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TheAikidoka
02-28-2012, 12:19 PM
Hi to all,
This thread is in response to a thread I started entitled, My thougths on competative vs non-competation.
the thread mushroomed into something I was quite unprepareed for, so what I am propsing here is just a continuation of that thread, but I hope people can see where I am heading towards.

First I will respond to one of the last post by Mr kevin Leavitt, which starts with him quoting me, it is as follows:

Quote: Said by Andy B:
Another quote I like use in the dojo is again I'm not sure who said this " a true pacifist is not a true pacifist if he is not able to in a blink of an eye cut down and finish the enemy, but at the moment of impending doom chooses peace". END QUOTE

Mr Leavitt`s comments:
I always choose peace...it is my attacker or opponent that makes the other choice and I finish it if necessary (hopefully).

I agree 100% with this definition. So now we are doing to brass tacks and the real core of the subject. Physical, real, martial skill. Have the skills, knowledge, and abilty to do something about the situation if necessary.

Seeing that we both agree on this subject. I am very interested in exchanging ideas about how you train your students to deal with and respond to those that do not wish to harmonize, reason, nor share the same love for non-competitiveness that you do.

I assume you prepare your students to deal with the realities and stresses that are involved in fighting and train them in concepts such as stress overload, andrenal dump, and how to deal with situations from positions of disadvantage and points of failure.

I know for myself and my training, it is a comfort and has created the room necessary for me to in many cases not have to engage in fighitng or violence, but knowing that I have a solid martial background that I can rely on if necessary to cut down my opponent if necessary.

Sounds like you and I are on the same sheet of music Andrew and most of this might be simply semantics! END of mr Leavitts response.

A new student started at our dojo only three months ago, I will not name him personally, lets just call him student A.
After 2 months of basic training, I asked him, why he wanted to practice Aikido or indeed any artial art. he told me he wanted to learn how to defend himself from the possible unprovoked attacks, i.e being mugged or being involved in a drunken fight. He wanted to learn techniques that would give him an advantage.
Now the student by coming to the dojo with this in mind, was already well aware of the dangers and the reality of how stressful a real fight can be, indeed you have to turn on the tv at night switch to the news and see the reality of violence in our world. It does not need to be taught it is blatant.
Is this not obviously the main reason why people take up martial arts in the first place, I understand they continue to practice for all the other aspects of training can give, but the primary reason is to learn how to deal with a potentially dangerous and indeed frightening experience.

Here lies the inate problem, he has had the thought that one day he maybe attacked (this student has never been involved in a violent confilct), and has believed this to be true, and that one day he will be attacked in some way or another. Which can never be proved or disproved. It is just a thought! So he learns Aikido with a specific goal in mind and not for the Joy of doing what he is doing for its own sake, he is living in the future not the present. I pointed this out to student A, and he litterally burst out laughing as he didnt realise this.
And it has its route in competing. If I learn this and an imaginary oponent does that I can beat him with this technique and so on and so forth.

How did I get him to this position, well this is the technique, its not really a technique in one sense but please humour me.

First I sat the student down on the mat and pointed out, that althought the dojo is noisy and people rushing around doing this or that. The mats we stand on, the weapons rack on the wall, indeed everything that we are surrounded by is completely and utterly still. Anyone reading this,check it out for yourself, look around you, no matter where you are in the world, look around you and notice the complete stillness that is everything around you. Student A`s eyes began to widen and and a smile appears.
Second, when he felt comfortable with the fact everything is still, I pointed to the fact that everything is also surrounded by stillness. A bigger smile came.
Third, the next thing I pointed him towards was that not only was everything still and surrounded by stillness, it is also completely and Utterly silent. Student A Now has a very big grin on his face.
The fourth, aspect of this reality I pointed to was that although everything is still, and silent, everything is surounded by a certain amount spaciousness. Now student A is almost in a fit of giggle`s, because he had never seen this reality.You can see this more in nature than in anything else. Just look at a tree or a flower, it is routed, again I say ROUTED in stillness, surrounded by Stilnees, silence and spaciousness

The last thing I pointed out to studen A, and it is the most crucial. If that is the true essence of everything else then it must be, it MUST BE, true for us as human beings as well. And do you know what, student A, fell silent as if a dawning of this reality was now taking place.

Now, how did I translate this into physical practice. I dont think a lot of people will agree with this but here goes nothing.
I asked student A, when we stood up to play the role of Tori (the defender) and I will be uke (the attacker). I told him I was not going to tell him a technique to use and I am not going to tell him how I was going to attack, but I will attack with full force. I asked him to experience the situation as though he had no physical body, no barrier between himself and the outside world, indeed interpret the situation as if he WAS the spaciousness in which the violence was going to happen.
So I attacked full force, I stood in the left hanmi, and kicked forward with all my might with my right foot coming forwards. And there was nothing there :) he simply side stepped gave me a push and I was down, he had full control of the situation. I do not even know what he did, do not need to know, only he does.

Afterwards I asked him to describe what he felt, again he had a huge grin on his face.
He said, whoa, that was amazing. I felt like I was suckinig you in in some kind of void or vorrtex. I did not have a feeling of needing to control you, but just the situation in hand. I felt we were one.

And the student experienced this only after a few months of training, it is not magic, but being fully in this moment, which is the reality of the situation.

Now wouldnt it be great if we taught kids from an early age, this type of training, so they actually FEEL we are all one and the same, we are apart of the same family. Any Attack or unprovoked attack, has its route in some form of competition.
Examples: from the point of view of the mugger: that person over there has something I want/need, must have, I cannot gain this by any other means but by force, and by getting what I want I can have a stronger sense of self. But they dont openly say this otherwise they would see it for the madness it is. So they justify there action, by yet another thought form, its oklook at him he drives a BMW he can afford it.
Example 2: They have lots of oil, and if they aint prepared to share it, because they have more than us, we will take it by force. And Justify the violence because they believe we "need" "must have" "want", what they have, and they can afford it, and we cant afford not to have it.

Do you see if we/humanity, were to realise we are that stilness, we are that spaciousness, and we are the silence that in habit this world, that we are of the same origins. We ARE LIFE, and we are LIVING LIFE NOW!
I repeat a quote from my ealier post: Jesus said "I am the truth and the light". I believe there is a piece missing here, it should been which I believe to be the truth, Jesus said "i am the truth and the light, you too are the truth and the light, its just you are not aware of it......yet"

All of this, in essence, is down to the self seeking competative mind. Where would the human race be without its problems of me and us. Ask yourselves this question. What problems do you have right now. Right now what problems are right in front of you now.
I am not talking about life situations, and the throught drama`s of me and us, because when you realise this, life situations, are no longer problematic as such, and without the mind of centention on all sides, the true difficulties we face as a species can be takled from a stand point of, lets act now so that nobody loses.
Is this not Budo?

Now I urge people to re-read my original post on, My thoughts on Competition vs none competition.

May I take this opportunity to say thank you to all who have contributed to my previous thread, and have had the patience to read and listen to what I have written in this one.

Always In Budo

Andy B

nickregnier1
02-28-2012, 12:29 PM
Dear Andy,

(sent you a message by the way). The posting you wrote is deep and very interesting indeed! This gives me a different view to explore Budo and life. Well written and I am not sure what else to write or debate but this is one of the best postings I have read I can tell you!

This keeps me happy with a big smile for the rest of the evening at least.
Take care,

Nick

TheAikidoka
02-28-2012, 12:36 PM
That was very kind of you nick, thank you, I have sent you the details for the Japan Aid event on 11th of march to the e-mail adress you gave to me, hope we can indeed meet and build friendships.

Andy B

TheAikidoka
02-28-2012, 12:54 PM
Also just to add a another little quote I use in the dojo, "I said this is very simple...but not always easy" :)

Andy B

Demetrio Cereijo
02-28-2012, 01:48 PM
I repeat a quote from my ealier post: Jesus said "I am the truth and the light". I believe there is a piece missing here, it should been which I believe to be the truth, Jesus said "i am the truth and the light, you too are the truth and the light, its just you are not aware of it......yet"

Which Jesus are you quoting?

TheAikidoka
02-28-2012, 02:12 PM
I wish to share with you all this little story that happened on my way to work today. This event that happened underlies the principle`s I am alluding to.

So i had just got parked up and I am walking the ten minute walk into work. Now what happened next actually made me stop in disbelief.

On this road where I was walking, the main road runs north to south and there is a cross roads running east to west. A car had stalled and had broken down right on the crossing, in the keep clear sign. Now there was traffic coming up from the south end, traffic coming up from the north, nobody could go anywhere.
But it did not stop them trying, beeping horns shouting get of the road (he could not because his car had broken down), then the abuse started " get out of the effing road was one comment I herd, they started reving engines because they did not want to be where they were but to where they thought they aught to be, and the competition started to see who could make the most noise to get rid of this situation. The Mechanics in bus garage oppposite turning away and you could literally see the thoughts popping in there head "nothing to do with me".

All this happened all in all in about a minute or two, I went up to that person in the car and noticed he was a very elderly gentleman, who by this time was so stressed out that when I tapped on the window to get his attention, he litteraly jumped in his seat. I asked if he was ok, and I could see the relief in his face as he realised I was not there to do any harm, he nodded nervously.
I said if you would like to just take the handbreak off I will push your car the 2 or 3 meters across the road so you are no longer in danger.
I stood up looked at the other people in there cars and just shook my head at them, I wanted to shout at them, I hope you never break down and have nobody to help you. But for the good that would do, I knew it wouldnt do any, I just shook my head in disbelief.
The elderly genmtleman was so grateful, I honestly thought he was going to cry. I again asked if he was ok, he said yes and thank you, I said, no need to thank me sir, I actually called him sir, demonstrating I was being respectful, and not gaining a sense of self from what had just happened, anybody with a little compassion and sense would have done the same, and he just smiled, a sincere smile, and I walked on to work.

This is just one example of the insanity and of the sickness of a competative human mind.
And this happened today!

Andy B

graham christian
02-28-2012, 03:14 PM
Demonstrating the budo of love, Aikido. Nice to see.

Regards.G.

TheAikidoka
02-28-2012, 03:59 PM
Does anybody, have any thoughts on the way I have been training the students in the dojo?
This I am very interested to hear.

Andy B

Michael Hackett
02-28-2012, 04:11 PM
You are teaching perfectly in your dojo for your students. Your perspective is not for everyone, but is your's and therefore exactly right in the environment you've created. Nothing wrong with that.

Kevin Leavitt
02-28-2012, 04:53 PM
No comments Andrew really.

I was more interested in discussing the whole concept of pacifism and having the means or marital ability to actually do something.

Of course, there is nothing wrong with spreading love and compassion in the world, we need more people to do this.

I am really more interested in what I consider to be more pragmatic solutions and applications of dealing with violence that address the complete spectrum in more depth than an allegory.

Of course, there are people out there that come to the martial arts for many different reasons, and there as just as many dojos out there that will cater to those reasons.

I just hope that in those dojos that the people studying in some of the dojos that are heavily based on philosophy and allegories, that the instructors and students understand the limitations of their practice and are not deluded into thinking that what they are doing will apply universally to every situation, or with real people in the real world that are really trying to cause real and authentic harm.

If in your practice and teaching you are able to open peoples minds to looking at thing differently and expand their hearts...nothing wrong with that. I'd just be careful about also making them understanding the limitations, dissonance, and problems they might possible face.

It is my profession to work with people, communities, and governments through the full spectrum of peace and violence from humanitarian assistance to full on war. I think I am pretty decent at it having done it for the last 27 years. However, I will tell you that I personally only understand a little bit about the intricacies of psychology and what makes people to the things they do and motivate them to postivie change. It is a tough business for sure.

Budo has been a big help personally to help me through some tough times, however, for me, Budo is about self and not about others. I can't affect them through preaching budo, I can only try to be what I want to see in the world. Outside of that, I can teach those that want to learn some physical things within the context of marital arts, and if they stick with it, maybe they will find their own way on the path.

PersonallyI have yet to find a person in budo that is qualified to guide someone specifically through transcendence, but that has been my experiences.

TheAikidoka
02-28-2012, 04:53 PM
You are teaching perfectly in your dojo for your students. Your perspective is not for everyone, but is your's and therefore exactly right in the environment you've created. Nothing wrong with that.

Thank you for your comments, michael. I can accept that. Just to clarify, it is not my Dojo.
I teach at a trditional dojo, headed by Kyoshi Roger Payne, 6th dan Aikido, 7th Dan Iaido, Official representative for judo in Uk from the Dai Nippon Butokukai, (society for Japanese martial virtues), founded in the late 1800`s, howeve there has been a wooden building on the site of the butokuden (hall of martial virtues) since around the eighth centuary.
I only began training with Kyoshi Payne in August Last year, However I have been practicing Aikido since I was fifteen, I am now 32. I spent ten years under sensei John duggan 6th DAn, of the shin gi tai Aikido society uk.

Kyoshi payne has obviously seen some worth in what I am doing or he surely would not ask me to teach in his full time traditional dojo. I teach the AIkido Juniors, which kyoshi sensei has never had in 35 year`s of the history of his dojo.
He also have asked me to teach Aiki weapons on the sunday`s. I teach the Aiki Ken and Aiki Jo syllabus, of M Saito Sensei, that was given to me by my first teachers son, MIchael Duggan 5th dan shin gi tai UK, when he went to japan and brought it back with him in the late 90`s early 2000`s. I do Not know if Michael was taught in Iwama or not I never felt the need to ask (I should do I know), however the case this is what I was taught, and feel obligated to pass on to the next generation, as it was taught to me. FWIW.

In Budo

Andy B

philippe willaume
02-28-2012, 06:19 PM
Hello andrew
Well since you asked I am sorry but I very strongly disagree.
It is not a judgement of what you do or how you teach and I am happy that it works for you and your students

From a personal protection stand point, in my opinion it is the equivalent to the dichotomy between entitlement and dangerous behavior.
It takes lots of time or energy to explain to a hard core feminist that avoiding dangerous behavior is different to laying blame on the victim.
IE accepting having a coffee at 12:00 in the hotel room of an acquaintance is a risky behavior and that it is not equivalent to a yes but she did arguments.

You can spread love and understanding and it does not hurt to back by a solid martial background.
Like Kevin I believe that Budo will make you a better man, and to vast extend getting rid of the need to prove thing to yourself than enable you to walk away or take a situation in its stride.
There even could be and argument for having the will to utterly obliterate your opponent and understanding the consequences does a lot to put thing in perspective and actually is making much less prone to act and much more understanding.
For me it is all vain if you do not have the will and the ability to backup your stance

From a philosophical stand point
To be fair I am a product of the French republic i.e. we are all born equal and it is your job to make sure that it stays that way.
As well I am much more in agreement with Voltaire than I am with Rousseau and when push comes to shove I even believe that the Divine Marquis got it right about humanity.
So as you guessed I am not inclined to acquiesce on the whole rooted immovable silence.
To be clear, I am not advocating that you die with your sword in hand and you need to get a ticked at Odin/Wotan brunch or that it is better to be judged by 12 that carried by six.
In fact I believe that Budo does make you a better person but you need to be able to deliver when the chips are down,

Phil

TheAikidoka
02-28-2012, 08:21 PM
Hi philipe,
Yes agreed, you must back up what you say with what you can do. I trained for the Royal Marines, I did not make it all the way through the training due to injury. But close enough, to learn how to kill, and do it quickly ruthlessly and with no disregard for the enemy whatsoever. I can deliver the kill stroke, I choose, again I choose, peace. I chose Aikido. Aikido did not choose me :)

I no longer have the desire for death, I Choose life.

This is Budo, this is Aikido.

Andy B

TheAikidoka
02-28-2012, 08:57 PM
Also, it is very important to teach, that every action you take no matter what act that may be, must be taken responsibility for.
I wil paraphrase a story I recently read on Aikido Journal, an incident that took place between Koichi Tohei Sensei & Morihei ueshiba.
After the war everything was in very short supply, Tohei sensei had recently came back from a trip to the states with a brand new leather coat, you know the Texan type with the frills and the leather and swede padding. When people at the dojo and others in the street saw Tohei sensei with this, they thought it amazing that somebody in Japan could afford or indeed own such an item.
Well the end result was that coat was stolen, Tohei came into the dojo as mad as anything, he sat all the deshi in a line and went into one big time!
Hearing the commotion, O'sensei came out to see what all the fuss was about, somebody explained to O'sensei what had happened. After a few minutes O'sensei turned to Tohei sensei and said" your to blame for this" and walked out the dojo. With Tohei in hot persuit.
Somebody asked Ueshiba later what he ment, how could Tohei be at fault?
Ueshiba said, Tohei made who ever it was a thief, by brandishing such an item in public, showing it off, he was inviting it to be stolen. Stealing is wrong. But turning a person into a thief is even worse.

And it had routes in competition, look at what I have and you don't.

This is true awareness, and seeing the situation exactly as it is. With no other judgements or labelling. Just the truth of the matter. This is taking responsibility for ones actions, instead of blaming others for what happened.

Andy B

Michael Hackett
02-28-2012, 10:04 PM
I never bought into that story.......a thief makes a conscious decision to steal the property of another. An honest man, regardless of the opportunity and desire, will choose not to steal. Blaming the victim is simply wrong. A person can stretch the degree of responsibility to silly limits for any event. If the rancher who raised the cattle that went into making the jacket had chosen to grow corn on his land instead, this never would have happened. It obviously was the rancher's fault that some Japanese citizen stole Tohei's jacket and made the man into a thief. While we're at it, we should condemn Henry Ford for all the drunk driving deaths we have here in the US as well, since he made the automobile affordable and available. O Sensei's logic was simply faulty and perhaps there was much more to his comment than what was reported; you know the omote and ura of an issue.

Stephen Nichol
02-28-2012, 10:25 PM
Does anybody, have any thoughts on the way I have been training the students in the dojo?
This I am very interested to hear.

Andy B

Greetings Andy,

First of all let me start off by asking have you read the book 'The Power of Now' by Ekhart Tolle (http://www.eckharttolle.com/books/now/)? I have and everything you state here is stated in that book.

To your question:

Perspective.

Each person has their own reasons, like you mentioned in the original post. You have to respect that and simply just 'be' yourself. When they ask specifically about things, you can present your 'way'. If they express a desire to know or learn more about your 'way' then you can show them the door and path... but they have to go through and follow it for themselves. You cannot change others, you can only change yourself.

Lead by example. Put yourself in 'situations' where you have to test (not compete) your convictions to your 'way' of being. Embrace the pain, the situations you avoid because they may allow your ego to emerge, gain a foot hold or if already present, be challenged and forced to deal with itself, its perception that it had of what the outcome should have been. Each time you are able to remain still, at peace with a situation that could/should/would (future/present/past) have caused you discomfort, fear, anxiety... then your 'way' is better for it. To a further extent... deriving pleasure and satisfaction can sometimes be feeding the ego as well so one has to be careful.

No judgements. Not even of yourself.. when you catch yourself slipping up.. and making a judgement about someone or something. Things are what they are, no more, no less.

When your students want to learn this as well... you can only show them the path and explain it.. but they have to find it within themselves, truly put themselves in each situation and remain at peace with it. Not like it, not love it, not fear it or dislike it... just be there and accept it. From that peace they can make decisions about what to with the situation.

It is hard for a person identified with thier mind, their ego, their job, their car, their bank account, the clothes they wear that 'they' are actually none of these 'things'. (Yes, this means belts and Hakamas too :) ) They are just themselves. If we take our 'stuff' away from ourselves we are still 'us'. In fact, in most cases I find people are actually owned by the stuff they think they possess. (You own a house but you pay taxes on it.., You own a company but you are responsible to your employees and all your customers. You own a car but you have fuel and maintanence expenses. You have money in the bank but every one else seems to want some of it.. taxes, fees, and we continue to all work so hard to hold onto our stuff... and find a space to breath and for some people it ends up killing them). I am not advocating we all go hari krishna and live under the trees... just that little by little we recognize what is important and what is not.

When a person dies... generally some perspective comes into play for most people.. not everyone (the monkey sphere (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dunbar%27s_number) comes into play, almost unfortunately). However this experience to can polarize a person because they will attach a feeling to it and not simply be at peace with it. (A person or group of people you love dies you feel loss and sadness. Person or group of people you dislike dies and you may feel good that they are gone. Does either of these feelings you have really help anyone.. you or someone else, truly? 'IF' you could be at peace with it regardless.. then there would at least be no negative effect from it (revenge for one).)

Anyway.. starting to 'go all over the place' with this... :hypno:

Back on point: Just 'be' the best example you can be for those around you. Be they students at the dojo where you train, co-workers at the office, family and friends an even more importantly... complete strangers. Because we tend to let our mind play tricks and imagine threats and create enemies of people we do not even know and even some we do know... If a students insists on dwelling about a possible future event of violence from someone they do not know.. well, they are better off at least start considering those they do know as that is far more likely to happen. Statiscally speaking. That or the 'random act of violence' they are likely to have to contend with will be a motor vehicle/plane/train accident. ;)

Rupert Atkinson
02-28-2012, 10:37 PM
The problem in AIkido as I see it is that people get caught up in preaching on about peace. Well, preaching peace is just words. In the dojo we need to be practicing almost as if for war. What I mean is, train seriously and talk peace all you want afterwards. At the end of the day, you can only 'let the villian off easy' if you have the ability to absolutely destroy him. If you can't destroy him, then you will not be able to 'let him off' or deal with him lightly/gently. Rather, he'll be busy destroying you. You can only 'be kind' to the villian if you are much better than him. And if you are not there yet, well, you had better stop talking about peace until you are more 'qualified' to do so, in my opinion.

Stephen Nichol
02-28-2012, 11:48 PM
The problem in AIkido as I see it is that people get caught up in preaching.

Sorry. Had to do it. You are 100% right up to this point. 'Preaching' about 'anything' is where most of it starts to go horribly wrong because there are always others who cannot simply accept and leave it at 'you/that person is just that way, feels that way, believes that way... '

It does not matter if I/you/us/them are right or wrong when we leave each other to our own paths.. only when I/you/us/them attempt to impose our beliefs/will on one another does it create a situation that needs to be dealt with. How we deal with it depends on our beliefs/path... training.. choice(s).

I suppose we are all guilty of some kind of preaching at some point. Opinions offered where and when none is asked...

Even above in my response to a specific question asking for an opinion I 'preached' the path I try to follow in my life. When asked by some one out of interest (happens more than I ever thought it would) I tell them about it. However I just try to live moment by moment and lead by example. I am always careful to check myself about the example I am setting as well for I know I am not perfect either. ;)

Chris Li
02-29-2012, 12:03 AM
Thank you for your comments, michael. I can accept that. Just to clarify, it is not my Dojo.
I teach at a trditional dojo, headed by Kyoshi Roger Payne, 6th dan Aikido, 7th Dan Iaido, Official representative for judo in Uk from the Dai Nippon Butokukai, (society for Japanese martial virtues), founded in the late 1800`s, howeve there has been a wooden building on the site of the butokuden (hall of martial virtues) since around the eighth centuary.

The Dai Nippon Butokukai has kind of a checkered history and is, currently, a very minor organization in Japan without much real connection to the pre-war group of the same name. It appears to be somewhat larger outside of Japan than in.

There's a kind of interesting (if old) discussion here (http://www.e-budo.com/forum/showthread.php?t=30833).

The summary here (http://ja.wikipedia.org/wiki/%E5%A4%A7%E6%97%A5%E6%9C%AC%E6%AD%A6%E5%BE%B3%E4%BC%9A) is a little better if you can read Japanese.

To get back to "peace", I think that before discussing peace in Aikido it should be established whether or not Morihei Ueshiba was in fact a pacifist (Kisshomaru denied that either he or his father were pacifists), and/or if he was a pacifist then what "peace" would mean to him.

Peace might, for example, mean something different to someone like Arnaud Amalric (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arnaud_Amalric) than it does to most people here (or so I imagine!).

Best,

Chris

Kevin Leavitt
02-29-2012, 12:11 AM
Stephen Nichol: I am a big fan of Tolle and I think the things he preaches are on track and in the bigger scheme of things, yes, that is how we should be living our lives.

However, IMO, budo and martial arts deals with a much, much smaller subset of this in at a very specific point on the spectrum of human interaction called real and authentic violence or better yet, hate put into action.

O'Sensei I think, saw a way to BRIDGE the gap, provide us a way to realistically address transcending this very, specific point of human interaction at a very real and personal level.

The problem is that I really believe that most people skip right over the MOST important parts of the process and jump right to the end state...right into the spectrum of the stuff Tolle talks about without really and authentically taking the time to deal with the point on the spectrum that Budo attempts to transcend!

Tolle has the luxury, the technology, and the audience to preach this too. However, to be quite honest, I n all the terrorist and "bad guys" I have searched and inventoried their possessions, I have NEVER once found a book of Tolle's amongst there posessions. Nor Ghandi, not anyone else of significance.

I have also willing to bet the there has not been on thief, gang member, or drug dealer that has been caught reading this stuff or following that path too!

So, the questions I have is how to you "MOVE" or "SHIFT" the center of the real nature of violence? At what point of the spectrum SHOULD we be spending our time on?

As Andrew says, I Choose Peace! I agree with that. However, if we choose Budo along with that...there is an obligation and commitment we make as warriors to work on a very specific aspect of that process...that is the martial process. It requires us to see the nature of violence, to look it in the eye, face it, and find ways to authentically positively affect it.

Now, I don't believe that all of us need to go to the extremes that some of us go to..say in the military, or put ourselves at risk as two reporters that were killed in Syria last week, however, I have great respect for people that are willing to put in on the line in such a way and we need more of them willing to have the courage to do so.

No, I think it is okay to be a lawyer, accountant, work at McDonalds or whatever it is you do in a peaceful, clean, relatively safe environment, go to a "normal" dojo three days a week and do all that without having to face violence first hand. It is not a requirement to put your life at risk.

However, it is a requirement if you choose budo to be willing to look honestly at the subject, to dig past the Utopic platitudes and delusions of grandiose rhetoric and look deep within yourself and realize where it is that you ARE, where other people ARE, and the differences between you, and study and reflect on the causes of violence and the responsibility we have as budoka to have the courage at some point to stand up to those that are being bulliled and oppressed, to set the example, and to help the victims while stopping the bad guys. At some level, this is an ABSOLUTE requirement. We MUST be willing to leave our comfort zones in SOME way to do this.

It is perfectly fine to choose something else than Budo. Perfectly fine to join an Ashram, listen and read Tolle, and try to "be the change". Please! we need more people to do these things. BUT, at the same time, we need to realize where we are CHOOSING to be on that spectrum of things. If we are NOT willing to face the realities of the physicality of Violence, to look at it, study it, commit to it...THEN we are doing something OTHER than marital arts and something other than Budo!

kewms
02-29-2012, 12:51 AM
I never bought into that story.......a thief makes a conscious decision to steal the property of another. An honest man, regardless of the opportunity and desire, will choose not to steal. Blaming the victim is simply wrong.

Would you steal to keep your family from starving?

Are you an honest man?

Katherine

Michael Hackett
02-29-2012, 01:52 AM
At the risk of getting into "lifeboat ethics" I can't honestly say whether I would steal to feed my family or not. I know of three inter-related families in Oklahoma who were paragons of virtue until the dust bowl and depression days. Many of the men in the three families did just that and stole to feed their families. Today there is no stigma attached to being a criminal in this small group of people and virtually all of the men and quite a few of the women are career criminals. If I stole to feed my family I still would have been making a choice and I would still be a thief. Maybe an understandable thief, maybe a noble thief, maybe a humanistic thief, but a thief non-the-less. I probably could even rationalize my behavior and attribute it to those who had plenty, or big business, or big banks, or even my poor luck. Am I an honest man? I can only answer that I strive to be, even with myself.

As I said earlier, I think there was much more ura context to the comments attributed to O Sensei than we recognize today. Then again, he had a number of strange ideas that I don't understand or necessarily share.

morph4me
02-29-2012, 07:10 AM
Andrew,

I'm having trouble figuring out what you mean by competitive mindset. In your examples I don't see anything competitive, The man in the car was blocking traffic and people were getting impatient, where was the competition?

Tohei sensei brought himself or was given a leather coat, it doesn't mean he wanted to say "look at what I have and you don't." Is he supposed to wear rags because someone else might be jealous? Where's the competition?

If a person is forced to defend themselves, that's not competition, that's survival. When a person sets a goal and strives for it, that's not competition, that's self improvement and self love. I don't think it's possible to love anyone else if you don't love yourself.

So if you wouldn't mind, please explain what it is you mean by competitive mindset, as your examples don't demonstrate what I understand to be competition.

Kevin Leavitt
02-29-2012, 07:17 AM
I think it would depend on who you were stealing from and the situation. If you have starving people and an institution or company or something has the ability to do something, but chooses to hoard and control, even if the law is on there side, then I would say that it is okay to steal as you are attempting to lessen true harm and not cause more. However, if you steal from another individual at their expense then that might be a different situation.

TheAikidoka
02-29-2012, 08:43 AM
To Stephen nicole,

Hi, Yes I have indeed read Mr Tolle`s book, the power of now, and it is oneof the best martial arts books I have ever read. Although the book does not say it is so, I believe it s, here`s why.

Do we not in martial artist`s demonstrate, we are completely present in this moment when we are training.
There is no time for thought when we are being attacked, it is not being able react to a situation, this is far too slow, this is, Go No Sen, reacting. To act in the now is being ahead of the game. To see, be aware of the situation arise before physical violence has devolped and act accordingly in such a way, that no harm can now come to you or other. this is sen sen no sen. the middle ground is sen no sen, to be able to act when you didnt see or you were not aware of the situation, when it happens instantly, you act in the sam instance.
I read somewhere recently, that the graveyards of japan are indeed full of warriors, who practiced Go no sen, or waiting for the attack and then trying to do something. this is competing, if he does this I will do that and so on.

I believe O`sensei, fully understood the martial effectiveness of being fully in the present so he could move accordingly. here is what I mean and I will use one of the most famous Doka attributed to O`sensei.
Quote "one does not need buildings, money or power, to practice the art of peace, heaven is right where you are standing and that is the place to train"

Here is what I understand him to be saying here, "one (you as the presence of your surroundings) does not need money, buildings or power (the egoic contending mind of self and me), to practice the art of peace, (to practice being yourself) heaven is right where you are standing and that is the place to train, (the eternal presentness of now, the omnipresence that always is).

I understand, O`sensei`s famous duel in the dojo where a swordsman attacked him with full force and violence whilst he himself was unnarmed, and he just side stepped pushed the guy into a wall and that man became injured, it was after this he had his enlightenment experience. he indeed said so himsekf "that I felt the gods chastising me for me conseated feeling of having power over another".
He had moved so deeply into that moment (the eternal now) it litterally shook him to his core, and the only way he cold explain this is through his religious beliefs. He did not force his views on anybody, he said find out for yourself. because I believe you have to be so sick of it all, that you litterally to turn your back on your own competing egoic sense of me.
Actually I feel it was due to these experiences that he also began to distance himself from Omoto, I understand the first and second Omoto incident`s, probably also had a lot to do with that, but I believ this had more to do with it. O`sensei does not come across as someone who is told what to do!

I have read that the main teaching of Omoto, is to find oneness with the god essence that is in and of everything. Indeed in the opening chapters of the Essence of Aikido by mr Stephens, Osensei is said that te essence of Aikido is to find oneness with god, to transcend the thought of self and other.

how do we do this/ Become aware of what is now. And it is completely non-resistant, or another way of saying this, is BU, to putting a stop to the contending spears, DO.(a way) Aikido is indeed a way to stop contending spears. The Contending Mind.

If you do not believe the examples I have given are people contending with each other, then simply watch the news tonight without judgements labels, approch with mushin, no mind. Then see it for youself :)

In Budo

Andy B

DH
02-29-2012, 09:22 AM
I think it would depend on who you were stealing from and the situation. If you have starving people and an institution or company or something has the ability to do something, but chooses to hoard and control, even if the law is on there side, then I would say that it is okay to steal as you are attempting to lessen true harm and not cause more. However, if you steal from another individual at their expense then that might be a different situation.
+1
Hi Kevin
Got the P.M. Good God, do I agree with that assessment!!!

As for this...most people do not understand the situations and theaters you have seen and operate in.
I think that Westerners often wield ethics and opinions that are insular and apply to their sheltered existence...all while claiming an intellectual understanding of suffering....from a safe distance.

Were America to be plunged into a situation where food, power, and water, were taken away from all, and controlled by a corrupt government and some soldier with an AK47 was shooting Moms and Dads trying to get food and I was watching my child die, you would meet a different ....me.
I don't really embrace situation ethics but there are extreme cases. And I have never accepted that one has to completely negate the other.

As to the whole competition in Budo argument-I really don't care about these gentle utopian people who have no real skills to do anything that would ever work against trained budo people.
Why?
What they do is NOT BUDO...it's something different like a moving yoga or moving motion dance class. It has no place in the history of budo either. In past eras, they would simply die and we would never have to deal with their theories and trying to steal a place in budo unearned. Their ideas would have stopped at the tip of a spear or sword.

