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graham christian
05-24-2012, 08:44 PM
Time for a differentiation, or should I say my differentiation between Aikido and i/p.

I notice lately it's become more 'regular' to use the word 'aiki' to represent i/p as if it is the natural aiki of aikido. This I believe is far from the case and thus the purpose of this thread.

I/P is given as tracing from chinese this and that and seen as being 'hidden' from the western or even those outside certain inner circles. This may well be the case in a lot of instances but the paranoia that goes with it I find amusing. Firstly because I think it doesn't apply to Ueshibas Aikido and secondly because it is possible for most in this day and age, if they are dedicated enough to go and find a good teacher of such things.

So what's the big secret? Nothing.

Back to Aikido. Here's the thing, Ueshiba's Aikido was not to do with internal power as per I/P or I/S. It was different. In fact I would say that i/p is more for health, body health.

I bet for some of you this sounds like quite a statement. Well when compared to the potential of Aikido and true aiki then that's what it looks like to me. In fact I will attempt to put it into a perspective which you may or may not agree with but nonetheless will see a perspective you may not have seen before.

Purpose. You would have to look at purpose. After the war Ueshiba gave a new purpose and said this path could be trodden through this martial art called Aikido. It was given as a spiritual path which would lead to enlightenment and bring peace and harmony to the world. A spiritual path.

Thus he told Hikitsuchi he was changing everything and that the truth was budo is love. Of course many didn't understand him and still today many don't but those on various spiritual paths do as it makes total sense to them and they may not even do Aikido.

Meanwhile, back inside the martial arts world for those induces by physical power and combat and neat tricks then they can but look elsewhere for these tricks to make their martial art more effective. Well, these tricks have been around for centuries and come under I/P.

The word 'tricks' is used here show the difference.

I/P and such, used in various chinese and and other arts can of course include the principles of yin and yang and 'chi' pathways in the body, and a whole load of stuff including connection to earth energy type things and thus is all well and good. Well, all of this is inherent in old texts to do with health too because that's where it has it's main purpose. That's actually what it's all about;

Now during his life being well into the martial arts and well connected Ueshiba no doubt learned all these things and to me no doubt mastered a lot of them before even the war, before Aikido.

So as far as Aikido goes I would say that it has a purpose which is spiritual, a path, but could include I/P as a minor project, one of many, but nowhere near the purpose. You'll get a healthier body, you'll learn neat tricks, you could go on to great things, but until the spiritual side is mastered then it's not the same Aikido.

I could even go as far as to say i/p is to do with the 'nature, or even 'mother nature' aspect of Aikido as with such things as tai chi etc. A connection with nature, from which your body comes and from which it will return. So lot's to learn there and harmonize with and that of itself will make you feel at least more spiritual or peep through the door at least. So I would call that the Earth side of Aikido which is universal and to do with Heaven and Earth, not just Earth.

Ueshibas Aiki was thus all embrasive, transcendant of those past i/p type things. I guarantee many of the top martial artists around knew of these things yet when meeting him found he did something completely different and thus wanted to learn. Different thus equals not like that which they had come across before and that includes all the i/p type things they had encountered in their lives.

To me it's obvious, it's hidden in plain sight. Why go backwards?

Peace.G.

Chris Li
05-24-2012, 11:32 PM
Time for a differentiation, or should I say my differentiation between Aikido and i/p.

I notice lately it's become more 'regular' to use the word 'aiki' to represent i/p as if it is the natural aiki of aikido. This I believe is far from the case and thus the purpose of this thread.

I/P is given as tracing from chinese this and that and seen as being 'hidden' from the western or even those outside certain inner circles. This may well be the case in a lot of instances but the paranoia that goes with it I find amusing. Firstly because I think it doesn't apply to Ueshibas Aikido and secondly because it is possible for most in this day and age, if they are dedicated enough to go and find a good teacher of such things.

So what's the big secret? Nothing.

Back to Aikido. Here's the thing, Ueshiba's Aikido was not to do with internal power as per I/P or I/S. It was different. In fact I would say that i/p is more for health, body health.


Well, there's still a lot of restricted information, although things have opened up quite a bit compared to past years. Also, there really aren't all that many people who are both willing and able to teach this stuff, so it's not quite that easy.

In any case, I see that you have some pretty firm opinions about what people are doing even though you haven't, despite multiple offers and invitations, ever come out to feel it.


Purpose. You would have to look at purpose. After the war Ueshiba gave a new purpose and said this path could be trodden through this martial art called Aikido. It was given as a spiritual path which would lead to enlightenment and bring peace and harmony to the world. A spiritual path.

I touched on it a little bit here (http://www.aikidosangenkai.org/blog/archive/2012-03-11/aiki-budo-is-the-way-of-human-development) and again here (http://www.aikidosangenkai.org/blog/archive/2012-03-18/aiki-budo-is-the-way-of-human-development-part-2), but the idea that Morihei Ueshiba originated a new purpose to martial training involving peace and enlightenment is demonstrably false.

That paradigm has existed for thousands of years, in many lands.



To me it's obvious, it's hidden in plain sight. Why go backwards?

Peace.G.

No one going backwards around here...I thought that we were being accused of being too forwards (http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showpost.php?p=309422&postcount=7). :freaky: :D :freaky:

Best,

Chris

mrlizard123
05-25-2012, 05:10 AM
Thus the next talking past each other debate threatens to begin.

Thus I would suggest people use the search facility and view all the replies to this this thread already repeatedly available on the forum without the need to revisit them.

Thus saving a rehashing of the same old "debate" in which the acceptance of evidence/faith on the various sides is measured differently, incompatible and unlikely to be resolved.

Thusly it was, is and ever will be thus.

lbb
05-25-2012, 08:11 AM
Thus the next talking past each other debate threatens to begin.

Indeed, but (to make this at least somewhat on topic for the forum in which it was posted) as many great spiritual teachers in many traditions have taught us, in their various ways, We Have Other Choices.

I particularly like George Ledyard's contribution to this thread (http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showthread.php?t=17491). I think he provides a clear, non-obfuscated definition of aiki that can be understood in practical terms, without rainbows and unicorns, but also without being exclusively bound to fascia or myofascial whatsis. He also provides a sensible comparison with how O-Sensei used the term, which I think is particularly useful not as some kind of aikido-fundamentalist proscriptive definition, but because I can see where the two views are talking about the same thing, just with a different focus or POV (sort of like looking at the same tree from slightly different angles).

It would do this forum a world of good if all those who so love to engage in the talking-past were to think about their need to declare, "You are NOT looking at MY tree, and your tree is not the One True Tree!" No doubt there are people in these debates who are myopically gazing at a streetlight thinking it's a tree, but this is where the analogy breaks down -- you don't have an objective view of whatever they're looking at that would enable you to say, "No, sorry, that's not what I'm looking at, and that is not a tree." You can only see it through their eyes.

And, finally, Ledyard Sensei grapples with the misappropriation of "aiki" to mean "whether an action or an attitude brings things together or pushes them apart" with realism and humor. If enough people start using the word "burrito" to refer to any kind of food wrapped up in any kind of flatbread, then your choice is to accept that that is the common usage (not necessarily to agree with it, but to accept that that is how others use the word "burrito"), or be perpetually disappointed and enraged when you order a "burrito" and get something that doesn't fit your definition. At the very least, accepting the reality of this other definition allows you to seek out those who are using your definition, and to get your burrito (or your aiki) served in the manner that you prefer.

Chris Knight
05-25-2012, 08:50 AM
mmm i like burritos

Chris Li
05-25-2012, 10:17 AM
I particularly like George Ledyard's contribution to this thread (http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showthread.php?t=17491). I think he provides a clear, non-obfuscated definition of aiki that can be understood in practical terms, without rainbows and unicorns, but also without being exclusively bound to fascia or myofascial whatsis. He also provides a sensible comparison with how O-Sensei used the term, which I think is particularly useful not as some kind of aikido-fundamentalist proscriptive definition, but because I can see where the two views are talking about the same thing, just with a different focus or POV (sort of like looking at the same tree from slightly different angles).

