degree of real-life capability. If you cannot execute a technique where the uke has no choice in ukemi, but instead TAKES ukemi, then some sense of a larger reality is missing and is a critical feedback loop in a training regime. Worse than that, is that if you have to find that reality out in a real-life encounter, then you place your own safety and well-being at real risk. Cooperative practice is a critical component in that training regime, and not the training regime in it's entirety. In reality, ukemi is not a choice of the uke.

By the way, I do Shindoryu Karate as well. It has nothing to do with competitions and winning & losing. I hope that clears up some lack of understanding that you display regarding karate. Did you attend any of the Aiki Expo's? Ushiro Sensei (shindoryu karate) was a major instructor at all of them. I guess Stanley Pranin saw some value in his teachings to the Aikido community at large.

As far as I am concerned, the pigeon-holing of the testing of ones' ideas and skill sets as simply competition for winning and losing falls under my longer post's classification of useless excuses for why a person should not have to demonstrate some reality behind alleged truths and perceived abilities. The Aiki Expo's clearly pointed this pattern out, while enabling significant growth to occur within our art. The courage of the attendees and instructors to go beyond myopic approach of remaining within a collusive training environment, enabled genuine bridges of understanding to be built, created new and lasting friendships and opened up the opportunity for us to be able to hellp keep Aikido as a real-life, martial art. O'Sensei did not practice or teach any shared delusional space, nor should we. The training that took place at the Hombu dojo while O'Sensei was alive was not some shared, delusional space either. There was a reason that it was called the Hell Dojo at one point in time. If we are not willing to test things out, then we risk the danger of falling into the comfort zone of a useless, shared delusional space. Aikido is different because of the potential to be effective in a conflict without having to become more violent than the attacker. That reality will never be discovered if people hide behind entirely collusive and cooperative practice.

Marc Abrams

DH
01-26-2012, 03:16 PM
What Dan and Marc are talking about is the essence of difference for me. If testing and competing with others is important to what you are doing, to me it makes it just like everything else. Why not just do Karate or kick boxing?
Aikido is different because it is not about winning.
Aikido was and is all about controlling others.
Exerting his will on others, is what the founder did to the day he died when someone grabbed his wrist. His superior center took control of theirs as he blended with it internally. The harmony he discussed was within himself which then controlled and neutralized others.
If not, there is no harmony as you will be the one controlled. Either way someone is going to get controlled.
It's okay that I don't think you understand what he was doing, and you think I don't. We have agreed to disagree before and I appreciate the polite, although frank manner in which we do.

Since you mentioned me and what I am doing as opposed to you:
Kickboxing, jujutsu, MMA and weapons is a whole different topic.One I am fully capable of discussing with you but I am wholeheartedly uninterested in using on you. Nor do I want to compete.That's not the type of testing we are talking about, Mary.

What we are discussing is demonstrable aiki. I would just touch hands with you between us anywhere on our person, and let you try to move me or stop me from moving and controlling you; gently, nicely, even kindly and laughing and talking while doing it. The very soft nature of it will be self-evident, but kiddo...you will be moved. And that is all there is to it. No rough housing, no competing. Your every effort will be neutralized and brought under my control in accord with the very principles Ueshiba talks about. And then I will explain where it comes from in his writing, what it means in context to the greater picture in Asian arts and then how to start doing it-usually while poking fun at myself and generally having fun.
To me...what we are talking about is deeper than anything in those arts you mentioned, and in what I have seen in modern Aikido (so far). It's aiki, it's a blast and it usually makes people smile or laugh out loud!
It makes discussion of throwing and how and why aiki is a different discussion when it comes to throwing than simple jujutsu principles, take on a whole new meaning.
Dan

mathewjgano
01-26-2012, 03:20 PM
What Dan and Marc are talking about is the essence of difference for me. If testing and competing with others is important to what you are doing, to me it makes it just like everything else. Why not just do Karate or kick boxing?
Aikido is different because it is not about winning.

It's only as different as the people practicing it make it, but I get the impression you're talking more about mental attitude/affectation (a very good one that leads to a holistic well-being) whereas Dan is talking more about physical attitude/effects. Both are important, but have different points of emphasis and function.