If someone thinks that some gentle, highly cooperative, harmonious movement, experiment is going to ever equal the efforts of people who have sweated and strained in highly resistive budo practice that produced capable budo-ka...they are only kidding themselves. Were they to put themselves to the test- they will fail every time.
The only recourse they have is:
* The internet where they make all sorts of unsupportable proclamations of the worth of their practice as some sort of budo.
* Running away from stress testing.
* Only seeking out training with others like them

The tragedy is since they simple can't function as a budo-ka, they are striving on the internet to re-define budo to accept all as equal. It's cheap and it's stealing the reputation-earned by the good work done by others....as their own. Worse they do this all while bad mouthing the very methods that made that reputation of budo in the first place!!! I think that is the part of this that irks me the most. They obviously want or need the validation as a budo or they would not wear the clothing and wield weapons. Yet, they openly deride the methods that it takes to make someone truly capable all while claiming to be equally capable themselves.

I say it over and over. If we do not self-police we are going to see the death of budo in our time. Why? More and more traditional Martial artists are useless even against a mediocre wrestler and the internet is now letting the world know just how true that is.
Everyday that we sit here and give credibility to these gentle people as our equal in Budo, is yet another day we sink the nail into the coffin of our beloved arts. We need to challenge them on the net and challenge them in person until they get what the demands of a Budo is about. Or they stop calling whatever that stuff is that they do...budo and they leave the name and reputation of budo to those capable of representing our arts as.....a budo.

IMO, Budo is vanishing before our eyes. Awash in a sea of indifference and fear of speaking the truth. Quite frankly I am sick and tired of what so many teachers say to me in private, over and over and don't have the courage or conviction to say in public. As one teacher recently said to me. "I applaud what you are doing and saying-But I can neither say it or publicly support you. So...when are we training next?" :rolleyes:

Dan

DH
02-29-2012, 10:07 AM
Edit:
One Taiji group was debating this, lamenting that although those doing Taiji for health have made the art popular- those "people" had nothing at all to do with the martial tradition of Taiji.
All interesting, because taiji is good for health as a health system and is a damn good fighting system in the hands of a few people.

Where I see a difference is that the health aspects are not practiced in Martial art related clothing or using weapons against another persons efforts with weapons making it falsely look like a martially effective effort. Therefore, it is rarely ever confused with a Budo.
Not so with many other Japanese budo.
Dan

graham christian
02-29-2012, 10:44 AM
Some thoughts for you Andrew. From the view of transcendence, which I believe Ueshiba's aiki is, it moves beyond competition.

This brings about a new,more enlightened view and understanding.

Yet with this comes the fact of destruction and thus a very budo thing.

Love destroys fear, kindness destroys ego, stillness destroys chaos and brings about harmonious flow, calmness slices through confusion, goodness destroys negativity and the void destroys illusion.

Thus true virtues are powerful and of course healthy, seen only as weak by the competitive mind.

Faith moves mountains.

Regards.G.

TheAikidoka
02-29-2012, 10:59 AM
To Mr Harden,
I am not going to attack your views as they are yours to own and do with as you see fit. However I would like to ask an honest question?
If as it appears, you see Budo as a means to strike violence with even greater violence so that you may become the victor or to make sure of victory, why practice Aikido, the way of Harmony which most people I am sure will agree, by its very name has a moral and ethical practice in and of itself. Aiikido founder did indeed say Aikido is the study of the spirit, and is not a means for felling and defeating others, but the mind of contention.

And I ask, please do not make comments about my martial skill or anybody else`s that you cannot provve, or indeed disprove, this again is only a thought, which you seem to have believed so completely, that to you it is true.

I too do not wish to argue, can you give your thoughts on the thread, how to be non-competative in a competative world. am genuinly interested in what you think, as you appear to be so respected in the martial arts world.

In Budo,

Andy B

TheAikidoka
02-29-2012, 11:07 AM
Some thoughts for you Andrew. From the view of transcendence, which I believe Ueshiba's aiki is, it moves beyond competition.

This brings about a new,more enlightened view and understanding.

Yet with this comes the fact of destruction and thus a very budo thing.

Love destroys fear, kindness destroys ego, stillness destroys chaos and brings about harmonious flow, calmness slices through confusion, goodness destroys negativity and the void destroys illusion.

Thus true virtues are powerful and of course healthy, seen only as weak by the competitive mind.

Faith moves mountains.

Regards.G.

It sure Does Graham, good to hear from you again. Although you and I have not always agreed in the past, I cannot agree with you more on this point. What i am saying if you dont see this, and feel it by dropping the mind of centention then it wil never be true for you, whoever that may be.

Great reply many thanks.

Andy B

TheAikidoka
02-29-2012, 11:24 AM
To All:
I have said in my previous thread, competition in and of it self is not a bad thing, a gave the example I think of judo in the martial context, it does indeed teach you to be in the moment, as do non competative martial martial arts, or should, so you can deal with a potentially violent situation.

However I am talking about the, unchecked, competative mind for the sake of competition, is madness. In the book the life giving sword, Yagyu Munenori (sorry if I spelt this wrong), states mind is sickness, and when are people going to listen about the enemy (ego) lurking is the one that needs to be cut down, the mind of thought.
Always no matter what it is, a conflict of whatever magnitude begins with thought, does it not?
We live in a time, where we are still fighting the arguments of centuries ago, still trying to prove who is right or wrong. This is all based in Human thought. Not the natural intelligence you mention in your previous post. I do not believe, it is a lunch eat lunch attitude, as I call it the "real world". There are indeed a lot of checks and balances that are in place, so no one species is alowed to dominate an area or indeed the entire planet, well not for too long anyway. Mother nature, Gaia, natural intelligence or the movements of the cosmos , ki energy, no matter what you want to call it, will save herself almost in one sense from herself , and this natural intelligence, it exist of and in itself in everything.
Some may even enterpret this as god essence, and I have no problem with that either, I think it is as close to understanding that god is in us as it gets.

Why do I say this, well because it's not something you think about, but rather you "Know" and feel to be true, and it is almost unspeakable. But here we are speaking about it.

Inhabit the body somebody once told me. I didn't understand what this ment for years I didn't get this. It literally means, inhabit the body, place some of your attention in you body, personally I use diaphragmatic breathing to practice being in the body. And I noticed something quite strange, the body LOVES, attention. I felt all tingly and almost light felling, and the first thing I noticed when I opened my eyes was how absolutely still everything was, I couldn't believe it, how had I not "seen" this before, then I noticed how everything was also surrounded by stillness. Not only that but everything was absolutely silent too, but it didn't freak me out or anything, because it was "natural". The last thing I notice was also everything was surrounded by a certain amount of spaciousness.
Please look around you and see it for yourself!

Now if this is true for everything else, think about it :-)

IT MUST BE TRUE FOR US TOO.

Indeed there are a lot of religious, social, political, dogma out there that is almost terrified, of us seeing the real beauty in the human body.
Because without this mindset of controlling through fear of the body,fear of self, fear of future, fear of the past, fear of what they will do to me, fear of not being good enough, fear of not being strong enough, fear of not being pretty enough, fear of............. And on it goes.
They loose there own sense of self , and would have to see we are all essentially the same. Who really wants to loose there sense of self, of me and I'm right your wrong, the me and all my problems, when the real problem is the contending mind itself. We are the problem, and none of us can see that either.

It is the human mind/thought set, of overly competing, and not understanding this natural intelligence, that nature does indeed provide enough for all if we are willing to share it, and not contend with each in everything we do. This includes one of the most amazing human attributes, Love.

In Budo

Andy B

Garth
02-29-2012, 12:10 PM
"We are the problem, and none of us can see that either"

Nope, only you I guess
So in the mean while, what is it you YOU propose that we /us me/you do about it?
I mean before we train a whole new generation to drop out of competitive mind and as probably one of your mentors said, "My advice to people today is as follows: if you take the game of life seriously, if you take your nervous system seriously, if you take your sense organs seriously, if you take the energy process seriously, you must turn on, tune in, and drop out." Tim Leary.
He had me until the last three words. Drop out of what? Society , civilization and all that it brings?
Good and Bad?
Or is it just competitive mind that you want dropped. And you still are competing for hearts and minds in the arena of ideas here.
I think enough people here and the last thread have justified and explained the difference between survival and competition......
and yet the problem is us , we are the problem. Hence, you malign the most prosperous as keeping the less fortunate down. The people who compete everyday in life and believe this is real and not a dream or illusion, and win so to speak, have been offered no real alternative except to yet in another way level the playing field and support the people who dont want to compete, who want to dropout, dream, spread their message, agenda.
What was that guy's name again? with the dogs? Maslow thankyou,
Notice where transcendence is on the pyramid and where basic physical security is?
There is a big big divide there, and you dont ever forget about the bottom of the pyramid because you can wind up there again, while you are still alive anyway.
And , should you and Dan meet, I am yet another person here to tell you he is not talking out of his hat...and martial skill is only part of what he teaches.....

Read more: http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/authors/t/timothy_leary.html#ixzz1nnHH3R5v

Demetrio Cereijo
02-29-2012, 12:16 PM
Quite frankly I am sick and tired of what so many teachers say to me in private, over and over and don't have the courage or conviction to say in public. As one teacher recently said to me. "I applaud what you are doing and saying-But I can neither say it or publicly support you. So...when are we training next?" :rolleyes:

Dan

Tell'em to step out of the wardrobe or no more training for them.

Aiki pride parade ASAP.

Chris Li
02-29-2012, 12:33 PM
Tell'em to step out of the wardrobe or no more training for them.

Aiki pride parade ASAP.

+1

What are people are afraid of, anyway?

Best,

Chris

Demetrio Cereijo
02-29-2012, 12:34 PM
"My advice to people today is as follows: if you take the game of life seriously, if you take your nervous system seriously, if you take your sense organs seriously, if you take the energy process seriously, you must turn on, tune in, and drop out." Tim Leary.

The guy who received the best BULLSHIT! I've ever heard.

chillzATL
02-29-2012, 12:38 PM
If as it appears, you see Budo as a means to strike violence with even greater violence so that you may become the victor or to make sure of victory, why practice Aikido, the way of Harmony which most people I am sure will agree, by its very name has a moral and ethical practice in and of itself. Aiikido founder did indeed say Aikido is the study of the spirit, and is not a means for felling and defeating others, but the mind of contention

Why do you see having tested, verifiable martial skill as immediately being "greater violence"? Ueshiba had tested and verifiable martial skill, yet his is the 'the way of harmony", but others who seek the same are just looking for greater violence? explain please.

Kevin Leavitt
02-29-2012, 12:43 PM
Andrew B wrote:

I that nature does indeed provide enough for all if we are willing to share it, and not contend with each in everything we do..


Agreed, but damn....people don't share it. There are people out there that use it for themselves, that squander it and use it to oppress and control others. So, what is there to make them stop doing this if they really don't want to? I really liked Ghandi's approach for sure. (I am actually doing a session with my son on Ghandi for home schooling right now). However, why don't we see more of this happening in the world. Why haven't we seen more Ghandi's coming forward? The conditions must be present for this to work. If they are not there, then you need other means to resist, defend yourself, and restore fairness.

How do you shift the balance of power? What if love doesn't work. What if we can't reason and transcend with like.....philosophy and a smile?

If as it appears, you (DAN H) see Budo as a means to strike violence with even greater violence so that you may become the victor or to make sure of victory, why practice Aikido, the way of Harmony which most people I am sure will agree, by its very name has a moral and ethical practice in and of itself. Aiikido founder did indeed say Aikido is the study of the spirit, and is not a means for felling and defeating others, but the mind of contention.

Some times it is necessary to strike violence with greater violence, absolutely! It should be a means to do this. However, we also must realize the consequences and outcomes of our actions and realize the true nature of the power we do possess and the responsibility we have to use it appropriately. THAT is were the whole moral and ethical and Compassion part comes in.

Aikido and all Budo, IMO actually is a means for destruction and defeating. It is also a means of restoration. The mid-point of this is harmony. what is NOT harmony is ignoring the destroying and defeating side of the equation and focusing on the love and compassion side only. When you do that...you might have something good, but it ain't budo as Dan pointed out.

Garth
02-29-2012, 12:44 PM
"My advice to people today is as follows: if you take the game of life seriously, if you take your nervous system seriously, if you take your sense organs seriously, if you take the energy process seriously, you must turn on, tune in, and drop out." Tim Leary.

The guy who received the best BULLSHIT! I've ever heard.

He also dealt the best BS , to a lot of young people , also:D :D

Unfortunately...

Kevin Leavitt
02-29-2012, 12:46 PM
He also dealt the best BS , to a lot of young people , also:D :D

Unfortunately...

Damn hippies! :D

TheAikidoka
02-29-2012, 12:56 PM
"We are the problem, and none of us can see that either"

Nope, only you I guess
So in the mean while, what is it you YOU propose that we /us me/you do about it?
I mean before we train a whole new generation to drop out of competitive mind and as probably one of your mentors said, "My advice to people today is as follows: if you take the game of life seriously, if you take your nervous system seriously, if you take your sense organs seriously, if you take the energy process seriously, you must turn on, tune in, and drop out." Tim Leary.
He had me until the last three words. Drop out of what? Society , civilization and all that it brings?
Good and Bad?
Or is it just competitive mind that you want dropped. And you still are competing for hearts and minds in the arena of ideas here.
I think enough people here and the last thread have justified and explained the difference between survival and competition......
and yet the problem is us , we are the problem. Hence, you malign the most prosperous as keeping the less fortunate down. The people who compete everyday in life and believe this is real and not a dream or illusion, and win so to speak, have been offered no real alternative except to yet in another way level the playing field and support the people who dont want to compete, who want to dropout, dream, spread their message, agenda.
What was that guy's name again? with the dogs? Maslow thankyou,
Notice where transcendence is on the pyramid and where basic physical security is?
There is a big big divide there, and you dont ever forget about the bottom of the pyramid because you can wind up there again, while you are still alive anyway.
And , should you and Dan meet, I am yet another person here to tell you he is not talking out of his hat...and martial skill is only part of what he teaches.....

Read more: http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/authors/t/timothy_leary.html#ixzz1nnHH3R5v

No not only me, but I aint getting into I want people to believe me, I want them to find out for themselves by stopping the constant chatter they have in the head, and believing it! To simply see what is really in front of them, through the stilness of the mind, not the constant competing one. That includes anything you are about to say and type next :)

By stopping that constant chatter in the head, ego, the competitive mind, saying I shouldnt be here I should be there, and I`m going to react to this situation with force because of what he/she did to me and then believing that thought. Yes I am indeed saying to litterally drop this mind.
It does not mean we cannot act or think in the moment, indeed it is the moment that needs the most concentration, in no matter what arena of human life you find yourself. It is a call to bring to attention the beauty that is held in each moment.

However we constantly miss this moment because humans are either trapped in the past: confilcts still being played out today have there basis in past confilct and look what he did to me, look what they took from me, land is the primary source here. Or are seeking peace in future: which never comes, nobody can tell you things will be better in the future because nobody has been there to tell you what it was like. It is just another thought!

Real achievable peace can only be realised now. I will ask the question again, where do you think people would be without there sense of me and my problems, collective or individual, without he did that or this to me, they have made a personal self out of it, and it is the madness of the self competing mind.

you talk about civilization, can you tell me what is so civil about the way we treat each other! letting starving countries starve when we have enough food to feed everyone, wether you believe this or not, we should at least have real efforts to do so. not have a fundraiser every now and then so we can feel good about ourselves for maybe giving a few pounds/dollars to put a sticking plaster over the real situation.

As Always in Budo

Andy B

Marc Abrams
02-29-2012, 01:02 PM
Some times it is necessary to strike violence with greater violence, absolutely! It should be a means to do this. However, we also must realize the consequences and outcomes of our actions and realize the true nature of the power we do possess and the responsibility we have to use it appropriately. THAT is were the whole moral and ethical and Compassion part comes in.

Aikido and all Budo, IMO actually is a means for destruction and defeating. It is also a means of restoration. The mid-point of this is harmony. what is NOT harmony is ignoring the destroying and defeating side of the equation and focusing on the love and compassion side only. When you do that...you might have something good, but it ain't budo as Dan pointed out.

Kevin:

You struck at the heart of the issue that seems to attract a certain type of person to Aikido (to the detriment of the integrity of the art- in my opinion). People would love to be able to allay their fears regarding real violence. It is easy to practice Aikido and pretend that you have been able to reconcile violence through greater love and harmony, without ever having to really do so. It is the easiest and most convenient delusion available to achieve while you pretend that you are actually doing Aikido. I do not believe that these people consciously ignore the destroying and defeating aspects as much as they are genuinely too afraid to directly confront this issue. When they can live very comfortably within their self-defined, safe worlds, they can continue to insist that they have indeed confronted this "evil" and "transcended" beyond it with their flowerly words. As long as they do not have to genuinely confront those "bad realities", they can continue to say that we do not get it yet, understand where they come from, etc.... As you said so eloquently, "you might have something good, but it ain't budo.

Regards,

Marc Abrams

Demetrio Cereijo
02-29-2012, 01:28 PM
Hi Marc,

People would love to be able to allay their fears regarding real violence. It is easy to practice Aikido and pretend that you have been able to reconcile violence through greater love and harmony, without ever having to really do so. It is the easiest and most convenient delusion available to achieve while you pretend that you are actually doing Aikido.

But this was how Aikido was offered to the general public by the "establishment".

Kevin Leavitt
02-29-2012, 01:30 PM
Thanks for the comments Marc.

I do want to point out and be clear that I do not believe that in order to study budo that you must become some super destructive bad ass ninja, navy seal type. That is really not the point.

The point is that in your practice you must study the true nature and really understand what you are doing and practicing and be true to the simple reality of what it is that you are doing.

Of course, we can also explore the "room" and expanded possibilities that come with experience and training as well, and in that certainly we can learn to find ourselves.

I also want to be clear that I really believe that the journey is about SELF and not about the world. Budo is about YOU...not about emulating the love and peace stuff and trying to convert people and win them over, and preaching to them.

If you take care of self...you can take care of the world, one person at a time.

Kevin Leavitt
02-29-2012, 01:41 PM
Hi Marc,

But this was how Aikido was offered to the general public by the "establishment".

Was it really offered that way by everyone, or is it what people really wanted to hear?

I think the endstate and goals are aikido are noble, and the philosophical basis is just fine. No issues with peace and harmony from me!

However, what is up for debate and perspective are the means and ways. As I said before, most people I think interpret harmony as the whole peace and love thing. For me, I see it as the mid-point between all those things where we have....nothing, if you will.

I personally think once we understand that, we as budoka, are in a position to realize the fragile nature of staying on the right side of that mid-point in the love and peace spectrum.

I know in talking to my friends and teachers that are 6th Dans in ASU that studied as young men with Saotome Sensei...he was not easy on them and what they practiced was anything but soft and loving!

Garth
02-29-2012, 01:48 PM
Dear Francis Sensei,
It was a pleasure to meet you at Bookman Sensei's 30th anniversary seminar.
And as you learned there I carried a somewhat unique perspective of that day. I concur wholeheartedly with your column. The only realization that I have come to is that; they say, " Aikido is a way to reconcile the world" , but I find that I cannot reconcile with people who are trying to kill me and that it is a two way street. I carry on daily as I did before 9/11 with each new person I meet to seek their intention(s).
In fact "vigilant" is inscribed on my hakama. Sometimes this is the best that I think I can do.
Never Forget
God Bless
This was my reply to Takahashi Sensei's column about 9/11.
This is where it gets you without a competitive mind, or paying attention to "chatter", we were at peace then, the former President had 8 years of "feeling everyone's pain" and sharing some of his own.
I was and am , as were so many who perished that day, happy , happy to meet new people and share with them all that the confines of a civil society have to offer. Only being vigilant of their intentions, which some people have a knack for, like they know before you declare your intentions. Osensei comes to mind.
And when appropriate he dealt with it accordingly.
So, on the one hand we have people like O'Sensei
who dealt in the moment, martially when necessary, and sought to change the world for the better.
And Gandhi, on the other hand. who said

There are many causes that I am prepared to die for but no causes that I am prepared to kill for.
, "I would like you to lay down the arms you have as being useless for saving you or humanity. You will invite Herr Hitler and Signor Mussolini to take what they want of the countries you call your possessions... If these gentlemen choose to occupy your homes, you will vacate them. If they do not give you free passage out, you will allow yourselves, man, woman, and child, to be slaughtered, but you will refuse to owe allegiance to them." In a post-war interview in 1946, he said, "Hitler killed five million Jews. It is the greatest crime of our time. But the Jews should have offered themselves to the butcher’s knife. They should have thrown themselves into the sea from cliffs... It would have aroused the world and the people of Germany... As it is they succumbed anyway in their millions." However, Gandhi realised that this level of nonviolence required incredible faith and courage, which he believed everyone did not possess. He therefore advised that everyone need not keep to nonviolence, especially if it were used as a cover for cowardice, saying, "where there is only a choice between cowardice and violence, I would advise violence."[108]

Oh wow!!!! He said transcend it all, as long as you are not being a coward, use what you have to use. Thanks a lot after a couple of million are dead.
Kind of convoluted and vague, non effective and only after he was asked about the death of millions. I think you are more in line with Gandhi than Osensei and Budo.

Demetrio Cereijo
02-29-2012, 01:52 PM
Was it really offered that way by everyone, or is it what people really wanted to hear?


I think Aikido's marketing from the 70's on aimed to a specific market niche, and "evolved" to satisfy the needs of said niche.

TheAikidoka
02-29-2012, 02:08 PM
I am not saying Aikido is aways pretty and nice and all lovey dovey airy fairy, wishy washy BS!
I trained hard, and I do mean hard for nearly ten years in Basics. By an instructor who spent 22 rs in the british special forces, special boat service to be exact, and he was not one to take a flower to a knife fight so to speak.
Currently, our dojo has Hiroaki Izumi sensei 6th dan Aikikai, come and pracitce with us every so often, and I had the pleasure of training with izumi sensei at our dojo last year for a week and a weekend.
We discussed things, he asked about where I wanted to take my Aikido, I was reluctant at first, but I did outline some of my thoughts to him, the upshot, my new teacher, the dojo and I have been asked to attend the opening of his new dojo in st lucia in august this year.
If izumi sensei did not think I had the skills to back up what I was saying, my teacher would not be asking me to go, my teacher would not ask me for the first time in its 35 yr history to start a childrens class (which for me is much more challenging), he would not have asked me to Teach the Aikido weapons class on sunday`s, which incidently have not been held for 3 yrs. Considering I only began training with Kyoshi roger Payne in August last year,(yes litterally a week before Izumi sensei came) what I am doing in a martial effectiveness sense, has been very well recieved. Anyione who wishes to see this for themselves, are welcome to see me train at the mid sussex martial arts school in skaynes hill east sussex any thursday night from 20:00, the sunday Aiki weapons class runs from 10:30 - 12:30.
Although it is not my place (it is not my dojo) to invite people to come and watch, I respectfully ask you send Kyoshi Payne an e-mail saying you wish to come and watch/partake in a class I am either partaking in myself or indeed are teaching. Ive no problem with that. there you go Ive just put myself out there for real scrutiny of my martial effectiveness, I await replies!

So as I have said to Mr Harden, Please do not speculate about my actual martial skill level, when you have no proof, or indeed cannot disprove, those thoughts.

In Budo

Andy B

Demetrio Cereijo
02-29-2012, 02:18 PM
So as I have said to Mr Harden, Please do not speculate about my actual martial skill level, when you have no proof, or indeed cannot disprove, those thoughts.

In Budo

Andy B

Who is speculating about your fighting skills?

What we have here is disagreement about your idiosincratic understanding of aikido philosophy and your views about the world/nature/life....

Garth
02-29-2012, 02:23 PM
If you were talking to me, sorry, let me restate.

I think your IDEAS are more in line with Gandhi than with Osensei and Budo.
Your actions, are as most here in the Aikido world. Training, teaching and doing and is it effective for its/your goals?(Highly debatable as evidenced by this whole website). But it must be done, because the ideas or ideals will not stand alone. They must be proven effective , somehow.

Living in the ideas world or ideal world is much easier for some and they can choose to stay there but then it really is just an dream? Isnt it?.

Kevin Leavitt
02-29-2012, 03:26 PM
I don't think Dan or anyone has commented on your skills or abilities. We were discussing and debating the perspectives of philosophy and the definitions and requirements of budo.

TheAikidoka
02-29-2012, 04:13 PM
Why do you see having tested, verifiable martial skill as immediately being "greater violence"? Ueshiba had tested and verifiable martial skill, yet his is the 'the way of harmony", but others who seek the same are just looking for greater violence? explain please.

I am not saying it is either or the other, greater or lesser violence, it just seems to appear that way from the responses he gave. And the responses he gave to me do not appear to be the harmony of which Aikido to points to. Ineed I believe somebody once said "violence! or is there another way?" :)

If Mr Harden would like to give his thoughts on the thread how to be non-conpetitive, like I have invited him to do so, then I`m all up for listening.
But, it seems he has declined to do so, up to this point in time. Instead he gives opinions on people he has not met, with no validty to there skill, and tells people what he is doing is Budo, and anything anybody else is doing does not come close to what budo means, indeed he has summised people dont even know what budo means. To me this is an insult, but thats ok too, because I am not taking it too personally, even if it was ment to be, indeed I have smiled a little smile at some of the comments about me personally that have been made.

Ive trained in Aikido for 17 years (this is my eighteenth year), I Know what I`m doing, I know what I`m capable of, and what I am not, and I am fully aware of what I cannot do.
I am simply showing how we take those lesson`s of reality that are lernt in a real traditional non-competitive dojo and a martial art and apply them to the real outside world. Because if we dont, I will use a quote from O`sensei, "what use is it learning this or that technique, if you do not try your upmost." you may well be able to beat thwe enemy no matter what form it takes, but do you still not also lose?

Now this may sound like I`m have having a go at Mr Harden, but I`m not, I genuinely wish to know his thoughts on the thread in hand.

Andy B

TheAikidoka
02-29-2012, 04:55 PM
Andrew B wrote:

Agreed, but damn....people don't share it. There are people out there that use it for themselves, that squander it and use it to oppress and control others. So, what is there to make them stop doing this if they really don't want to? I really liked Ghandi's approach for sure. (I am actually doing a session with my son on Ghandi for home schooling right now). However, why don't we see more of this happening in the world. Why haven't we seen more Ghandi's coming forward? The conditions must be present for this to work. If they are not there, then you need other means to resist, defend yourself, and restore fairness.

How do you shift the balance of power? What if love doesn't work. What if we can't reason and transcend with like.....philosophy and a smile?

Some times it is necessary to strike violence with greater violence, absolutely! It should be a means to do this. However, we also must realize the consequences and outcomes of our actions and realize the true nature of the power we do possess and the responsibility we have to use it appropriately. THAT is were the whole moral and ethical and Compassion part comes in.

Aikido and all Budo, IMO actually is a means for destruction and defeating. It is also a means of restoration. The mid-point of this is harmony. what is NOT harmony is ignoring the destroying and defeating side of the equation and focusing on the love and compassion side only. When you do that...you might have something good, but it ain't budo as Dan pointed out.

If that was what mr Harden (I call him that because I do not know him), then he sure went around the houses without adreessing the title of the thread, indeed his responses, appeared to be in the very negative spectrum of things.

That Said, I can find only one thing to disagree with you Kevin in the above post. That Budo is for defeating, I kind of agree that it maybe used for utter destruction Hiroshima & Nagasaki come time mind, but it neither makes it right or wrong it just what is, in this moment. This last comment may bring a string of criticism, please people see what I am saying before posting anything nasty.

In this way, the people of the day, used the most destructive means they had at there disposal to finish the fight quickly done finished over.
But and it is a very big but, were the powers that be on all sides ready for the consequences and the fall out of using such destructive means.
My point even if you utterly destroy the will of the enemy to carry on the fight, do you still not loose?
could you call that act Budo or not?
Would you not call it competition of the highest order?

Thoughts from all please?

In Budo

Andy B

TheAikidoka
02-29-2012, 05:27 PM
Also..... You can never make anybody do anything they truly do not want to do, even if you smack them in the face with the reality of what ever situation they are in.
Drug addicts come to mind here and they damage they cause themselves, but here the phrase drugs get me out of my "mind", to me absoloutly makes sense from the competing mind point of views I have been discussing. this is not justification, I simply understand it.
Change can only come from within you me, and everybody, and the will not to revert back to the dog eat dog, competing human mentality, indeed it is absoloutly the only way from within. I am just trying to point to what maybe possible with a true open heart and mind. That is being non`competititve in a competitive world

Andy B

Garth
02-29-2012, 06:09 PM
NO

I call it survival, Take a life or lives to save lives. Is that not Budo or one of its ideas?
When you pare it down to elemental. Of course you cant seem to be able to do that with out attacking alleged collusion, conspiracy of competition.
So what did we lose after using the A bomb? Our innoccence? Our integrity, honor? Did we lose the peace that followed or did we win the peace?
Again this thread goes nowhere as did the last, because you ask for opinion and then cherry pick what you deem useful and cast off the rest as some kind of treason to the human race.:crazy:

DH
02-29-2012, 08:04 PM
If Mr Harden would like to give his thoughts on the thread how to be non-conpetitive, like I have invited him to do so, then I`m all up for listening.
But, it seems he has declined to do so, up to this point in time. Instead he gives opinions on people he has not met, with no validty to there skill, and tells people what he is doing is Budo, and anything, anybody else is doing does not come close to what budo means, indeed he has summised people dont even know what budo means. To me this is an insult, but thats ok too, because I am not taking it too personally, even if it was ment to be, indeed I have smiled a little smile at some of the comments about me personally that have been made.

Now this may sound like I`m have having a go at Mr Harden, but I`m not, I genuinely wish to know his thoughts on the thread in hand.

Andy B
This will be the second, and the last time I ever talk to you- no matter whay you say or do.

You have a pattern.
People talk in general terms and you take everything personal. Even when you are directly told it had not one thing to do with you. Secondarily you continue to conflate posts so far past their meaning that it simply ends all real chance of communication.
In two threads I have spoken to long time posters and you...beyond all bounds of reason make it all about you.
This comment of yours:
Instead he gives opinions on people he has not met, with no validty to there skill, and tells people what he is doing is Budo, and anything, anybody else is doing does not come close to what budo means, indeed he has summised people dont even know what budo means. To me this is an insult, but thats ok too, because I am not taking it too personally, even if it was ment to be, indeed I have smiled a little smile at some of the comments about me personally that have been made.
No where did I make a statement such as that, involve the points you raised or refer to you in any way. This is the second time you have interrupted into a conversion not involving you and flatly stated it was all about you. As surprised as I am, it has let me know that it would be pointless to talk to you.

To be clear-I didn't give you any thought whatsoever, I was talking to people I know.
I would certainly appreciate it -one last time- for you to realize if I am talking about you I will either talk to you or use your name. Until you display some recognition of what is actually being said by me and others, I would prefer that you please not contact me or refer to me in any way. Don't even reply to this post.
Thank you
Dan

hughrbeyer
02-29-2012, 08:31 PM
you talk about civilization, can you tell me what is so civil about the way we treat each other! letting starving countries starve when we have enough food to feed everyone, wether you believe this or not, we should at least have real efforts to do so. not have a fundraiser every now and then so we can feel good about ourselves for maybe giving a few pounds/dollars to put a sticking plaster over the real situation.

This drives me nuts. Do you have the courage required to deal with this problem for real? Cuz it ain't pretty.

You want to know the biggest reason for starvation in the world? Bad governments. Malnutrition? Poor health care? Refugees? Bad governments. You want to deal with the root cause, rather than putting a band-aid (Americanism there) on it? You've got to deal with the problem of bad governments. Look anywhere in the world: South vs. North Korea, Haiti vs. Dominican Republic, Spain 40 years ago vs. Spain now, etc.--it's not the people, it's the government.

So what's your proposal? Regime change? Been there, tried that, got the T-shirt, it's shot full of holes. Sanctions? Slow, painful, and the pain falls on the most vulnerable. Shovel money into the country? It goes to the bad men in the bad government. Deliver aid yourself? The bad governments won't let you. Run around bleating about aiki and love? Makes you feel good, but who does it feed?

Myself, I think we've got to get to the point where national sovereignty is limited. If you've got blood running in your streets or people dying like flies from curable conditions, expect to be tossed out at the point of the gun. But it won't happen until we accept that that kind of intervention always comes at a cost and sometimes, when a bad government over there coincides with a feckless and incompetent government over here, at a great cost. And we also have to have the courage to walk away when the minimal task is done, and resist the temptation to run other people's lives for them.

But that's just me. Got a better answer?

TheAikidoka
02-29-2012, 08:56 PM
This will be the second, and the last time I ever talk to you- no matter whay you say or do.