Well, I, for one, have never proposed a definition "exclusively bound to fascia or myofascial whatsis". But I do think that O-Sensei's technical methods are entwined with his philosophy - so much so that you can't get one without the other without it becoming something quite different.

For example, the term "Take Musu Aiki" that's cited in the linked post. The definition given isn't wrong - but it's not complete either, and that will change the implications.

Best,

Chris

graham christian
05-25-2012, 02:59 PM
Well, there's still a lot of restricted information, although things have opened up quite a bit compared to past years. Also, there really aren't all that many people who are both willing and able to teach this stuff, so it's not quite that easy.

In any case, I see that you have some pretty firm opinions about what people are doing even though you haven't, despite multiple offers and invitations, ever come out to feel it.

I touched on it a little bit here (http://www.aikidosangenkai.org/blog/archive/2012-03-11/aiki-budo-is-the-way-of-human-development) and again here (http://www.aikidosangenkai.org/blog/archive/2012-03-18/aiki-budo-is-the-way-of-human-development-part-2), but the idea that Morihei Ueshiba originated a new purpose to martial training involving peace and enlightenment is demonstrably false.

That paradigm has existed for thousands of years, in many lands.

No one going backwards around here...I thought that we were being accused of being too forwards (http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showpost.php?p=309422&postcount=7). :freaky: :D :freaky:

Best,

Chris

Haven't come out to meet it? Please...... Despite multiple offers?........Good joke.

There's only been one person I've said no to. I said on numerous occasions I've 'felt' plenty of internal stuff over the years. In fact I'm surprised how it appears many of you hadn't. So don't bother with the get out and meet type of responses.

As it happens I have met one person who has trained once or twice with Dan for example. The only difference with that is the method of teaching and learning and practicing it is it not?

Many different aspects, many different people with different internal skills, none equalled anything like what I call Aikido.

I've been more impressed with some who have never done any martial art actually or some who have been confused by it and asked what to do. That's my experience.

I use the same type of response to those who come saying or asking about a martial expert or an I/P expert or a spiritual master of some kind or other, it makes no difference to me. I merely ask 'what good do they do with it in life?' 'Who do they help?' That's all. For to me if they don't use it in that way then I'm not interested or impressed and see it merely as a waste of time. As you may imagine I meet many, many spiritual people who can ask all kinds of strange questions and 'what ifs'. I still say the same. If a 'Kami' appeared in front of me and performed all kinds of miraculous feats I still wouldn't be impressed for I would merely ask the same question. If you're not improving self, not helping others and having fun as well then why are you here is my view. Simples........

Peace.G.

Chris Li
05-25-2012, 03:20 PM
Haven't come out to meet it? Please...... Despite multiple offers?........Good joke.

There's only been one person I've said no to. I said on numerous occasions I've 'felt' plenty of internal stuff over the years. In fact I'm surprised how it appears many of you hadn't. So don't bother with the get out and meet type of responses.

As it happens I have met one person who has trained once or twice with Dan for example. The only difference with that is the method of teaching and learning and practicing it is it not?.

Nope, not at all, that's why IHTBF. I would hesitate to judge Dan or anybody else by meeting someone who trained with them twice. I've been working with Dan since 2010, and I make very sure that people don't judge what he does or can do by the little that I'm able to show.

I use the same type of response to those who come saying or asking about a martial expert or an I/P expert or a spiritual master of some kind or other, it makes no difference to me. I merely ask 'what good do they do with it in life?' 'Who do they help?' That's all. For to me if they don't use it in that way then I'm not interested or impressed and see it merely as a waste of time.

Which is fine for you - but doesn't put you in any position to make technical statements about something that you've never experienced.

Best,

Chris

graham christian
05-25-2012, 06:32 PM
Nope, not at all, that's why IHTBF. I would hesitate to judge Dan or anybody else by meeting someone who trained with them twice. I've been working with Dan since 2010, and I make very sure that people don't judge what he does or can do by the little that I'm able to show.

Which is fine for you - but doesn't put you in any position to make technical statements about something that you've never experienced.

Best,

Chris


I don't Judge Dan, which you imply. I don't give technical anything with relation to what you have done for x years or anyone elses technical ability on here for that matter.

I am in a position however to judge, based on my experience, given as such, thank you very much. I can judge and give my opinion on all the various 'types' I have encountered.

I have seen nowhere written that what one individual does as I/P is any different and in fact that the difference is in it's transmission. It is not of itself something brand new is it? It is internal power isn't it? Therefore I have come across it before and I am quite aware of it's potential. I do have friends who have trained in such things for many years too.

It is not me who likes to think I need to get out more or that unless I meet certain prescribed people then I don't know. Therefor it is me who smiles at such ways of thinking and inside believe it is those who say such things that need to get out more for it is they who think they can judge me so inaccurately.

Maybe it's cultural, meaning I don't think you Americans especially realize just how many people a person born and raised in London and involved in martial arts for many years has met. In fact couldn't avoid meeting. In the U.S. with it's great wide spaces and distances maybe a lot of you don't meet many folks from other arts etc. and so getting out is a big thing to you. It always seemed like normal procedure to me and my friends and part of the adventure.

Even in Aikido alone do you realize just how many clubs there are around here? Yet I often here on posts people asking does anyone know of any Aikido place in this or that area over there. You virtually fall over them over here, well around London and the outskirts anyway. Tai chi, kung fu, you name it. Less than five minutes from me now is the only real Shaolin school in the whole of England and a great bunch they are too.

So I don't judge a person based on someone I met trained a couple of times with him or her. I don't judge anyone personally I have not met. A person who did a bit of 'x' can tell me the type of thing they did and practice and I with my experience can get quite a good idea about the type of thing thank you.

I say 'it's all good.' I also say many things are not Aikido. I'm very clear. You can say my views are wrong if you like, that's all good too, but all this you cant judge and you must feel so and so is to me superfluous nonsense.

I could say 'you must feel the spiritual Aiki or true kokyu or such' but prefer to keep it under my hat ha, ha. But seriously I would never do so because to me it's a stupid thing to say, I don't care how many think it's some kind of stable must. I wouldn't want any of you to feel what I do. Why would I?

How would that help you? It wouldn't help you one iota. As I've said before I'm not into dilettantes. People who want to dip their toes in and have something to talk about. So the fact someone felt someone is again to me minor. They learned nothing really for themselves. It's good for gossip.

Nah, give me someone who says this is what I do and this is what I experience and this is what I learned from and can now do. Many things, even how I do, etc. but do being the operative word.

That's my preference. I wouldn't lower myself to discuss someones charachter tell them what they can or cant judge based on their experience or imply I know how good or bad they are at the thing they do. That's not budo in my book or even acceptable in real life in your local bar or shop or anywhere.

Here's a good question for you: Does I/P result in the persons communication being less negative? Does it result in being more stable, more certain and positive and at the same time averse to putting others down and gossiping and ridiculing others ways.? In other words, does it lead to better behaviour as like O'Sensei for instance? True spiritual disciplines tend to do this.

Peace.G.

Chris Li
05-25-2012, 07:47 PM
I don't Judge Dan, which you imply. I don't give technical anything with relation to what you have done for x years or anyone elses technical ability on here for that matter.

I am in a position however to judge, based on my experience, given as such, thank you very much. I can judge and give my opinion on all the various 'types' I have encountered.

Just my point, you don't have any experience here, and you haven't encountered the one guy that most of us are talking about when these things come up.



Maybe it's cultural, meaning I don't think you Americans especially realize just how many people a person born and raised in London and involved in martial arts for many years has met. In fact couldn't avoid meeting. In the U.S. with it's great wide spaces and distances maybe a lot of you don't meet many folks from other arts etc. and so getting out is a big thing to you. It always seemed like normal procedure to me and my friends and part of the adventure.