DH
01-26-2012, 03:55 PM
It's only as different as the people practicing it make it, but I get the impression you're talking more about mental attitude/affectation (a very good one that leads to a holistic well-being) whereas Dan is talking more about physical attitude/effects.

Both are important, but have different points of emphasis and function.
No...they don't.
You cannot do what I am talking about without serious...very serious mind/body connection, easily involving spirit and a projection more easily experienced at the end of a 12' spear. It is the mind that effects and moves the physical. First defined in the Chinese arts and all but hand copied by Ueshiba in his writing.
Because the type of aikido training we are discussing has a palpable and real effect as opposed the aiki bunnies who can do little, people tend to underscore some sort of imagined difference as we are physical and they are ki bunnies all in their nice meditative space.
It is my view that this does a diservice to an age old practice. When people knew what they were actually talking about and wanted and needed power...they were talking about internal training and the mind controlling ki to produce physical power. Ueshiba continually discussed the power in aiki, not just the spiritual aspect. In fact he said aiki informed his faith.
Dan

Mary Eastland
01-26-2012, 04:19 PM
@Marc...apoligize for what...I would be happy to if I meant to offend but I didn't so if you took offense from me disageeing with I suggest you get a thicker skin.

@ Dan...I think you could spend some time really trying to understand aikido that I speak of....you may be totally right about being able to move me...and you may still not understand what I am trying to say...(rather badly it seems) ;o)

DH
01-26-2012, 04:27 PM
@Marc...apoligize for what...I would be happy to if I meant to offend but I didn't so if you took offense from me disageeing with I suggest you get a thicker skin.

@ Dan...I think you could spend some time really trying to understand aikido that I speak of....you may be totally right about being able to move me...and you may still not understand what I am trying to say...(rather badly it seems) ;o)
Well duh, I can't when you won't s'plain Lucy!!!:D
I know we disagree. But in all honesty I think I have been doing the majority of the heavy lifting in at least trying to describe how I see things and what I do. I think most of these things can can only be resolved face to face and then in more informed discussions over dinner. But alas, I also realize many people don't want to do that for a host of reasons.
Hey, In light of the oft times mean spirited discource seen in budo debates, may I say once again I appreciate that we can disagree without having to tear each other apart over a hobby. ;)
Dan

Marc Abrams
01-26-2012, 05:06 PM
@Marc...apoligize for what...I would be happy to if I meant to offend but I didn't so if you took offense from me disageeing with I suggest you get a thicker skin.

@ Dan...I think you could spend some time really trying to understand aikido that I speak of....you may be totally right about being able to move me...and you may still not understand what I am trying to say...(rather badly it seems) ;o)

Mary:

My skin is very, very thick. I could care less if you agree or disagree with me. What I take offense to is the deliberate distortion of what I said. If it was unintended, than a simple apology and acknowledgement to that is called for. If it was intended, a simple apology and acknowledgment to that is called for. We can all agree to disagree all day long, but distorting information and creating words and impressions that were never there is simply not good debating, dialogue or anything else positive or constructive for that matter.

Marc Abrams

kewms
01-26-2012, 06:35 PM
On the other hand, from my perspective, it looks to me like "ordinary" aikido people are all about "winning" every time: they never lose. They never experience what it is to lose, which is a vital lesson for human life.

To me, the "fact" that aikido people "always win" is one of the most corrupting influences in the activity (which at that point can no longer be called an art). In judo, you get humbled a lot and even though you win from time to time, you never forget that you can lose. And that represents death.


I started to respond to this, then realized that I already have:
http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showthread.php?t=19941

Short version: to get better, you have to be willing to fail.

Katherine

gregstec
01-26-2012, 06:41 PM
cut it out you guys with these neutering stuffs! you folks give the creep. the topic is about throwing, not neutering. of course, if there are techniques that can neuter while throwing, then i would like to know. it could come in handy. wonder what such throw would be like. maybe involving a pull-up at the end of the throw as Ellis suggested in another thread. i meant you can just grab the other bugger's gi pants and pull up with a twist at the end, sort of an atomic wedgie koshinage. just thinking out loud on how to go about doing a neutering koshinage. which got me to think about neuter aikido. would such aikido style only have techniques for the purpose of neutering? and wondering if they have technique like yankyo? wonder what sort of warm-up routines such aikido style practice. :D

You are warped! - but I luv it! :D

Greg

gregstec
01-26-2012, 07:23 PM
There has been a lot of far out metaphors and analogies going on here that I am not even going to dare jump into - IMO, most are pretty much off base from the topic.