You have a pattern.
People talk in general terms and you take everything personal. Even when you are directly told it had not one thing to do with you. Secondarily you continue to conflate posts so far past their meaning that it simply ends all real chance of communication.
In two threads I have spoken to long time posters and you...beyond all bounds of reason make it all about you.
This comment of yours:

No where did I make a statement such as that, involve the points you raised or refer to you in any way. This is the second time you have interrupted into a conversion not involving you and flatly stated it was all about you. As surprised as I am, it has let me know that it would be pointless to talk to you.

To be clear-I didn't give you any thought whatsoever, I was talking to people I know.
I would certainly appreciate it -one last time- for you to realize if I am talking about you I will either talk to you or use your name. Until you display some recognition of what is actually being said by me and others, I would prefer that you please not contact me or refer to me in any way. Don't even reply to this post.
Thank you
Dan

Then why post anything at all on a thread that I started, if it was not directly related to me or the thread in question, was it to deliberately to get my my back up. Surely if you wanted a conversation about something else not related to me or anything that I had written why write it in a thread you had as it seems no interest in taking part in. This simply makes no sense whatsoever. I would say even rude.
That's just crazy. Yes I thought it was about me or at least my ideas because you post those comments on a thread I started. And still you would not address the honest questions I have proposed to you.

Some of the comments you made were indeed talking about Budo not being understood. This seems like deliberate trolling to me. Actually I had never heard this expression until you used it on the previous thread and I had to ask a friend who showed me the definition, somebody who deliberately post something on-line to cause an argument, and get a reaction. So I thank you for teaching me something at least.

Is that not what you have just done. If you do not wish to talk discuss and comment on topics I may bring up then that is fine Mr Harden, no problem there. May I suggest that in future you may want to start a thread of your own, and not carry on conversations within others threads, that you have no desire to partake in, and when people question those comments you deny it was anything to do with the thread poster, and accuse them of making it personal. You made it personal, not me.

I have never ment you harm verbal or otherwise, but the way you have conducted yourself is quite beyond belief, or maybe I am one of those deluded persons with no skills whatsoever with no clue what Budo means, and you are trying to convey this a particularly weird way?

If you never wish to speak to me again that is fine, I offer the hand of friendship with this prayer:

Dan May you go ahead in life in love and peace, even if you don't think so, I still feel everybody is one, we are all brothers.

In Budo

Andy B

P.S
Please if anyone thinks I have completely missed the point here either private message me or indeed feel free to post it here, I truly have no idea what he is talking about!

TheAikidoka
02-29-2012, 09:14 PM
This drives me nuts. Do you have the courage required to deal with this problem for real? Cuz it ain't pretty.

You want to know the biggest reason for starvation in the world? Bad governments. Malnutrition? Poor health care? Refugees? Bad governments. You want to deal with the root cause, rather than putting a band-aid (Americanism there) on it? You've got to deal with the problem of bad governments. Look anywhere in the world: South vs. North Korea, Haiti vs. Dominican Republic, Spain 40 years ago vs. Spain now, etc.--it's not the people, it's the government.

So what's your proposal? Regime change? Been there, tried that, got the T-shirt, it's shot full of holes. Sanctions? Slow, painful, and the pain falls on the most vulnerable. Shovel money into the country? It goes to the bad men in the bad government. Deliver aid yourself? The bad governments won't let you. Run around bleating about aiki and love? Makes you feel good, but who does it feed?

Myself, I think we've got to get to the point where national sovereignty is limited. If you've got blood running in your streets or people dying like flies from curable conditions, expect to be tossed out at the point of the gun. But it won't happen until we accept that that kind of intervention always comes at a cost and sometimes, when a bad government over there coincides with a feckless and incompetent government over here, at a great cost. And we also have to have the courage to walk away when the minimal task is done, and resist the temptation to run other people's lives for them.

But that's just me. Got a better answer?

No Hugh I do not. However I do seriously appreciate the honest and blunt answer. And as I believe I said earlier Aikido, is not always pretty.
But we simply can't continue the way we are headed. It's sounds daft I know be we have to save ourselves from ourselves, otherwise there maybe not much humanity left in the world to see the next century. Yes governments play a major role in this, but how do we elect a government, has this too not turned into a circus of pathetic competion, and it is the people who inact the governments orders we also have to question.
What if an entire Army turned around and said simply NO. Not in my name, that is just wrong, that would be a start. Because they would have stopped competing. Instantly, spontaneously and with courage.

Anyone can say yes we will do this that and the other, I can't rememeber the last time I herd one politician in the west came forward and said with honesty with courage and dignity, NO not in my name, the bailing of the banks is just one thing that comes to mind here. Stop the competition and stop it now, stop the starving and the kids dying of thurst, dying by guns and all the other foul ways we destroy each other in the world, if one among us had the courage to just say, NO No No, not in my name will allow this madness to continue?

There is my answer Hugh, Just a simple No, but it's not easy I will give you that.

Andy B

Stephen Nichol
02-29-2012, 09:47 PM
** Caution, Wall of Text Incomming **

Just going to attempt a little damage control here.

Starting off with stating that text alone generally leaves a lot to be desired in the way of 'tone'. Even when we do take the time to attempt phrasing things in the best possible way and use the smiles to help convey that tone and emotion... not everyone is going to read it the way it was intended.

People skim, skip, simply do not have or want to take the time to read, re-read, reflect on a discussion like this. Even if they do, they can easily 'read into' what has been said and in some instances, forget for a moment that in a thread like this, all replies, statements, opinions are not directed at the original poster.. the universe does not revolve around 'me' so why should all replies in a thread 'on the internets' revolve around me either?

So then it 'feels' like a personal attack of some sort.

So to be clear I will refrain from using 'you' which anyone reading this, especially the original poster, could possibly think it means them personally and I will use any other pronoun or combination of them such as: 'someone' 'people' 'they' etc.. unless I directly address that person.

My reading of this whole thread is fairly simple.

My take DH's point of view is very straight forward:

1. Martial Arts need to be martially effective FIRST, truly effective. If people are going to say they practice a 'martial art' then they had better be able to demonstrate martial effectiveness in a martial situation. (not going to touch specifics such as 'they claim to know and use Aiki/IP/IS - insert short form of every other term in the known and unknown universe for 'the secret recipe and need to demonstrate that.)

2. If someone 'studies' martial arts but do not 'practice' what they study in a martial manner in martial situations, they should not claim or attempt to pass off what is being done as a 'practice' of martial art'.

This would be in an academic pursuit such as a historian who is extremely knowlegible about a martial art's history, origins, practices and people involved however they do not actually 'use it' for themselves.

Individuals who 'go through the motions' of a martial art but are focused on the 'art' (heavily slanted toward the purely spiritual side) and not the 'martial' and feel that 'they' are entitled (as they believe they are doing what was really intended from the beginning and those that train for combat effectiveness actually have it wrong) to all the titles, trappings, recognition of those who actually test their 'martial practice' of the 'art' (jitsu, jutsu, do, etc..) in 'live/resistive/full intent (but controlled?)' martial situations. These are the people that really get under DH's skin.

At no point have I seen (and I could be wrong) where DH has argued Andy's belief in 'being' and 'no ego', 'senseless competition for the sake of it'. Others have and they have done so from their experiences and have stated as such.

I have not read DH's replies to this thread and understood anything he said to be an assumption of Andy's martial effectiveness at all. He was only referring to 'those people' who mimic but do not test themselves in the a way he (and others) consider 'martially effective' manner.

Andy, understand I am not defending DH, I am pretty sure he can and has done that rather well on these forums and in this thread.

I am not judging either.

I have made posts about my feelings on why I train, how I train, the results I strive to achieve and my respect for each person to have their own goals in their training for themselves.

Andy, you have repeatedly made your point regarding your beliefs, goals, spiritual training objectives.

Unfortunately you may have misunderstood some of the posts/cross replies as being directed at you when perhaps they were not and posted replies accordingly. I prefer to not make the assumption as I have know way to 'know' what you were thinking/feeling during those moments you read and replied to those posts. I am merely making an observation and doing my best to get back to middle ground.

For what it is worth:

I approach my life with 'The Power of Now' system as best I can. I am not perfect, I make mistakes, I catch myself 'dwelling' and 'day dreaming' (usually about Aikido class). I laugh and smile when I catch my mind 'ceaselessly wandering around the past and possible futures' and try to put it back in its box until I need to to solve a task at hand. I do not judge even myself for letting my mind run around out of its box because no one got hurt by it. I lost some time 'right now' because of it, I missed out on some of that 'stillness' and ability to focus on the moment I have 'right now', but no true harm became of it.

I approach my Aikido training in much the same way. I train Iwama Ryu, Takemusu Aikido with a very clear approach to resistance to establish centre, connection, take balance immediately etc etc..

I had to learn very quickly not to expect perfection of myself in my techniques, simply improvement. Even my own expectations of how quick or slow I should 'get' a technique or see the underlying principle of Aikido 'in the technique' could lead me to become frustrated. I have recently learned to apply the same 'power of now' approach to it. I train, try to learn, understand and look to always improve and know there always more to learn. I will 'get' it when I do.

It will happen when it happens. I am happy right 'now' with that. If I will only be happy 'when' I get it then I will never be happy will I?

Here is Andy's situation with this thread/forum as I see it: The medium of text, this thread, this forum. We do not truly know you. We cannot easily see your living example so we are not in a position to know what to 'think' or feel about 'you' with the point you present in the way you present it.

To your point of competition, the human condition, the minds ability to destroy itself (creating 'problems' simply to have something to think about) and how it all ties into 'martial arts', 'martial artists', 'your instruction of your students' in this belief system... I said it before:

You can only lead by example and if they like what they see, you can only show them the path and explain it... they have to walk it for themselves.

People here do not know you. We have not been able to train with you, see your example as you live it each moment... so how can they begin? Sure some of us come to this path on our own, by other means.. many paths etc... but those that have or are on a path very similar or close will be able to see you on yours... but they may still really like the one they are on. They will have their reasons. Accept that.

When we come here, post here about it is no different. Present your case, prepare to see others points. Do not judge them even if they judge yours (after all you brought it to the table for discussion) and always, always reflect on the reactions you get.

I do not mean to preach here but please consider the following:

I get the feeling you train a martially applicable 'style' of Aikido. When you do so, do you always 'check' the reaction of your training partner for the desired effect of your Aikido in the technique you are using 'with' them?

If you do not get the result you are expecting or seeking... do you not take a moment right then and 'now' to reflect, 'observe' and learn from it? Find the middle point to establish 'Aiki' and let the technique work for itself?

So by the same measure... if you come here and post anything at all, especially a philosophical belief system that others may not understand/ be ready for or able to accept or simply flat out deny it (its feasibility)... well, do you 'resist' that reaction that your mind creates in you when you read all this or can you simply accept it, find the Aiki within to try again to communicate it in another way.

I can see from your posts that you do try and the effect is well.. this brings me back to the begining. The same as the medium of text is the same, the audience is the same... the situation is the same. Not all of us can see your example through our own experience...

To address the issue of 'Spiritual / Moral High Ground' combined with 'Teh Deadly Ninja Death Touch skills of peace and harmony'...

When 'we' as practicioners of 'martial' arts are 'at peace' with 'ourselves first' and can act out of that peace and not with artificial, mind created or percieved fear, heated emotions, substances that alter our ability to be 'clear'.... then we can enter into combative violence with others who seek to do us harm for whatever 'insane' cause they may believe they have... it does not matter at that point. The action has been taken and needs to be dealt with.

All we can do is train and prepare ourselves both physically and mentally (spiritually for those that prefer that terminology) to always be ready and accept that the need to use our physical skills may never happen. If we do at one moment need the skill... hopefully it will be there for us.

I believe that with some things... it is better to have it and not need it than to need it and not have it. To that end I train for martial effectiveness as best I can.

My intentions are to always serve others before myself. Care for others as best I can. Protect myself and those that need it should I be in a position and situation to do so.

So even if: Some random ex Russian spetznaz and French Foriegn Legionaire have a love child that is hell bent on my destruction because they do like the way I cut my hair (I have very little) and the cloths I wear and pulls out his human heat seeking death ray... I will not act from hate, mind created fear (real fear of lose of my life and potential harm to others, especially those I care about is 'OK') about a possible Russian and French alliance that is doomed to a communist utopian alliance of 'surrender and then work with the enemy' (oh wait, that sounds vaguely familiar to some other principle I heard mentioned somewhere... ;) ) but I will defend myself, I will kill if necessary.. and I would hope I never, ever have to find out what 'necessary' will be.

TheAikidoka
02-29-2012, 11:02 PM
Hi Stephen, I applaud you on you well thought out and presented post.

I admit I may have been too overly zealous, and preachy, in my replies, and I truly did not see the persctive you have given to Dan H's post/s. my last and final message to Dan was a very sinncere one ( prayer). I also appologise to anyone if they felt uncomfortable with the tone and forcefulness of my posts/thread. Absolutely no harm was intended from my part, and yes I also admit it truly felt like a personal attack on my martial effectiveness the way some things were worded. I too practice Iwama Aikido, indeed the weapons class Kyoshi Payne has asked me to teach is, Saito Sensei's/ueshiba's Aiki ken & Jo. It is the only weapons work I have been taught so that is all I teach. I do not teach what I pretend to know, so to speak.

I too, see the very real need of the teachings of the power of now, and also if you wish to look at it, the video of Mr tolle, the flowering of human consciousness, great watch actually, is available to watch on you tube.

Thank you for teaching me the most important lesson I forgot for a while, whilst I had my mind stolen by the very threads I tried convey my uderstanding in all of this, and that is, Humility.

I was and am just sick of it all, literally sick to death of the violence in this world that is so unecessary, that as I see it, comes from the over competing Human mind, and I just had to tell someone how I felt, here seemed as good as place as any to be honest.

Off to bed now, this is how seriously I take these discussions and the art I practice, it's ten to five in the morning, And for the life of me I could not see where I had gone wrong here. I have now been awake for just a little over twenty four hours thinking nothing but this, apart obviously when I was at work till midnight.

I cannot thank you enough, deep appologees to all, especially and I do mean this to Dan H, I hope we will find some middle ground one day.

Thank you again Stephen.

Best wishes to all,

As always In Budo,

Andy B

Stephen Nichol
02-29-2012, 11:05 PM
No Hugh I do not. However I do seriously appreciate the honest and blunt answer. And as I believe I said earlier Aikido, is not always pretty.
But we simply can't continue the way we are headed. It's sounds daft I know be we have to save ourselves from ourselves, otherwise there maybe not much humanity left in the world to see the next century. Yes governments play a major role in this, but how do we elect a government, has this too not turned into a circus of pathetic competion, and it is the people who inact the governments orders we also have to question.
What if an entire Army turned around and said simply NO. Not in my name, that is just wrong, that would be a start. Because they would have stopped competing. Instantly, spontaneously and with courage.

Anyone can say yes we will do this that and the other, I can't rememeber the last time I herd one politician in the west came forward and said with honesty with courage and dignity, NO not in my name, the bailing of the banks is just one thing that comes to mind here. Stop the competition and stop it now, stop the starving and the kids dying of thurst, dying by guns and all the other foul ways we destroy each other in the world, if one among us had the courage to just say, NO No No, not in my name will allow this madness to continue?

There is my answer Hugh, Just a simple No, but it's not easy I will give you that.

Andy B

This drives me nuts. Do you have the courage required to deal with this problem for real? Cuz it ain't pretty.

You want to know the biggest reason for starvation in the world? Bad governments. Malnutrition? Poor health care? Refugees? Bad governments. You want to deal with the root cause, rather than putting a band-aid (Americanism there) on it? You've got to deal with the problem of bad governments. Look anywhere in the world: South vs. North Korea, Haiti vs. Dominican Republic, Spain 40 years ago vs. Spain now, etc.--it's not the people, it's the government.

So what's your proposal? Regime change? Been there, tried that, got the T-shirt, it's shot full of holes. Sanctions? Slow, painful, and the pain falls on the most vulnerable. Shovel money into the country? It goes to the bad men in the bad government. Deliver aid yourself? The bad governments won't let you. Run around bleating about aiki and love? Makes you feel good, but who does it feed?

Myself, I think we've got to get to the point where national sovereignty is limited. If you've got blood running in your streets or people dying like flies from curable conditions, expect to be tossed out at the point of the gun. But it won't happen until we accept that that kind of intervention always comes at a cost and sometimes, when a bad government over there coincides with a feckless and incompetent government over here, at a great cost. And we also have to have the courage to walk away when the minimal task is done, and resist the temptation to run other people's lives for them.

But that's just me. Got a better answer?

Well Hugh has the big picture down as most of us acknowledge it. Right down to the way in which we intervene in each others lives / countries.

I understand Andy's point about the change has to start with ourselves first. He feels that we as martial artists have that responsibility to 'be' this way and to pass that along.

The simplest analogy I can think of (and I do this ever so cautiously ) is Star Wars, the ideals, moral code and ethics of the Jedi vs the ideals, moral code(?) and ethics(?) of Sith and pretty much everyone in between.

In our reality we have no 'all unity force' but we do share a lot in common as simple 'humans'. Food, shelter etc..

We cannot force change on others... not truly. We can stop one person or group of people from harming another person or group of people. We can do this with law enforcement, as vigilantes, as a seriously concerned citizen with martial arts skills in the right place at the right time... or, as a soldier, sworn to duty in service of a country whos ideals you swear to uphold.

So on the individual level, you have self discipline, control, desire to do what is right by others and yourself. Do no harm.

On the social community level, we have law enforcement to serve and protect. (Not going to go into justice systems... whole lot of 'gray area' and a rather large black hole in the middle)

On the national level.. we have the military.

On the global level... we have .. um, the UN right?

Or unilateral action of one nation vs. another for whatever reason they come with... 'we did it for their own good' or 'we did it for our own good' or 'we did it before they did it to us' and my favorite 'we did it for everyone's interests because 'we' know what is best for everyone else... mmm hmm.' (no specifics, many nations have done this in the past and will sadly repeat it in the future.)

Even if it is just the country's leadership doing it to its own country... the road to some place of failure (as viewed by others who sit back and judge) is paved with best intentions... even if some of those intention are a little self centered.

So yes, 'IF' everyone was wanting to change within themselves, truly seek to make all situations around them better... and honestly, only as far as their immediate community but with the understanding that each community level can help the others and so on... sure, it could happen. Eventually that could spread but it would only survive at the 'my sphere, community level'.

Because at the end of the day, no matter how much I wish no harm to come to anyone and that everyone has a roof over their head, food to eat and warm bed and people who love and care for them... I do not know them. If they are suffering due to their government situation, community situation, family situation, or die in a tragic accident, act of mother nature or whatever.. I am most likely not going to 'sincerely' affected by their deaths or harsh life situation. I will reflect on it, appreciate what I have, what I can share, thank those that protect my nation which allows me this ability to write this stuff on the internets... but outside of my 'sphere'.. I can only wish everyone out 'there', 'be well'.

Kevin Leavitt
03-01-2012, 12:11 AM
Andrew B wrote:

What if an entire Army turned around and said simply NO. Not in my name, that is just wrong, that would be a start. Because they would have stopped competing. Instantly, spontaneously and with courage.


The bad guys would rejoice and pick up where they left off.

If you really think your ideas are the immediate solution to the problem, then I would invite you to go to say Afghanistan in the Hindu Kush up in a small village near the Pakistan border. A village that is beautiful to be honest, full of hard working people that simply want to live their lives locally, and have their community and have their freedoms from the oppression of others.

Go there and talk to the village elders about their history. Go there and have some Chai with the men and talk to them about what they have experienced at the hands of others. Ask them about their experiences. Stay a few days and when the Taliban and/or A.Q come through, go out there and stand in the street and tell them ENOUGH!

There are several places in South Sudan where you should go to Tell them to stop taking the children away to work for them and to stop making them child soldiers. Tell them you won't participate any longer in the violence. Tell them they need to stop the insanity and the "competitive mind". Reason with them, make them see that there is another way.

Why confine your training and teachings to your dojo? If it works so well, then you have a great responsibility has a human and a budoka to go out in the world and to stop this stuff!!

Andrew, you have my word, if you can demonstrate that what you believe works in reality, then lets motivate ARMIES of westerners to go forward and put an end to this NOW.

I don't think you'd find one person on this forum that would not folllow you and admit they were wrong if you were able to do that.

graham christian
03-01-2012, 12:35 AM
It sure Does Graham, good to hear from you again. Although you and I have not always agreed in the past, I cannot agree with you more on this point. What i am saying if you dont see this, and feel it by dropping the mind of centention then it wil never be true for you, whoever that may be.

Great reply many thanks.

Andy B

Thank you.
Peace.G.

Kevin Leavitt
03-01-2012, 12:58 AM
Andrew B wrote:

I was and am just sick of it all, literally sick to death of the violence in this world that is so unecessary, that as I see it, comes from the over competing Human mind, and I just had to tell someone how I felt, here seemed as good as place as any to be honest.


I think we can all agree that we are sick to death of the violence and it should end. No one wants that anymore than me!!!

I do my best on a interpersonal and personal level to do the little things in life that, while they won't make a difference today or tomorrow, maybe one day. I am a vegetarian and have been since 9/11. I thought hard about the senseless killing and murder in this world and thought to myself, if we have any hope at evolution as a species, AND if we cannot treat animals with respect and humanely, then what hope do we have with our own race! So, I decided to stop eating meet or any action that directly participated in killing of animals. I have not eating meat or flesh of any creature since that day (intentionally).

Felt good about myself, until I realized that the boots I wear, the new car I just bought, all had leather in them. I tried my best to justify it, to mitigate it some how. All over the place I saw how, as much as I tried, at best I was a hypocrite.

I finally realized that everyone is to some degree, and there is no way around it! I read alot of the writings of the Dali Lama too

Anyway, it is important to be the change you want to see in the world. It is also important to realize that at best we are all hyprocrites. What is important is not necessarily that you draw a hard line and refuse to cross it, but forgive yourself and others when they do, and try simply to do better!

Mindfullness is what is important when we do what we do. Think about it, and the causes/effects and try and make informed decisions as we navigate through the uncertainty.

I don't preach to others about being a vegetarian or hold them in judgement. I simply do it because it is a practice that I feel is right for me, and serves to remind me of what I need to do. It is a ritual and a spiritual practice.

When I travel with others, they find out of course. It makes them think, they look at me and see a big strong guy that has not eating meet in over 11 or so years, and is able to live, survive, and do so in a "BIG" way. They are able to think about it for a minute and see the possibilities.

So, I am happy, because for a moment I shifted their thought patterns!

So yes, the little things matter. They do.

So, I appreciate your honesty and I certainly sympathize with your concern over the insanity of violence. I am in a position where I see suffering and the corruption that causes it ALOT.

I am just as passionate about ending it as you are. I don't have the ultimate solution, but I have seen ways to slow it down, to put an end to it for SOME people and to help others.

In this day and age, it requires people to have courage to stand up and fight for what they believe in. It requires the whole of our world. It requires Peace Corps workers, volunteers, and moms, and dads.

It also requires warriors.

It requires Warriors to stand up to others that can't fight back. It requires Warriors to educate others to be strong and to defend themselves.

Being a warrior is not for everyone. It is a choice we make. Budo is the way of the warrior. That is my point. It is just as fine to be a peace corps worker or a church worker.

I would not go to the Peace Corps or a Church and tell them they need to pick up guns and fight. They have a different "fight".

It astounds me though, why people would come to Budo and try and change it away from it's purpose as a "bridge" between peace and violence.

Maybe the fact that it sits so close to the middle more than anything else, it is a challenge to keep it centered at the midpoint!

Alberto_Italiano
03-01-2012, 12:58 AM
Kevin:

You struck at the heart of the issue that seems to attract a certain type of person to Aikido (to the detriment of the integrity of the art- in my opinion). People would love to be able to allay their fears regarding real violence. It is easy to practice Aikido and pretend that you have been able to reconcile violence through greater love and harmony, without ever having to really do so. It is the easiest and most convenient delusion available to achieve while you pretend that you are actually doing Aikido. I do not believe that these people consciously ignore the destroying and defeating aspects as much as they are genuinely too afraid to directly confront this issue. When they can live very comfortably within their self-defined, safe worlds, they can continue to insist that they have indeed confronted this "evil" and "transcended" beyond it with their flowerly words. As long as they do not have to genuinely confront those "bad realities", they can continue to say that we do not get it yet, understand where they come from, etc.... As you said so eloquently, "you might have something good, but it ain't budo.

Regards,

Marc Abrams

A masterpiece - could not agree more. Martial trascendence means to be able to dominate violence. To me, like it seems to you, the equation true_martial_competence=ruthless_violence_management is clear & unescapable (btw, not implying I am able - implying, rather, that I would not settle down, ever, for any goal different from this).

I don't care how much transcendent one may be: I am fine with whatever degree of it, and as far as I am concerned one can also be as much trascendental as a seraph could go and I would encourage him/her in his/her pursuit.

Yet, that trascendence, no matter how it is structured, if it must be Martial, must be able to neutralize violence - and when I say violence i don't mean the all too convenient setting of running away (which, yet, by all accounts I advocate you should attempt first in a real situation, if you can) or of mesmerizing your opponent with your spiritual stare: I want to see the guy in action in a setting where s/he can't run away and has to accept of being physically engaged, in order to evaluate whether s/he is Budo or not...
That's the Martial part. The Art one is: you master the situation so much that you won't use any weapon whatever but only the ones of your martial art, for mastery stays precisely in the fact that whilst your opponent can be ruthless, you can not. If you could be as ruthless as him (stab, kick groins, break necks, punch, crash chairs on heads...), where's the "Art"?

But, one question: how do you reconcile yourself, having this belief within, with the way aikido is practiced in most dojos?
Because, certainly, the aikido that is practiced in most dojos is not Budo.

TheAikidoka
03-01-2012, 06:16 AM
A founders vision, this martial art is not for leading the world into destruction by the piling up of weapons, But a way to reconcile the worlds differences, indeed Aikido full fills religion, and can purify the hearts and minds of the aggressor.

If the Aikido world as it seems cannot buy into. Share a vision of this possibility, Willing to accept there is indeed another way that is not based in constant competition with one another, then I do ask the question. What's the point of practicing it?

It becomes empty, empty practice,empty words, and we become empty.

I really don't have much more to say on the competitive mind, it's obvious to me and a few others the degradation that it causes and must be curbed or stopped altogether, by saying no more, each one of us, no more.

No you cannot change people, if they truly don't want to, then it must be our job as a human being, to stop the madnes the insanity and cruelty ourselves, starting today with ourselves, and pray to whoever god you believe in that it works, because we can see from history, more violence does not cut it either.
Change can only come from the individual, simply saying, No more, enough is enough, I think O' sensei said this to terry Dobson, when discussing weight training. No Terry enough is enough, no more.

In Budo

Andy B

Kevin Leavitt
03-01-2012, 06:34 AM
Alberto wrote:

But, one question: how do you reconcile yourself, having this belief within, with the way aikido is practiced in most dojos?
Because, certainly, the aikido that is practiced in most dojos is not Budo

I don't concern myself too much about what is practiced in most dojos. I try to only concern myself about what I am practicing. I believe that budo is personal. The practice of budo is about me and no one else. I need to work on myself, that is all I can really affect. I can only choose what I do and my own actions. Therefore, what others do is no business or concern of mine.

Of course, I am happy to share a commonality between other like minded people on the path. You know what, we tend to find each other! My current "dojo community" is made up of some very interesting people. We are all over the world in some very interesting places. We train when we can and each of us brings to the table a different set of goals, skills, and perspectives.

I tend to not spend too much time with people that do not share the same priorities.

it is really as simple as that.

I think that most budoka should really not be concerned with what others are doing, but what they themselves are doing. I love to talk about budo, to be budo, to do it, and I am happy to train with anyone, anywhere, any time that want to do the same. I have no desire to be the savior of aikido, nor do I think that it needs to be saved.

What will happen, is as people become more educated and aware and find each other, they will begin to walk away from the things they begin to understand are not things they want to spend time with.

So, I think, those that want to change things for themselves will find each other and "aikido" will evolve. Those dojos that want to continue in the ways that they want to continue may do so. They will always attract a certain personality type.

Nothing wrong with that. Those of us that have a difference of opinion simply need to continue to hold ourselves accountable and the ones that are really on the path will find us.

I want to be clear though that even though there are those schools out there that say they are doing budo....they may not be doing it, and in their hearts I think they know that when they look deep.

phitruong
03-01-2012, 06:56 AM
budo, the way of the warrior is a hard path. you stand between peace and violence, i.e. half of you for peace and half for violent. harmony isn't about peace. it's about balance. balance between dark and light, between good and bad, between yin and yang, between peace and violent. that's easterner thinking, balance. BALANCE is the key or ki or aiki or whatever. kinda like donut and coffee, you must have balance, can't have one without the other. :)

Kevin Leavitt
03-01-2012, 07:08 AM
..and you must keep an eye out over your shoulder cause there is always a cop lurking near by to take your donut and upset the balance of nature!

Marc Abrams
03-01-2012, 07:58 AM
A founders vision, this martial art is not for leading the world into destruction by the piling up of weapons, But a way to reconcile the worlds differences, indeed Aikido full fills religion, and can purify the hearts and minds of the aggressor.

If the Aikido world as it seems cannot buy into. Share a vision of this possibility, Willing to accept there is indeed another way that is not based in constant competition with one another, then I do ask the question. What's the point of practicing it?

It becomes empty, empty practice,empty words, and we become empty.

I really don't have much more to say on the competitive mind, it's obvious to me and a few others the degradation that it causes and must be curbed or stopped altogether, by saying no more, each one of us, no more.

No you cannot change people, if they truly don't want to, then it must be our job as a human being, to stop the madnes the insanity and cruelty ourselves, starting today with ourselves, and pray to whoever god you believe in that it works, because we can see from history, more violence does not cut it either.
Change can only come from the individual, simply saying, No more, enough is enough, I think O' sensei said this to terry Dobson, when discussing weight training. No Terry enough is enough, no more.

In Budo

Andy B

Andrew:

That is your idiosyncratic, misinterpretation of what O'Sensei was saying. He was commenting on themisuse of budo, not the neutering of budo. Once again, Kevin's words ring true: "you might have something good, but it ain't budo."

Now back to the donuts and coffee I just stole from the cop who just impounded them from Phi :D .

Marc Abrams

gates
03-01-2012, 09:25 AM
Andrew,
Just a couple of thoughts to play devils advocate.

Competition drives progress.
The competitive human instinct is a necessary function of our drive to survive.

As a ridiculous example think of captive Panda. They seem to lack a basic drive to get jiggy, so the zoo keepers add mirrors to the enclosure to stir them up a bit.

The thrust of this very thread could be considered as a competition as it 'competes against' an opposing viewpoint, that competition is necessary.

Chris Li
03-01-2012, 09:32 AM
Andrew,
Just a couple of thoughts to play devils advocate.

Competition drives progress.
The competitive human instinct is a necessary function of our drive to survive.

As a ridiculous example think of captive Panda. They seem to lack a basic drive to get jiggy, so the zoo keepers add mirrors to the enclosure to stir them up a bit.

The thrust of this very thread could be considered as a competition as it 'competes against' an opposing viewpoint, that competition is necessary.

And more - the Founder clearly spoke against competitive matches in Budo.

OTOH, I think it would be more difficult to show that he advocated an extreme bias against any form of competition in all of its senses. Certainly, he had strong ties to the military - and the Aikikai continued those ties into the post-war era.

Best,

Chris

Demetrio Cereijo
03-01-2012, 10:08 AM
And even more difficult would be taking his "let's not make aikido a sport" as "nature is wrong".

Demetrio Cereijo
03-01-2012, 10:10 AM
A founders vision, this martial art is not for leading the world into destruction by the piling up of weapons, But a way to reconcile the worlds differences, indeed Aikido full fills religion, and can purify the hearts and minds of the aggressor.



Aikido fulfills religion? Which one? How?

Chris Li
03-01-2012, 10:30 AM
Aikido fulfills religion? Which one? How?

Which is really a key question that usually goes unasked.

Ueshiba did say, essentially, that Aikido fulfills religion - but defining just what he meant by that is probably more difficult than most people imagine when they toss it out there, and what he did mean is probably a little different than many imagine.

Best,

Chris

Demetrio Cereijo
03-01-2012, 10:39 AM
Well, maybe Andrew can explain what Ueshiba meant. IIRC he (Andrew) said he has read the Kojiki, the Nihon Shoki and the Oomoto-kyo doctrine.

Surely his explanation is worth reading.

mathewjgano
03-01-2012, 11:38 AM
A founders vision, this martial art is not for leading the world into destruction by the piling up of weapons, But a way to reconcile the worlds differences, indeed Aikido full fills religion, and can purify the hearts and minds of the aggressor.

If the Aikido world as it seems cannot buy into. Share a vision of this possibility, Willing to accept there is indeed another way that is not based in constant competition with one another, then I do ask the question. What's the point of practicing it?

It becomes empty, empty practice,empty words, and we become empty.

I really don't have much more to say on the competitive mind, it's obvious to me and a few others the degradation that it causes and must be curbed or stopped altogether, by saying no more, each one of us, no more.