Last time I looked, New York (born and raised) was larger than London. So is Tokyo, where I lived for many years - and I'm willing to bet there are a few more dojo there than in London, too. Your point is?


Here's a good question for you: Does I/P result in the persons communication being less negative? Does it result in being more stable, more certain and positive and at the same time averse to putting others down and gossiping and ridiculing others ways.? In other words, does it lead to better behaviour as like O'Sensei for instance? True spiritual disciplines tend to do this.

Peace.G.

Like conventional Aikido? The track record for conventional Aikido in this area really isn't very good - I suppose that IP doesn't do any worse. :D

Best,

Chris

graham christian
05-25-2012, 08:37 PM
Precisely...:)

Peace.G.

Chris Li
05-25-2012, 08:50 PM
Precisely...:)

Peace.G.

OK, with that I'll take that as agreement that you have no experience in this area. :D

Note that "not any worse" isn't the same as "not any better". :cool:

Best,

Chris

graham christian
05-25-2012, 09:24 PM
No doubt you will...

Peace.G.

Tom Verhoeven
05-26-2012, 09:16 PM
I touched on it a little bit here (http://www.aikidosangenkai.org/blog/archive/2012-03-11/aiki-budo-is-the-way-of-human-development) and again here (http://www.aikidosangenkai.org/blog/archive/2012-03-18/aiki-budo-is-the-way-of-human-development-part-2), but the idea that Morihei Ueshiba originated a new purpose to martial training involving peace and enlightenment is demonstrably false.

That paradigm has existed for thousands of years, in many lands.

Best,

Chris

That is not a valid counter-argument. Graham did not state that Ueshiba Morihei originated a new purpose to martial arts training. He claims that O Sensei at that time gave a new purpose to his path and made it into a spiritual path. And that he expressed this by saying to Hikitsuchi "Budo is love".

The fact that the idea of enlightenment and peace as the ultimate goal of martial arts is very old and can be found throughout history in many different cultures and countries is here irrelevant.

Tom

Chris Li
05-27-2012, 01:17 AM
That is not a valid counter-argument. Graham did not state that Ueshiba Morihei originated a new purpose to martial arts training. He claims that O Sensei at that time gave a new purpose to his path and made it into a spiritual path. And that he expressed this by saying to Hikitsuchi "Budo is love".

The fact that the idea of enlightenment and peace as the ultimate goal of martial arts is very old and can be found throughout history in many different cultures and countries is here irrelevant.

Tom

I disagree, the idea that Morihei Ueshiba originated a new purpose to martial arts training is, in fact, the most common view in conventional Aikido. That makes it a reasonable interpretation when it's restated without qualification.

Best,

Chris

Kevin Leavitt
05-27-2012, 01:47 AM
I like the stereotype of "you Americans". The irony of this is that many of "you Americans" have spent more time living abroad than in the United States. Just thought I'd point that out. Kind of telling if you ask me. That is, concerning the assumptions and sweeping generalizations that one makes concerning others. Just saying.

I find that most folks on aikiweb to have a pretty wide experience base and world view and open mind which I like a a lot. It is kinda a downer really when this is not the case.

For someone claiming to have insight on spirituality as it relates to humanity, this is kind of counter to that if you ask me.

graham christian
05-27-2012, 08:08 AM
I like the stereotype of "you Americans". The irony of this is that many of "you Americans" have spent more time living abroad than in the United States. Just thought I'd point that out. Kind of telling if you ask me. That is, concerning the assumptions and sweeping generalizations that one makes concerning others. Just saying.

I find that most folks on aikiweb to have a pretty wide experience base and world view and open mind which I like a a lot. It is kinda a downer really when this is not the case.

For someone claiming to have insight on spirituality as it relates to humanity, this is kind of counter to that if you ask me.

No stereotype there Kevin. Many have spent more time living abroad??? That sounds stereotypical.

The Americans I mentioned or was referring to were those who took great time and repeated effort to tell me to 'get out more'. Those 'few'. Therefor, with such a strange view I concluded they must have a strange view of London. As I said, they talked about getting out more like it was all new to them and beneficial yet I've never heard anyone over here say such things as it's normal.

By the way, stereotypical and Americans? I doubt you know what the views over here are for it's not polite to say such things plus all such views are pretty stupid anyway.

Peace.G.

Kevin Leavitt
05-27-2012, 08:59 AM
I will be in London in about 4 weeks so I will make sure to pay attention.

No, I stated a fact. Many Americans have spent more time abroad than living in the states. Not a stereotype, a fact.

I could see your point of view that it is assumptive that u don't get out since your opinions are narrowly defined. It is my opinion, for instance that I believe you filter out information that does not meet your criteria of support your opinions. I wouldn't necessarily jump to the conclusion that u need to get out more, but I do believe based on my conversations that u have very strict parameters concerning Aikido.

So yeah I would see your point I suppose.

Carl Thompson
05-27-2012, 09:18 AM
No stereotype there Kevin. Many have spent more time living abroad??? That sounds stereotypical.

The Americans I mentioned or was referring to were those who took great time and repeated effort to tell me to 'get out more'. Those 'few'. Therefor, with such a strange view I concluded they must have a strange view of London. As I said, they talked about getting out more like it was all new to them and beneficial yet I've never heard anyone over here say such things as it's normal.

By the way, stereotypical and Americans? I doubt you know what the views over here are for it's not polite to say such things plus all such views are pretty stupid anyway.

Peace.G.

Graham

Telling someone their views are stupid is generally regarded as impolite.

Have you ever heard the phrase "on a wronger"? You do something wrong (e.g.: stereotype people because of their nationality, claim to know what a phenomenon that can only be felt is, without feeling it etc) and everything you do to make out that you didn't do something wrong just makes it "wronger". I recall you getting an offer on this forum to meet and train with someone who is at the centre of most of these discussions on IP. You had a chance but you refused and yet you still appear to want to be part of a debate about something that can only be felt, without actually feeling it.

You could be a voice providing us with information on IP from another viewpoint. However you appear unwilling to get into a position in which you can actually experience the phenomenon being discussed. If you get another chance, all these preceding spiels without any backup just lessen your reliability as a witness so when you do get hold of one of these people, it will be difficult for some to take what you say seriously.

You contribute a lot to this forum. One thing I appreciate, regardless of whether I agree with you is that I get to look at things from your point of view. The more you inform that view, the better for all of us.

Carl

graham christian
05-27-2012, 09:39 AM
I will be in London in about 4 weeks so I will make sure to pay attention.

No, I stated a fact. Many Americans have spent more time abroad than living in the states. Not a stereotype, a fact.

I could see your point of view that it is assumptive that u don't get out since your opinions are narrowly defined. It is my opinion, for instance that I believe you filter out information that does not meet your criteria of support your opinions. I wouldn't necessarily jump to the conclusion that u need to get out more, but I do believe based on my conversations that u have very strict parameters concerning Aikido.

So yeah I would see your point I suppose.

Thank you, well put. You are right, I do.

It's good to ask 'foreign' peoples their views on how they generally view you culturally. It's quite eye opening purely as an exercise. I used to manage a place of rented rooms for my brother in law and would ask the various inhabitants such questions about how they as Macedonians, or Polish or Indian or Slovakian etc. viewed the English generally, even from the point of view of how the way we speak sounds to them. It's all fascinating since being in a culture you can be surprised on what you have never noticed from the 'outside'.

My parameters are strict and you may say 'fixed' if you like. They are and always will be as I pointed out in the thread three stages of Aikido.

I stick to Budo is love and thus a strict discipline to that end. I stick to Aikido is Harmony with Ki and thus the opponent is someone to take care of and 'heal' thus bring them to a harmonious state in themselves and all done in the application of Aikido. I stick to these parameters and when it isn't the case it isn't Aikido. No buts, no ifs.