However, I would like to comment on the 'testing' point - IMO, testing has absolutely nothing to do with competition, winning, losing, or ranking - it is simply a procedure to see where you are at with something and to find out what is working and what is not - and, it can be performed in a cooperative environment - you just need to set up the parameters of the test with both parties so each knows their role in the procedure. For example, testing your response to a real attack with the intent to grab your arm and throw you to the ground - uke comes in at full speed and full power and nage tests his response. That is not competitive and there is no winner or loser, but it can be real and a good test of your conditioned level of training. Another neat test is to randomly attack someone full force with no notice to see what their initial response is - a good test for awareness and conditioning because there is no time to think; of course, the attacker should back off if the response is not able to protect from the attack :)

Greg

Mary Eastland
01-26-2012, 08:01 PM
@ Dan:
There may be no overt reference to winning. It is a feeling I get when I read your posts. Testing in our style is to provide a reference to a dependable feeling. I think I am missing something in your language. We might be saying the same things.

I would really like to have coversations about it without the constant pressure to do what you do. I think Graham does great at trying to relate to you guys, but it seems like you just make fun of him. It seems like you are trying to shut him up. So I don't write much about it anymore.

David Orange
01-26-2012, 08:04 PM
I started to respond to this, then realized that I already have:
http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showthread.php?t=19941

Short version: to get better, you have to be willing to fail.


I thnk it's really unhealthy to create a situation for people by which they can never fail because they never have to reach to the depths and pull out the best they have.

And I think it's even worse to promote such people to even shodan--much less sandan, yodan, etc.

I think you have to be willing to fail and also to experience failure when you were giving all you had. That's the kind of thing that makes a person turn inward and face the real truth.

Giving people authority along with the belief that they will always win is just a recipe for disaster. And the sad thing is, the same recipe is taught to strings of students, so the disasters just go on and on.

Cheers.

David

David Orange
01-26-2012, 09:16 PM
http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showthread.php?t=19941

Nice article, by the way.

David

Janet Rosen
01-26-2012, 11:12 PM
I thnk it's really unhealthy to create a situation for people by which they can never fail because they never have to reach to the depths and pull out the best they have.

And I think it's even worse to promote such people to even shodan--much less sandan, yodan, etc.

I think you have to be willing to fail and also to experience failure when you were giving all you had. That's the kind of thing that makes a person turn inward and face the real truth.

David

Yes. That is not "competition" testing. It is reality testing. It applies WHATever your own personal goals for training are because you get to compare what you do to what you hope or intend to do. If you keep succeeding then you aren't challenging yourself to actually identify your weaknesses and keep learning.

David Orange
01-26-2012, 11:45 PM
Yes. That is not "competition" testing. It is reality testing. It applies WHATever your own personal goals for training are because you get to compare what you do to what you hope or intend to do. If you keep succeeding then you aren't challenging yourself to actually identify your weaknesses and keep learning.

Extensive testing is required of anything before we entrust our money to it. How much more so if our lives may depend on it? Why would that even be seen as competition?

Cheers.

David

David Orange
01-26-2012, 11:51 PM
I have my own personal interpretation about this statement but just want to "throw" it out there to see what others think.

George Ledyard's thread on "Gus Learns to Fly" just reminded me of Sokaku Takeda's statement: "Aiki is to overcome the opponent mentally, at a glance, and win without fighting."

So he didn't go in to throw or to pin. And he was focused on winning, make no mistake--though he knew how to do it without fighting.

And that's worth thinking about.