No you cannot change people, if they truly don't want to, then it must be our job as a human being, to stop the madnes the insanity and cruelty ourselves, starting today with ourselves, and pray to whoever god you believe in that it works, because we can see from history, more violence does not cut it either.
Change can only come from the individual, simply saying, No more, enough is enough, I think O' sensei said this to terry Dobson, when discussing weight training. No Terry enough is enough, no more.

In Budo

Andy B

I've been itching to post on this because I think it's a facinating topic in a variety of ways. I agree with the idea that many people are "too competitive" and that the world would be a much nicer place if people worked together more. To me it's simple math that resources working together add up to more than resources working against each other. That's over-simplified compared to reality, but I'm confident in it as a rule of thumb.
Competition is neither good or bad on its own. It's a fact of life and while being part of the negative situations you've described, it's not the competition that makes them negative. Competition is kind of like the car that you drive to go do something: what you choose to do is still left to be decided; the car just helps you get there. It is human nature to be self-centered and hoard resources. It is human nature to be social and share. If we didn't look out for ourselves, we wouldn't have a society to look out for also. If we weren't social, we wouldn't be the dominant species on the planet (i.e. we wouldn't have the success we generally do), and we as individuals would be rather ineffectual.
Yes, people compete as a matter of habit and that can be troublesome, but people also practice avoidance or subservience as a matter of habit, and that can be just as bad in its own way. So I wouldn't say one ought be non-competitive so much as autonomous and kind. I love competition when it's done in a fun, caring atmosphere. It's the caring that makes the difference, not the competition...in my opinion.
Take care,
Matt
p.s. As regards "Harmonization" in Aikido: my understanding, coming somewhat from a Jinja Shinto perspective, is that we ought harmonize with Great Nature. We harmonize with Daishizen in order to reveal the smaller "truths" by comparison.

jonreading
03-01-2012, 12:50 PM
Yeah, like Matthew... I'll bite...

First, I think we are really talking about the role of "sport", not "competition". Competition is a necessary part of all life, a theory put forth by Mr. Darwin. Sport is a luxury of pastime and not germane to the survival of life. To argue humans should be less competitive would be at some level in conflict with the theory of evolution. However, the use of "competition" and "sport" have become synonymous, even though there is a difference.

This world holds a limited number of resources, each life within the world driven to accumulate that which it needs to survive. It is only a recent development that humans have become so successful at acquiring what they need to survive they may acquire excess in both resources and time. In fact, so recent is the reality of this transition as there are still many individuals within cultures and cultures themselves that are not successful in this endeavor.

Budo is about resolution, not competition. I believe the spirit in which O Sensei spoke against competition was actually an admonishment for turning aikido into a pastime activity of contention. I contend that aikido is not sport. But I also contend that competition is about acquiring that which you need, even if the resource is limited. Winning and losing are labels for sport. For me, "non-competition" is like saying, "try not to acquire that which you need." If you have a need, you must to commit to satisfy the need; competition will determine if you are successful or not (i.e. no one starves to death by choice; rather, we starve by an inability to acquire [sufficient] food).

Most of us are fortunate to live within cultures where needs are typically satisfied. I can purchase my rice from a grocery store instead of contending with the local druglord's .50 cal machine gun anchored to the back of a truck stationed at my local food depot. I can let someone take the last bag of rice because there are beans in the next isle. I will not starve because I have no need for excess food. Likewise, to argue that we should be less competitive is an argument based upon the assertion that we do not have [the need] to use our aikido to protect ourselves. The superficiality of the argument disqualifies this statement (to be non-competitive) as budo.

Budo is a challenge to become better. It is a method of resolving that within you that is at conflict. As a point of argument, the very nature of our choice to train aikido was likely one of competition. When we walked through the door for the first time, did we not, on some level, deem ourselves in need of something (presumably aikido)? What was it about aikido that made it a better choice then tai chi, yoga, karate, or any number of other endeavors that competed to claim resolution to your need? Did karate "lose" because you chose to train aikido? Did aikido "win" your commitment?

graham christian
03-01-2012, 06:04 PM
Nice 'words' to do with competition and how natural it is but is it true?

Look around yourself even at things, look around yourself at the people you met today or ones you know, look around yourself at what happens at work.

If you actually look you will find competing, operating from the competitive mind, is completely crazy. It always leads to trouble and always makes things harder and generally makes things worse, in fact it always does.

This is different to a specialized arena. Thus we have sports and games and that's where it's a jointly agreed upon activity given rules of play.

I see people at work competing with things even and suffering the consequences. A builder who is trying to do something, like say remove a screw or hang a door or whatever. If it's a bit troublesome and he decides to look at it as the door is opposing him he then starts swearing at it and blaming it and trying to force it and ouch!!! Yeah, something 'bad' happens. He caused it, yet he blames the door. Crazy

If you work in an office or environment with people working closely together and there's that one who is always trying to show they are better, to impress the boss, to do all kind of annoying things and then act innocent, all kinds of methods. Oh the competitive mind. This person thus has to prove and therefor proving to the boss how 'bad' the others are become all part of the game. Lies become useful to this end. On and on. This fellow or woman is heading for a good beating or come uppance, after annoying and possibly destroying a few lives on the way of course. Oh the competitve mind.

Do you compete with the pavement you walk on, see it as an enemy? Do you walk around seeing others as enemies? In fact rather than do you the better question would be where do you? for in that part of life you are to that degree neurotic or paranoid to that extent, fearful of, thus suffering due to a viewpoint of your own. Then you can walk around and gather instances of things happening that justify you holding on to that viewpoint. Oh the competitive mind.

It's not human nature it's human insanity based on human lack of awareness.

When a person realizes just how stupid or mad the competitive mind is and just how stupid they have been following it then they can start growing spiritually and in awareness and even become a comfortable person to be around.

Regards.G.

mathewjgano
03-01-2012, 07:00 PM
Nice 'words' to do with competition and how natural it is but is it true?

Look around yourself even at things, look around yourself at the people you met today or ones you know, look around yourself at what happens at work.
If you actually look you will find competing, operating from the competitive mind, is completely crazy. It always leads to trouble and always makes things harder and generally makes things worse, in fact it always does.

This is different to a specialized arena. Thus we have sports and games and that's where it's a jointly agreed upon activity given rules of play.
I disagree with "always." I do look around; I do "actually look" and see ridiculous examples of competition all the time. In fact many of my oldest posts here involve me making the case against competition in general. Still, simply put, forms of competition are good, and I'm not just talking about sports and games.

I see people at work competing with things even and suffering the consequences. A builder who is trying to do something, like say remove a screw or hang a door or whatever. If it's a bit troublesome and he decides to look at it as the door is opposing him he then starts swearing at it and blaming it and trying to force it and ouch!!! Yeah, something 'bad' happens. He caused it, yet he blames the door. Crazy
I've been in a similar situation, where I viewed the installation as a competition between myself and it. The difference is that when I was frustrated I didn't let it cause me to lose control. Competition doesn't necessitate animonsity. The problem here is animosity, not a competitive mindset. In other jobs I've competed with my co-wokers. I held no animosity for them whether or not I "beat" their pace. I was competing to the benefit of us all.

If you work in an office or environment with people working closely together and there's that one who is always trying to show they are better, to impress the boss, to do all kind of annoying things and then act innocent, all kinds of methods. Oh the competitive mind. This person thus has to prove and therefor proving to the boss how 'bad' the others are become all part of the game. Lies become useful to this end. On and on. This fellow or woman is heading for a good beating or come uppance, after annoying and possibly destroying a few lives on the way of course. Oh the competitve mind.

Again, I don't see those as the necessary product of competitiveness. Insecurity and selfishness, maybe. You seem to think that being competitive means you're always working to detract from others' situations or goals. That is only the cheap variety of competitiveness. The good stuff is where it's done while actually caring about the other guy; in ways that pushes all to apply themselves to their highest abilities. In my opinion the best competition is the kind which inspires an understanding of "Masakatsu Agatsu," and that is not relegated merely to sports and games, but rather pertains to something considerably more wide-reaching.
Take care,
Mat

graham christian
03-01-2012, 07:45 PM
I disagree with "always." I do look around; I do "actually look" and see ridiculous examples of competition all the time. In fact many of my oldest posts here involve me making the case against competition in general. Still, simply put, forms of competition are good, and I'm not just talking about sports and games.

I've been in a similar situation, where I viewed the installation as a competition between myself and it. The difference is that when I was frustrated I didn't let it cause me to lose control. Competition doesn't necessitate animonsity. The problem here is animosity, not a competitive mindset. In other jobs I've competed with my co-wokers. I held no animosity for them whether or not I "beat" their pace. I was competing to the benefit of us all.

Again, I don't see those as the necessary product of competitiveness. Insecurity and selfishness, maybe. You seem to think that being competitive means you're always working to detract from others' situations or goals. That is only the cheap variety of competitiveness. The good stuff is where it's done while actually caring about the other guy; in ways that pushes all to apply themselves to their highest abilities. In my opinion the best competition is the kind which inspires an understanding of "Masakatsu Agatsu," and that is not relegated merely to sports and games, but rather pertains to something considerably more wide-reaching.
Take care,
Mat

I see you disagree in the first paragraph but I don't see examples of where it is good.

You say competive mind doesn't mean animosity. In that example given I don't say it means it but it is the cause of it. Without the competive mind there cannot be animosity. If you controlled that mind and found that then you were not using animosity then that shows that you were not competing at that point. It also shows that if you didn;t control it then you would be in a state of animosity towards.

I am saying the competitive mind leads to, causes all those things. The competitive mind cannot lead to masakatsu and agatsu for it bars true understanding. Caring I agree with for without it there can be no Aikido and actually caring removes the competitive mind. So the truth is that he who uses the competitive mind does not care but merely justifies it's use.

To push someone to apply their self to their highest ability done with care is an act of kindness and has no competition in it. To push through a barrier is not an act of competition but an act of courage and if you are being helped by another to do so then you are being supported by their faith in you.

All good. Thus the competitive mind is merely a trap, atrap that works to the degree you agree with it and adopt it. A self defeating mind. A mind that has already lost.

The five minds of budo, the five spirits of budo have no competition in them.

May all reach senshin.

Peace. G.

Kevin Leavitt
03-01-2012, 11:45 PM
there are many examples. Communism based on Marxism attempted to put some good theories together to eliminate competition, yet in the end people work to screw each other over. Yes, you could say it is because of the competitive mine of the individual and I would agree. So how do you change that?

Capitalism is based on communism coupled with democracy embraces the competitive mind and works with it. It actually works because it encourages a natural instinct in people to work together to win. Sure in theory it would be nice to get people to work together, but that requires a degree of altruism that simply does not exsist.

Competition or a competitive environment can create a situation in which it is advantageous for people to work together. We do it all the time in the Military in basic training and it specialized training in Special ops.

Personally, I believe, as Jon stated that Aikido is not so much about eliminating the competitive mind, but recognizing that it exsist and using a process for us to deal with the realities of human nature, not to try and change it globally. As I have stated earlier, Aikido is about self and embrace what is human.

You already know that greed and corruption are bad. We all know that. So how do you stop it? How to you create the conditions and space necessary to help others that are so lost see that there are alternatives?

Aikido iand budo s about solutions, not theory.

So let's agree that this competition is bad as defined as corruption, greed, and oppression. Can you agree that the human mind is, well human?

If so, then how do you work with it? How does Aikido work to change people from greed to cooperation and a more peaceful do existence? What is it in budo or Aikido that can lead to that? Why is it unique? What does it offer that everything else fails?

Let's stop arguing about the definition, agree that suffering is wrong, and talk a little more concrete on how budo alleviates it.

I think you guys are barking up the wrong tree. On the right street, but the cat is in another tree. Not the macro topic of competition or competive mind.

Marc Abrams
03-02-2012, 07:22 AM
there are many examples. Communism based on Marxism attempted to put some good theories together to eliminate competition, yet in the end people work to screw each other over. Yes, you could say it is because of the competitive mine of the individual and I would agree. So how do you change that?

Capitalism is based on communism coupled with democracy embraces the competitive mind and works with it. It actually works because it encourages a natural instinct in people to work together to win. Sure in theory it would be nice to get people to work together, but that requires a degree of altruism that simply does not exsist.

Competition or a competitive environment can create a situation in which it is advantageous for people to work together. We do it all the time in the Military in basic training and it specialized training in Special ops.

Personally, I believe, as Jon stated that Aikido is not so much about eliminating the competitive mind, but recognizing that it exsist and using a process for us to deal with the realities of human nature, not to try and change it globally. As I have stated earlier, Aikido is about self and embrace what is human.

You already know that greed and corruption are bad. We all know that. So how do you stop it? How to you create the conditions and space necessary to help others that are so lost see that there are alternatives?

Aikido iand budo s about solutions, not theory.

So let's agree that this competition is bad as defined as corruption, greed, and oppression. Can you agree that the human mind is, well human?

If so, then how do you work with it? How does Aikido work to change people from greed to cooperation and a more peaceful do existence? What is it in budo or Aikido that can lead to that? Why is it unique? What does it offer that everything else fails?

Let's stop arguing about the definition, agree that suffering is wrong, and talk a little more concrete on how budo alleviates it.

I think you guys are barking up the wrong tree. On the right street, but the cat is in another tree. Not the macro topic of competition or competive mind.

Kevin:

Don't you think that you are being too hard on them? The tree that they are playing with is not that high, has a step-ladder built into it, etc... The comforts of that tree make masakatsu and agatsu to become self-evident to all. Your invitation and mine to allow them to try the other trees in places like Homs, Afghanistan, a bunch of places in Africa, southeast Asia, etc., now that is simply being too hard on them.

Whereas we all do not have to go to those places to wake up to a larger, more nuanced and ugly set of realities, we should at least be honest enough to ourselves and others as to the significant limits inherent in many of our ideas and practices.

Comments like Graham's have quite the hollow ring to them:
When a person realizes just how stupid or mad the competitive mind is and just how stupid they have been following it then they can start growing spiritually and in awareness and even become a comfortable person to be around.

Quite a judgmental statement from an allegedly spiritual, comfortable person.

An equivalent to my world is when I talk to couples about strength in a relationship. I talk about that strength as not being evident in how well they get along, but in how well they fight with one another.

Regards,

Marc Abrams

Kevin Leavitt
03-02-2012, 09:44 AM
It really is the same theme or trend that we see with the whole IS/IT debate. Everyone will talk conceptually about how it should work, the theories etc...but when asked the tough questions about application, or to definitively explain the technical pieces of how you do something...you typically get crickets chriping...or at best a revised problem statement that attempts to shift the focus.

A simple question I ask really. How does Aikido reduce or eliminate the competitive mind or reduce suffering?

graham christian
03-02-2012, 09:47 AM
there are many examples. Communism based on Marxism attempted to put some good theories together to eliminate competition, yet in the end people work to screw each other over. Yes, you could say it is because of the competitive mine of the individual and I would agree. So how do you change that?

Capitalism is based on communism coupled with democracy embraces the competitive mind and works with it. It actually works because it encourages a natural instinct in people to work together to win. Sure in theory it would be nice to get people to work together, but that requires a degree of altruism that simply does not exsist.

Competition or a competitive environment can create a situation in which it is advantageous for people to work together. We do it all the time in the Military in basic training and it specialized training in Special ops.

Personally, I believe, as Jon stated that Aikido is not so much about eliminating the competitive mind, but recognizing that it exsist and using a process for us to deal with the realities of human nature, not to try and change it globally. As I have stated earlier, Aikido is about self and embrace what is human.

You already know that greed and corruption are bad. We all know that. So how do you stop it? How to you create the conditions and space necessary to help others that are so lost see that there are alternatives?

Aikido iand budo s about solutions, not theory.

So let's agree that this competition is bad as defined as corruption, greed, and oppression. Can you agree that the human mind is, well human?

If so, then how do you work with it? How does Aikido work to change people from greed to cooperation and a more peaceful do existence? What is it in budo or Aikido that can lead to that? Why is it unique? What does it offer that everything else fails?

Let's stop arguing about the definition, agree that suffering is wrong, and talk a little more concrete on how budo alleviates it.

I think you guys are barking up the wrong tree. On the right street, but the cat is in another tree. Not the macro topic of competition or competive mind.

Hi Kevin.
Concrete on how budo alleviates it? Love to. Unfortunately I find debating with someone who believes in budo the way you do for example means that you would have to understand and accept the way and type of budo I believe in. When we understand each others budo then debate can ensue.

Unfortunately we both understand your type of budo yet it's not reciprocated. All I see is false understandings, just like in the post above, where a standard courageous view in the buddhist world or indeed any religious world or spiritual pursuit knows and calls the competitive mind crazy and stupid and worse than that even. Yet another not aware of these views understanding wise will then take that statement as some kind of judgemental something or other.

Statements like cat is in another tree show we are not 'on the same page'.

Here's the thing, the views I express and others of similar perspective, are concrete. They are not accepted by some as concrete thus not seen as real. Therein lies the problems in discussion.

That's all really.

Regards.G.

graham christian
03-02-2012, 09:55 AM
Kevin:

Don't you think that you are being too hard on them? The tree that they are playing with is not that high, has a step-ladder built into it, etc... The comforts of that tree make masakatsu and agatsu to become self-evident to all. Your invitation and mine to allow them to try the other trees in places like Homs, Afghanistan, a bunch of places in Africa, southeast Asia, etc., now that is simply being too hard on them.

Whereas we all do not have to go to those places to wake up to a larger, more nuanced and ugly set of realities, we should at least be honest enough to ourselves and others as to the significant limits inherent in many of our ideas and practices.

Comments like Graham's have quite the hollow ring to them:
When a person realizes just how stupid or mad the competitive mind is and just how stupid they have been following it then they can start growing spiritually and in awareness and even become a comfortable person to be around.

Quite a judgmental statement from an allegedly spiritual, comfortable person.

An equivalent to my world is when I talk to couples about strength in a relationship. I talk about that strength as not being evident in how well they get along, but in how well they fight with one another.

Regards,

Marc Abrams

Yes Marc, such is your perception. Nothings changed there. As I said above in my last post, the comments I make are real and concrete. Admitting stupidity is a real thing. Only ego hates it in my estimation.

Your world is yours but it seems to me you think therefor others world is wrong. Strength in relationships in my world is good communication and therefor arguments gradually dissappear.

Different.

Regards.G.

morph4me
03-02-2012, 10:14 AM
Competitive:- Teaches

1. To set a goal
2. To improve your skills and performance to reach your goal
3. To exert whatever effort it takes to improve yourself
4. This teaches one that although you may not reach your goal, you can improve.
5. This proves that hard work and determination can take you farther than wishing and complaining

Non-competitive:- Teaches

1. To develop an attitude of entitlement.
2. To expect that the people putting forth an effort will take care of you
3. So there is an expectation that those who do nothing to improve themselves will be supported by those who do.
4. This teaches one how to create dependency.
5. This proves that everyone is equal and should have the same opportunities for advancement, regardless of qualifications or effort.

phitruong
03-02-2012, 10:43 AM
Unfortunately I find debating with someone who believes in budo the way you do for example means that you would have to understand and accept the way and type of budo I believe in. When we understand each others budo then debate can ensue.

.

*scratching head (lice falling off)* if two persons understand each other view/belief, then what is the point of debating? might as well talking to yourself. by not accepting another person view/belief, isn't that where competitive start?

mathewjgano
03-02-2012, 10:55 AM
You say competive mind doesn't mean animosity. In that example given I don't say it means it but it is the cause of it. Without the competive mind there cannot be animosity.
You seem to have said it must cause animosity, I said it doesn't have to cause it. I said a competitive mind doesn't necessarily mean animosity is also present. You're saying it can cause animosity and that because of this, if we removed the competitive mindset, we could remove animosity, is this correct? I'm saying not all competition breeds animosity and so we only "need" to remove the parts that actually cause something negative.
We disagree about the nature of my mindset I described in work situations, but I maintain my mindset was competitive; I imagined the installation to be in a position of opposition. I defeated it. I won. I was a gracious winner and we remain friends to this day. :D Had I been defeated I would have had to own it, smile, and try something different...or get pissed off and then own it and try something different anyway. I still had a choice as to which one I fostered. I avoid animosity, so the competition I employ (i.e. applied compeititve mindset) tends to work out well for all involved. I compete with people up to a point. Sure past that point I'm trying to cooperate, but there is still competition involved. I am actively using a competitive mindset in these situations.
As with all things, when taken too far, they become unhealthy. In all things, balance.

If you controlled that mind and found that then you were not using animosity then that shows that you were not competing at that point.
This presumes a person must have animosity in order to have a competitive mindset. Of course I disagree with that idea. I've been competing in one form or another my whole life. I've actively developed a competitive mindset in conjunction with my non-compeitive mindset so I bounce back and forth between being competitive and not, quite easily. Yes, if all I did was act competitively, it would be problematic at best...I believe this is called Oppositional Defiant Disorder. However, since I apply balance to my natural competitive behaviors, it's never been suggested I should have less animosity...if anything I've usually been told I'm too much of a nice guy.

TheAikidoka
03-02-2012, 10:55 AM
Well, maybe Andrew can explain what Ueshiba meant. IIRC he (Andrew) said he has read the Kojiki, the Nihon Shoki and the Oomoto-kyo doctrine.

Surely his explanation is worth reading.

Dear Demetrio,
To have any meaningful answer that you would understand (not being funny here, but its true), I suggest first read the teaching`s, to grasp an understanding for yourself, follow the links below.

Kojiki:

http://www.sacred-texts.com/shi/kj/index.htm

Nihongi,

http://www.sacred-texts.com/shi/nihon0.htm

Reikai Monogatari Omoto`s spiritual texts

http://www2.plala.or.jp/wani-san/briefsummary.html

Anything you wish to ask afterwards feel free by all means, but at I feel, you may not need to ask.

In Budo

Andy B

graham christian
03-02-2012, 11:00 AM
*scratching head (lice falling off)* if two persons understand each other view/belief, then what is the point of debating? might as well talking to yourself. by not accepting another person view/belief, isn't that where competitive start?

Don't wully, flied lice good for you......

By not accepting then yes that is a point where competitiveness starts.

I have met and talked to many martial artists but guess what, no arguments, no debates, yet an understanding of our different views.

Thus we discuss without contention. It's all good. Thus we learn from each other and part wishing each other well on our journeys.

A good debate is a discussion and a bad one is an argument I would say.

Regards.G.

graham christian
03-02-2012, 11:11 AM
You seem to have said it must cause animosity, I said it doesn't have to cause it. I said a competitive mind doesn't necessarily mean animosity is also present. You're saying it can cause animosity and that because of this, if we removed the competitive mindset, we could remove animosity, is this correct? I'm saying not all competition breeds animosity and so we only "need" to remove the parts that actually cause something negative.
We disagree about the nature of my mindset I described in work situations, but I maintain my mindset was competitive; I imagined the installation to be in a position of opposition. I defeated it. I won. I was a gracious winner and we remain friends to this day. :D Had I been defeated I would have had to own it, smile, and try something different...or get pissed off and then own it and try something different anyway. I still had a choice as to which one I fostered. I avoid animosity, so the competition I employ (i.e. applied compeititve mindset) tends to work out well for all involved. I compete with people up to a point. Sure past that point I'm trying to cooperate, but there is still competition involved. I am actively using a competitive mindset in these situations.
As with all things, when taken too far, they become unhealthy. In all things, balance.

This presumes a person must have animosity in order to have a competitive mindset. Of course I disagree with that idea. I've been competing in one form or another my whole life. I've actively developed a competitive mindset in conjunction with my non-compeitive mindset so I bounce back and forth between being competitive and not, quite easily. Yes, if all I did was act competitively, it would be problematic at best...I believe this is called Oppositional Defiant Disorder. However, since I apply balance to my natural competitive behaviors, it's never been suggested I should have less animosity...if anything I've usually been told I'm too much of a nice guy.

That's good, it's your way and you find it works for you. It's definitely better than continuously being oppositional I agree and find those folks with that mindset thinking they are on some zealous mission.(in the name of some 'virtue' of course)

I merely present the view of 'without one'. A view attained or sought by many, buddhists being one example. Those who do so discover new views and in my experience then live an even more balanced life.

Thus we have differing views here yet the overall goal is the same.

Peace.G.

Kevin Leavitt
03-02-2012, 11:21 AM
Hi Kevin.
Concrete on how budo alleviates it? Love to. Unfortunately I find debating with someone who believes in budo the way you do for example means that you would have to understand and accept the way and type of budo I believe in. When we understand each others budo then debate can ensue.

Unfortunately we both understand your type of budo yet it's not reciprocated. All I see is false understandings, just like in the post above, where a standard courageous view in the buddhist world or indeed any religious world or spiritual pursuit knows and calls the competitive mind crazy and stupid and worse than that even. Yet another not aware of these views understanding wise will then take that statement as some kind of judgemental something or other.

Statements like cat is in another tree show we are not 'on the same page'.

Here's the thing, the views I express and others of similar perspective, are concrete. They are not accepted by some as concrete thus not seen as real. Therein lies the problems in discussion.

That's all really.

Regards.G.

Agreed, we are not on the same page. I accept that.

So, I ask for a clearer definition of the competitive mind. I offer the standard buddhist definition along the lines that life is suffering and desire/wants/cravings is what causes suffering....I got all that, I am a practicing buddhist BTW.

I see two distinct issues. Personal level of suffering and the manifestation of it in society or Societal.

Can you accept this as a definition of competitive mind? that is, on a personal level, that desires/wants/cravings cause suffering and the things that people do to act on them is the thing you are calling BAD...or the competitive mind?

If not, then please explain what you mean at the root level what the causes are of competitive mind so we can better understand the causations.

From there, we can then begin to discuss the various solutions on the spectrum. From mediation and other transformative processes.

And, yes, even the Dali Lama admits that sometimes violence is necessary in order to STOP violence if you take the time to listen to what he says. He understands the complex nature of things.

So, it isn't about if I agree to what your definition of budo is or isn't....it is about YOU giving examples or defining HOW your perspective provides solutions to the various problems on the spectrum.

So, again, I ask. How does the physical practice of aikido help us in alleviating suffering. How does practicing the "WAR WAY" or the "VIOLENCE of Marital Arts" help us in alleviating suffering and injustice in the world? How do we STOP Violence?

That is all that is being asked. It is a very simple question really.

mathewjgano
03-02-2012, 11:34 AM
That's good, it's your way and you find it works for you. It's definitely better than continuously being oppositional I agree and find those folks with that mindset thinking they are on some zealous mission.(in the name of some 'virtue' of course)

I merely present the view of 'without one'. A view attained or sought by many, buddhists being one example. Those who do so discover new views and in my experience then live an even more balanced life.

Thus we have differing views here yet the overall goal is the same.

Peace.G.

:)Fair enough sir! I just need to know...
did I win? :p (Kidding of course).
Cheers,
Matt

Kevin Leavitt
03-02-2012, 11:47 AM
exerpt from a speeh by the Dali Lama:

"I want to make it clear, however, that although I am deeply opposed to war, I am not advocating appeasement. It is often necessary to take a strong stand to counter unjust aggression. For instance, it is plain to all of us that the Second World War was entirely justified. It "saved civilization" from the tyranny of Nazi Germany, as Winston Churchill so aptly put it. In my view, the Korean War was also just, since it gave South Korea the chance of gradually developing democracy. But we can only judge whether or not a conflict was vindicated on moral grounds with hindsight."

Kevin Leavitt
03-02-2012, 11:52 AM
Hindsight.

IMO, this is important. Budo gives us a chance to evaluate our actions as we do not have the luxury of hindsight when we must make a stand. Therefore, we must study violence in all it's forms in order to better understand the seriousness of our actions and to make the best informed decisions we can when the time comes for us to make those tough decisions. It may only be a split second we have to make that decision.

It is about walking tall (right) and carrying a big stick (might).

Kevin Leavitt
03-02-2012, 12:02 PM
The Dali Lama on a plan of action to create world peace:

Disarmament can occur only within the context of new political and economic relationships. Before we consider this issue in detail, it is worth imagining the kind of peace process from which we would benefit most. This is fairly self - evident. First we should work on eliminating nuclear weapons, next, biological and chemical ones, then offensive arms, and finally, defensive ones. At the same time, to safeguard the peace, we should start developing in one or more global regions an international police force made up of equal number of members from each nation under a collective command. Eventually this force would cover the whole world."

The Dali Lama recognizes the need for people to defend and to hold people accountable for their actions. Another example, IMO, of the fact that Budo is a bridging strategy to World Peace. Who will do this? Who are the people that will participate and be WILLING to do the tough things that are required of a "world police force"? Who has the COURAGE to stand and say STOP?

Kevin Leavitt
03-02-2012, 12:10 PM
My point of the Dali Lama posting is that even in Buddhism, the concept of defense is there. The Dali Lama recognizes the need for mitigation of violence.

So, the big question is the purpose of budo to eliminate the so-called competitive mind, or is the purpose of it to keep it in check or hold it accountable?

Another thought comes to mind. You may have a non-competitive mind and be completely enlightened and transformed...however, when you meet a competitive mind that is intent on competing with you...you are in a competition whether you recognize it or not. You may choose to NOT accept it, but the mere fact you establish a connection, relationship, or response...you are competing. Failure to recognize that means the competitive mind will impose his will on you and achieve his desired end state.

Even Ghandi in his pursuit of non-violent resistance was in competition for an ideal.

Again, right street, wrong tree on the whole focus on the competitive mind.

TheAikidoka
03-02-2012, 12:15 PM
Aikido fulfills religion? Which one? How?

Which is really a key question that usually goes unasked.

Ueshiba did say, essentially, that Aikido fulfills religion - but defining just what he meant by that is probably more difficult than most people imagine when they toss it out there, and what he did mean is probably a little different than many imagine.

Best,

Chris -

Here is how.
Because they point to the eternal presence that is this moment. Aikido train`s this every time an attack is Initiated and delivered. what I am I talking about?

Uke has to be keenly in the present in this moment not to give away his intentions of which attack he is going to deliver. Tori has to be keenly present Also in this moment to be open to where the attack is coming from.

Tori can be so acutely aware of what is gong on right now that he can indeed control where uke attacks.

Now because Uke has to have a thought about attacking, Tori will see it usually well before the blow has struck, time stands still when your in the moment does it not?

Now tori can move circularly because he "sees" the movement of uke, he can now enter triangularly, stepping to uke`s third point (sankaku) to uke frontin this way he can simply step forward (with unbelievable power) push Uke`s chin up and backwards, destroying ukes balnce to his sankaku to the rear. This is the squaring of all things. this creates harmony, so nobody loses, you can choose piece in this moment.

Any body aware of what im talking about is Irimi nage, omote, stepping to the live side of uke, this is the most dangerous for tori, but with timing.

Now what does this appear to be pointing to?

Your both in the moment without no thought of past or future, no thought about him or me, no thought of, I wonder if I can make a competition out of this no. It is pointing to the reality that is this moment, and it is only in this moment we can choose peace, not tomorrow, net yesterday but now.

No religion teaches to be now, here in this moment. Most talk about fear, and you must do this or that ritual and follow these rules to get there (kingdom of heaven) or whatever they claim that will happen to you if you dont, it is fear of future, if you don`t not do these things.

Most religions talk about the oneness of being with god, finding god essence or however you address you particular denomination. but whatever they teach you to get there is not it either because it is always based in future. Then we have those religious leaders harking on about what htey and their religion did to us and our god is the true god ague fight compete for the right to say we are indeed right ;-)

They do not teach that actual peace can only come when you are silent enough to accept the situation you are in (no matter what that situation maybe) this moment, you can find peace because you are peace.
This is the lack that Aikido fulfills, this lack that is not taught in religion.And this is how Aikido Fulfills them, It is indeed hidden in plain sight.

Indeed, this teaches how be, non-competitive in a competitive world, and it is peace.

In Budo

Andy b

:triangle: :circle: :square:

:ai: :ki: :do:

Chris Li
03-02-2012, 12:36 PM
Which is really a key question that usually goes unasked.

Ueshiba did say, essentially, that Aikido fulfills religion - but defining just what he meant by that is probably more difficult than most people imagine when they toss it out there, and what he did mean is probably a little different than many imagine.

Best,

Chris -

Here is how.
Because they point to the eternal presence that is this moment. Aikido train`s this every time an attack is Initiated and delivered. what I am I talking about?



Well, I understand what you're saying - but show me that Ueshiba said that as well.

Best,

Chris

Kevin Leavitt
03-02-2012, 12:43 PM
Andrew, your example of irimi nage. No issues with the example. However, you say you can CHOOSE peace in the moment. Sure, that is compassion. However, it does not, IMO, demonstrate the elimination of the competitive mind. It demonstrates that nage acknowledges the situation and responds to it appropriately and chooses to be ethical somewhere on the spectrum.

However, lets back up a little. Why should nage engage at all? If he is not trying to preserve something important to him (competition) then why would he need to do anything? Why not stand there and simply accept uke's will imposed on him?

On religion: I think you are correct in your statements about most organized religions dealing in the future and on fear. However, there are religious institutions and practices that do "preach" on the concept of present mind. I do however, think you are generally correct in your take on this.