This to me therefor makes Aikido the hardest and most advanced Martial Art in existence. The only one with no opponents. The only one with masakatsu and agatsu as the thing to realize as it's guiding light.

No tricks in order to dominate, no misguided enticement to being all powerful, no purpose to win, no competition.

By the way, not far from here there's a whole area of Americans near an old American air base. I suppose being a super power and militarily speaking then many may well spend lots of time in certain countries. In Europe and more importantly in England the various cultures are well apparent but overall it's still amusing to me, a nice game hanging on to cultural identity and thinking it means something.

Thus people get trapped and led to wars etc. Identities. The cause of much grief. But that's another story ha, ha.

Peace.G.

graham christian
05-27-2012, 10:16 AM
Graham

Telling someone their views are stupid is generally regarded as impolite.

Have you ever heard the phrase "on a wronger"? You do something wrong (e.g.: stereotype people because of their nationality, claim to know what a phenomenon that can only be felt is, without feeling it etc) and everything you do to make out that you didn't do something wrong just makes it "wronger". I recall you getting an offer on this forum to meet and train with someone who is at the centre of most of these discussions on IP. You had a chance but you refused and yet you still appear to want to be part of a debate about something that can only be felt, without actually feeling it.

You could be a voice providing us with information on IP from another viewpoint. However you appear unwilling to get into a position in which you can actually experience the phenomenon being discussed. If you get another chance, all these preceding spiels without any backup just lessen your reliability as a witness so when you do get hold of one of these people, it will be difficult for some to take what you say seriously.

You contribute a lot to this forum. One thing I appreciate, regardless of whether I agree with you is that I get to look at things from your point of view. The more you inform that view, the better for all of us.

Carl

Carl, I think you misread it. I said stereotyping is stupid of itself.

Recall if you will that I have said I have trained with people who do various forms of Internal. Recall also I have met one who is trying some of the methods from the person you refer to. So note I have met many in the past. Recall if you will I have never said it is useless or wrong or any such thing. So note I can and have given opinions on having felt it and it's nothing new to me.

Now, to this new 'breed' of I/P meaning this new 'way of disseminating and practicing it' then you may well say I have not been in contact with to any great degree at all. How could I, it's new.

I accept offers from those who I believe have something of worth for me or for various other reasons. I refuse offers for various reasons too as do you no doubt and everyone else. So the fact that one person I see no need to meet or train with seems to hold some significance to you I'll just leave with you and whoever else.

Let me give you a reality: In life now I do not go searching for any extra something with regards to Aikido so I need not meet anyone offering something 'new'. That's me circa now.

I meet 90% of the time only those who want to learn what I have to teach, the other ten percent (probably even less) is to share.

You do not have to feel something to understand so if you believe that then therein lies our difference of view. Sometimes you do. Add to that the fact that what you feel of itself means what exactly? Not much. It doesn't mean much at all really until you can personally do it yourself. It's just something that is a part of all training everywhere in the process of learning not some special outstanding golden rule.

I've said before and will say again, dilettantes love to feel and say it has to be felt. I have no time for such. It's interesting only from the view that the person reporting translated what they felt. Beyond that I see no relevance. It's relevance is only in relation to if you want to do it yourself. Otherwise it's just good gossip.

Peace.G.

Chris Parkerson
05-27-2012, 10:34 AM
Hey Graham,

I had an idea about spirituality and Aikido. I would love your insight.

Postulate#1 aikido promotes love and harmony.
Postulate #2 big changes are occurring in society regarding how love-based living expresses itself in distinction to fear-based lifestyling. One love-based concept is to trust emergence and surrender to group wisdom. In contradistinction, fear based folks tend to create hierarchies and only trust heirarchically appointed leadership.

Issue: can we allow for emergent holarchies? Can wick trump hierarchical dogmas?

graham christian
05-27-2012, 11:34 AM
Hey Graham,

I had an idea about spirituality and Aikido. I would love your insight.

Postulate#1 aikido promotes love and harmony.
Postulate #2 big changes are occurring in society regarding how love-based living expresses itself in distinction to fear-based lifestyling. One love-based concept is to trust emergence and surrender to group wisdom. In contradistinction, fear based folks tend to create hierarchies and only trust heirarchically appointed leadership.

Issue: can we allow for emergent holarchies? Can wick trump hierarchical dogmas?

I see they can both be fear based. The loved based one you mention I don't see any connection between trusting in emergence and group wisdom. Emergent holarchies? Without inspection I have never heard of such so my first thought is that it's more intellectual nonsense.

I will check it up and get back to you.

The subject seems to be more about hierarchies that your questioning and how the principles of love fit. Is that so?

Anyway, got to go out now, get back to you later.

Peace.G.

Chris Parkerson
05-27-2012, 12:08 PM
Historical Emergent holarchy -
In the Old Testament - book of Judges.
No king, just a bunch of tribal shepherds. But during a crisis, a skilled person emerges with the tools to navigate the. Crisis.

WWII - German SS troops knew in the field who should be in charge. It was the guy who emerged and proved his skills within the context of battle.

Modern - in new age community, heirRchy is replaced by holarchy through round table (Tribal) councils. Wisdom university, for instance, Jim Garrison gave up the presidency and now shares it equally between 3 people. The larger council sits with them but the student body sits in a circle surrounding them all during their annual leadership course. Students also participate in most levels of curriculum development and doctoral review.

Hierarchy (encyclopedia britanica's old style of printing annual volumes is replaced by wikipedia and group consciousness emerges with accurate data va collaboration.

DH
05-27-2012, 01:15 PM
Time for a differentiation, or should I say my differentiation between Aikido and i/p.

I notice lately it's become more 'regular' to use the word 'aiki' to represent i/p as if it is the natural aiki of aikido. This I believe is far from the case and thus the purpose of this thread.

I/P is given as tracing from chinese this and that and seen as being 'hidden' from the western or even those outside certain inner circles. This may well be the case in a lot of instances but the paranoia that goes with it I find amusing. Firstly because I think it doesn't apply to Ueshibas Aikido and secondly because it is possible for most in this day and age, if they are dedicated enough to go and find a good teacher of such things.

So what's the big secret? Nothing.
Peace.G.
You can't use or have ever demonstrated IP/IS and by your own writing reveal you know nothing at all about it. I find it curious to then read you making a comparison of something you know nothing about

Here's the thing, Ueshiba's Aikido was not to do with internal power as per I/P or I/S. It was different. In fact I would say that i/p is more for health, body health
Morihei Ueshiba continuously quoted the Internal arts training concepts. He then went on to continuously demonstrate- in the same fashion many internal arts did- with push tests.

a. You cannot discuss them, so you ridicule us (as paranoid?)
b. You can do nothing of this (so you discredit it's worth)

Many of us can read what he said and do what he did to one degree or another. You...cannot. Hence, the movement to now get away from the Ueshiba standard (that so few of you can even approach) and try to redefine his work as something that you CAN do, at any cost.

You, and many Shihan and advanced teachers have disqualified yourself from any discussion of Ueshiba by your own hand. As time moves on, more and more of you are going to be tested when you appear in public-well, that's already happening anyway.
The smart teachers will do one of two things; Avoid and/or reduce public exposure or...............change.
As One Shihan recently wrote; we can stand on the street corner and shout for all he cared. That's fair and that's fine, as long as he doesn't touch hands with us. More and more of us will continue to use Ueshiba's training model and there will be nothing you can do but to stare in wonder....just as they did with Ueshiba
Only one of us is correct. And only one of us can and has proven it...over and over.

I openly state that those who continue to discount this work are going to slip away into the mist. The value of Ueshiba's work stood against challenge then and it does now. Whats left....avoid challenge.