Regards,

David

mathewjgano
01-27-2012, 01:12 AM
No...they don't.
You cannot do what I am talking about without serious...very serious mind/body connection, easily involving spirit and a projection more easily experienced at the end of a 12' spear. It is the mind that effects and moves the physical. First defined in the Chinese arts and all but hand copied by Ueshiba in his writing.
Because the type of aikido training we are discussing has a palpable and real effect as opposed the aiki bunnies who can do little, people tend to underscore some sort of imagined difference as we are physical and they are ki bunnies all in their nice meditative space.
It is my view that this does a diservice to an age old practice. When people knew what they were actually talking about and wanted and needed power...they were talking about internal training and the mind controlling ki to produce physical power. Ueshiba continually discussed the power in aiki, not just the spiritual aspect. In fact he said aiki informed his faith.
Dan

Maybe that was poorly worded then, but nowhere did I say or mean to imply you are less meditative. I didn't even talk about the training. I said (or tried to) that the things you're "talking" about are both valid in their own right; both describe important parts of Aikido. From what little (very little) I saw of your training it was as meditative as anything I've ever seen; in fact there was almost no "getting physical."
When it comes to talking about aikido, it is my impression that you tend to "talk" more about the role of physical potency and that she tends to "talk" more about the role of attitude (in the psychological sense), (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Attitude_(psychology)) compared to each other.

mathewjgano
01-27-2012, 01:17 AM
No...they don't.
You cannot do what I am talking about without serious...very serious mind/body connection, easily involving spirit and a projection more easily experienced at the end of a 12' spear. It is the mind that effects and moves the physical. First defined in the Chinese arts and all but hand copied by Ueshiba in his writing.
Because the type of aikido training we are discussing has a palpable and real effect as opposed the aiki bunnies who can do little, people tend to underscore some sort of imagined difference as we are physical and they are ki bunnies all in their nice meditative space.
It is my view that this does a diservice to an age old practice. When people knew what they were actually talking about and wanted and needed power...they were talking about internal training and the mind controlling ki to produce physical power. Ueshiba continually discussed the power in aiki, not just the spiritual aspect. In fact he said aiki informed his faith.
Dan

Maybe that was poorly worded then, but nowhere did I say or mean to imply you are less meditative. I didn't even talk about the training. I said (or tried to) that the things you're "talking" about are both valid in their own right; both important parts of Aikido. From what little (very little) I saw of your training it was as meditative as anything I've ever seen; in fact there was almost no "getting physical."
When it comes to talking about Aikido, it is my impression that you tend to "talk" more about the role of physical potency and that she tends to "talk" more about the role of attitude (in the psychological sense), (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Attitude_(psychology)) compared to each other.

phitruong
01-27-2012, 07:30 AM
You could ask Ashida Kim about "Monkey Steals the Peach (http://monkeystealsthepeach.com/monkey_steals_the_peach.jpg)" technique.

Looks legit.

now that's a technique worthy of consideration. why couldn't aikido has technique with cool name like that? we only have technique number 1, 2, 3, etc and even more lame such as wrist turn, four corners, entering, ...etc. so lame! why couldn't we have techniques with name like "jade lady plays with ken and chokes out barbie", "buddha attendant warrior pounding the crap out politicians", "immortal points to the lady bathroom", "investment lawyer using a hoe", "in yo mama face" and so on.

phitruong
01-27-2012, 07:35 AM
They cut the worst pictures out! Ashida Kim eating the unwashed peaches.........:yuck:



sheesh Marc! i was eating a peach cobbler! now i have to throw on some ice-cream to wash out the taste. you are messing with my diet to keep my girlish figure in order to do a good koshinage!

DH
01-27-2012, 10:09 AM
@ Dan:
There may be no overt reference to winning. It is a feeling I get when I read your posts. Testing in our style is to provide a reference to a dependable feeling. I think I am missing something in your language. We might be saying the same things.
We probably are.
It appears from watching and what you write that you guys are already trying to do what I am doing on a certain level. I think the only one who would be surprised ...are you guys. I am fairly certain that what you are striving for with your "correct feeling" model is what we do and would be instantly recognized by you as correct feeling. Honestly from watching your practice on film I think you would be delighted with the more definitive langage and training processes we have. But here is the thing, it isn't a pressure to do what ...I...do. You are your own people.
This constant reference to he/ she/ me/ we is what screws things up. It isn't about us as individuals. It's about what Ueshiba did. Anyone who thinks they are out their blazing a new trail is a fool. That would include me too. Ueshiba defined Aikido. Ueshiba knew and discussed concepts that span generations and cultures.
a. we are either trying to understand the physical technology that these people developed
b. we are reinventing the wheel in very haphazard ways.