I appreciate your example of how you believe Aikido fulfills this "missing part of religion". For me, however, as a somewhat Non-religious person as would be consider by the average "religious" person, it is detached from religion and really has nothing to do with religion whatsoever. However, everyone is free to find spiritual and religious meaning where ever they find it.

I do agree that it is a requirement to be in the present in Budo as well. However, budo also is concerned about the past and future as well.

TheAikidoka
03-02-2012, 12:48 PM
Well, I understand what you're saying - but show me that Ueshiba said that as well.

Best,

Chris

No Chris, he said go find out for yourself.

Andy B

TheAikidoka
03-02-2012, 12:57 PM
Andrew, your example of irimi nage. No issues with the example. However, you say you can CHOOSE peace in the moment. Sure, that is compassion. However, it does not, IMO, demonstrate the elimination of the competitive mind. It demonstrates that nage acknowledges the situation and responds to it appropriately and chooses to be ethical somewhere on the spectrum.

However, lets back up a little. Why should nage engage at all? If he is not trying to preserve something important to him (competition) then why would he need to do anything? Why not stand there and simply accept uke's will imposed on him?

On religion: I think you are correct in your statements about most organized religions dealing in the future and on fear. However, there are religious institutions and practices that do "preach" on the concept of present mind. I do however, think you are generally correct in your take on this.

I appreciate your example of how you believe Aikido fulfills this "missing part of religion". For me, however, as a somewhat Non-religious person as would be consider by the average "religious" person, it is detached from religion and really has nothing to do with religion whatsoever. However, everyone is free to find spiritual and religious meaning where ever they find it.

I do agree that it is a requirement to be in the present in Budo as well. However, budo also is concerned about the past and future as well.

There is no past, there is no future, this is Fact. You do not compete, by finishing the opponent in the sense he so completely injured, he may have to go to hospital, he does not get maimed, he does not die, he does not lose, so you do not lose.
yes you can do all these things damage injure maim kill disable, but once you do, there is no going back, you cannot undo what has been done, You also cannot easily undo what has happened in You. So make it as peaceful an encounter, peaceful I think is the wrong word, Kinder is more to where I`m going, but you can have full domination of the situation, but not the opponent.

Thus no competing: look what your about to do to me with that big knofe how dare you attack me in such a way. BANG trapped in competition, and if you have the skill will probably utterly destroy the opponent. There is Another way. Non-competing.

you preserve life. not go onto to commit to death, death of spirit that is you. You the peace under which all situations/moments Occur

Andy B

graham christian
03-02-2012, 01:02 PM
Agreed, we are not on the same page. I accept that.

So, I ask for a clearer definition of the competitive mind. I offer the standard buddhist definition along the lines that life is suffering and desire/wants/cravings is what causes suffering....I got all that, I am a practicing buddhist BTW.

I see two distinct issues. Personal level of suffering and the manifestation of it in society or Societal.

Can you accept this as a definition of competitive mind? that is, on a personal level, that desires/wants/cravings cause suffering and the things that people do to act on them is the thing you are calling BAD...or the competitive mind?

If not, then please explain what you mean at the root level what the causes are of competitive mind so we can better understand the causations.

From there, we can then begin to discuss the various solutions on the spectrum. From mediation and other transformative processes.

And, yes, even the Dali Lama admits that sometimes violence is necessary in order to STOP violence if you take the time to listen to what he says. He understands the complex nature of things.

So, it isn't about if I agree to what your definition of budo is or isn't....it is about YOU giving examples or defining HOW your perspective provides solutions to the various problems on the spectrum.

So, again, I ask. How does the physical practice of aikido help us in alleviating suffering. How does practicing the "WAR WAY" or the "VIOLENCE of Marital Arts" help us in alleviating suffering and injustice in the world? How do we STOP Violence?

That is all that is being asked. It is a very simple question really.

Hi Kevin.
That which you point out I call bad, based on selfish, cravings etc causing suffering and that also being competitive mind yes, I accept that and that is my understanding.

So if you agree with that then we are starting on the same page, thank you for explaining.

Then you ask how does the physical practice of Aikido help us in alleviating suffering. My answer is Physical practice doesn't. Aikido is not a physical practice to me, it is a spiritual practice, a practice of applying spiritual principles in order to finally see just how real and concrete they actually are. Then we can look at life from a new view which actually gives better solutions.

The 'war way' the 'violence way' does not help alleviate suffering is the point. It and thus the competitive mind cannot alleviate suffering is the point. The point I believe O'Sensei continually stated.

Thus Aikido is the discipline and path of peace. That's my view.

Aikido and how it stops violence put as you put it as a simple question deserves thus a simple answer. No competitive mind, no violence. To stop violence takes non-resistance, compassion to gain the correct understanding, humility to act without fear or hidden agenda, center, zanshin, the spirit of loving protection, and those virtues O'Sensei talked about and demonstrated.

Such is my view.

I have too many examples in Aikido of demostrating this in action to students coming from such perspectives with such questions. Thus they find a reality, they experience this different reality, they see the potential use of this different reality and thus have a personal experience which shows their competitive attitude could not handle but yet made 'too much sense' as they tend to put it whilst laughung their socks off.

Regards.G.

Demetrio Cereijo
03-02-2012, 01:07 PM
Dear Demetrio,
To have any meaningful answer that you would understand (not being funny here, but its true), I suggest first read the teaching`s, to grasp an understanding for yourself, follow the links below.

...
Ok, thanks.

Anything you wish to ask afterwards feel free by all means, but at I feel, you may not need to ask.
You're right.

Regards.

Chris Li
03-02-2012, 01:09 PM
No Chris, he said go find out for yourself.

Andy B

So anything anybody comes up with on their own is OK?

I'm asking if you, yourself, can show a connection between your beliefs and what Ueshiba said, and what that connection is.

Otherwise, it's just whatever you came up with - which is not necessarily a bad thing, but I'm asking you to be a little clearer.

Best,

Chris

graham christian
03-02-2012, 01:18 PM
exerpt from a speeh by the Dali Lama:

"I want to make it clear, however, that although I am deeply opposed to war, I am not advocating appeasement. It is often necessary to take a strong stand to counter unjust aggression. For instance, it is plain to all of us that the Second World War was entirely justified. It "saved civilization" from the tyranny of Nazi Germany, as Winston Churchill so aptly put it. In my view, the Korean War was also just, since it gave South Korea the chance of gradually developing democracy. But we can only judge whether or not a conflict was vindicated on moral grounds with hindsight."

To judge in retrospect such things and revert back to 'moral grounds' for me is a matter of intellect and pretty useless really. That doesn't mean don't do it for still things can be learned but unfortunately from my view the important things are not learned from such a process.

No, I prefer to look at the thing itself, war. It is the result of ignorance.

Now, knowing that we may search for a time or place where it was necessary, still knowing it is a result of ignorance rather than justifying it. Therefor to remember that it of itself is always bad, evil and can never be otherwise.

We can therefor in this wide universe come across situations where we have apparently no option but thus this shows only that we can be 'forced' into doing evil. It doesn't magically make it right or good.

So wisdom dictates that there is always a better way and so also dictates that is is up to us to become more wise. Justifying war as right or good does not lead to more wise, it actually give sthe excuse, if you won, to carry on being ignorant.

These are my views.

Regards.G.

Marc Abrams
03-02-2012, 01:29 PM
There is no past, there is no future, this is Fact.

This statement is actually false. Your experience of past, present & future is simply a bio-electrical (via chemical processes) occurrence that manifest as cognitive, emotional and sensory experiences. At an existential level, your present is a simultaneous experience of all temporal modalities.

You do not compete, by finishing the opponent in the sense he so completely injured, he may have to go to hospital, he does not get maimed, he does not die, he does not lose, so you do not lose.
yes you can do all these things damage injure maim kill disable, but once you do, there is no going back, you cannot undo what has been done, You also cannot easily undo what has happened in You.

Life is not a trial run. Nothing that has occurred can be done again. In a real fight, if you try to think about what you do, you are .5 seconds behind the person doing something. Bad place to be..... You do what you do in that moment and hopefully you might later have the luxury of joy, regret, sadness, etc..

So make it as peaceful an encounter, peaceful I think is the wrong word, Kinder is more to where I`m going, but you can have full domination of the situation, but not the opponent.

Thus no competing: look what your about to do to me with that big knofe how dare you attack me in such a way. BANG trapped in competition, and if you have the skill will probably utterly destroy the opponent. There is Another way. Non-competing.

you preserve life. not go onto to commit to death, death of spirit that is you. You the peace under which all situations/moments Occur

Andy B

All of that sounds good but rarely seems to translated into effective actions. I would suggest instead that if you can remain as calm and in control of your experiences as possible in a horrible moment, the greater likelihood of you being more effective in that moment- (eye-of-the-hurricane analogy). What you described was a function of a person thinking about the situation, placing him/herself 0.5 seconds behind potential actions. It is not the competing mind that gets the person hurt, but the person who tries to think before acting. That is a neurological/ neuropsychological reality that we cannot escape from.

Marc Abrams

graham christian
03-02-2012, 01:39 PM
Hindsight.

IMO, this is important. Budo gives us a chance to evaluate our actions as we do not have the luxury of hindsight when we must make a stand. Therefore, we must study violence in all it's forms in order to better understand the seriousness of our actions and to make the best informed decisions we can when the time comes for us to make those tough decisions. It may only be a split second we have to make that decision.

It is about walking tall (right) and carrying a big stick (might).

O.K. Once again I will give you an alternative view.

Budo of Aikido for me gives us a chance to study non resistance in all it's forms so that we can use these principles to handle any violence. Thus the study is not of violence but of that which ends it.

It is about walking tall and carrying the bowl of peace.

Regards.G.

graham christian
03-02-2012, 01:52 PM
My point of the Dali Lama posting is that even in Buddhism, the concept of defense is there. The Dali Lama recognizes the need for mitigation of violence.

So, the big question is the purpose of budo to eliminate the so-called competitive mind, or is the purpose of it to keep it in check or hold it accountable?

Another thought comes to mind. You may have a non-competitive mind and be completely enlightened and transformed...however, when you meet a competitive mind that is intent on competing with you...you are in a competition whether you recognize it or not. You may choose to NOT accept it, but the mere fact you establish a connection, relationship, or response...you are competing. Failure to recognize that means the competitive mind will impose his will on you and achieve his desired end state.

Even Ghandi in his pursuit of non-violent resistance was in competition for an ideal.

Again, right street, wrong tree on the whole focus on the competitive mind.

Once again I give an alternative viewpoint.

The Buddhist concept of defence is actually one that the competitive mind cannot grasp. O'Sensei to all intents and purposes operated from a true buddhist/shinto viewpoint. He talked about 'no attack' in Aikido and thus no defence but the competitive mind cannot and will never understand what that means. Therefor if such a person was to ever use such terms they would have a totally different meaning. Hence people didn't understand what he meant being a common thread.

The whole point of Aikido is to show how when meeting a person of competitive mind you are not in a competition and how to be so.

I am not in competition with my attacker. I do not compete with him. I help him out of his own condition and then he feels better. Aikibudo.

Regards G.

Demetrio Cereijo
03-02-2012, 02:19 PM
O'Sensei to all intents and purposes operated from a true buddhist/shinto viewpoint.

Do you mean Ueshiba operated under a honji suijaku paradigm or should I understand "true buddhist/shinto viewpoint" as something different?

graham christian
03-02-2012, 02:35 PM
Do you mean Ueshiba operated under a honji suijaku paradigm or should I understand "true buddhist/shinto viewpoint" as something different?

I mean he operated from an enlightened viewpoint which he said was the true purpose of all religions. So you could say I am saying a true religious viewpoint, universal, more kannagara.

I mention buddhism and shinto from a cultural perspective and the fact he studied both.

I mention true to mean enlightened.

Regards.G.

Demetrio Cereijo
03-02-2012, 02:53 PM
I mean he operated from an enlightened viewpoint which he said was the true purpose of all religions. So you could say I am saying a true religious viewpoint, universal, more kannagara.

I mention buddhism and shinto from a cultural perspective and the fact he studied both.

I mention true to mean enlightened.

Regards.G.

More kannagara? As in Kono Shozo's Kannagara no Michi (http://books.google.es/books?id=v7Xs1NzMMHMC&pg=PA127&lpg=PA127&dq=shozo+kannagara&source=bl&ots=AUMq6HYyEH&sig=His_fDpqYtnOW-bDjrNgS5heyQc&hl=es&sa=X&ei=OzNRT9nfHsSm0QWEgtmrDg&ved=0CDYQ6AEwAw#v=onepage&q=shozo%20kannagara&f=false)? Another meaning maybe? Which kannagara are you referring to when you say "more kannagara"?

Kevin Leavitt
03-02-2012, 03:09 PM
Graham, thanks for answering my questions. I do appreciate and respect you for that.

Then you ask how does the physical practice of Aikido help us in alleviating suffering. My answer is Physical practice doesn't. Aikido is not a physical practice to me, it is a spiritual practice, a practice of applying spiritual principles in order to finally see just how real and concrete they actually are. Then we can look at life from a new view which actually gives better solutions.


I think this sums up our differences, and really based on this paragraph alone, tells me that you and I are on two different planes.

Aikido for me is physical and real as is any form of budo. The intent and courage to cause harm must be present and real if necessary. For me, it is important to be able, at least mentally to be able to stand up and STOP violence. The more skill we have, the more we can influence the outcome in a more skillfull way to include non-violent ways.

If the practice ignores this aspect and is simply an allegory for what I consider to be a bastardization of philosophy and a revisionistic practice that dismissing the importance of the physical, then you are no longer practicing budo, martial art, or aikido, but something else.

Again, I have no issue with your intentions for peace, I think we'd share the same vision and endstate, but to me, what you are practicing has nothing to do with martial arts or budo. Budo has a very specific focus in its application. It is really a shame IMO that it goes misunderstood.

So, I think at this point, I have beat this to death and there really is nothing more I can say on the subject as it is very apparent to me that we are practicing two entirely separate things.

Thanks for the discussion and debate Graham.

graham christian
03-02-2012, 03:25 PM
More kannagara? As in Kono Shozo's Kannagara no Michi (http://books.google.es/books?id=v7Xs1NzMMHMC&pg=PA127&lpg=PA127&dq=shozo+kannagara&source=bl&ots=AUMq6HYyEH&sig=His_fDpqYtnOW-bDjrNgS5heyQc&hl=es&sa=X&ei=OzNRT9nfHsSm0QWEgtmrDg&ved=0CDYQ6AEwAw#v=onepage&q=shozo%20kannagara&f=false)? Another meaning maybe? Which kannagara are you referring to when you say "more kannagara"?

http://www.google.com/url?

If that link works I mean that view. Otherwise basically the way of the gods.

G.

graham christian
03-02-2012, 03:35 PM
More kannagara? As in Kono Shozo's Kannagara no Michi (http://books.google.es/books?id=v7Xs1NzMMHMC&pg=PA127&lpg=PA127&dq=shozo+kannagara&source=bl&ots=AUMq6HYyEH&sig=His_fDpqYtnOW-bDjrNgS5heyQc&hl=es&sa=X&ei=OzNRT9nfHsSm0QWEgtmrDg&ved=0CDYQ6AEwAw#v=onepage&q=shozo%20kannagara&f=false)? Another meaning maybe? Which kannagara are you referring to when you say "more kannagara"?

The reference can be found on google entitled shinto beliefs. From www.world-religions-professor.com/shintobeliefs.html.

He puts it in a way that would be more to your liking I suspect.

G.

graham christian
03-02-2012, 03:54 PM
Graham, thanks for answering my questions. I do appreciate and respect you for that.

I think this sums up our differences, and really based on this paragraph alone, tells me that you and I are on two different planes.

Aikido for me is physical and real as is any form of budo. The intent and courage to cause harm must be present and real if necessary. For me, it is important to be able, at least mentally to be able to stand up and STOP violence. The more skill we have, the more we can influence the outcome in a more skillfull way to include non-violent ways.

If the practice ignores this aspect and is simply an allegory for what I consider to be a bastardization of philosophy and a revisionistic practice that dismissing the importance of the physical, then you are no longer practicing budo, martial art, or aikido, but something else.

Again, I have no issue with your intentions for peace, I think we'd share the same vision and endstate, but to me, what you are practicing has nothing to do with martial arts or budo. Budo has a very specific focus in its application. It is really a shame IMO that it goes misunderstood.

So, I think at this point, I have beat this to death and there really is nothing more I can say on the subject as it is very apparent to me that we are practicing two entirely separate things.

Thanks for the discussion and debate Graham.

A pleasure doing business with you Sir. In response may I end off too with my alternative way.

Aikido for me spiritual and real as in any form of sen no budo. The intent and purpose and courage to do without harm and in fact improve the others disposition is the aim and must be present at all times. For me it is thus important to be able to stand up mentally and spiritually to stop violence which these spiritual principles do. The more we know them and practice them the more ways of ending violence we see and can put into effect.

I have no argument with your intentions towards peace. The old ways of budo did just as you say. Just as O'Sensei said too.

At which point I too have no need to carry on this discussion but thank you too for it.

Peace. G.

Demetrio Cereijo
03-02-2012, 03:54 PM
The reference can be found on google entitled shinto beliefs. From www.world-religions-professor.com/shintobeliefs.html.

He puts it in a way that would be more to your liking I suspect.

G.

It's not about what I like, it's about translating you for I'm never sure which meaning you give to the words you use.

Both a "Graham to English" and a "Graham to Japanese" dictionaries are needed to talk with you.

graham christian
03-02-2012, 04:47 PM
It's not about what I like, it's about translating you for I'm never sure which meaning you give to the words you use.

Both a "Graham to English" and a "Graham to Japanese" dictionaries are needed to talk with you.

Ha, ha. You are probably right there. But you do 'like' references to virtually all statements.

Peace.G.

TheAikidoka
03-02-2012, 09:05 PM
Hi Kevin.
That which you point out I call bad, based on selfish, cravings etc causing suffering and that also being competitive mind yes, I accept that and that is my understanding.

So if you agree with that then we are starting on the same page, thank you for explaining.

Then you ask how does the physical practice of Aikido help us in alleviating suffering. My answer is Physical practice doesn't. Aikido is not a physical practice to me, it is a spiritual practice, a practice of applying spiritual principles in order to finally see just how real and concrete they actually are. Then we can look at life from a new view which actually gives better solutions.

The 'war way' the 'violence way' does not help alleviate suffering is the point. It and thus the competitive mind cannot alleviate suffering is the point. The point I believe O'Sensei continually stated.

Thus Aikido is the discipline and path of peace. That's my view.

Aikido and how it stops violence put as you put it as a simple question deserves thus a simple answer. No competitive mind, no violence. To stop violence takes non-resistance, compassion to gain the correct understanding, humility to act without fear or hidden agenda, center, zanshin, the spirit of loving protection, and those virtues O'Sensei talked about and demonstrated.

Such is my view.

I have too many examples in Aikido of demostrating this in action to students coming from such perspectives with such questions. Thus they find a reality, they experience this different reality, they see the potential use of this different reality and thus have a personal experience which shows their competitive attitude could not handle but yet made 'too much sense' as they tend to put it whilst laughung their socks off.

Regards.G.

Right on Brother, right on. Fantastic response, right to the heart of what I'm talking about.

In Budo

Andy B

TheAikidoka
03-02-2012, 09:14 PM
This statement is actually false. Your experience of past, present & future is simply a bio-electrical (via chemical processes) occurrence that manifest as cognitive, emotional and sensory experiences. At an existential level, your present is a simultaneous experience of all temporal modalities.

Life is not a trial run. Nothing that has occurred can be done again. In a real fight, if you try to think about what you do, you are .5 seconds behind the person doing something. Bad place to be..... You do what you do in that moment and hopefully you might later have the luxury of joy, regret, sadness, etc..

All of that sounds good but rarely seems to translated into effective actions. I would suggest instead that if you can remain as calm and in control of your experiences as possible in a horrible moment, the greater likelihood of you being more effective in that moment- (eye-of-the-hurricane analogy). What you described was a function of a person thinking about the situation, placing him/herself 0.5 seconds behind potential actions. It is not the competing mind that gets the person hurt, but the person who tries to think before acting. That is a neurological/ neuropsychological reality that we cannot escape from.

Marc Abrams

I ment, make it as peaceful as you possibly can. Avoid it if you can, if you cannot avoid it, then injure slightly, if you have to maim/disable, before you kill, and if you must kill, kill cleanly and swiftly ( do not let them suffer) because not one drop f life should be wasted even in death.

This I believe is what O sensei ment, then technique from no matter what style, form or indeed different martial arts, will have that same intent behind it, do as little harm as possible to control the situation in hand.

This does not say do nothing if the violence escalates, indeed to do nothing when you can, is cowardice and it is vileness to my eyes, when I think of Budo.

Ask yourself where are you at this moment, I guarantee you when you read this the answer will be.......HERE NOW. You cannot be anywhere else. Please do try and tell me I'm wrong. And Come up with a convincing argument that is not based on the thought of form, because if it, is it is based in some kind of fear of future or past. if you can theN, you are not really present at all.

Andy B

TheAikidoka
03-02-2012, 09:33 PM
This points to the truth,, that although O'sensei's style changed considerably over the years, his single mindedness on the way did not waver 1 inch. He mainted vigorously it was still Aikido, he also vigorously maintained it was........BUDO!!!! Everything he did was BUDO!!!

And B

TheAikidoka
03-02-2012, 10:00 PM
Andrew, your example of irimi nage. No issues with the example. However, you say you can CHOOSE peace in the moment. Sure, that is compassion. However, it does not, IMO, demonstrate the elimination of the competitive mind. It demonstrates that nage acknowledges the situation and responds to it appropriately and chooses to be ethical somewhere on the spectrum.

However, lets back up a little. Why should nage engage at all? If he is not trying to preserve something important to him (competition) then why would he need to do anything? Why not stand there and simply accept uke's will imposed on him?

On religion: I think you are correct in your statements about most organized religions dealing in the future and on fear. However, there are religious institutions and practices that do "preach" on the concept of present mind. I do however, think you are generally correct in your take on this.

I appreciate your example of how you believe Aikido fulfills this "missing part of religion". For me, however, as a somewhat Non-religious person as would be consider by the average "religious" person, it is detached from religion and really has nothing to do with religion whatsoever. However, everyone is free to find spiritual and religious meaning where ever they find it.

I do agree that it is a requirement to be in the present in Budo as well. However, budo also is concerned about the past and future as well.

Dear Kevin :) (me smiling broadly)

You seem to be agreeing with quite a lot of what I have said, look a little deeper and you will see what you have said is, pretty much the same as, what I have.

You said quote:
"sure it is compassion, but it does not, IMO demonstrate how to eliminate the competitive mind"

My friend, THERE IS NO COMPETITION IN REAL TRUE COMPASSION.

Compassion Is love and there is no competing in true love is there, when you are in true love with whatever form, there is no competing, YOU ACT, YOU ARE ONE, MOVE AS ONE, AND IT IS NO EFFORT NO MATTER WHAT MOMENT OF FORM YOU ARE IN.

Aikido.
Carrier
Your spouse
Kids
Your close LOVED ones,
Your thoughts,
Your movements
Your breathing
Your attacker.


There should be no competition here, or in the majority of what we do, indeed what is most important to you, and is it all or part form of competition to you, because it's not for me AT ALL! because..............

I LOVE THEM ALL.

I am, I am Alive now, And I choose to love them all, even if they are not always nice to me, I TRULY DEEPLY LOVE THEM.

It is no effort when one love's and live something, only when fear hatred and anger reside pro dominantly, do we find these all to be troublesome and fearful of, and guilty for, do you see it is he competitive mind that drives this, the constant competition for more.

And time is included in this.

And all of this can be one, now and it can only ever be one now and in ths moment.

Because underneath it all if you take a very deep breath and hold it "NOW", just put your attention there (don't think. I have follow my breath), feel the movement, with no thought, no judgement, no mental movies/images, just feel breath.

Then you may feel the peace that you are, and always has and will be in this present moment, and you act from this stillness. Instead of he competing mind.

Yes I get, angry, annoyed even furious sometimes, But I quickly dissolve it because I become aware of the peace that I am, you are, and everyone on the planet is. an Ido that Now.

Always In Budo

Andy B

Kevin Leavitt
03-03-2012, 02:42 AM
what I agree with in the end state not the methods. You are failing to understand that.

The other difference seems semantical to you, but you are missing that as well. The definition of competition. The mere fact that you want to preserve anything at all, be it your life, your idealogy, your family...what ever immediately means you are in competition for something.

A noble idea to have equal and true compassion equally for all. If you truly love your enemy as much as you love your child, then there is no reason for defence. The enemy needs he lust from raping your daughter and taking your son to serve as a soldier. He needs this and true compassion or as you put it ...requires you to not put your needs or the needs of your child over his.

My friend, we are at best hypocrites in this world. We are human and we must make choices. Life is about attachment. It is not about confidence and pontificating. It is noble to what to make things the way we want them to be, but ignoring those things that make us human is pure anxiety simple ignorance and or audacity.

I understand what love is, and I have experienced pure hate as well. I have stared into the eyes of evil and corruption that is way past the ability for redemption. If you experience it, there is no room for love.

Now, we can talk about my mental state all day long about killing with compassion, or detachment from anger, and no mind etc. The things I think you are describing as being void of the competitive mind. I understand those things pretty well. They have nothing to do with competition or competitiveness.

They have everything to do with detachment or compassion.

You see it is possible to love somethings more than others. It is possible to value good over evil. Our mind is in constant competition over priorities and attachments. We need to learn to manage the hypocracies. That is what we do in budo. It is about choices and priorities...they compete.

In dealing with things that don't agree with us, that we consider wrong, unjust, and bad...we can still deal with those things compassionately and choose to use the most ethical means necessary to deal with it. To only deal with the core of the issue and not inject feeling or emotion.

I have dealt with my enemies in like real in actual combat. I engaged with him, not in anger, not in hatred, I only dealt with his actions and choices, using the force he choose to use. So, I get it and understand it crystal clear. I have stopped him from forcing his negative behavior on others, and then turned to take care of his family as if I would take care of my own, to feel their pain and suffering. It is an absolute requirement. It it human.

The fact of the matter is that in the end, we are human, the very nature of your existence means we form attachments, which makes us hypocrites at best. The difference in our opinions is that I believe budo is designed to help us deal with this hypocrisy and ignorance, to manage it and come to reconcile this at the midpoint.

Whereas you seem to believe that it is designed to transform us into a state of nirvanna. Nirvanna is a worderful concept and one I would personally like to in theory achieve. However getting there is difficult at best and relegates the human experience to something that is completely meaningless, and I think that there is something to be heavily considered in that. It is a catch 22.

So as you say, if you look deeply my friend you will see that.

I really fail to see also what studying a fighting system or at least one based on that would have anything to do with reaching a state of pure love or bliss. You can kinda skip all that if this is what you want to achieve.

I see those that do Aikido falling into three categories. First those that do this because they like it, but have not really figured out why they do it, they simply like it. Those that do it because they understand the nature and realities of budo and why we need it. Third, those that choose to ignore the realities of the world and attempt to co-opt or hijack budo to fit whatever warped paradigm they wish it to be. This third group is of danger to themselves and others as they out of intention o not, are ignorant to the realities that are around them.

I pray that the dissonance that they experience when reality meets their skewed perspective that it is not in a situation that causes them true harm. And that my friend is me showing you true love and compassion, or as you put it, the non competitive mind.

Dave de Vos
03-03-2012, 05:56 AM
Andrew, you associate competition with cruelty, ruthlessness, callousness and you associate non-competition with empathy, compassion, mercy. But when I look up the meanings of competition, I don't find those meanings. These are associations you choose to make to reject competition and promote non-competition. IMO this is a clear case of a Straw Man fallacy (that's why I more or less stopped following this thread, although it seemed interesting at first).

Demetrio Cereijo
03-03-2012, 06:40 AM
...But you do 'like' references to virtually all statements.

Peace.G.
Only the ones that look extracted from posteriore parte spine dorsi.

:D

TheAikidoka
03-03-2012, 07:41 AM
Competitive:- Teaches

1. To set a goal
2. To improve your skills and performance to reach your goal
3. To exert whatever effort it takes to improve yourself
4. This teaches one that although you may not reach your goal, you can improve.
5. This proves that hard work and determination can take you farther than wishing and complaining

Non-competitive:- Teaches

1. To develop an attitude of entitlement.
2. To expect that the people putting forth an effort will take care of you
3. So there is an expectation that those who do nothing to improve themselves will be supported by those who do.
4. This teaches one how to create dependency.
5. This proves that everyone is equal and should have the same opportunities for advancement, regardless of qualifications or effort.

Thank you mr quin, for your alternate view, on my original five points of view. I have been incredibly busy at work, and have a 3 & a 4 your old daughters also keeeping me busy as well as teaching practicing, an d posting threads and comments on Aiki Web ( love it all really :) ) and do not have time to read all post.
thank you for your contribution and efforts, I will digest what you have said, and will if necessay write an appropriate response. This is more of the kind of thing I first expected when I had the original Idea Competition vs non-competition.

In Budo

Andy B

Marc Abrams
03-03-2012, 08:44 AM
I ment, make it as peaceful as you possibly can. Avoid it if you can, if you cannot avoid it, then injure slightly, if you have to maim/disable, before you kill, and if you must kill, kill cleanly and swiftly ( do not let them suffer) because not one drop f life should be wasted even in death.

This I believe is what O sensei ment, then technique from no matter what style, form or indeed different martial arts, will have that same intent behind it, do as little harm as possible to control the situation in hand.

This does not say do nothing if the violence escalates, indeed to do nothing when you can, is cowardice and it is vileness to my eyes, when I think of Budo.

Andrew:

Have you ever been in really violent, physical encounters? The idea that you have some choice as to trying to control the level of "peacefulness" is in my own view, unrealistic and frankly dangerous to ask anyone to consider when faced with such a situation. The same applies to killing cleanly. All of that sounds awesome from the rear seat of an auditorium listening to a lecture on that topic. Unfortunately, there may be some practical considerations regarding your genuine, physical well-being that supersede such a luxury of thought.



Ask yourself where are you at this moment, I guarantee you when you read this the answer will be.......HERE NOW. You cannot be anywhere else. Please do try and tell me I'm wrong. And Come up with a convincing argument that is not based on the thought of form, because if it, is it is based in some kind of fear of future or past. if you can theN, you are not really present at all.

Andy B

Andrew:

What you are saying is too simplistic to genuinely understand what I was trying to say to you. I will try, in short, to give you a primer in the neuropsychology that I was referring to.

1) We are telic beings. We function as entities that seek to define our experience based upon some internal constructs. That is at a meta-level- akin to an existential psychological means of understanding.

2) We, among several other species, have memories. Memories serve to frame our experiences so as to provide us a construct of understanding. IN OTHER WORDS, your present experience always involves the past.

3) Because we ascribe meanings and understandings to events and interactions, along with that, comes the predictive element to our understandings. This creates a sense of continuity of experiences. IN OTHER WORDS, your present experiences always involves the future.

4) If you are sitting in a room and you are hallucinating and believe that you at a beach, where are you? Once again, our experiences are the end result of a series of bio-chemical reactions. Your wanting to say that you are only here in the now, is as a result of points 2 & 3.

In summary, any experience that you have is as a direct result of internal constructs that are at its essence, bio-chemical/electrical processes. Those internal processes are framed for us as past, current and future experiences, all encapsulated within a moment. It does not matter whether you or I believe this or not, it is simply the best scientific understanding we have to date. If that changes, I will make a note to appraise you of those changes.

Marc Abrams

graham christian
03-03-2012, 09:12 AM
Only the ones that look extracted from posteriore parte spine dorsi.

:D

Hmmmm. Latinus maximus............hmmmmmm.

Peace,G.

Demetrio Cereijo
03-03-2012, 09:32 AM
Hmmmm. Latinus maximus............hmmmmmm.

Peace,G.

Required for understanding the most spiritual parts of the Kojiki.

:D

graham christian
03-03-2012, 10:05 AM
Required for understanding the most spiritual parts of the Kojiki.

:D

Hmmm...intellectus dominus....hmmmm. Spiritualus minimus...hmmmmm.

Peace.G.

Demetrio Cereijo
03-03-2012, 10:24 AM
Ahhhh... the famous anti-intellectualism of western buddhism. Well played, sir.

graham christian
03-03-2012, 12:04 PM
Ahhhh... the famous anti-intellectualism of western buddhism. Well played, sir.

Forget the western part and you're spot on brother.

Another facet of the negative competitive mind. To have more data, to present the image of knowing, to be superior. Without being able to do. A strange phenomenon.

Compare that to zen for example, mmmm. To ask a zen monk to talk about the past he would ask why you are still carrying it.

To explain blah, blah, blah, and quote blah, blah, blah, he would say your cup is full.

Yet at the same time his mind is shugyo.

To intellectualize Buddhism is a western trait my friend.

To know nothing is indeed enlightening.