There's really nothing to say when you cannot withstand it. As I said in another thread; people still want to debate when thousands of you have consistently and continuously failed in person.
What's left to debate?
The nature of your failure?
The quality of your misunderstanding?
How little effort it takes to show you?
What?

Thankfully his work continues to unite many who are thrilled to finally get it...after decades in the wrong direction.
Dan

Tom Verhoeven
05-27-2012, 01:59 PM
Historical Emergent holarchy -
In the Old Testament - book of Judges.
No king, just a bunch of tribal shepherds. But during a crisis, a skilled person emerges with the tools to navigate the. Crisis.

WWII - German SS troops knew in the field who should be in charge. It was the guy who emerged and proved his skills within the context of battle.

Modern - in new age community, heirRchy is replaced by holarchy through round table (Tribal) councils. Wisdom university, for instance, Jim Garrison gave up the presidency and now shares it equally between 3 people. The larger council sits with them but the student body sits in a circle surrounding them all during their annual leadership course. Students also participate in most levels of curriculum development and doctoral review.

Hierarchy (encyclopedia britanica's old style of printing annual volumes is replaced by wikipedia and group consciousness emerges with accurate data va collaboration.

Hello Chris,
Not just in the old testament; in the most parts of Celtic and Germanic Europe a leader was chosen by the people. One of the most famous kings of the Celtic people here in the Auvergne being of course Vercingetourix, who managed to defeat Ceasar in the first battle and had to surrender in the following one. Vercingetourix was chosen to lead as they needed a general leader at that time. But also within the Celtic community itself a leader or rather spokesman would be chosen when the need arose.

In older society people shared a basic wisdom - what O Sensei called joshiki no kanyo or in English, common sense.

So I think you may have a good point. And I like your example of wikipedia. The internet could be a wonderful way of sharing knowledge and maybe grow towards common wisdom.

But you need a willingness to share and a willingness to learn. Perhaps this works fine with wikipedia. And I sure wish it would work in Aikido, as I think that the founder pointed to a world of reconciliation and peace where we could exchange knowledge and grow with one another. But when I read the threads on Aiki Web I do not get the impression that many people are interested in that. I have seen it on other fora on other subjects as well. It stagnates as people only want to voice their own opinion and are too often not genuinely interested in what others do or have to tell without judging it.

Perhaps in the future this will change?

Greetings from the Auvergne,
Tom

Tom Verhoeven
05-27-2012, 02:16 PM
I disagree, the idea that Morihei Ueshiba originated a new purpose to martial arts training is, in fact, the most common view in conventional Aikido. That makes it a reasonable interpretation when it's restated without qualification.

Best,

Chris

No, that is not how argumentation works.

You are just using the statement to press forward your own opinion on an issue that is not being discussed.

It is not a real response on what was actually said before. That makes it invalid. It has nothing to do with agreeing with it or not.

Tom

graham christian
05-27-2012, 02:28 PM
Historical Emergent holarchy -
In the Old Testament - book of Judges.
No king, just a bunch of tribal shepherds. But during a crisis, a skilled person emerges with the tools to navigate the. Crisis.

WWII - German SS troops knew in the field who should be in charge. It was the guy who emerged and proved his skills within the context of battle.

Modern - in new age community, heirRchy is replaced by holarchy through round table (Tribal) councils. Wisdom university, for instance, Jim Garrison gave up the presidency and now shares it equally between 3 people. The larger council sits with them but the student body sits in a circle surrounding them all during their annual leadership course. Students also participate in most levels of curriculum development and doctoral review.

Hierarchy (encyclopedia britanica's old style of printing annual volumes is replaced by wikipedia and group consciousness emerges with accurate data va collaboration.

Thanks.
So back to the original question of such 1) being based on love. 2)replacing what you desribe as hierarchical dogmas.

Oh, and you also have the word wisdom there too in the first.

So I would say that any structure based on wisdom is obviously best. I would qualify this and say wisdom comes from love and goodness so then such structures would be love based.

The key is plain and simple love and wisdom. With it then maybe most systems would be good.

You could have such as a 'dictatorship' type of system of which kingdoms were also, yet if run on the principles of love and wisdom would be great. The same goes for democracies too. So for me it's not so much the system it's the nonsense attached to them.

Group doesn't necessarily equal more wise.

I don't quite believe your S.S. type view or the others given as standard procedure but I can see how that would be best in such circumstances in the field. If it has a wise man in charge then such people would be given the relevant positions of Authority yes. If not then the usual command structure chaos.

So systems which help the wise float to the top like cream are good whatever they are.

That's my view.

Peace. G.

graham christian
05-27-2012, 02:56 PM
You can't use or have ever demonstrated IP/IS and by your own writing reveal you know nothing at all about it. I find it curious to then read you making a comparison of something you know nothing about

Morihei Ueshiba continuously quoted the Internal arts training concepts. He then went on to continuously demonstrate- in the same fashion many internal arts did- with push tests.

a. You cannot discuss them, so you ridicule us (as paranoid?)
b. You can do nothing of this (so you discredit it's worth)

Many of us can read what he said and do what he did to one degree or another. You...cannot. Hence, the movement to now get away from the Ueshiba standard (that so few of you can even approach) and try to redefine his work as something that you CAN do, at any cost.

You, and many Shihan and advanced teachers have disqualified yourself from any discussion of Ueshiba by your own hand. As time moves on, more and more of you are going to be tested when you appear in public-well, that's already happening anyway.
The smart teachers will do one of two things; Avoid and/or reduce public exposure or...............change.
As One Shihan recently wrote; we can stand on the street corner and shout for all he cared. That's fair and that's fine, as long as he doesn't touch hands with us. More and more of us will continue to use Ueshiba's training model and there will be nothing you can do but to stare in wonder....just as they did with Ueshiba
Only one of us is correct. And only one of us can and has proven it...over and over.

I openly state that those who continue to discount this work are going to slip away into the mist. The value of Ueshiba's work stood against challenge then and it does now. Whats left....avoid challenge.

There's really nothing to say when you cannot withstand it. As I said in another thread; people still want to debate when thousands of you have consistently and continuously failed in person.
What's left to debate?
The nature of your failure?
The quality of your misunderstanding?
How little effort it takes to show you?
What?

Thankfully his work continues to unite many who are thrilled to finally get it...after decades in the wrong direction.
Dan

By my own writing Dan I have met people who use forms of internal so therefor I must know something about it. It has existed for a long time you know. Your particular brand.....no. I have tasted baked beans but not some brands of. So I can compare lentils to baked beans. Hope that clears your confusion.

I neither discredit, ridicule or say 'you' are paranoid

What I do many others call internal but it is me who says I don't call it such.

I choose to call it spiritual or universal.

I'm glad your 'model' is working for you and others.

What are you on about 'push tests'? Like it's something new. Shows how little you know about me.

Oh well, believe what you wish but tell me about me? Ha, ha. Good jokes.

Peace. G.

Chris Parkerson
05-27-2012, 03:37 PM
Tom and Graham,

I think that. Love-based system can influence emergent holarchy.
Ants, slime mold and computer intelligence works on emergence according to Steven Johnson's book: Emergence: The Connected Lives of Ants, Brains, Cities, and Software
http://www.amazon.com/gp/aw/d/068486875X

While some ants go in one direction looking for food, others go on another. Some paths are dead ended, others become path finders for new food sources. The whole colony is fed by the collective energies of the tribe. Inter-being (Thich Nhat Han's term) is present in the activity of the colony.

I do not know whether one scout party argues with another. But both scout parties do have the agency to search where they will.

For humans to do the same, we first likely will need to parse the difference between faith and belief. I suspect we all have faith that Morehei Ueahiba, for instance, was onto a great realization of love and attempted to embody this spirit of love in his art. But faith and belief are very different things.