Graham
I would like to correct a statement you made about Graham relating to us.
I think Graham does great at trying to relate to you guys, but it seems like you just make fun of him. It seems like you are trying to shut him up.
Graham does not do any great job in relating to us guys....and I am not making fun of him.
When I read Graham telling us he knows what Ueshiba did, and knows and can do what we are talking about and surpassed it twenty years ago...and then he appears on film doing what he does and moving the way he moves (this in in front of many Aikido teachers here)....well it begs questions. I don't say it...he did. It is easy to avoid this stuff by not making claims you cannot support. It draws attention to you of your own accord.

Posting standards
Turning away from Graham I would observe that, if you know that you feel like any average Joe, and your aiki is not anything extraordinary on an international scale ...what the hell are you thinking appearing on an international forum and saying it is, in front of people who have either been judged to have exactly those qualities or in front of others who have felt and seen those qualities.

One thing is for sure, there is an incredible amount of talk by people who claim they understand what Ueshiba was talking about and doing...And then when you see and feel them, they both move and feel like any other Shodan, Sandan, what have you. I am simply challenging those in the community-including me- who say these things to either put up or shut up, or at least have a better sense of balance about what it is they do.

To me and seemingly ONLY to me, is how evident the understanding is even in this single thread. In the talking points on throwing, most of it has nothing to do with aiki. The cornerstone for aikido's approach to throwing anyone.
Dan

Mark Freeman
01-27-2012, 11:12 AM
We probably are.
It appears from watching and what you write that you guys are already trying to do what I am doing on a certain level. I think the only one who would be surprised ...are you guys. I am fairly certain that what you are striving for with your "correct feeling" model is what we do and would be instantly recognized by you as correct feeling. Honestly from watching your practice on film I think you would be delighted with the more definitive langage and training processes we have. But here is the thing, it isn't a pressure to do what ...I...do. You are your own people.


Hi Dan

to Mary

I come from a training paradigm similar to yourself and Ron, in that, a high proportion of my time has been developing 'correct feeling' a la the Tohei line. I thouroughly enjoy continuing to learn and teach this model. My own goal has been, since I started, is to become more co-ordinated in mind and body, and my 'style' of aikido has served me well in this endeavour. After 20 years of practice, I feel that I am making good progress.

I have trained with Dan each time he has been in the UK and will do so again, either when he is here or I come to the US. What I have gained from Dan is invaluable to me. I consider myself to be a good aikido teacher, able to pass on what I have learnt well. The 'stuff' that I have gained from his training, has allowed me to experiment and practice with a level beyond where I already was (which modestly, I thought, was pretty high, as I have an excellent teacher). Where before I was painting with a palette of colours, the added ingredient of this work has given all of the colours more vibrancy and depth. The pictures I paint now are more impressive.

My focus has shifted from what I do to the uke - blend with, lead, follow, throw -almost exclsively to, what I do within myself - my internal set up - mind/intent/dantien(one point) and the movement created internally, how far that extends out from me, and how sophisticated can I get it.. I still do all of the blending, leading etc, but now it is done from such a solid place that the result is truly compelling.

Honestly, to have someone grab both of your wrists, and to see the look on their face as they move in a direction of 'my' choosing, whilst I am standing stock still, is a picture I don't think I'll ever get tired of looking at.:) To get to this point takes time, effort, patience, focus, work and a good training model. It's fun to learn and fun to do. When Ueshiba said aikido should be practiced in a joyful atmosphere or words very close to that, I'm sure he would be happy with your dojo and mine, and although Dan does not teach aikido, Ueshiba would be happy with the atmosphere in his, he 'may' even say 'this is my aikido' (this will never be known, and will provide laughter and tears for years to come).

regards,

Mark

graham christian
01-27-2012, 12:50 PM
@ Dan:
There may be no overt reference to winning. It is a feeling I get when I read your posts. Testing in our style is to provide a reference to a dependable feeling. I think I am missing something in your language. We might be saying the same things.