Peace.G.

Chris Li
03-03-2012, 12:15 PM
Forget the western part and you're spot on brother.

Another facet of the negative competitive mind. To have more data, to present the image of knowing, to be superior. Without being able to do. A strange phenomenon.

Compare that to zen for example, mmmm. To ask a zen monk to talk about the past he would ask why you are still carrying it.

To explain blah, blah, blah, and quote blah, blah, blah, he would say your cup is full.

Yet at the same time his mind is shugyo.

To intellectualize Buddhism is a western trait my friend.

To know nothing is indeed enlightening.

Peace.G.

I've translated for a number of well known Japanese Buddhist priests, and the material was very intellectual (and very difficult).

Still, I have to admit, two of them were from western Japan. :D

None of them even mentioned anything about full cups - but they did keep pouring the beer when my cup was empty... ;)

Best,

Chris

graham christian
03-03-2012, 12:36 PM
I've translated for a number of well known Japanese Buddhist priests, and the material was very intellectual (and very difficult).

Still, I have to admit, two of them were from western Japan. :D

None of them even mentioned anything about full cups - but they did keep pouring the beer when my cup was empty... ;)

Best,

Chris

I bet you have. Most would be too polite to say so unless you are actually studying buddhism with them.

Now, more importantly, did you understand and apply what you translated? When you sobered up of course.

It's good that you helped them communicate with the world, very kind of you. I bet you can talkall about it. You could even relate it and discuss and debate it.

No different to Ki. Can you use it? Like the calm mind, can you apply it without fail in Aikido.

Can you 'stand in the void'? Until then feel free to talk about, nothing wrong with that but it's not doing it, it's not knowing. It's intellectualizing about.

There's so many things I don't know that I'm happy.

Peace.G.

Gary David
03-03-2012, 12:48 PM
I bet you have. Most would be too polite to say so unless you are actually studying buddhism with them.

Now, more importantly, did you understand and apply what you translated? When you sobered up of course.

It's good that you helped them communicate with the world, very kind of you. I bet you can talkall about it. You could even relate it and discuss and debate it.

No different to Ki. Can you use it? Like the calm mind, can you apply it without fail in Aikido.

Can you 'stand in the void'? Until then feel free to talk about, nothing wrong with that but it's not doing it, it's not knowing. It's intellectualizing about.

There's so many things I don't know that I'm happy.

Peace.G.

Graham
To really know it you have to feel it...that is part of a body thing.....for us to understand you we have to feel you.....it is very hard to get you out to play. Spirit-mind-body.... I will say that you are very good with the words...putting them together....arranging them to work....all of that.

Just go straight
Gary

Demetrio Cereijo
03-03-2012, 12:48 PM
Forget the western part and you're spot on brother.
Not really. Anti-intellectualism is not so common in eastern buddhism. Of course, if by buddhism you mean the modern approach of people like D.T. Suzuki then I have to agree with you. However, I have serious doubts about that approach being buddhism.

In any case, being my cup full, my fridge almost empty and, of course, the futility of this kind of exchanges, I'm heading to the supermarket ... I quit. You win. Happier now?

graham christian
03-03-2012, 01:43 PM
Graham
To really know it you have to feel it...that is part of a body thing.....for us to understand you we have to feel you.....it is very hard to get you out to play. Spirit-mind-body.... I will say that you are very good with the words...putting them together....arranging them to work....all of that.

Just go straight
Gary

Hi Gary.
To really know it that's true. To understand me you only have to read what I write.

You don't have to know me you know. Just as I don't have to know you.

For some reason you feel 'we have to feel you'. You don't have to anything and who exactly are 'we'?

I don't go out to play type statements I have never really understood, I think there is an americanism there I don't get. Maybe a cultural thing.

If you mean I don't come over there on some kind of tour then yes and I don't see myself doing so.

If you mean I don't want to meet or train with anyone who continuously insults what I do or blatantly says it's rubbish, then yes, no play.

If you mean to prove to someone then yes, no play.

If you mean just to satisfy someones curiosity the 50/50 for I don't see much purpose in that either.

If you mean anyone that want's to learn or needs help then I'm always out playing.

Help is a fine word and a fine action. To understand me is simple from that view. You want help with your Aikido then come see me. If you're not coming for help then don't bother yourself.

The only other times is when asked to share, when invited to visit, and then it depends on who is asking. Simple really.

Peace.G.

Gary David
03-03-2012, 03:41 PM
Hi Gary.
To really know it that's true. To understand me you only have to read what I write.

You don't have to know me you know. Just as I don't have to know you.

For some reason you feel 'we have to feel you'. You don't have to anything and who exactly are 'we'?

I don't go out to play type statements I have never really understood, I think there is an americanism there I don't get. Maybe a cultural thing.

If you mean I don't come over there on some kind of tour then yes and I don't see myself doing so.

If you mean I don't want to meet or train with anyone who continuously insults what I do or blatantly says it's rubbish, then yes, no play.

If you mean to prove to someone then yes, no play.

If you mean just to satisfy someones curiosity the 50/50 for I don't see much purpose in that either.

If you mean anyone that want's to learn or needs help then I'm always out playing.

Help is a fine word and a fine action. To understand me is simple from that view. You want help with your Aikido then come see me. If you're not coming for help then don't bother yourself.

The only other times is when asked to share, when invited to visit, and then it depends on who is asking. Simple really.

Peace.G.

Graham
I guess we are at and end.....

You are right I don't have to know you...I will never know you, your understanding or skill level by what you write... you will have to go out and establish your ....what would have been called your bonafidies...you have to establish your reputation in person with hands on contact if you want to be highly regarded by anyone I know. Not that it matters to you one way or the other.

If reading is a way to know you then reading your video clips should give me a understanding of what you do.......you told me I couldn't even come close to knowing what you were doing by reading you clips.....getting out and mixing with others outside your small circle would help.......not that it matters to you.

If one publishes a book on the skill set to do something along with how to do it stuff you have to get out to sell it in person or it will be a not go, it is like someone tellings others about how to function within a marriage having never been close to being in one and only reading about it on the internet......not that this matters to you.

Helping and sharing with others is a good thing though it seems you are very selective in who you allow in to be helped......not that this matters to you.

As for helping me with my Aikido.........I don't think you are up to it.......

Of course on the internet you only have to type and if you can get enough folks to respond to you you have form.........this matters to you.......you only have substance if you get out and establish validity in person......

see you on the other side....

Happy Trails (another western Cowboy kind of thing)

Gary

graham christian
03-03-2012, 05:24 PM
Graham
I guess we are at and end.....

You are right I don't have to know you...I will never know you, your understanding or skill level by what you write... you will have to go out and establish your ....what would have been called your bonafidies...you have to establish your reputation in person with hands on contact if you want to be highly regarded by anyone I know. Not that it matters to you one way or the other.

If reading is a way to know you then reading your video clips should give me a understanding of what you do.......you told me I couldn't even come close to knowing what you were doing by reading you clips.....getting out and mixing with others outside your small circle would help.......not that it matters to you.

If one publishes a book on the skill set to do something along with how to do it stuff you have to get out to sell it in person or it will be a not go, it is like someone tellings others about how to function within a marriage having never been close to being in one and only reading about it on the internet......not that this matters to you.

Helping and sharing with others is a good thing though it seems you are very selective in who you allow in to be helped......not that this matters to you.

As for helping me with my Aikido.........I don't think you are up to it.......

Of course on the internet you only have to type and if you can get enough folks to respond to you you have form.........this matters to you.......you only have substance if you get out and establish validity in person......

see you on the other side....

Happy Trails (another western Cowboy kind of thing)

Gary

1st para: Correct. That doesn't matter to me. My purpose isn't to be highly regarded.

2nd para:You read books, you gain some understanding, hence reading, hence books. Bet you haven't met many of the Authors though. To want to would be...... strange. What you believe the vids show is not close, true. Getting outside my'small circle' would help what?

3rd para.:Ha, ha, thought you were going to say if you write a book on marriage you had to get out and marry people.....
As you say you merely have to be married, to have experience, then Aikido wise I'm ready to write a book.
You know, I bet you have read a lot about swordwork hmmmm. By someone that's killed and maimed people with swords? Think you get the picture. So correct again, I don't need hands on to sell a book.

4th para: Everyone on earth selects who they want to teach. Helping? Nah, not very selective at all.
You believe I can teach you nothing. That's good. So if I can't help you and you don't need me to teach you then why would you want me to get out and meet folk like you? So your thoughts....correct again, in respect to taking them as advice, no they mean nothing to me.

My thoughts have substance whether you folks meet me in person or not.

So I suggest you go straight and look at exactly what you are saying. 1) You don't believe I can help you and therefor others maybe. 2) You don't believe my Aikido is real or effective.

Therefore why on earth would you think I should get out and share it? Hmmmm. Not straight methinks...

This is the confusion I see. You're against it yet want me to share it.

Allow me to say what I think. I think you are against what I say and the only reason you want me to go out and meet others is to make me wrong. How close is that? Strange thing is that way of thinking will never know unless personally experiencing.

On the other side of the coin we have positive people who read and are inspired by what they read and thus inspired in what they do.

In the middle would be people who are neither inspired nor wanting to prove wrong but merely interested, merely find the alternative view interesting. Neutral.

Fodoshin. Unmoved by what others tell you you should or must do, unmoved by others self important advice, unmoved by negative competitiveness, unmoved by 'helpful' manipulation. Yet always open to warmth and life and the smilarities and differences therein. Unmoved by attacks or attempts to undermine.

I think you will find a man of budo named Ueshiba did as he wanted, when he wanted, according to his own principles and was unmoved by others negative manipulative ways, especially after the war .
May the universe be my advisor and may I be humble enough to listen.

Peace.G.

Gary David
03-03-2012, 06:23 PM
Allow me to say what I think. I think you are against what I say and the only reason you want me to go out and meet others is to make me wrong. How close is that? Strange thing is that way of thinking will never know unless personally experiencing.


Graham
I will concede that you are the master of pretzel logic..... you can change and shape the meeting and words in sentences to fit your needs.

Let me finish with a couple of things then we can move in our different directions.....



there is a saying here that "you say what you do and do what you say" you only say......Aikido needs to be felt as the experience.

your success or failure has no value or meaning to me, but believe what you will as you will anyway

as for your helping me with my Aikido......my stating that you couldn't is a factor of were I am on my journey/path now. To go with you would mean me stepping back and changing paths. I don't have 10 or 15 years to catch back up....and your path doesn't work for me in any case.




In closing.... a friend of mine related that he teaches Aiki- jujutsu with 3 distinct approaches. One being sport or recreation level, the 2nd is for police where they face resistive and noncooperative individuals but have to be careful about limiting injuries to these same individuals, the 3 rd being military were the attacker is not at all cooperative and the outcome may well be death. No one I know wishes to be involved in the later two, but one should have some window into them or at least be aware they exist......

I don't see current Aikido as being anything other than recreation level without any awareness to the tools existing out there to even push their level of Aikido to openings, doors if you will, that expands their effectiveness........the general response being "...we already do that...."

But again everyone seems happy...so why change....after all "we already do that"

Have fun on you journey...go your way....I'll go mine.

Respect is given where it is earned and return (another cowboy thing,,,,)
Gary

Marc Abrams
03-03-2012, 06:44 PM
Graham
I will concede that you are the master of pretzel logic..... you can change and shape the meeting and words in sentences to fit your needs.

Let me finish with a couple of things then we can move in our different directions.....



there is a saying here that "you say what you do and do what you say" you only say......Aikido needs to be felt as the experience.

your success or failure has no value or meaning to me, but believe what you will as you will anyway

as for your helping me with my Aikido......my stating that you couldn't is a factor of were I am on my journey/path now. To go with you would mean me stepping back and changing paths. I don't have 10 or 15 years to catch back up....and your path doesn't work for me in any case.




In closing.... a friend of mine related that he teaches Aiki- jujutsu with 3 distinct approaches. One being sport or recreation level, the 2nd is for police where they face resistive and noncooperative individuals but have to be careful about limiting injuries to these same individuals, the 3 rd being military were the attacker is not at all cooperative and the outcome may well be death. No one I know wishes to be involved in the later two, but one should have some window into them or at least be aware they exist......

I don't see current Aikido as being anything other than recreation level without any awareness to the tools existing out there to even push their level of Aikido to openings, doors if you will, that expands their effectiveness........the general response being "...we already do that...."

But again everyone seems happy...so why change....after all "we already do that"

Have fun on you journey...go your way....I'll go mine.

Respect is given where it is earned and return (another cowboy thing,,,,)
Gary

Gary:

You hit the nail on the head! A person wants something to be personally experienced and exercises pretzel logic to keep some people away from personally experiencing what he does. Cowboys have another expression for that.... Unfortunately, Jun would give the proverbial time-out for calling a person to task. People have asked him to provide some specific understandings of what he alleges that he does and says. Pretzel logic again and avoids the obvious lack of depth of any real understanding..... Oh yeah, that darn intellectualism. How dare somebody ask that you actually know what you are talking about... Personal feelings and personal, unable to test experiences are paramount. After all, life is so simple.....

One would think that he should be more focused on personal accountability. I remember asking him some questions that he said that he was going to get answered..... Still waiting.... Then again, I will post my own findings. Basically, We have somebody with no more than 15 years of being under some unknown teacher and left to pursue...... who knows what O'Sensei said and did, without ever knowing Japanese, or spent any time with a direct student of O'Sensei. ... Said he did WELL what Tohei Sensei did and never felt him, or knew him and posted that his teacher was a student of Tohei Sensei (Yet to be established as fact)... Talked about such knowledge of Zen and no apparent understanding of some serious Zen and Buddhist literature. ... Talked about knowledge of weapons and has yet to say where that learning came from..... On and On and On...... Maybe integrity and honesty about what you say and do is part of the cowboy American way....

Marc Abrams

graham christian
03-03-2012, 06:59 PM
Graham
I will concede that you are the master of pretzel logic..... you can change and shape the meeting and words in sentences to fit your needs.

Let me finish with a couple of things then we can move in our different directions.....



there is a saying here that "you say what you do and do what you say" you only say......Aikido needs to be felt as the experience.

your success or failure has no value or meaning to me, but believe what you will as you will anyway

as for your helping me with my Aikido......my stating that you couldn't is a factor of were I am on my journey/path now. To go with you would mean me stepping back and changing paths. I don't have 10 or 15 years to catch back up....and your path doesn't work for me in any case.




In closing.... a friend of mine related that he teaches Aiki- jujutsu with 3 distinct approaches. One being sport or recreation level, the 2nd is for police where they face resistive and noncooperative individuals but have to be careful about limiting injuries to these same individuals, the 3 rd being military were the attacker is not at all cooperative and the outcome may well be death. No one I know wishes to be involved in the later two, but one should have some window into them or at least be aware they exist......

I don't see current Aikido as being anything other than recreation level without any awareness to the tools existing out there to even push their level of Aikido to openings, doors if you will, that expands their effectiveness........the general response being "...we already do that...."

But again everyone seems happy...so why change....after all "we already do that"

Have fun on you journey...go your way....I'll go mine.

Respect is given where it is earned and return (another cowboy thing,,,,)
Gary

You are good at telling me what I do. Incorrectly.
I'm good at telling you what I do. Maybe the art of listening could help.

You say I only say, contrary to what I have said but do you listen? So who is twisting words?

Another person from this forum met me and said I walk the talk, but do you listen?

I'm serious, for if you did you couldn't make such statements so I can only assume you didn't hear.

I have taught some policemen and in fact out of two visiting once only one said he wanted to learn while the other couldn't see any use for this way. The one who did used it to not only save his own life but to disarm a gunman. I have related this before. But you talk as if you didn't listen, as if I am unaware or such things police and various other areas may face.

As in all arts and ways, some can see their potential use, some cannot.

Well if that's the cowboy view on respect then yeeeeeeha!!! I teach to give respect not to earn it and that those who say you must earn it have none.

Tohei taught that too, just as a matter of interest.

Peace.G.

graham christian
03-03-2012, 07:08 PM
Gary:

You hit the nail on the head! A person wants something to be personally experienced and exercises pretzel logic to keep some people away from personally experiencing what he does. Cowboys have another expression for that.... Unfortunately, Jun would give the proverbial time-out for calling a person to task. People have asked him to provide some specific understandings of what he alleges that he does and says. Pretzel logic again and avoids the obvious lack of depth of any real understanding..... Oh yeah, that darn intellectualism. How dare somebody ask that you actually know what you are talking about... Personal feelings and personal, unable to test experiences are paramount. After all, life is so simple.....

One would think that he should be more focused on personal accountability. I remember asking him some questions that he said that he was going to get answered..... Still waiting.... Then again, I will post my own findings. Basically, We have somebody with no more than 15 years of being under some unknown teacher and left to pursue...... who knows what O'Sensei said and did, without ever knowing Japanese, or spent any time with a direct student of O'Sensei. ... Said he did WELL what Tohei Sensei did and never felt him, or knew him and posted that his teacher was a student of Tohei Sensei (Yet to be established as fact)... Talked about such knowledge of Zen and no apparent understanding of some serious Zen and Buddhist literature. ... Talked about knowledge of weapons and has yet to say where that learning came from..... On and On and On...... Maybe integrity and honesty about what you say and do is part of the cowboy American way....

Marc Abrams

Another personal, insulting, inaccurate post, Integrity??? huh.

Mirror springs to mind.

Peace.G.

TheAikidoka
03-03-2012, 07:33 PM
Andrew:

Have you ever been in really violent, physical encounters? The idea that you have some choice as to trying to control the level of "peacefulness" is in my own view, unrealistic and frankly dangerous to ask anyone to consider when faced with such a situation. The same applies to killing cleanly. All of that sounds awesome from the rear seat of an auditorium listening to a lecture on that topic. Unfortunately, there may be some practical considerations regarding your genuine, physical well-being that supersede such a luxury of thought.

Andrew:

What you are saying is too simplistic to genuinely understand what I was trying to say to you. I will try, in short, to give you a primer in the neuropsychology that I was referring to.

1) We are telic beings. We function as entities that seek to define our experience based upon some internal constructs. That is at a meta-level- akin to an existential psychological means of understanding.

2) We, among several other species, have memories. Memories serve to frame our experiences so as to provide us a construct of understanding. IN OTHER WORDS, your present experience always involves the past.

3) Because we ascribe meanings and understandings to events and interactions, along with that, comes the predictive element to our understandings. This creates a sense of continuity of experiences. IN OTHER WORDS, your present experiences always involves the future.

4) If you are sitting in a room and you are hallucinating and believe that you at a beach, where are you? Once again, our experiences are the end result of a series of bio-chemical reactions. Your wanting to say that you are only here in the now, is as a result of points 2 & 3.

In summary, any experience that you have is as a direct result of internal constructs that are at its essence, bio-chemical/electrical processes. Those internal processes are framed for us as past, current and future experiences, all encapsulated within a moment. It does not matter whether you or I believe this or not, it is simply the best scientific understanding we have to date. If that changes, I will make a note to appraise you of those changes.

Marc Abrams

To Mark
I have sent you a PM, hope you understand when you read it.
and yes it is simple, but is not easy, it's never easy.

oh and science is only based on theory, all theory, I'm dealing in absolute truth and fact.
Ask a professor of physics or any real science as you like this form, what time it is, and he will come up with all sorts of theories, except the absolute truth, not theory, it is simply the present moment.

Andy B

Gary David
03-03-2012, 07:55 PM
Another personal, insulting, inaccurate post, Integrity??? huh.

Mirror springs to mind.

Peace.G.

Graham
Geeezzzz I can't win with you....ooops that being competitive. A couple of more things be I ride off into the sunset.........


You always tell me what I told you, but never what I said

One of the other Western things is to "be skeptical but learn to listen....this I have always tried to do with you, but you leave no room

It seems that everything mentioned by someone else here you have done or something close to it or have the answer for it....doesn't leave much room either....that is wiggle room....

None of my post are meant to be insulting...just pointing out things


Aside from that I think you are an interesting individual....so have fun on your journey...

and so it ends.....
Gary

TheAikidoka
03-03-2012, 08:07 PM
Gary please don't go, dont, goooooo, away. Couldn't resist famous song I like, that just popped in there.

:)

Hope you guys can mend your differences that's what Aikido is all about it is not in the differences, it's in the how. it's in reconciliating the conflict that is happening in this moment, through and that resolution, comes from a non competitive mind. There you go, take it or leave it my friends. There is the truth.

In peace brothers

Andy B

graham christian
03-03-2012, 08:50 PM
Graham
Geeezzzz I can't win with you....ooops that being competitive. A couple of more things be I ride off into the sunset.........


You always tell me what I told you, but never what I said

One of the other Western things is to "be skeptical but learn to listen....this I have always tried to do with you, but you leave no room

It seems that everything mentioned by someone else here you have done or something close to it or have the answer for it....doesn't leave much room either....that is wiggle room....

None of my post are meant to be insulting...just pointing out things


Aside from that I think you are an interesting individual....so have fun on your journey...

and so it ends.....
Gary

Hi Gary.
You can win with me, that's the point. It's so easy that it's difficult to see how to make it hard.

Acceptance. Neither agreement nor disagreement. Center. Then and only then may you continuously win. I practice continuously winning. I would like the 'apparent' opponent to do so too.

Notice I don't even venture to give an opinion as to how you should do your Aikido or to anyone else for that matter and even worse what they should do. Why?

Because I accept I don't know them. Thus I am free of such behavior. Non competitive. Winning.

Saying geez you can't win with me is like saying you can't find any openings. Why should you want to?

I am not your opponent or enemy.

I know I am your friend, I know I am even the friend of my enemy. Any ideas you have of what I should do or need thus they may be your enemy, not me.

You ever heard the saying 'give them enough rope'?

A favorite of mine. Thus I let those few use what I say to misquote me, use what I say to try and find a discrepancy, use what I say to try prove something or other about me. Wow, what a game. What a waste. I am mischievous enough to give them more rope. I accept for some reason they must do it so carry on for at the end of the day egg on face springs to mind.

Someone like you, having trained with many competent people and carried on for so long and still learning I can only admire. For I see dedication to a path and really I see nothing else, I don't need to.

Peace.G.

Kevin Leavitt
03-04-2012, 01:02 AM
Gary please don't go, dont, goooooo, away. Couldn't resist famous song I like, that just popped in there.

:)

Hope you guys can mend your differences that's what Aikido is all about it is not in the differences, it's in the how. it's in reconciliating the conflict that is happening in this moment, through and that resolution, comes from a non competitive mind. There you go, take it or leave it my friends. There is the truth.

In peace brothers

Andy B

We have tried to reconcile and mend differences, and keep it honest and civil. So we met the requirements of reconciliation. How ever reconciliation requires two or more parties to want to meet on the middle ground. If this does not occur, the it is also within the realm of budo to walk away or to stand up and stop the BS as well.

If I offer up the argument that says pigs can fly and then one comes back and says it is impossible because they don't have wings. I insist they can and then another person says a requirement would be that the need wings so therefore they can't. And I state well I never said they could actually fly, just that they could if they had wings. Another joims in and says, I have trained one to fly. Then one comes back and says no way prove it. I say you'd have to visit me and I dint have a pig right now. And the argument goes on. And then I go...pigs can fly, and then it starts all over again. Then another retorts my statement...I then say, well you are not open to seeing the fact that a pig can fly that is why you can't see it. Some one calls BS on it again. I pull the bully card out and claim that the anti pig flying people are picking on me that is not Aikido. Someone says what does flying pigs have to do with aikido. We deflect to a BS conversation about Aikido and how we need to all get along and that the anti pig fliers need to accept that it is possible for a pig to fly. Some one comes back and says they can't fly. I say I never said they could fly, just that it is possible if you can imagine it. If you open up your mind, you'd be able to see the possibilities and wouldn't it be great if a pig could fly! Okay prove they can fly, I am bringing the pig and u train him and show me he can fly. I state well I never said I could do it only that it is possible, I read about it and have talked to others s that say the same thing . I train my students in the basics of pig flying so if one day they meet a pig and they need to make him fly they will have the skills to do that. But you have never actually made one fly? No but I trained with someone that I cannot name that has taught many that have. Prove it! Why are u bullying me, that is unaiki!

Discussion ends with the anti pig fliers throwing their hands up in the air in utter exhaustion. A few weeks go by and then I start another thread that states why is it that people can't accept that it might be possible for a pig to fly?

Doesn't change the fact that a pig can't fly. There is no requirement for anyone to accept your theories of delusion. It is okay to say you are deluded, or a troll..and these are the reasons I believe this to be true. It is perfectly acceptable to categorize you as someone that has nothing or little value to add. It is perfectly acceptable to disengage from future conversations and refuse to give you an audience for future absurb debate. In a since I can refuse o let you on the mat.

The only requirements are that I attempt to reconcile and have an intelligent conversation. I do it civilly and respectfully, I make my stand and disengage once it starts to become negative.

Have a good day.

Kevin Leavitt
03-04-2012, 01:07 AM
Graham wrote

You ever heard the saying 'give them enough rope'?

A favorite of mine. Thus I let those few use what I say to misquote me, use what I say to try and find a discrepancy, use what I say to try prove something or other about me. Wow, what a game. What a waste. I am mischievous enough to give them more rope. I accept for some reason they must do it so carry on for at the end of the day egg on face springs to mind.

The basic definition of trolling in my opinion, which I am beginning to suspect is a big part of you modus operendi.

Chris Li
03-04-2012, 01:57 AM
I bet you have. Most would be too polite to say so unless you are actually studying buddhism with them.

Now, more importantly, did you understand and apply what you translated? When you sobered up of course.

It's good that you helped them communicate with the world, very kind of you. I bet you can talkall about it. You could even relate it and discuss and debate it.

Well...you're assuming that I sobered up...

Anyway, my point was that if you know anything at all about buddhism in Japan, you know that quite a lot of it is scholarly and intellectual. In short,

To intellectualize Buddhism is a western trait my friend.

is not only a vast oversimplification of one sect of buddhism, it's just incorrect.

No different to Ki. Can you use it? Like the calm mind, can you apply it without fail in Aikido.

Can you 'stand in the void'? Until then feel free to talk about, nothing wrong with that but it's not doing it, it's not knowing. It's intellectualizing about.

There's so many things I don't know that I'm happy.

Peace.G.

I don't get your point, you want to give you my own opinion of what I can do? I don't think that I'm going to do that - but I can and will explain what Ueshiba said about standing in the void at some point, and if you can do it first than I'll buy you lunch next time you're in Hawaii. :)

OTOH, if you can't explain it then you can't, in my book, really say that you're doing it, because you don't, therefore, know what you're doing.

Best,

Chris

graham christian
03-04-2012, 02:05 AM
Graham wrote

The basic definition of trolling in my opinion, which I am beginning to suspect is a big part of you modus operendi.

That comment was not designed for you. I don't know what trolling is but I suspect it's more to do with hounding and being negative to.

Peace.G.

Kevin Leavitt
03-04-2012, 02:33 AM
the fact that comments are posted on a forum makes any comment open for public consumption or comment. PM if you don't want responses.

Here is a good site for the definitions and insights on trolling. http://www.urban75.com/Mag/troll.html

The fact that you admit that you will allow people to go down a path or guide them intentionally the wrong way...give them enough rope, informs me that you are not really interested in having an honest and up front conversation and are more interested in the game of argument and play. You used the word mischief I believe. Not only trolling, but is demonstrates competition and the competitive mind in its finest hour.

graham christian
03-04-2012, 02:57 AM
Well...you're assuming that I sobered up...

Anyway, my point was that if you know anything at all about buddhism in Japan, you know that quite a lot of it is scholarly and intellectual. In short,

is not only a vast oversimplification of one sect of buddhism, it's just incorrect.

I don't get your point, you want to give you my own opinion of what I can do? I don't think that I'm going to do that - but I can and will explain what Ueshiba said about standing in the void at some point, and if you can do it first than I'll buy you lunch next time you're in Hawaii. :)

OTOH, if you can't explain it then you can't, in my book, really say that you're doing it, because you don't, therefore, know what you're doing.

Best,

Chris

Well Chris, that is my point and thus where we differ. I like giving my own personal view rather than someone elses, someones quotes, all kinds of data. That's me. I like to base my views on what I experience or can do or even my interpretation of read items. Yes, all mine. Where mine is the same as anothers then I may quote that other.

There are many here who do the same and rarely if ever quote this person or that.

The problem is quite the opposite to your last sentence in as much as I can explain it as can I explain other things I say I can do but it's the explanation you seem to have the trouble with.

This reply of yours shows another difference also in that when it comes to study I am quite different to you too and your methods.

In fact I am proud to say that I am a translator like you. So we have one thing in common although I don't translate one language into another I translate philosophic and spiritual principles and truths into modern language as used by the general public. Thus I translate such things as void and Ki and kokyu into things students can grasp and apply, all done in modern English.

Having spent many years studying and translating and teaching in such a fashion I can relate many things said in Aikido to each other, fitting together nicely like pieces of a puzzle. Thus I can relate the basics of Kotodama to the five spirits(minds) of budo and in turn relate them to space and energy and time etc. and in turn relate them to void, Ki, hara, kokyu, etc. Translation, explanation, application.

My way. A different way.

So if I continually ask you if you can do it or for your own opinion whilst you continually demand references and quotes and original chinese this and that then we obviously are asking for the wrong things from each other.

But as far as I am concerned I can only talk for me so you will only get my opinion, not someone elses, not Musashis, not the Dalai lamas, or else my understanding of such as Ueshibas or Toheis.

I'm beginning to see it's my approach that you don't get, rather than anything else. My approach to study, to teaching, to Aikido itself. I approach communication on here no different to talking to Bill down the local. In life as such people don't ask for references and who said, they merely either say, woah, you lost me there, or some such and then I find a frame of reference they are used to in which to produce mutual understanding. Normal conversation.

It's also how I teach. Just like normal conversation.

I treat kokyu like it's normal, I treat zanshin like it's normal, like it's not some great mystical thing and it's something they do every day. It's never a matter of a person doesn't know or can't do it's a matter of seeing when they do and then they can see for themselves when they don't and wonder why?

So sorry to burst your bubble but I would say you use kokyu in everyday life and standing in the void, its all a matter of to what degree and recognising it.

Peace.G.

graham christian
03-04-2012, 03:16 AM
the fact that comments are posted on a forum makes any comment open for public consumption or comment. PM if you don't want responses.

Here is a good site for the definitions and insights on trolling. http://www.urban75.com/Mag/troll.html

The fact that you admit that you will allow people to go down a path or guide them intentionally the wrong way...give them enough rope, informs me that you are not really interested in having an honest and up front conversation and are more interested in the game of argument and play. You used the word mischief I believe. Not only trolling, but is demonstrates competition and the competitive mind in its finest hour.

There you go again mistranslating, misunderstanding. If I believe someone has a negative purpose towards me I let them carry on. They want me to get into a fight or war. No, sorry, carry on for you are only fighting yourself and will eventually get egg on your face.

Those who want argument thus want that game. Carry on.

Mischief yes, but not the type those who want to continually go against use, not the type to intentionally wind up. Insulting and belittling under the guise of integrity to me is a mischievous game. So you wanna play, ok I can play simply by not responding in kind.

No different to Aikido. No different to the mischief seen in O'Senseis eyes as he plays with the 'opponent' When they are ready to have a grown up cionversation withou negative insults and put downs feel free.

It is not my job to stop them being so negative and thus I give them the space and time they wan't, I give them more rope. For in the end they are only hanging themselves.

Not seeing this is why people still see O'Sensei in action as him competing and winning despite him saying differently. Alas.

Peace.G.

Kevin Leavitt
03-04-2012, 04:14 AM
okay, so maybe it is not intentional, but it is difficult to communicate with your reasoning and inconsistent use of logic and definitions that seem to change with convienence to fit your view of the world.

Demetrio Cereijo
03-04-2012, 08:34 AM
In fact I am proud to say that I am a translator like you. So we have one thing in common although I don't translate one language into another I translate philosophic and spiritual principles and truths into modern language as used by the general public. Thus I translate such things as void and Ki and kokyu into things students can grasp and apply, all done in modern English.

Having spent many years studying and translating and teaching in such a fashion I can relate many things said in Aikido to each other, fitting together nicely like pieces of a puzzle. Thus I can relate the basics of Kotodama to the five spirits(minds) of budo and in turn relate them to space and energy and time etc. and in turn relate them to void, Ki, hara, kokyu, etc. Translation, explanation, application.

My way. A different way.
You are not a translator, you are a cult guru.

Chris Li
03-04-2012, 11:12 AM
Well Chris, that is my point and thus where we differ. I like giving my own personal view rather than someone elses, someones quotes, all kinds of data. That's me. I like to base my views on what I experience or can do or even my interpretation of read items. Yes, all mine. Where mine is the same as anothers then I may quote that other.

OK, so give us your own personal view of what "standing in the void" means. Since:

In fact I am proud to say that I am a translator like you. So we have one thing in common although I don't translate one language into another I translate philosophic and spiritual principles and truths into modern language as used by the general public. Thus I translate such things as void and Ki and kokyu into things students can grasp and apply, all done in modern English.