The faith I mention is quite primal and is near impossible (like the Tao) to describe in words. Belief, on the other hand, is about ideas on how this faith manifests in real time. Beliefs become dogmas. Dogmas differentiate and often isolate us from "inter-being". We use Dogmas to judge one another as to our correctness and from there, hierarchy is built. We shame and ridicule those who believe differently. We divide into camps and generate more heat than light when talking about where to look for the food.

Iconoclast that I am, I refuse to be in any camp. But I demand of myself the faith to build unity through love like jalahudin Rumi's stiry of the moth that flies into the flame.

Like that story, surrender is necessary for living emergence to arise. This is the "emerging" spiritual mindset that I see taking root around the world. And this is where I look for an internal power that trumps all previous practices. So, I choose not to judge another's experience even if they judge mine. That way, I try to be the change I want to see in this world. This world still has many fear-based folks who seek control rather than surrender. Thus, I suspect we will have some sort of inter-being Chrysalis where we all feel our very joints and marrow melts down within our cocoon (self-limiting judgments). But I will continue to long for the 100th monkey to do his part in being the change. His will not be like mine. But he has the freedom and agency to scout as he wishes for food.

Eventually we will all be in awe of the emergence. No heroes. Just "inter-being" and food for all...

Just a few thoughts from my own spiritual journey.

graham christian
05-27-2012, 03:55 PM
Nice Chris. I like your view. I have a similar view on faith too.

Interbeing, that's a cute way of putting it by the Author. I understand the concept and have a video on how there is communication between plants and tres etc via what can only be described as like an internet through the ground. All these things are fascinating.

I would differentiate here in this fashion. Communication. Colonies of ants and bees etc acting 'as one' so to speak have an intricate system of communication and so it's still very physical and programmed. Thus they don't or can't generally escape that specific program. Although it's very awe inspiring it is also nonetheless robotic.

Thus it could be 'natural' emergence within the framework of the program though.

Love and spiritual are outside, beyond this type of emergence. I have never met a wise ant or bee.

Some trees on the other hand, well that's another story....

Thus Aikido to me is potentially the wisest of all martial arts. The one which has the techniques and ways of harmonious movement to improve the 'opponent'.

Peace.G.

Chris Parkerson
05-27-2012, 05:01 PM
Johnson's book has offered a great paradigm. Perhaps one of the most eye opening books I have read on spirituality. And i do not think he was intentionally writing about spirituality. Ha!!!!!

To me. He provides a powerful key to understanding the Tao.

hughrbeyer
05-27-2012, 05:24 PM
But you need a willingness to share and a willingness to learn. Perhaps this works fine with wikipedia. And I sure wish it would work in Aikido, as I think that the founder pointed to a world of reconciliation and peace where we could exchange knowledge and grow with one another. But when I read the threads on Aiki Web I do not get the impression that many people are interested in that. I have seen it on other fora on other subjects as well. It stagnates as people only want to voice their own opinion and are too often not genuinely interested in what others do or have to tell without judging it.

I'm wondering what you think this ideal world would look like, especially when you're dealing with a body skill like Aikido. I say I do X and it's effective; you say no, do Y, it's more effective. It takes a few posts back and forth to clarify what we mean, but then we're at an impasse.

What does it even mean to not judge in this situation? To be human is to judge. That's what made us human. It's also what got us kicked out of the Garden, of course... but if we want to be better martial artists (or better scientists, or better writers, or better hamburger-flippers, if it comes to that) we have to judge.

So we judge by meeting and testing our ideas. We don't judge the people, we test the ideas empirically. For me, anyway, that's what this forum is all about--find out who are the people and what are the ideas that I'll want to engage with.

And it seems to me that AikiWeb is working pretty well for that. Seems to me that there was a whole bunch of noise a while back about the IS stuff, and a bunch of people called it horse pucky, and over time a bunch of them met with Dan... and changed their minds. (In fact, given how generally cantankerous people are, it's amazing to me how few people have met Dan (or Mike, or Howard, or the others promoting these skills) and haven't changed their minds.) That is the way a discussion is supposed to work when it's working well.

If a few folks have gotten their feelings hurt along the way, that's too bad--but this is budo, people. The consequences of an invalid training paradigm involve much more serious injuries than to feelings. To hold back on truth on the mat is to lie, and it's a dangerous lie. If you let me think I'm doing something that works when it doesn't you haven't just lied to me, you've put me at risk.

And that's my spirituality in budo. Love, yeah, but it's a love like Jesus' love. You know how much time he spent calling people scorpions, vipers, dogs, and hypocrites? In training, we meet the truth like we meet the mat (<smack!>). How we learn to deal with that is a measure of who we are as people.

mathewjgano
05-27-2012, 05:46 PM
Some great philosophy, thank you, folks! I think the highest ideal in humanity is love (I like to make the tough statements ;)). It is through love that we can most easily, perhaps, reconcile misgivings we acquire throughout our interactions.
We divide into camps and generate more heat than light when talking about where to look for the food.

I really like the way you put this, Chris! I grew up having a wide variety of friends who rarely liked each other. In any interaction (as much as I can muster), I begin with the idea of connecting with the person and finding commonality. This is the only way I know for people with very different views to come together. It's harder for some than others...and it's a shame that our past experiences always seem so ready to color the present. I guess our brains learn and remember for a reason though. The trick, as I see it, is to actively seek to build bridges rather than burn them. This is the essence of O Sensei's spiritual message as I've come to believe it to be. Recently I read an article which described Doshu's view of the different groups within Aikido as being necessary and good. Some folks are loath to suggest almost purely philosophical Aikido can still be Aikido, while others are loath to suggest almost purely combative Aikido can still be Aikido. Doshu seemed to suggest what's important is that we're working on something to show others; to leave it to them to determine the things most relevant to them and their part of the very big reality we all share.
I have to work hard sometimes in order to keep from being a very cynical person. I'm one of those idealists who became somewhat jaded and started to hate people because they got shit on my rose-colored glasses. On the other hand, I'm typically a very nice person to everyone I meet because I automatically see them as valuable to me, directly and indirectly. This kind of cognitive dissonance typifies the human condition for me. We're social, loving, animals who have powerfully violent, anti-social urges hard-wired into us. It takes work; to promote in others to do that work, we have to find common ground. If we're not seeking that common ground, either actively or passively, then we're not able to progress spiritually...in my opinion, of course.
Abstractly, this work is idealized by the concepts of shugyo and keiko; of personal discipline/study/work and mixing it with others'. Simply getting on the mat will not necessarily produce results, but the effort must be there to build up ourselves and the world around us or entropy wins by default. Obviously martial arts aren't the only place to work on this kind of thing, let alone Aikido, but it is one medium of practice which can work very well for some people.

The consequences of an invalid training paradigm involve much more serious injuries than to feelings.
Well, not necessarily. And when it comes to spiritual/philosophical values, no one gets to determine what's valid except the individual doing the practice. Where people value physical potency very highly, they tend to gravitate towards those who express that trait. However, for those who see that as secondary, even for a budo practice, I don't think it make their practice invalid. Less valid, perhaps, but that's a personal choice subject to a series of personal judgements/values...and not one discussion will ever solve. It's still a matter of bringing a horse to water...and anything that smacks of forcing will cause the horse to resist.

graham christian
05-27-2012, 06:51 PM
Johnson's book has offered a great paradigm. Perhaps one of the most eye opening books I have read on spirituality. And i do not think he was intentionally writing about spirituality. Ha!!!!!

To me. He provides a powerful key to understanding the Tao.

Excellent. Jonathon Livingstone Seagull for me..

Peace.G.

graham christian
05-27-2012, 07:21 PM
O'Sensei did keep giving out a message of peace, a world message, a spiritual message.

So when we see the principles of it and can just as well apply them to life and living only then can we say we understand 'him'.

Until then, just carry on training and learning. Many paths to the top of Mount Fuji.

An ideal world, now there's a heady concept. But is it really? It's probably very simple to envisage.

A thriving place of harmony amongst men. It's really not so hard to do.