I would really like to have coversations about it without the constant pressure to do what you do. I think Graham does great at trying to relate to you guys, but it seems like you just make fun of him. It seems like you are trying to shut him up. So I don't write much about it anymore.

Thank you. I think so too.

That only makes me understand my Aikido even more. I understand by reading on this forum many different types of Aikido or ways if you like. I understand enough to know which ones I would enjoy and which ones not, which ones I would enjoy and learn something useful from and which ones I would not.

Although it would probably never happen yours is one I would definitely enjoy and learn something useful from.

Regards.G.

DH
01-27-2012, 06:37 PM
I wish you well Graham. You seem like a decent guy. Everyone should be free to explore and enjoy their practice.

My position is not singular to you even though several want to try and make it so. It's not even my position. It was created here on Aikiweb and Ebudo.
For both clarity and a non-partisan review it calls for anyone (this includes a laundry list of some heavy hitters) who claims to understand what Ueshiba was saying or even just aiki, should -by the very nature of that understanding- possess unusual power and skill.
It will save everyone needless time and energy in reading and sifting through if that power and skill is vetted by people in the Budo community. If upon examination, these people are no different than your average Tom, Dick, and Mary sandan next door..it saves many people some traveling time.

This is beneficial to everyone, is not prejudicial to any one person and should be welcomed. It was what Budo people did for generations, now brought to the internet age. As a process; it is in place with everything from your car mechanic to your local contractor. Though in budo, it appears only a certain type routinely object.
Dan

graham christian
01-28-2012, 01:26 AM
I wish you well Graham. You seem like a decent guy. Everyone should be free to explore and enjoy their practice.

My position is not singular to you even though several want to try and make it so. It's not even my position. It was created here on Aikiweb and Ebudo.
For both clarity and a non-partisan review it calls for anyone (this includes a laundry list of some heavy hitters) who claims to understand what Ueshiba was saying or even just aiki, should -by the very nature of that understanding- possess unusual power and skill.
It will save everyone needless time and energy in reading and sifting through if that power and skill is vetted by people in the Budo community. If upon examination, these people are no different than your average Tom, Dick, and Mary sandan next door..it saves many people some traveling time.

This is beneficial to everyone, is not prejudicial to any one person and should be welcomed. It was what Budo people did for generations, now brought to the internet age. As a process; it is in place with everything from your car mechanic to your local contractor. Though in budo, it appears only a certain type routinely object.
Dan

I wish you well too my friend.

Your position is yours, anothers is anothers. I know of no 'heavy hitters' in any budo world for that term to me is egotistical.

I know not of Ebudo either.

I claim to know what I know and relate a lot of it to the teachings of O'Sensei and some of his students and their teachings, thus Aikido. As I have done so for many years yes I do have a certain amount of skills and ability which some may call unusual power and skill. Those who call it that are the ones who create the significance for to me it doesn't matter.

Saving people time and energy as you call it is easy. Realize this is a forum for sharing views and not some stage or laboratory or private club. (or battlefield for that matter)

I fail to see how 'vetted' has anything to do with it. In fact in my experience so called experts vetting is mostly a waste of time. It's good for ego but other than that worthless most of the time.

I fail to understand either any relationship to to effort and travelling time. In your world and many others you may have 'attracting others' to come and do what you do as a reason for posting and thus use it as a promotional tool, that is not my world and not my reason.

Your views on beneficial to everyone belong in your world not mine.

Your analogy of throughout history and budo that has been the way is once again in my view faulty at best, limited.

So my conclusion is this: You can have your views of how things should be and how things should be done and how therefore it would lead to this and that and you may share those views with however many others you like. But trying to foister them on me is a waste of time. I do not live in your 'budo world' nor do I want to. I respect it and let it be.

What good does it do for you or any of your disbelieving friends to know what you claim to about me anyway? How would that benefit you in any way? In my view it is a purposeless pursuit for you claim to be happy doing your way.

Those who claim to be searching for unusual power and claim to want to learn how to control and believe it is all about control are not welcome in my Aikido. Therefore that alone tells you I do not have what you are looking for.

As I have said before it's all about purpose. Those with other purposes can learn somewhere else that befits their purpose. In life it is no different for me than in the dojo. Those of good heart and purpose who ask then I am there, those who ask for other reasons then no.