It should be easy for everybody to understand what you're talking about.

My own personal view, after more than 30 years of study and training in Japanese buddhism in both English and Japanese, is that it is just incorrect that the intellectualization of Buddhism is a western misconception of what really happens in Japan. As in:

To intellectualize Buddhism is a western trait my friend..


So sorry to burst your bubble but I would say you use kokyu in everyday life and standing in the void, its all a matter of to what degree and recognising it.

Peace.G.

No bubbles bursting around here - and I haven't seen any explanations, in modern English or any other.

Best,

Chris

graham christian
03-04-2012, 12:11 PM
OK, so give us your own personal view of what "standing in the void" means. Since:

It should be easy for everybody to understand what you're talking about.

My own personal view, after more than 30 years of study and training in Japanese buddhism in both English and Japanese, is that it is just incorrect that the intellectualization of Buddhism is a western misconception of what really happens in Japan. As in:

No bubbles bursting around here - and I haven't seen any explanations, in modern English or any other.

Best,

Chris

O.K. Sir. I'll Start with religion. First I'll give my view on it itself. Originally things have a basic purpose and people and groups emerge following this purpose or responsibility. Health, the field of body health ends up with a subject about it and practitioners responsible for advising, helping, and curing problems in that area. Can be called doctors, etc. In ancient chinese I believe there was even a scale of such things where at the bottom was the animal doctor, then on to physical doctor and on up to sage.

Now, back to religion. Originally it was the subject of spiritual well being, spiritual health. Later down the track we come across another field called mental health too. Three different health fields. The mental being more a modern one as spiritual would always address that before.

The spiritual fields thus dealt with universal principles including god or the ultimate creative force.

Now, within this field you get many 'following' different religions. Yet a religion gives rules which are meant to be spiritual guidlines to adhere to for your spiritual well being. Disciples follow to the letter. They study and follow. Thus we have another scale which goes right down to someone following a religion who actually only goes to church once a year but doesn't actually follow much of the principles but still considers himself religious. A scale once again.

Actually there is the subject of the religion and there is the doing, the practice, the following of such principles extant in it. Two different things. So many can study for years and talk all about it and say they follow it but they are merely students of the subject. Another part of the scale.This is what I mean by intellectualizing but not doing.

Now Buddhism, in all of it's forms is a path of actions designed to increase spiritual awareness and lead to enlightenment. It deals with spiritual, universal principles to come to terms with and through which a person transcends the duality logic of the mind, the same logic which the intellect uses. The same logic based on fear that ego uses. In this way it could be said to be ante intellect yet it's not ante it is transcendental.

Now culturally the people may follow in respect to rituals and rites etc. and even may follow in terms of studying the history etc.(the subject of) and still be called Buddhists or lay buddhists or whatever label, but thet's not the same as actual practicer of. Add to that there would be levels of practicer of as well.

So we come to the scene where in all religions we may be lucky enough to come across someone who has learned and transcended and walks the talk and we would know, we would say to ourselves even, that we have met a true holy man.

Such is my condensed view on that.

Peace.G.

Chris Li
03-04-2012, 12:24 PM
O.K. Sir. I'll Start with religion. First I'll give my view on it itself. Originally things have a basic purpose and people and groups emerge following this purpose or responsibility. Health, the field of body health ends up with a subject about it and practitioners responsible for advising, helping, and curing problems in that area. Can be called doctors, etc. In ancient chinese I believe there was even a scale of such things where at the bottom was the animal doctor, then on to physical doctor and on up to sage.

Now, back to religion. Originally it was the subject of spiritual well being, spiritual health. Later down the track we come across another field called mental health too. Three different health fields. The mental being more a modern one as spiritual would always address that before.

The spiritual fields thus dealt with universal principles including god or the ultimate creative force.

Now, within this field you get many 'following' different religions. Yet a religion gives rules which are meant to be spiritual guidlines to adhere to for your spiritual well being. Disciples follow to the letter. They study and follow. Thus we have another scale which goes right down to someone following a religion who actually only goes to church once a year but doesn't actually follow much of the principles but still considers himself religious. A scale once again.

Actually there is the subject of the religion and there is the doing, the practice, the following of such principles extant in it. Two different things. So many can study for years and talk all about it and say they follow it but they are merely students of the subject. Another part of the scale.This is what I mean by intellectualizing but not doing.

Now Buddhism, in all of it's forms is a path of actions designed to increase spiritual awareness and lead to enlightenment. It deals with spiritual, universal principles to come to terms with and through which a person transcends the duality logic of the mind, the same logic which the intellect uses. The same logic based on fear that ego uses. In this way it could be said to be ante intellect yet it's not ante it is transcendental.

Now culturally the people may follow in respect to rituals and rites etc. and even may follow in terms of studying the history etc.(the subject of) and still be called Buddhists or lay buddhists or whatever label, but thet's not the same as actual practicer of. Add to that there would be levels of practicer of as well.

So we come to the scene where in all religions we may be lucky enough to come across someone who has learned and transcended and walks the talk and we would know, we would say to ourselves even, that we have met a true holy man.

Such is my condensed view on that.

Peace.G.

In not so many words - you yourself decide what buddhism is, and that those who don't practice as you do are not buddhists.

Further, you ignore that many of those excluded buddhists are actually Japanese in Japan, since that would prove your original statement:

To intellectualize Buddhism is a western trait my friend.

is, in fact, incorrect.

Glad we got that clarified. :freaky:

Best,

Chris

graham christian
03-04-2012, 12:46 PM
In not so many words - you yourself decide what buddhism is, and that those who don't practice as you do are not buddhists.

Further, you ignore that many of those excluded buddhists are actually Japanese in Japan, since that would prove your original statement:

is, in fact, incorrect.

Glad we got that clarified. :freaky:

Best,

Chris

Chris, please. I don't decide those who don't do as me are not thank you. I took the trouble to make a whole inclusive scale.

Saying intellectualism is a western trait is incorrect from one perspective yes. I'm sure there are many in Japan or anywhere else for that matter. That just makes them intellectual Buddhists or Buddhists still trapped in duality to a larger degree.

No more on that subject from me now, on this thread, been a pleasure explaining my view.

Peace.G.

Marc Abrams
03-04-2012, 12:50 PM
When boxed into a corner by one's own lack of real knowledge, Graham will not admit a lack of knowledge, despite having presented himself as being knowledgeable, leaves by saying "that is my opinion, no more on that subject......" This pattern continues unabated.... No surprise why people keep on calling him to task.

Marc Abrams

ps- Chris and Kevin: Thanks for boxing him into a corner time and time again.....

graham christian
03-04-2012, 01:03 PM
When boxed into a corner by one's own lack of real knowledge, Graham will not admit a lack of knowledge, despite having presented himself as being knowledgeable, leaves by saying "that is my opinion, no more on that subject......" This pattern continues unabated.... No surprise why people keep on calling him to task.

Marc Abrams

ps- Chris and Kevin: Thanks for boxing him into a corner time and time again.....

It's called integrity.

Now when someone appears, not to add to the discussion in any constructive way, now what is that called?

Peace.G.

Demetrio Cereijo
03-04-2012, 02:06 PM
It's called integrity.
No, it's called honesty. Integrity is another thing.

As an example:

The first point to understand about the difference between honesty and integrity is that a person may be entirely honest without ever engaging in the hard work of discernment that integrity requires.; she may tell us quite truthfully what she believes without ever taking the time to figure out whether what she believes is good and right and true. The problem may be as simple as someone's foolishly saying something that hurts a friend's feelings; a few moments of thought would have revealed the1ikelihood of the hurt and the lack of necessity for the comment. Or the problem may be more complex, as when a man who was raised from birth in a society that preaches racism states his belief in one race's inferiority as a fact, without ever really considering that perhaps this deeply held view is wrong. Certainly the racist is being honest-he is telling us what he actually thinks- but his honesty does not add up to integrity.

You probably are honest.... maybe you say what you believe is good, right and true, but your lack of connection to a concern with truth, your indifference to how things really are puts you far far away from integrity.

TheAikidoka
03-04-2012, 02:19 PM
NO NOW, All please lets get back to the topic thread, in hand and stop the arguing.

Many thank`s,

Andy B

Demetrio Cereijo
03-04-2012, 02:29 PM
NO NOW, All please lets get back to the topic thread, in hand and stop the arguing.
Why?

graham christian
03-04-2012, 03:17 PM
Why?

Because it's a matter of integrity. As I said earlier. Persisting off topic.

Peace.G.

Demetrio Cereijo
03-04-2012, 03:21 PM
There is no off topic, the past is an illusion, future doesn't exist... the thread is in the now as it is.

graham christian
03-04-2012, 03:26 PM
There is no off topic, the past is an illusion, future doesn't exist... the thread is in the now as it is.

The Topic is in the present, you are not. Off topic isn't.

Demetrio Cereijo
03-04-2012, 03:41 PM
The Topic is in the present, you are not. Off topic isn't.

Still carrying it?

graham christian
03-04-2012, 03:43 PM
Carrying what?? ha, ha.

graham christian
03-04-2012, 03:48 PM
By the way Demetrio, I used to walk around covered with cream and strwaberry's and sponge, do you know why?

Tyson Walters
03-04-2012, 04:05 PM
By the way Demetrio, I used to walk around covered with cream and strwaberry's and sponge, do you know why?

Was it a competitive dessert themed costume party?

graham christian
03-04-2012, 04:08 PM
Was it a competitive dessert themed costume party?

Close but no cigar. You see that's where I learned how to deal with the competitive mind.

It was so hard living in the gateau.

Peace.G.

Demetrio Cereijo
03-04-2012, 04:29 PM
Le gāteau est un mensonge.

hughrbeyer
03-04-2012, 06:21 PM
Have you ever been in really violent, physical encounters? The idea that you have some choice as to trying to control the level of "peacefulness" is in my own view, unrealistic and frankly dangerous to ask anyone to consider when faced with such a situation. The same applies to killing cleanly...

Hate to distract you from Standard AikiWeb Digression #2 (we all know what #1 is), but I'd like to cycle back to something Marc said earlier.

I don't disagree with your point, Marc, but I think it's only half the story. The other half the story is, in my view, one of the main reasons to train budo. The point of "detachment" and "compassion" as they relate to budo is that bringing those qualities to an encounter raises the odds that you won't leave it dead. Look back at the recent posts by Kevin, who has more credibility on this than I ever will (God willing). Coolness under fire matters because it works--and once you have it, you do in fact have the opportunity to make decisions, even in stressful situations. Achieving that state is the whole point of training

The flip side is the point you raise, which is also true at the same time. Complete detachment is something to work towards, not something that is ever likely to be achieved. Few of us will ever be like Ueshiba, dodging bullets in Mongolia. (And whatever you think of that story, I think it does express the sense of being detached and in control in a high-stress situation.)

And, of course, you don't train for coolness under stress without ever putting yourself under stress.

phitruong
03-04-2012, 08:20 PM
NO NOW, All please lets get back to the topic thread, in hand and stop the arguing.

Many thank`s,

Andy B

ironic isn't it, considering the topic of the thread? telling folks to stop arguing doesn't work out as you hope does it? welcome to life.

Stephen Nichol
03-04-2012, 09:33 PM
ironic isn't it, considering the topic of the thread? telling folks to stop arguing doesn't work out as you hope does it? welcome to life.

More ironic to me that a forum filled with people who train in a martial art that is supposed to 'meet' 'blend' 'guide' 'find harmony' etc... end up clashing and falling all over the verbal/written floor. Although I am seeing some nice back rolling and some attempts to 'get off the line' but that is about it.

And even funnier is those who know it is not an encounter that one will be able to apply actual technique with so with so they take the highest order of philosophical Aikido and apply it instead and 'simply are not there' to be part of it. (just sit on the side lines and watch the classic 'thread de-rail' train wreck.. 8 pages and still going strong. :eek: )

Sometimes when I think that could make the effort to write another wall of text in an attempt to bring peace to this thread (and the many others like it), to the parties involved within it and their issues with each other, themselves and their various points of view... I realise I could just go spend two to three hours training instead and most likely 'feel' like I get more out doing that. You know, that feeling of a tangible, positive result from learning something or helping another Aikidoka learn something they were over looking in their technique? Yeah, that is a great feeling. Something solid at least.

Also, I tend to find doing solo weapons work to very relaxing and almost meditative and can get lost in it for hours. So many subtle nuances in it that translate so well to open/empty hand... yet so simple at the same time. Good for your own development and may allow you to pass something on to others you train with later.

So given the choice, and we always have a choice, I recommend that stepping away from the keyboard/smart phone/tablet (whatever you method for viewing and replying is) and do a little training with someone or by yourself with weapons will go further in personal growth and pay off when training with others and possibly 'try to teach and explain it all to someone' who is 'right there with you' than trying to express a point on here on the internet in the hopes of changing another persons mind/views/opinions.

Do not get me wrong, I am a hypocrite at times too... because once in awhile I kind of 'try to instigate that change by expressing my views and seeing the reactions of others.'

I do not resist that knowledge or try to. I simply acknowledge that 'the situation changes so I myself must consider that, be aware of it, blend and change myself' or else I could find myself in conflict with the situation and worse, with myself over a moral/intellectual situation because I was unwilling to blend and change.

In those situations I will admit/say I was mistaken, wrong, that I misunderstood or that what I believed, felt, thought 'then' no longer applies 'now'... at the very least, it may not apply in the same way.

So even though I will agree with someone's thoughts on the mind vs 'being' and all this other existential stuff that surrounds us, it does not mean I or we are the only voices we need to hear anymore. I always keep my ears, eyes, and especially my mind open to further possibilities as I never know when the next tiny grain of enlightenment will pass me by. Its source could come from even idiot babbling away on the internet.. however from a certain perspective it could be 'spiritual gold'.

Differences of opinion and belief... only acknowledge that it is not the same as your own and be a peace with that. Arguing a point with all the facts you want with someone who is only does not even begin to acknowledge your position but continuously side steps it and even chance you make to assert it is well.. oh wait, that is a good example of getting off the line and 'not being there'... but on the internet it feels like being 'trolled'.

So this reply is my attempt to bring a little perspective back here and to remind people not to feed the trolls... especially the little troll that lives inside yourself that may be trying to get out and feed itself on here. Better to read first and when you feel you are being trolled... step away, go practice or train and do something truly productive. Then decide that even if you are / were being trolled on these forums... does it really matter? Compared to what you were doing when you were training and practicing?

If you feel you are being trolled. Ask once. Check it once with the general community as it gets done here. After that.. just avoid the troll lest you become one yourself in any attempt to engage it. Any attempt at all.

Kevin Leavitt
03-04-2012, 11:17 PM
It is okay to say"your wrong" and qualify why you believe it.
It is okay to stand up for your beliefs.

It is a requirement to seek to understand before being understood.

There is no requirement to blend or compromise if there is none. You can't create something that not there.

We must engage in the most thoughtful and skillful way possible. This is mindfulness.

In budo it is not okay to avoid or sit on the sideline and not take action if it is necessary.

That said, picking your battles is what is called wisdom!

Kevin Leavitt
03-04-2012, 11:33 PM
Gary please don't go, dont, goooooo, away. Couldn't resist famous song I like, that just popped in there.

:)

Hope you guys can mend your differences that's what Aikido is all about it is not in the differences, it's in the how. it's in reconciliating the conflict that is happening in this moment, through and that resolution, comes from a non competitive mind. There you go, take it or leave it my friends. There is the truth.

In peace brothers

Andy B

Hate to distract you from Standard AikiWeb Digression #2 (we all know what #1 is), but I'd like to cycle back to something Marc said earlier.

I don't disagree with your point, Marc, but I think it's only half the story. The other half the story is, in my view, one of the main reasons to train budo. The point of "detachment" and "compassion" as they relate to budo is that bringing those qualities to an encounter raises the odds that you won't leave it dead. Look back at the recent posts by Kevin, who has more credibility on this than I ever will (God willing). Coolness under fire matters because it works--and once you have it, you do in fact have the opportunity to make decisions, even in stressful situations. Achieving that state is the whole point of training

The flip side is the point you raise, which is also true at the same time. Complete detachment is something to work towards, not something that is ever likely to be achieved. Few of us will ever be like Ueshiba, dodging bullets in Mongolia. (And whatever you think of that story, I think it does express the sense of being detached and in control in a high-stress situation.)

And, of course, you don't train for coolness under stress without ever putting yourself under stress.

I am not sure what came first the chicken or the egg.

However I think simply that detachment or coolness under fire are by products. You train hard and gain skill, competence, and experience in what u are doing, it allows you to see more clearly what is going on. Because you understand this better you can make decisions better more devoid of emotion, and much will become intutuive, without thought.

It frees up the mind to make more important decisions with more input that provides us a better chance of making a better informed decision.

If I am going to debate I study debate. If I am going to enter pie eating contest, I am going to study those things that attribute to me to eat more pies. If I am going to fight, I study fighting, and approximate the conditions under which I am going to potentially face.

The point is, to reach the state of detachment I want to achieve in any situation requires that I gain experience in those conditions or I will have very little to fall back on when reality is met.

Budo will allow me to experience some important things that will help us in life if we are true to it, and honestly look at what it is that it will actually do for us. The catch 22 is that we form associations and attachments, and look for meaning when in fact, there is nothing really there many times. IMO there are some very simple and straight forward things that budo can teach us, but because we are human, we like to make things difficult and complex. It also gives us an excuse to not hold ourselves accountable when we fail to learn those simple lessons or don't want to pit in the hard work. For a lot of folks, it is also about the entertainment value.

graham christian
03-05-2012, 06:36 AM
I am not sure what came first the chicken or the egg.

However I think simply that detachment or coolness under fire are by products. You train hard and gain skill, competence, and experience in what u are doing, it allows you to see more clearly what is going on. Because you understand this better you can make decisions better more devoid of emotion, and much will become intutuive, without thought.

It frees up the mind to make more important decisions with more input that provides us a better chance of making a better informed decision.

If I am going to debate I study debate. If I am going to enter pie eating contest, I am going to study those things that attribute to me to eat more pies. If I am going to fight, I study fighting, and approximate the conditions under which I am going to potentially face.

The point is, to reach the state of detachment I want to achieve in any situation requires that I gain experience in those conditions or I will have very little to fall back on when reality is met.

Budo will allow me to experience some important things that will help us in life if we are true to it, and honestly look at what it is that it will actually do for us. The catch 22 is that we form associations and attachments, and look for meaning when in fact, there is nothing really there many times. IMO there are some very simple and straight forward things that budo can teach us, but because we are human, we like to make things difficult and complex. It also gives us an excuse to not hold ourselves accountable when we fail to learn those simple lessons or don't want to pit in the hard work. For a lot of folks, it is also about the entertainment value.

Very nicely put.

Peace.G.

graham christian
03-05-2012, 07:14 AM
More ironic to me that a forum filled with people who train in a martial art that is supposed to 'meet' 'blend' 'guide' 'find harmony' etc... end up clashing and falling all over the verbal/written floor. Although I am seeing some nice back rolling and some attempts to 'get off the line' but that is about it.

And even funnier is those who know it is not an encounter that one will be able to apply actual technique with so with so they take the highest order of philosophical Aikido and apply it instead and 'simply are not there' to be part of it. (just sit on the side lines and watch the classic 'thread de-rail' train wreck.. 8 pages and still going strong. :eek: )

Sometimes when I think that could make the effort to write another wall of text in an attempt to bring peace to this thread (and the many others like it), to the parties involved within it and their issues with each other, themselves and their various points of view... I realise I could just go spend two to three hours training instead and most likely 'feel' like I get more out doing that. You know, that feeling of a tangible, positive result from learning something or helping another Aikidoka learn something they were over looking in their technique? Yeah, that is a great feeling. Something solid at least.

Also, I tend to find doing solo weapons work to very relaxing and almost meditative and can get lost in it for hours. So many subtle nuances in it that translate so well to open/empty hand... yet so simple at the same time. Good for your own development and may allow you to pass something on to others you train with later.

So given the choice, and we always have a choice, I recommend that stepping away from the keyboard/smart phone/tablet (whatever you method for viewing and replying is) and do a little training with someone or by yourself with weapons will go further in personal growth and pay off when training with others and possibly 'try to teach and explain it all to someone' who is 'right there with you' than trying to express a point on here on the internet in the hopes of changing another persons mind/views/opinions.

Do not get me wrong, I am a hypocrite at times too... because once in awhile I kind of 'try to instigate that change by expressing my views and seeing the reactions of others.'

I do not resist that knowledge or try to. I simply acknowledge that 'the situation changes so I myself must consider that, be aware of it, blend and change myself' or else I could find myself in conflict with the situation and worse, with myself over a moral/intellectual situation because I was unwilling to blend and change.

In those situations I will admit/say I was mistaken, wrong, that I misunderstood or that what I believed, felt, thought 'then' no longer applies 'now'... at the very least, it may not apply in the same way.

So even though I will agree with someone's thoughts on the mind vs 'being' and all this other existential stuff that surrounds us, it does not mean I or we are the only voices we need to hear anymore. I always keep my ears, eyes, and especially my mind open to further possibilities as I never know when the next tiny grain of enlightenment will pass me by. Its source could come from even idiot babbling away on the internet.. however from a certain perspective it could be 'spiritual gold'.

Differences of opinion and belief... only acknowledge that it is not the same as your own and be a peace with that. Arguing a point with all the facts you want with someone who is only does not even begin to acknowledge your position but continuously side steps it and even chance you make to assert it is well.. oh wait, that is a good example of getting off the line and 'not being there'... but on the internet it feels like being 'trolled'.

So this reply is my attempt to bring a little perspective back here and to remind people not to feed the trolls... especially the little troll that lives inside yourself that may be trying to get out and feed itself on here. Better to read first and when you feel you are being trolled... step away, go practice or train and do something truly productive. Then decide that even if you are / were being trolled on these forums... does it really matter? Compared to what you were doing when you were training and practicing?

If you feel you are being trolled. Ask once. Check it once with the general community as it gets done here. After that.. just avoid the troll lest you become one yourself in any attempt to engage it. Any attempt at all.

8 Pages shows that the topic is interesting doesn't it? Most pages showed various views on the matter. Some even had banter.

You yourself have 'entered'.

Now when people of different views meet in discussion, as long as they stay on topic, then what's the problem? When a person opposes the view given then you may see 'confusion' flying about a bit. That's real, that's life. Ever had a 'discussion' with your wife when your views are opposite? I think for some the results may be similar to here except for a few pots and pans flying.

The one who 'fails' is the one who goes into personal or even general insult for is it not he who has lost and is bitter? Now taking pot shots from the sidelines? Now uninvolved with the topic?

As I say in Aikido to someone trying to throw me or move me without success: 'That's at me, not with me'

Peace.G.

Patrick Hutchinson
03-05-2012, 07:51 AM
"I used to walk around covered with cream and strawberry's and sponge"
I guess you must have been a trifle congested Graham

graham christian
03-05-2012, 07:56 AM
"I used to walk around covered with cream and strawberry's and sponge"
I guess you must have been a trifle congested Graham

Ha, ha. I was admired, drooled over, a real tasty geezer, alas eaten alive....lol.

Peace.G.

jonreading
03-05-2012, 10:31 AM
I will try again...

For the original post, I think some elements of the argument are incomplete or insufficient. The sport mentality does have some negative aspects; but it also has positive ones. The deliberate omission of the opposite aspects of sport mentality indicate to me a weak and biased position. I think if you are seeking a honest exchange, you need to respect the opposite position (even if you do not agree with it). As several posts have pointed out, your bias has weakened your position.

Second, (more to Graham's points, but in relation to the discussion:
1. Aikido is not religion. Do not imbue aikido with religious doctrine. If you belong to a religion, fine. Aikido is not Hinduism, Buddhism, Christianity, Juddaism, or Islam. Your ideology is cultist and not aikido.
2. Aikido is practical. Do not strip the practicality of aikido because you cannot physically apply aikido. You have set up such large spiritual goals and constructs as they will never be realized. If budo is about world peace, then it has failed. As Kevind pointed out, show me where your grand theology has succeeded ( even a snake oil salesman shows how his product cures).

As many have pointed out, before we can talk about this topic there needs to be a reality check. Much of my frustration in this thread is the evasion, occlusion, and ignorance of the argument. If you cannot simply explain your position, then you simply do not understand your position. Think about what you want to say and try again.

As I see this argument, the claim is that we should omit ALL sport mentality because some percentage of those who participate in this mentality may in-appropriately apply it to other aspects of their life which the poster believes is negative. This claim is made without respect to the opposite position, inconsiderate of the possibility of other causational factors which may contribute to the in-appropriate application of sport mentality and finally based upon a subjective personal observation that judges the behavior as either good or bad.

Remember, the Nazis believed they were right. Self-righteousness is a perspective. Everyone wants world peace, some just want world peace because it puts them at the top of the food chain.

Marc Abrams
03-05-2012, 10:52 AM
I am not sure what came first the chicken or the egg.

However I think simply that detachment or coolness under fire are by products. You train hard and gain skill, competence, and experience in what u are doing, it allows you to see more clearly what is going on. Because you understand this better you can make decisions better more devoid of emotion, and much will become intutuive, without thought.

It frees up the mind to make more important decisions with more input that provides us a better chance of making a better informed decision.

If I am going to debate I study debate. If I am going to enter pie eating contest, I am going to study those things that attribute to me to eat more pies. If I am going to fight, I study fighting, and approximate the conditions under which I am going to potentially face.

The point is, to reach the state of detachment I want to achieve in any situation requires that I gain experience in those conditions or I will have very little to fall back on when reality is met.

Budo will allow me to experience some important things that will help us in life if we are true to it, and honestly look at what it is that it will actually do for us. The catch 22 is that we form associations and attachments, and look for meaning when in fact, there is nothing really there many times. IMO there are some very simple and straight forward things that budo can teach us, but because we are human, we like to make things difficult and complex. It also gives us an excuse to not hold ourselves accountable when we fail to learn those simple lessons or don't want to pit in the hard work. For a lot of folks, it is also about the entertainment value.

Kevin:

You pointed out something very important. The detachment and coolness under extreme stress situations are products of proper training. That type of training is typically missing from most martial arts training paradigms. I have seen too many martial artists get the piss knocked out of them because they simply fell apart during extreme stress incidents. Training in the military and some realistic self-defense training schools work on "inoculating" the person so that the person can effectively function under extreme stress circumstances.

Non-competitive training paradigms are not designed to address that issue. I separate these components in my school and make it entirely optional for people to do some occasional work on learning how to deal with high stress situations. Some things, like addressing breathing patterns are built into what I teach as part of the regular curriculum.

It might be instructive and informative for some for you to describe some the means by which the military addresses this issue in their training paradigms.

Be Well,

marc abrams

graham christian
03-05-2012, 11:55 AM
I will try again...

For the original post, I think some elements of the argument are incomplete or insufficient. The sport mentality does have some negative aspects; but it also has positive ones. The deliberate omission of the opposite aspects of sport mentality indicate to me a weak and biased position. I think if you are seeking a honest exchange, you need to respect the opposite position (even if you do not agree with it). As several posts have pointed out, your bias has weakened your position.

Second, (more to Graham's points, but in relation to the discussion:
1. Aikido is not religion. Do not imbue aikido with religious doctrine. If you belong to a religion, fine. Aikido is not Hinduism, Buddhism, Christianity, Juddaism, or Islam. Your ideology is cultist and not aikido.
2. Aikido is practical. Do not strip the practicality of aikido because you cannot physically apply aikido. You have set up such large spiritual goals and constructs as they will never be realized. If budo is about world peace, then it has failed. As Kevind pointed out, show me where your grand theology has succeeded ( even a snake oil salesman shows how his product cures).

As many have pointed out, before we can talk about this topic there needs to be a reality check. Much of my frustration in this thread is the evasion, occlusion, and ignorance of the argument. If you cannot simply explain your position, then you simply do not understand your position. Think about what you want to say and try again.

As I see this argument, the claim is that we should omit ALL sport mentality because some percentage of those who participate in this mentality may in-appropriately apply it to other aspects of their life which the poster believes is negative. This claim is made without respect to the opposite position, inconsiderate of the possibility of other causational factors which may contribute to the in-appropriate application of sport mentality and finally based upon a subjective personal observation that judges the behavior as either good or bad.

Remember, the Nazis believed they were right. Self-righteousness is a perspective. Everyone wants world peace, some just want world peace because it puts them at the top of the food chain.

Jon.
The o/p is about how to be non competitive. How does sport mentality fit in with that? I would say it's not 'deliberately omitted' and rather it's not this subject.

Sports mentality is great for sports as is other mentality for other things.

Thus on first studying, being open to non competitive, only then may someone see how causative that can be and in what way. Then one may see how it's very useful in this competitive world.

The 'arguments' are thus only answers to people who question this approach. The thread is this approach.

Now, it just so happens that Ueshiba promoted and said such things, very spiritual. The principles of non competitive are spiritual principles therefore my stance is quite open and clear.

There are no claims about what others should do. The non competitive mind allows others to do as they do, it's all inclusive.

Hitler was very competitive and is a good example of how far the competitive mind can go and how far you can be led by it.

Nice new word though, cultist. Ha, ha. New negative label for spiritual.

If you want to understand non competitive or such statements by Ueshiba then you have no choice but to study spiritual principles. If not then practice it in a competitive way. No problem.

If you want to talk about positive aspects of sports mentality then why not start a thread for such?

Peace.G.

Kevin Leavitt
03-05-2012, 12:08 PM
Marc, I am going to take a slight twist on your request.

Really the military models of stress inoculation and overload do not have to remain in the realm of the military. When we use these things in the military I want to also point out that we understand the endstate of what it is that we are trying to inoculate. If not, then it could have a negative effect if not done in a controlled and proper manner. So, it is not enough simply to "go harder, go faster".

To go off on a slight tangent:

and, Marc, feel free to correct me from a psychological point of view if I get it wrong, as I am simply looking at my experiences with no education in psychology.

The stress a Navy Seal feels is really no different than say an accountant female that shows up to the dojo for the first time and has someone approach her with a shomen strike and tells her to irimi.

the stress she feels is as valid and as real as any stress that anyone else feels. I think we need to recognize it. The difference is what we are training that stress to result in.

For the seal, it is taking creating an overload so he can work through his faculties and apply his skills he as accumulated through slow methodical training. In that, he will receive feedback that will tell him alot about how he functions under pressure and then he can go back and fix the things he needs to fix. WHen that pressure is applied again, he will hopefully be able to handle it better. So, when he does a room clearing, or he is trying to fire off a 1000 meter shot from a windy, rocking, boat, he can deal with that better.

We can do the same in Aikido. That Female accountant can be placed under increasing stress in the dojo after doing kata and drills repetitively and provided feedback and correct things that wrong until she can handle increasingly more and more.

The issue is on the endstate though. What I find disturbing is that alot of people will do ....say iriminage in a very controlled manner, they get comfortable with it, and they get more and more efficient with it, feell better and more confident.

However, many times they fail to recognize what it is that they are training and how the conditions would apply correctly to other aspects. A HUGE gap is jumped and they believe because they can deal with "strikes" and "multiple opponents", that they can "handle" themselves.

There is a Cognitive Dissonance that occurs and IMO is the largest sickness and the thing we must be very careful of in the dojo cause it is HIGHLY contagious and affects us all.

Anyway, there is some benefits to the way Aikido is typically trained if we recognize the limitations of our training.

Again, the stress a Female Accountant feels is every bit as real and valid as a Navy Seal.

So, we can create an stressful environment (realitively speaking) for the female, as well as the Navy Seal. Keep in mind the stress environment will most likely look very, very different as they are working on two different levels.

So, we create that CONTROLLED stress environment for the average joe, in this case our female accountant in the Aikido dojo. She will learn alot about herself, and how to handle stress, what her triggers are, how to better control it, how to eliminate and mitgate many of the factors of stress and fear.

These things can carry over into other aspects of her life and have positive outcomes. A HUGE benefit of budo.

However, it may not mean she has the skills to handle a rapist, multiple opponents, or even really defend herself in reality.

That all depends on the conditions she is subjected too in training. As Marc identifies, there are two separate and distinct methodologies that he trains in for very different reasons depending on what his students want to work on.

Note, that I have not mentioned ANYTHING about philosophy, religion, or spirituality.

I personally don't think these things belong in the dojo as a focus. Certainly we can create an environment that allows people to experience and self actualize philosophically, religiously, or spiritually, and many people certainly find those things through budo.

However, in training, I honestly believe they muddy the waters and cause a great deal of confusion. Most Aikido instructors do not have the backgrounds in psychology, religion, or philosophy to really be getting into the business of counseling or provide advice in this area.

I think if you focus on good, solid, fundamental training that has been proven over time and guide your students correctly to understand the nature and limitations of their trainng, mentor and push them in the right directions, they will find their way.

Too much garbage and attachment gets injected in what we do, when in reality we should simply concentrate on the physical. Very real, very physical training.