Some people live in harmony with those around them and life. That shows it is possible and hidden there in plain sight.

Some groups of people and groups of friends do too. Some communities do too. These people must therefor be the masters in plain sight. Learn from these hidden masters, now there's a start.

Peace.G.

mathewjgano
05-27-2012, 07:29 PM
However, for those who see that as secondary, even for a budo practice, I don't think it make their practice invalid. Less valid, perhaps, but that's a personal choice subject to a series of personal judgements/values...and not one discussion will ever solve. It's still a matter of bringing a horse to water...and anything that smacks of forcing will cause the horse to resist.

I want to clarify I meant "less valid" in terms of comparative physical potency. I learned something about how to deal with brute force from skiing. I might even say it was an effective way of training for it. If I were to, many people might interpret that as suggesting it matches their sense of what "effective" entails. Instead of telling me why I'm wrong or how my view is invalid, I think folks would do better to simply offer their sense of things and move on. We cannot escape the mind's task of judging the world around us; it does that whether we're aware of it or not, but we can show each other that we respect the fact that we cannot see into each other's world, even if in fact we're 100% correct about our assumptions.
When people speak of "not judging each other," they're addressing this "need" people have for walking their own path (though often taking it too literally, in my opinion). People have the right to be wrong and to find the truth in their own way. This is something I think everyone ought respect; while actively doing their best to express their own opinions as strongly as they can.
I believe O Sensei left it to the individual to go after whatever they valued. I think it's clear his first mission was to raise himself up to be a worthy actor on the stage of the universe; next was his household; neighborhood; etc. I presume he expected us all to do our best and that in sincerely doing so we would eventually stumble upon profound truths. Internal Power training is, in my opinion, the highest form of physical training, but not the highest form of training. People can live without it and still be said to be working on potent (i.e. enough for their goals) "budo."
...And most of us, in my strictest opinion, cannot claim understanding of budo because most of us have never been through a battlefield. We're all working on an approximation and hoping that when called upon for the precise thing itself, our approximation is close enough.
...or something like that. I'm tired and want a cookie.
I feel like trying again later when I'm feeling more lucid, but here's an attempt for our consideration. Any feedback would be appreciate.
Take care,
Matt

graham christian
05-27-2012, 07:48 PM
Here's one for you Matthew, after your tea and biscuits. Only cowards fight.

It's an interesting view to contemplate. But please, don't choke on the biscuit.

Peace.G.

Tom Verhoeven
05-27-2012, 09:00 PM
Tom and Graham,

I think that. Love-based system can influence emergent holarchy.
Ants, slime mold and computer intelligence works on emergence according to Steven Johnson's book: Emergence: The Connected Lives of Ants, Brains, Cities, and Software
http://www.amazon.com/gp/aw/d/068486875X

While some ants go in one direction looking for food, others go on another. Some paths are dead ended, others become path finders for new food sources. The whole colony is fed by the collective energies of the tribe. Inter-being (Thich Nhat Han's term) is present in the activity of the colony.

I do not know whether one scout party argues with another. But both scout parties do have the agency to search where they will.

For humans to do the same, we first likely will need to parse the difference between faith and belief. I suspect we all have faith that Morehei Ueahiba, for instance, was onto a great realization of love and attempted to embody this spirit of love in his art. But faith and belief are very different things.

The faith I mention is quite primal and is near impossible (like the Tao) to describe in words. Belief, on the other hand, is about ideas on how this faith manifests in real time. Beliefs become dogmas. Dogmas differentiate and often isolate us from "inter-being". We use Dogmas to judge one another as to our correctness and from there, hierarchy is built. We shame and ridicule those who believe differently. We divide into camps and generate more heat than light when talking about where to look for the food.

Iconoclast that I am, I refuse to be in any camp. But I demand of myself the faith to build unity through love like jalahudin Rumi's stiry of the moth that flies into the flame.

Like that story, surrender is necessary for living emergence to arise. This is the "emerging" spiritual mindset that I see taking root around the world. And this is where I look for an internal power that trumps all previous practices. So, I choose not to judge another's experience even if they judge mine. That way, I try to be the change I want to see in this world. This world still has many fear-based folks who seek control rather than surrender. Thus, I suspect we will have some sort of inter-being Chrysalis where we all feel our very joints and marrow melts down within our cocoon (self-limiting judgments). But I will continue to long for the 100th monkey to do his part in being the change. His will not be like mine. But he has the freedom and agency to scout as he wishes for food.

Eventually we will all be in awe of the emergence. No heroes. Just "inter-being" and food for all...

Just a few thoughts from my own spiritual journey.

Bonjour Chris,

Thank you for your inspiring thoughts. There is a lot there that I agree with and you mentioned also a few things that are worth reflecting further on.

I don't know the book that you mentioned, but will certainly look into that. I am a bit more familiar with ants; they are an intriguing species that create alliances between different ant-groups, even if they do not belong to the same kind of ants. When I walk through the forest, I can go from one nest to the other and there is something magic about how they are all connected and recognize each other.

I have been reading the books and listening to the lectures of Thich Nath Hanh for more then three decades by now and he remains an ongoing source of inspiration. Plum village is not far from here. He has quite a following here in France.

Your difference between faith and belief seems similar to Plato's difference between dogma and sophia (wisdom). According to Plato people tend to stay in their cave discussing the shadows of reality (dogmas) instead of going towards the light of wisdom. Once wisdom has been reached there is no real point anymore in discussing dogma. A similar idea can be found in Buddhism and Taoism.
And although I sometimes seem to get caught up in pointless discussions, I always try to keep this idea in mind.

Not judging is essential for any connection that we make. Problem is that we live in a judgmental society. Even Thich Nath Hanh once lost a sangha because of internal political debates about control and dogmatic judgments. I see that too much in Aikido as well. I have always tried to stay away from Aikido politics and have kept an open mind to all Aikido styles. I have come across a lot of serious practicioners of Aikido who, like you, have come to really inspiring thoughts and skills. But I have also come across quite a few who shout their opinion in your face, but lack genuine depth of knowledge.

The story of the 100th monkey has been proven to be wrong. Sadly it does not work like that.

I do see an emerging spiritual mindset around me, but I am still a bit cautious about whether this will last and grow. But I like your approach; to be the change that you want see in this world. Will keep that in mind!
Hope to read more about your spiritual journey in the future.
Thank you!

Kind regards,
Tom

mathewjgano
05-27-2012, 10:00 PM
Hi Graham,
In the sense that brave people find themselves within a "fight" and might still be described as not-fighting, I tend to agree. Otherwis, I would say many a brave person fights, too; indeed it is the brave who "fight" against injustice or who might "fight" the swift currents of a river to help someone.
Also, thank you Tom and Chris for your exchange. I've really enjoyed reading it.
Merci, et bon chance tout le monde! May we all learn to speak each others' languages a bit better.
Au revoir,
Matt

Chris Parkerson
05-27-2012, 10:09 PM
Bonjour Chris,

Thank you for your inspiring thoughts. There is a lot there that I agree with and you mentioned also a few things that are worth reflecting further on.

I don't know the book that you mentioned, but will certainly look into that. I am a bit more familiar with ants; they are an intriguing species that create alliances between different ant-groups, even if they do not belong to the same kind of ants. When I walk through the forest, I can go from one nest to the other and there is something magic about how they are all connected and recognize each other.

I have been reading the books and listening to the lectures of Thich Nath Hanh for more then three decades by now and he remains an ongoing source of inspiration. Plum village is not far from here. He has quite a following here in France.

Your difference between faith and belief seems similar to Plato's difference between dogma and sophia (wisdom). According to Plato people tend to stay in their cave discussing the shadows of reality (dogmas) instead of going towards the light of wisdom. Once wisdom has been reached there is no real point anymore in discussing dogma. A similar idea can be found in Buddhism and Taoism.
And although I sometimes seem to get caught up in pointless discussions, I always try to keep this idea in mind.