Enjoy your journey for I have up to now certainly enjoyed mine and will carry on doing so.

Regards.G.

DH
01-28-2012, 10:19 AM
Okay Graham
Your words and thoughts remain inconsistent. You have chosen to participate in a community and have entered into discussions of values and results in practice. You have stated repeatedly you have a superior understanding to pre war aiki and talked about power. That was your choice
I never cared until you participated in discussions of what I do -calling me a fraud. In your reply here you again attempt to reduce my efforts in teaching the community to promotional rhetoric.

Okay
Let's discuss throwing and skills and abilities to actually do so using aiki.

In both pre and post war Ueshiba stated his atemi can kill
Let's say I try to punch you in the face while not only retaining my center but it's moving in several different directions in a flash and in the space of two seconds I kick you and punch you four times.
Lets say that each of those kicks or punches have enough power to not only knock you out, but break bones and also eliminate the effective use of any limb you offer to "connect" with me. Now for clarity I have concussed people, or given them whip lash -even from a wrist grab-using about a tenth of my power.

Let's say, every time you move to stop me... I do not follow
Every time you touch me, I stick to whatever body part you send and I hit you agin and again...

Using the understanding of Ueshiba you claim to know...how do you stop me, much less ....how do you throw me? How do you -with the superior understanding you decided to claim here - in love bring a peaceful resolution to this conflict?

So, you have claimed to know what I do and you walked away from it twenty years ago into something superior. That means you can do what I do and now are better. Great.
Describe for us, how I can do these things? What is allowing it to happen what is the actual skill you are going to use to prevent it from happening?

I am interested in how your superior understanding of Ueshiba would stop Ueshibas pre-war form of aiki. I contend you cannot answer and will not answer....and have no ability to even try.
But, this is a discussion of throwing and aiki right? I not only know the answer to both sides, I demonstrate it and teach it under critical review...within the community and out.
Thoughts?
I am all ears.
Dan

graham christian
01-28-2012, 10:53 AM
Okay Graham
Your words and thoughts remain inconsistent. You have chosen to participate in a community and have entered into discussions of values and results in practice. You have stated repeatedly you have a superior understanding to pre war aiki and talked about power. That was your choice
I never cared until you participated in discussions of what I do -calling me a fraud. In your reply here you again attempt to reduce my efforts in teaching the community to promotional rhetoric.

Okay
Let's discuss throwing and skills and abilities to actually do so using aiki.

In both pre and post war Ueshiba stated his atemi can kill
Let's say I try to punch you in the face while not only retaining my center but it's moving in several different directions in a flash and in the space of two seconds I kick you and punch you four times.
Lets say that each of those kicks or punches have enough power to not only knock you out, but break bones and also eliminate the effective use of any limb you offer to "connect" with me. Now for clarity I have concussed people, or given them whip lash -even from a wrist grab-using about a tenth of my power.

Let's say, every time you move to stop me... I do not follow
Every time you touch me, I stick to whatever body part you send and I hit you agin and again...

Using the understanding of Ueshiba you claim to know...how do you stop me, much less ....how do you throw me? How do you -with the superior understanding you decided to claim here - in love bring a peaceful resolution to this conflict?

So, you have claimed to know what I do and you walked away from it twenty years ago into something superior. That means you can do what I do and now are better. Great.
Describe for us, how I can do these things? What is allowing it to happen what is the actual skill you are going to use to prevent it from happening?

I am interested in how your superior understanding of Ueshiba would stop Ueshibas pre-war form of aiki. I contend you cannot answer and will not answer....and have no ability to even try.
But, this is a discussion of throwing and aiki right? I not only know the answer to both sides, I demonstrate it and teach it under critical review...within the community and out.
Thoughts?
I am all ears.
Dan

Dan. Why do you say such things?

1)Superior understanding to pre-war aiki. Never said that.
2) Call you a fraud. Never said that either.
3) Reduce your efforts in teaching the community. Never.
4) Claim that I know what you do and walked away from it twenty years ago. Never happened either.

So these four things are not true. First I would ask you to retract them before any discussion especially 1,2and 4. Point 3 sounds subjective unless you know something I don't.

Apart from that I am willing to discuss any point with you.

Regards.G.