If we do this, I have found that the rest tends to take care of itself without the preaching or pontification.

jonreading
03-05-2012, 12:57 PM
Jon.
The o/p is about how to be non competitive. 1. How does sport mentality fit in with that? I would say it's not 'deliberately omitted' and rather it's not this subject.

Sports mentality is great for sports as is other mentality for other things.

Thus on first studying, being open to non competitive, only then may someone see how causative that can be and in what way. Then one may see how it's very useful in this competitive world.

The 'arguments' are thus only answers to people who question this approach. The thread is this approach.

Now, it just so happens that Ueshiba promoted and said such things, very spiritual. The principles of non competitive are spiritual principles therefore my stance is quite open and clear.

There are no claims about what others should do. The non competitive mind allows others to do as they do, it's all inclusive.

Hitler was very competitive and is a good example of how far the competitive mind can go and how far you can be led by it.

2. Nice new word though, cultist. Ha, ha. New negative label for spiritual.

If you want to understand non competitive or such statements by Ueshiba then you have no choice but to study spiritual principles. If not then practice it in a competitive way. No problem.

If you want to talk about positive aspects of sports mentality then why not start a thread for such?

Peace.G.

Hey Graham, let me address the two bolded comments:
1. I believe the original post is not actually referring to "competition", but rather, the sport-oriented mentality that drives us to "win" or "lose". In this sense, I am actually aligned with much of what the poster presents. For example, I agree that designating "winners" and "losers" can be detrimental to personal growth. I have chosen not to use the word "competition" because I do not believe that is the appropriate term. As I said in my previous post, using "competition" in this sense would eventually lead us to a conflict of scientific theory (using the theory of evolution as an example to demonstrate that natural selection is competition). The original post's argument is too weak to stand against Darwin, so I am speculating that he is actually referring to the sport-oriented mentality.
2. I do not believe "cult" is a negative word; you may choose to place a negative label on that term. Rather, "cult" refers to a small religious offshoot of devotees to a singular entity. I believe this labels your perspective rather well. You emphatically advocate spirituality (derived from some religious or some moral foundation) is central to (even over the physical practice) your aikido. Cult aikido is quite common and while your flavor is different, you are one of many one who have deified O Sensei and his spiritual path. To be fair, Big Trouble in Little China is one of my favorite cult classics.

I have more time (and a full keyboard)... What I am trying to get at is that I see little empirical evidence to support a claim that the "sport mentality" that we manifest is wholly at fault for any number of our shortcomings. You [Graham] posted some fictitious examples to outline some of my earlier comments, to which I can now respond:

I see people at work competing with things even and suffering the consequences. A builder who is trying to do something, like say remove a screw or hang a door or whatever. If it's a bit troublesome and he decides to look at it as the door is opposing him he then starts swearing at it and blaming it and trying to force it and ouch!!! Yeah, something 'bad' happens. He caused it, yet he blames the door. Crazy

If you work in an office or environment with people working closely together and there's that one who is always trying to show they are better, to impress the boss, to do all kind of annoying things and then act innocent, all kinds of methods. Oh the competitive mind. This person thus has to prove and therefor proving to the boss how 'bad' the others are become all part of the game. Lies become useful to this end. On and on. This fellow or woman is heading for a good beating or come uppance, after annoying and possibly destroying a few lives on the way of course. Oh the competitve mind.

In your first example, you are talking about projection. This is actually quite common and has nothing to do with competition, but rather the projection of causation onto a person or object.

In your second example, you are talking about the drive to place yourself in a position of security. The example lacks the necessary facts to ascertain whether those actions are or are not appropriate. For example, if the employee was better than her fellow employees, would her actions to illustrate this fact be inappropriate? If the employees job was quality control and her job was to illustrate the poor performance of her fellow employees, would her actions be inappropriate?

In neither example can you assert that the idea of winning and losing was wholly at fault for any outcome... and you fictitiously created them to serve as your examples. The original argument uses inductive reasoning to cast a generalization using a limited number of examples. Generally, inductive reasoning is considered to be a poor style of argumentation because it is very difficult to support. Not necessarily wrong, just argumentatively weak.

The sense I get from this thread that raises my hackles is that for being a personal journey, I am hearing many "thou shalt nots" that are associated with budo. The thread also hands out alot of judgements (in my opinion lacking sufficient evidence to support a position) in the name of budo. To ask the rhetorical question, if my aikido is about me, why should I give a f%#$ whether my partner is being competitive? Or negative? Or resistive? Because if my aikido is poor, I cannot get it to work on uke unless she is anything but a lamb.

Truly, I believe this is a conversation to justify a change in [uke] behavior that contributes to aikido success. I am not sure if that is the intent of the original post, or the progression of responses. Once again, uke is bad and nage is good. Competing is bad and not competing is good. Resisting what I want to do is bad, letting me throw you is good. This has nothing to do with budo. The assumption on my end (and I assume others) is that we are talking about an aikido that requires cooperation to work. This is not my aikido. The aikido I am working on is about me and it [should] work regardless of what my partner thinks, acts, or says.

I am trying to tease out from the thread that if we are talking about something other than simply glorifying nage while admonishing some habit in uke that prevents success, then I am missing some key facts to help me understand the argument.

Janet Rosen
03-05-2012, 12:58 PM
Kevin, thank you - great post (#188)

Marc Abrams
03-05-2012, 12:58 PM
Jon.
The o/p is about how to be non competitive. How does sport mentality fit in with that? I would say it's not 'deliberately omitted' and rather it's not this subject.

Sports mentality is great for sports as is other mentality for other things.

Thus on first studying, being open to non competitive, only then may someone see how causative that can be and in what way. Then one may see how it's very useful in this competitive world.

The 'arguments' are thus only answers to people who question this approach. The thread is this approach.

Now, it just so happens that Ueshiba promoted and said such things, very spiritual. The principles of non competitive are spiritual principles therefore my stance is quite open and clear.

There are no claims about what others should do. The non competitive mind allows others to do as they do, it's all inclusive.

Hitler was very competitive and is a good example of how far the competitive mind can go and how far you can be led by it.

Nice new word though, cultist. Ha, ha. New negative label for spiritual.

If you want to understand non competitive or such statements by Ueshiba then you have no choice but to study spiritual principles. If not then practice it in a competitive way. No problem.

If you want to talk about positive aspects of sports mentality then why not start a thread for such?

Peace.G.

Graham:

Did you forget your earlier post?

Chris, please. I don't decide those who don't do as me are not thank you. I took the trouble to make a whole inclusive scale.

Saying intellectualism is a western trait is incorrect from one perspective yes. I'm sure there are many in Japan or anywhere else for that matter. That just makes them intellectual Buddhists or Buddhists still trapped in duality to a larger degree.

No more on that subject from me now, on this thread, been a pleasure explaining my view.

Peace.G.

For such an allegedly peaceful and noncompetitive person, your acts speak differently.

Now you would like to shape the thread to conveniently fit your position- common pattern for you. O'Sensei was competitive, Martin Luther King Jr. was competitive, Ghandi was competitive, as well as Eisenhower, Patton, Hitler and a whole bunch of other people. So much for that empty comparison of yours.

If people do not agree with your non-intellectual, idiosyncratic positions on things, your responses are little more than sad attempts at sophistry trying to justify your own beliefs (quite competitive an approach). By the way, have you heard back from Mike Muspratt yet regarding his history? Remember those questions you said that you were going to get answered for me? Or is this yet another attempt to wiggle out from a self-created corner?

Marc Abrams

Demetrio Cereijo
03-05-2012, 01:12 PM
Hey guys (and gals), let's not forget Graham didn't started this. He was only supporting Andrew.

graham christian
03-05-2012, 01:43 PM
Hey Graham, let me address the two bolded comments:
1. I believe the original post is not actually referring to "competition", but rather, the sport-oriented mentality that drives us to "win" or "lose". In this sense, I am actually aligned with much of what the poster presents. For example, I agree that designating "winners" and "losers" can be detrimental to personal growth. I have chosen not to use the word "competition" because I do not believe that is the appropriate term. As I said in my previous post, using "competition" in this sense would eventually lead us to a conflict of scientific theory (using the theory of evolution as an example to demonstrate that natural selection is competition). The original post's argument is too weak to stand against Darwin, so I am speculating that he is actually referring to the sport-oriented mentality.
2. I do not believe "cult" is a negative word; you may choose to place a negative label on that term. Rather, "cult" refers to a small religious offshoot of devotees to a singular entity. I believe this labels your perspective rather well. You emphatically advocate spirituality (derived from some religious or some moral foundation) is central to (even over the physical practice) your aikido. Cult aikido is quite common and while your flavor is different, you are one of many one who have deified O Sensei and his spiritual path. To be fair, Big Trouble in Little China is one of my favorite cult classics.

I have more time (and a full keyboard)... What I am trying to get at is that I see little empirical evidence to support a claim that the "sport mentality" that we manifest is wholly at fault for any number of our shortcomings. You [Graham] posted some fictitious examples to outline some of my earlier comments, to which I can now respond:

In your first example, you are talking about projection. This is actually quite common and has nothing to do with competition, but rather the projection of causation onto a person or object.

In your second example, you are talking about the drive to place yourself in a position of security. The example lacks the necessary facts to ascertain whether those actions are or are not appropriate. For example, if the employee was better than her fellow employees, would her actions to illustrate this fact be inappropriate? If the employees job was quality control and her job was to illustrate the poor performance of her fellow employees, would her actions be inappropriate?

In neither example can you assert that the idea of winning and losing was wholly at fault for any outcome... and you fictitiously created them to serve as your examples. The original argument uses inductive reasoning to cast a generalization using a limited number of examples. Generally, inductive reasoning is considered to be a poor style of argumentation because it is very difficult to support. Not necessarily wrong, just argumentatively weak.

The sense I get from this thread that raises my hackles is that for being a personal journey, I am hearing many "thou shalt nots" that are associated with budo. The thread also hands out alot of judgements (in my opinion lacking sufficient evidence to support a position) in the name of budo. To ask the rhetorical question, if my aikido is about me, why should I give a f%#$ whether my partner is being competitive? Or negative? Or resistive? Because if my aikido is poor, I cannot get it to work on uke unless she is anything but a lamb.

Truly, I believe this is a conversation to justify a change in [uke] behavior that contributes to aikido success. I am not sure if that is the intent of the original post, or the progression of responses. Once again, uke is bad and nage is good. Competing is bad and not competing is good. Resisting what I want to do is bad, letting me throw you is good. This has nothing to do with budo. The assumption on my end (and I assume others) is that we are talking about an aikido that requires cooperation to work. This is not my aikido. The aikido I am working on is about me and it [should] work regardless of what my partner thinks, acts, or says.

I am trying to tease out from the thread that if we are talking about something other than simply glorifying nage while admonishing some habit in uke that prevents success, then I am missing some key facts to help me understand the argument.

O.K. Jon.
Firstly I believe the original post has nothing to do with sports mentality and is not too weak to stand up to Darwin. Quite the contrary. Darwin would be an observation the competitive mind would love for on the whole it fits it.

As far as the word cult is used I was tempted to say I take it as a compliment but it tends to have too many negative connotations. So thanks for the compliment.

The examples are not fictitious. Projection in such a way is done by the competitive mind.

The secretary who is good need not go behund others backs and say negative things for her work will stand out like a bright star and needs no competitive 'help' I think you will find in life that it would be the others through fear for their job security or plain jealousy would resort to such things. Then maybe even justify it with Darwins theory of survival.

Whether or not inductive reasoning is considered the way of arguing or not I don't really care. I would say that too is more to do with competitive mind also. It reminds me only of a 'friend' who would come to visit me on my stall in portobello road every week. He loved an argument just like you describe. Every week I would listen and take my time and give him a short answer which had him laughing and going away to think about it. Then next week he would come back with a new 'yeah but' and argument and only get the same result.
It actually blows some peoples minds when all I say is no, or I don't know, or good. They wait and then complain saying 'you can't just say that' . 'I just did'. I say. They then go into but, but, but, blah blah blah,. Good. No argument. You see they want an argument. They want competition. Good.

So you believe Budo is about you being able to do whatever you wish to the opponent, I'll add while defending yourself so you don't think I'm being 'clever' Good. Then that's your view and how you practice.

So I will inform you of another budo. Both are disciplines and both take great discipline and training and studying, ie: shugyo. Yet they are different.

It is not the person telling you what you should do, ie: me or anyone else, it is the rules of your discipline that tell you what you should do.

Now this other Budo is non competitive and thus a different Budo. Thus this Budo is not about self it is solely about the protection of the other. Thus different principles.

Therein lies the difference.

Peace.G.

Demetrio Cereijo
03-05-2012, 01:54 PM
So you believe Budo is about you being able to do whatever you wish to the opponent, I'll add while defending yourself so you don't think I'm being 'clever' Good. Then that's your view and how you practice.
Well,

"To equip your inner-self with the power to move the enemy according to your own will is the true Kannagara no Michi."

It seems Jon's and O Sensei's views are very similar.

So I will inform you of another budo. Both are disciplines and both take great discipline and training and studying, ie: shugyo. Yet they are different.

It is not the person telling you what you should do, ie: me or anyone else, it is the rules of your discipline that tell you what you should do.

Now this other Budo is non competitive and thus a different Budo. Thus this Budo is not about self it is solely about the protection of the other. Thus different principles.

Fine but, why do you call aikido this other budo?

graham christian
03-05-2012, 02:09 PM
Graham:

Did you forget your earlier post?

For such an allegedly peaceful and noncompetitive person, your acts speak differently.

Now you would like to shape the thread to conveniently fit your position- common pattern for you. O'Sensei was competitive, Martin Luther King Jr. was competitive, Ghandi was competitive, as well as Eisenhower, Patton, Hitler and a whole bunch of other people. So much for that empty comparison of yours.

If people do not agree with your non-intellectual, idiosyncratic positions on things, your responses are little more than sad attempts at sophistry trying to justify your own beliefs (quite competitive an approach). By the way, have you heard back from Mike Muspratt yet regarding his history? Remember those questions you said that you were going to get answered for me? Or is this yet another attempt to wiggle out from a self-created corner?

Marc Abrams

Nice try but no cigar. I am still on topic thank you. Not discussing the ins and outs of Buddhism.

Passionate people are very competitive, compassionate people not so. That doesn't mean they don't stand up for what they believe. Nothing to do with competition.

Sophistry, nice word. As I said stand up for your belief is not competition.

Haven't even seen Mike yet. I answered those questions of yours then, did you listen? I have asked my friend who is going to see him, when he is ready and not before, and then it is for Mike to decide not you or me.

As I said to you, the idea I shall put to him is the idea of having his story told. Now this he may well like. Alas, to do so because of your 'demands' ? NO. So when the idea is put to him and if he agrees then we will find a person qualified to talk or correspond or meet him. It would be an honour for me to arrange such if he so desires.

Peace.G.

Marc Abrams
03-05-2012, 02:13 PM
Marc, I am going to take a slight twist on your request.

Really the military models of stress inoculation and overload do not have to remain in the realm of the military. When we use these things in the military I want to also point out that we understand the endstate of what it is that we are trying to inoculate. If not, then it could have a negative effect if not done in a controlled and proper manner. So, it is not enough simply to "go harder, go faster".

To go off on a slight tangent:

and, Marc, feel free to correct me from a psychological point of view if I get it wrong, as I am simply looking at my experiences with no education in psychology.

The stress a Navy Seal feels is really no different than say an accountant female that shows up to the dojo for the first time and has someone approach her with a shomen strike and tells her to irimi.

the stress she feels is as valid and as real as any stress that anyone else feels. I think we need to recognize it. The difference is what we are training that stress to result in.

For the seal, it is taking creating an overload so he can work through his faculties and apply his skills he as accumulated through slow methodical training. In that, he will receive feedback that will tell him alot about how he functions under pressure and then he can go back and fix the things he needs to fix. WHen that pressure is applied again, he will hopefully be able to handle it better. So, when he does a room clearing, or he is trying to fire off a 1000 meter shot from a windy, rocking, boat, he can deal with that better.

We can do the same in Aikido. That Female accountant can be placed under increasing stress in the dojo after doing kata and drills repetitively and provided feedback and correct things that wrong until she can handle increasingly more and more.

The issue is on the endstate though. What I find disturbing is that alot of people will do ....say iriminage in a very controlled manner, they get comfortable with it, and they get more and more efficient with it, feell better and more confident.

However, many times they fail to recognize what it is that they are training and how the conditions would apply correctly to other aspects. A HUGE gap is jumped and they believe because they can deal with "strikes" and "multiple opponents", that they can "handle" themselves.

There is a Cognitive Dissonance that occurs and IMO is the largest sickness and the thing we must be very careful of in the dojo cause it is HIGHLY contagious and affects us all.

Anyway, there is some benefits to the way Aikido is typically trained if we recognize the limitations of our training.

Again, the stress a Female Accountant feels is every bit as real and valid as a Navy Seal.

So, we can create an stressful environment (realitively speaking) for the female, as well as the Navy Seal. Keep in mind the stress environment will most likely look very, very different as they are working on two different levels.

So, we create that CONTROLLED stress environment for the average joe, in this case our female accountant in the Aikido dojo. She will learn alot about herself, and how to handle stress, what her triggers are, how to better control it, how to eliminate and mitgate many of the factors of stress and fear.

These things can carry over into other aspects of her life and have positive outcomes. A HUGE benefit of budo.

However, it may not mean she has the skills to handle a rapist, multiple opponents, or even really defend herself in reality.

That all depends on the conditions she is subjected too in training. As Marc identifies, there are two separate and distinct methodologies that he trains in for very different reasons depending on what his students want to work on.

Note, that I have not mentioned ANYTHING about philosophy, religion, or spirituality.

I personally don't think these things belong in the dojo as a focus. Certainly we can create an environment that allows people to experience and self actualize philosophically, religiously, or spiritually, and many people certainly find those things through budo.

However, in training, I honestly believe they muddy the waters and cause a great deal of confusion. Most Aikido instructors do not have the backgrounds in psychology, religion, or philosophy to really be getting into the business of counseling or provide advice in this area.

I think if you focus on good, solid, fundamental training that has been proven over time and guide your students correctly to understand the nature and limitations of their trainng, mentor and push them in the right directions, they will find their way.

Too much garbage and attachment gets injected in what we do, when in reality we should simply concentrate on the physical. Very real, very physical training.

If we do this, I have found that the rest tends to take care of itself without the preaching or pontification.

Kevin:

I agree with what you said. I think that many teachers have not really explored the physical and psychological aspects of being in extreme stress environments. Like you pointed out, in absence of that, magical thinking occurs in that there is an unrealistic jump between the existing training paradigms employed and the belief that the skill sets and abilities would continue to manifest properly during high stress events/interactions. The very hard and real training that we both agree upon as being important are far too frequently dismissed by many who think that a totally cooperative & non-competitive training environment will suffice. Then again, I also think that people can maintain the right not to have to be exposed to that type of situation as long as they are fully aware that by missing those aspects of training, the likelihood of being able to respond effectively to a real assault, significantly diminishes.

I am upfront with my students when I let them know that I will slowly introduce them to these components of training as they have some time under their belts. I do not advertise that I am there to teach them to be able to effectively defend themselves in a short period of time. I am focused on systematically changing the way in which they respond to stressors so that they keep their focus and composure. It is easy to hard-wire in the fear/anger response set and difficult to get it out (good evolutionary survival set). When I add this stuff into the typical training paradigms, I normally have to do some psych. debriefing to help the person whose issues were set off, properly process what happened so that the person can use the experience as a building block on the way to being able to respond effectively during high stress events/interactions.

Adding to what you also said, most martial arts teachers have not received any formal training/instruction into hows and whys of teaching. I think that people need to spend time thinking through the hows and whys of their teaching paradigms. That thinking should be connected to the goals and paradigms of training.

Marc Abrams

graham christian
03-05-2012, 02:14 PM
Well,

"To equip your inner-self with the power to move the enemy according to your own will is the true Kannagara no Michi."

It seems Jon's and O Sensei's views are very similar.

Fine but, why do you call aikido this other budo?

The first quote above I agree to you it seems so. To see differently you would have to know inner true self and the meaning of will in that context.

It's called the Budo of love.

Peace.G.

Kevin Leavitt
03-05-2012, 02:31 PM
All scholastic, academic, and practical concepts in the field of conflict resolution pretty much recognize that you have three basic elements to a conflict. At least two people or ideologies or concepts, and the situation in which they meet. By the nature of them meeting, they are competing to dominate and achieve the desired goal.

The competition is real and it exist.

Failure to recognize it and deal with it does not mean it does not exist. It is still there and will exercise its will to dominate or "win".

It could be that we never recognize that it is there (failure to identify) or we may actively choose to ignore it. I believe that choosing to ignore it might be the non-competive mind.

It may be that it does not actively or blatantly affect us. It could be that it affects us somehow, but we are unable to see that clearly, but we still experience that something is not right. (Dissonance).

However, if we identify it, and take action because we do not like it, or feel we need to stop it, or control it, we are immediately competing with it. That is unrefutable, no matter how you choose to reframe it.

However, we can over react to it, become emotionally invested to the point we are clouded by our own preoccupations to see it for what it really is. I believe this would be what Andrew and Graham are calling the competive mind.

I think they might intuitively understand this, but are using the wrong words and framing the perspective incorrectly and have made a doctrine by combining several concept incorrectly and are therefore focused on the wrong solution set.

However that is my opinion, and discussing this with them is like discussing religion with someone that has their mind made up about how the world works and the relationship with religion. If you don't share the same common dogma at the base level, then you are never going to be able to convince them that your view point has merit.

Demetrio Cereijo
03-05-2012, 02:32 PM
To see differently you would have to know inner true self and the meaning of will in that context.

Sorry, I've run out of whiskey.

graham christian
03-05-2012, 02:40 PM
Kevin, I read your post (188). Very nicely put. From the heart. Your view.

Now if someone came to me and whether they had watched me or trained with me or just met me but said they were looking for someone to teach them physical Aikido and gave me a good reasoned explanation as to why then I would gladly send them in your direction.

Thus there is for me no competition.

Peace.G.

Kevin Leavitt
03-05-2012, 02:48 PM
Marc wrote:

When I add this stuff into the typical training paradigms, I normally have to do some psych. debriefing to help the person whose issues were set off, properly process what happened so that the person can use the experience as a building block on the way to being able to respond effectively during high stress events/interactions.

Which is why you will never see me teach a weekend self defense seminar to a women's group. o get any real value out of it requires, IMO, a reality check that might put some folks into a psychological mess if you take them from zero to 60 and introduce to them the reality of rape and violence. So, if you simply do the key chain thing and the foot stomp, you send them away with a good feeling, but no better off than when they came into the dojo. Actually you made it worse.

You see, this is the very core of why I have issue with this noncompetive mind stuff. Please someone tell me how this would benefit someone that is being violently assaulted? They need to recognize that they are in a competition for their life. It is real and they better have a strong ego if they want to live.

It briefs well to talk about remaining calm under pressure, and there is value to this, but in reality when u are losing and fighting for your life, you will not be calm, you are competing, and you need to be emotionally charged and alive to fight for your life. It is the default physical skills that matter under stress.

Now if their is no stress and you are in control, then by all means go to your calm happy place, but you must take that guy serious and realize that you are still competing.

Like I said, in budo, we have enough to do getting our heads screwed on straight to deal with conflict than to start muddying the waters with feeling good about ourselves.

In the end if you are ever in a real violent situation, you must do things that you don't like, that will make you feel ugly and dirty. You will be an emotional wreck afterwards until sometime passes. However, if you train and prepare yourself ahead of time, you can make the best choices you can make, and minimize the PTSD issues you experience, and yes, everyone gets some sort of PTSD, it is how you manage it that determine how it affects you in the long run.

Now hopefully most of us will never experience what I am describing, but that should not mean we cannot train properly and still realize the benefits of training for conflicts that are not phsycial violent encounters.

Demetrio Cereijo
03-05-2012, 02:54 PM
In the end if you are ever in a real violent situation, you must do things that you don't like, that will make you feel ugly and dirty. You will be an emotional wreck afterwards until sometime passes. However, if you train and prepare yourself ahead of time, you can make the best choices you can make, and minimize the PTSD issues you experience, and yes, everyone gets some sort of PTSD, it is how you manage it that determine how it affects you in the long run.

That's training the spirit.

Kevin Leavitt
03-05-2012, 02:54 PM
Kevin, I read your post (188). Very nicely put. From the heart. Your view.

Now if someone came to me and whether they had watched me or trained with me or just met me but said they were looking for someone to teach them physical Aikido and gave me a good reasoned explanation as to why then I would gladly send them in your direction.

Thus there is for me no competition.

Peace.G.

Thanks. So to clarify..then what you are teaching...you don't consider it a martial art then?

So what do you consider it? A physical meditation, mind improvement process, or something like that?

Are you upfront with your students about the limitations of their training?

What is the end state you are trying to achieve for the,?

Just want to see where you stand on this so I can better understand your position on the spectrum.

graham christian
03-05-2012, 07:30 PM
Thanks. So to clarify..then what you are teaching...you don't consider it a martial art then?

So what do you consider it? A physical meditation, mind improvement process, or something like that?

Are you upfront with your students about the limitations of their training?

What is the end state you are trying to achieve for the,?

Just want to see where you stand on this so I can better understand your position on the spectrum.

Hi, been busy on another thread.

I don't think it needs clarifying as I have done so many times before. This time though I will answer but not go into debate on as I have already explained before my views. (unless it's a brand new question)

Yes I do consider it a martial art.

I consider it a spiritual martial art. Much like a zen martial art.

End state is stable, capable people, very end state is enlightened people.

I am very upfront with my students and they know the capabilities of it. There are no limitations.

I doubt that gives you a 'fitting in a spectrum' view. Best stick with outside of your experience view I would suggest.

Not much else I can say.

Peace.G.

Kevin Leavitt
03-05-2012, 10:31 PM
Thanks for the response, it is helpful to see your position.
So how many people have you enlightened over the years?
Understand it is a on going process, just curious how your students are doing in this area since it is your focus.

graham christian
03-06-2012, 01:41 AM
Thanks for the response, it is helpful to see your position.
So how many people have you enlightened over the years?
Understand it is a on going process, just curious how your students are doing in this area since it is your focus.

Yes, it is an ongoing process.

How many? Is that a trick question? If you mean full enlightenment, the final end state then I consider it such.

If you mean it as a verb then every single student over the years is the answer. From day one. They can't help but hit enlightening realizations the way I teach for it is par for the course and expected. It's what I offer and it's what I deliver.

They learn the spiritual and how it relates to the mental and physical in practice and this opens there eyes to their own potential and their own life, let alone life itself. Now that's quite enlightening for someone in itself. They learn many things they had previously thought impossible or only read about in fiction books. That too is enlightening.

They learn that the path is one of harmony and just how hard that is yet how true it is and that too is enlightening.

Thus their lives get better, they get more confident, they handle problems in life much better and become more enlightened good and reasonable and able people.

Not all at the same rate obviously. Thus Aikido is a great tool for the problems on the mat are a mere reflection of how they approach similar in life and show the next barrier for them to go through.

Every conceivable situation in Aikido represents a problem or situation in life that you must solve, handle directly with harmony. Thus without harmful intent, without harm, without anger or fear or any other negative emotion, without force, without someone coming to your rescue, without thinking, without the view of escape, without reaction, selflessly.

Peace.G.

Kevin Leavitt
03-06-2012, 05:04 PM
thanks Graham

TheAikidoka
03-07-2012, 11:04 AM
The Dai Nippon Butokukai has kind of a checkered history and is, currently, a very minor organization in Japan without much real connection to the pre-war group of the same name. It appears to be somewhat larger outside of Japan than in.

There's a kind of interesting (if old) discussion here (http://www.e-budo.com/forum/showthread.php?t=30833).

The summary here (http://ja.wikipedia.org/wiki/%E5%A4%A7%E6%97%A5%E6%9C%AC%E6%AD%A6%E5%BE%B3%E4%BC%9A) is a little better if you can read Japanese.

To get back to "peace", I think that before discussing peace in Aikido it should be established whether or not Morihei Ueshiba was in fact a pacifist (Kisshomaru denied that either he or his father were pacifists), and/or if he was a pacifist then what "peace" would mean to him.

Peace might, for example, mean something different to someone like Arnaud Amalric (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arnaud_Amalric) than it does to most people here (or so I imagine!).

Best,

Chris

Sorry about the lateness of my response. Here you can find the History of DNBK and the international division of the organization. I wanted to post the whole article, however the material is copy righted, so I can only post the link:

http://www.dnbk.org/history.cfm

Hope this clarifies the situation.

Andy B

Chris Li
03-07-2012, 12:20 PM
Sorry about the lateness of my response. Here you can find the History of DNBK and the international division of the organization. I wanted to post the whole article, however the material is copy righted, so I can only post the link:

http://www.dnbk.org/history.cfm

Hope this clarifies the situation.

Andy B

As I said, the information here (http://ja.wikipedia.org/wiki/%E5%A4%A7%E6%97%A5%E6%9C%AC%E6%AD%A6%E5%BE%B3%E4%BC%9A) is a little better, if you can read Japanese.

The post-war organization has no real connection to any major Aikido organization that I am aware of. There's nothing wrong with that, of course.

Best,

Chris

TheAikidoka
03-09-2012, 08:07 AM
As I said, the information here (http://ja.wikipedia.org/wiki/%E5%A4%A7%E6%97%A5%E6%9C%AC%E6%AD%A6%E5%BE%B3%E4%BC%9A) is a little better, if you can read Japanese.

The post-war organization has no real connection to any major Aikido organization that I am aware of. There's nothing wrong with that, of course.

Best,

Chris

Hi Chris,
Just to make this clear, when Aikido was first named as such (not by osensei), O`sensei, had to give it a name so that it would be accpeted as a traditional Budo by the Japaneses gouvernment, this is achieved through, Dai Nippon Butokukai.
The DNBK, authorizes teaching & certification in traditional Japanese arts including Kobudo, Aikido, Iaido, Kendo, Judo, and other tradional arts from Japan.

Head of DNBK is, His Royal Highness, Sosai, Higashi Fushimi, Jigo, the chief abbot of Shorenin Temple. He is a brother to late Empress Kotaigo of Emperor Hirohito of Japan. Vice Governor, Fuku Sosai is his son, Higashi Fushimi, Jiko, he serves as the Shinmon of the Shorenin Temple.

Many of today`s exponents of Aikido within Aikikai, are also members of DNBK, including Hioaki Izumi Sensei, 6th Dan Aikikai, Dan graded also in Kendo and Iaido.

Post WW2 or not, many people still in Japan today still consider DNBK recognition, as one of the highest authority on traditional Japanese martial Arts. And many practitioners from Differetn arts Are members.

In Budo

Andy B

Chris Li
03-09-2012, 09:34 AM
Hi Chris,
Just to make this clear, when Aikido was first named as such (not by osensei), O`sensei, had to give it a name so that it would be accpeted as a traditional Budo by the Japaneses gouvernment, this is achieved through, Dai Nippon Butokukai.
The DNBK, authorizes teaching & certification in traditional Japanese arts including Kobudo, Aikido, Iaido, Kendo, Judo, and other tradional arts from Japan.

Head of DNBK is, His Royal Highness, Sosai, Higashi Fushimi, Jigo, the chief abbot of Shorenin Temple. He is a brother to late Empress Kotaigo of Emperor Hirohito of Japan. Vice Governor, Fuku Sosai is his son, Higashi Fushimi, Jiko, he serves as the Shinmon of the Shorenin Temple.

Many of today`s exponents of Aikido within Aikikai, are also members of DNBK, including Hioaki Izumi Sensei, 6th Dan Aikikai, Dan graded also in Kendo and Iaido.

Post WW2 or not, many people still in Japan today still consider DNBK recognition, as one of the highest authority on traditional Japanese martial Arts. And many practitioners from Differetn arts Are members.

In Budo

Andy B

It's true that the Japanese government was using the DNBK to regulate all martial arts during the war, that's how the name "Aikido" came about.

However, that organization was dissolved, and the new one of the same name has only a slight connection to the pre-war organization and no governmental authority of any kind.

The Kendo, Judo, and Kyudo organizations after the war opposed the reestablishment of the DNBK name and today continue in their own separate organizations as well as a single group association, the Nippon Budokan, of which the Aikikai is a member (as well as the All Japan Judo, Kendo, Kyudo, Sumo, Shorinji-Kempo, Naginata, Karate and Jukendo federations).

There are two major Kobudo organizations in Japan, the Nihon Kobudo Kyokai and the Nihon Kobudo Shinkokai. Most of the traditional martial arts belong to one or both of these groups - but not to the DNBK.

As I said before, there is no connection to any major Aikido organization. For example, the Japanese page lists branch dojo in many different arts, including Aikido - but for Aikido there is only a single dojo, in Hiroshima.

Sure, there are people from different arts as members, but as far as martial arts organizations in Japan it's fairly minor today (there's nothing wrong with that). I think that if you spoke to most Aikido practitioners in Japan they would be hard-pressed to even tell you whether or not the DNBK still exists.

Best,

Chris