Not judging is essential for any connection that we make. Problem is that we live in a judgmental society. Even Thich Nath Hanh once lost a sangha because of internal political debates about control and dogmatic judgments. I see that too much in Aikido as well. I have always tried to stay away from Aikido politics and have kept an open mind to all Aikido styles. I have come across a lot of serious practicioners of Aikido who, like you, have come to really inspiring thoughts and skills. But I have also come across quite a few who shout their opinion in your face, but lack genuine depth of knowledge.

The story of the 100th monkey has been proven to be wrong. Sadly it does not work like that.

I do see an emerging spiritual mindset around me, but I am still a bit cautious about whether this will last and grow. But I like your approach; to be the change that you want see in this world. Will keep that in mind!
Hope to read more about your spiritual journey in the future.
Thank you!

Kind regards,
Tom

Thank you for the kind words. Oddly enought, my sangha name is "Compassionate Heart of service" in my TNH practice. I also happen to be a Christian Theologian and would introduce you to the word (Irenics). Perhaps you already know it, but I love its sound. It is the opposite of polemics (focussing upon what we cannot agree on).

Christianity is full of beliefs.... to a fault. Indeed, in Harvey Cox's (Harvard Seminary Professor) 2009 book on "The Future of faith, he called the last 2,000 years an age of belief (rather than faith). It is there that I got the differences in definition.

For me, Rumi cuts to the quick. "Sell your Cleverness and buy Bewilderment" he says (Coleman barks translation). The more we surrender our hearts to eachother, the more we will find commonality. And even when we find ourselves stuck in "attachment" (must have this; cannot have that) we can make friends with it and watch it arise and go away without even judging our judgment. he he he.

Would we could do this with eachother as well.

Namaste and Puha

Chris

Tom Verhoeven
05-27-2012, 10:30 PM
I'm wondering what you think this ideal world would look like, especially when you're dealing with a body skill like Aikido. I say I do X and it's effective; you say no, do Y, it's more effective. It takes a few posts back and forth to clarify what we mean, but then we're at an impasse.

What does it even mean to not judge in this situation? To be human is to judge. That's what made us human. It's also what got us kicked out of the Garden, of course... but if we want to be better martial artists (or better scientists, or better writers, or better hamburger-flippers, if it comes to that) we have to judge.

So we judge by meeting and testing our ideas. We don't judge the people, we test the ideas empirically. For me, anyway, that's what this forum is all about--find out who are the people and what are the ideas that I'll want to engage with.

And it seems to me that AikiWeb is working pretty well for that. Seems to me that there was a whole bunch of noise a while back about the IS stuff, and a bunch of people called it horse pucky, and over time a bunch of them met with Dan... and changed their minds. (In fact, given how generally cantankerous people are, it's amazing to me how few people have met Dan (or Mike, or Howard, or the others promoting these skills) and haven't changed their minds.) That is the way a discussion is supposed to work when it's working well.

If a few folks have gotten their feelings hurt along the way, that's too bad--but this is budo, people. The consequences of an invalid training paradigm involve much more serious injuries than to feelings. To hold back on truth on the mat is to lie, and it's a dangerous lie. If you let me think I'm doing something that works when it doesn't you haven't just lied to me, you've put me at risk.

And that's my spirituality in budo. Love, yeah, but it's a love like Jesus' love. You know how much time he spent calling people scorpions, vipers, dogs, and hypocrites? In training, we meet the truth like we meet the mat (<smack!>). How we learn to deal with that is a measure of who we are as people.

Sure, to judge is human. To err is human. To kill is human. To make war is human. To step into dogshit is human. To make irrational decisions is human. To completely destroy wildlife is human. To pollute the air is human. To be cruel to animals is human. To deny food and water to children in third world countries is human.

So shall we just sit back and enjoy the ride? Or is it humanly possible to reflect on these things and wonder if we like this, if this is the world that we really want? And if not, to reflect if we have the strength and the courage and the wisdom to do something about this?

There are alternatives that many of the people in this world already use on a daily basis. To explain in it in Buddhist terms; you should be able to discriminate between edible plants and poisonous plants, you should be able to see the difference between a bucket as a whole and a bucket with a hole in it. you should be able to see the difference between an elephant and a fish. You should be able to discriminate Mozart from Bach. But there is no need to say; Mozart got it right and Bach got it wrong or worse then that Mozart was perfect and Bach was completely useless. There is no point in saying; a rose is a real flower, but a daisy is not. That is what is meant by judging. If you would pursue an academic study you would come across the same principle. If a person has been brought to a hospital with a wound as a result of a fight, the surgeon is not going to ask whether this man is the criminal or the victim. He operates without judgement.

I used to teach Aikido to professional dancers. The choreographers that I knew were not as such interested in the skill of the dancers, as they were all trained and skilled dancers. They did not judge their dancers, but if they saw a difference they would try to fit that in the choreography.
This is the reason why in traditional Aikido dojo you often will see a crooked beam on the kamiza wall. It represents a saying by Buddha about not judging.

To be a better artist in whatever discipline you like, you do not need to judge. Quite the opposite, by judging you show a limitation of perspective.

You cannot test ideas or skills via the internet. At best, if there is film available (youtube, dvd) you can get an impression of what someone is doing and you can try to compare it to what you are doing. I see on Aiki web a lot of conclusions that are based on bias, hidden agenda's, fixed opinions and a lack of reading with care what someone is trying to express. And worse then that; people draw conclusions about the other person's skills and experience without ever having met that person. So I can not agree with you that Aiki web is working pretty well.

I am not a christian. But I do not think that what you say here about Jezus represents the christian faith sincerely.

As for your description of your training; for me spirituality in Budo means something completely different. It does not involve hurting or damaging other people, be it physical or any other way.

Tom

Chris Li
05-28-2012, 03:07 AM
No, that is not how argumentation works.

You are just using the statement to press forward your own opinion on an issue that is not being discussed.

It is not a real response on what was actually said before. That makes it invalid. It has nothing to do with agreeing with it or not.

Tom

Well, I think that it was being discussed. Hence my response that I disagree.

Anyway, isn't just about everyone pushing forward their opinion? What's the problem with that?

Best,

Chris

Chris Li
05-28-2012, 03:10 AM
By my own writing Dan I have met people who use forms of internal so therefor I must know something about it. It has existed for a long time you know. Your particular brand.....no. I have tasted baked beans but not some brands of. So I can compare lentils to baked beans. Hope that clears your confusion.

Well if you say it, then it must be true. :freaky:

As I said, you have no way to know whether we're talking about baked beans or not, since you've never eaten the thing in question.

Best,

Chris

Alec Corper
05-28-2012, 04:28 AM
I offer this in the spirit of learning mindfulness, not as an attack. The fact that 10 people agree upon something and derive feelings of unity and harmony from their agreement does not mean that what they agree upon is objectively correct. So long as they do not or cannot test the subject of their agreement their harmony is a product of assumption. However, those good feelings may be more important to them than discovering if the agreement is in fact based on reality, in which case it is preferable to maintain the joint illusion and remain happy.

I test everything I can since I am deeply familiar with the human tendency to cling to that which makes them feel good about what they hold onto. Spirituality is the safest ground of all since there is no test which we can all agree to, At least when someone designs a 1 winged plane we can all watch the crash.
'A scholar was being rowed across a river and by way of conversation asked the boatman," my dear chap, have you ever learnt to read?" The boatman replied, "no." To which the scholar, "well then you have wasted half your life." Sometime later a storm began and the boatman asked, have you ever learnt to swim?" and the scholar shook his head. the boatman then said, "well you just lost all yours".

Tom Verhoeven
05-28-2012, 06:06 AM
Well, I think that it was being discussed. Hence my response that I disagree.

Anyway, isn't just about everyone pushing forward their opinion? What's the problem with that?

Best,

Chris

If your only aim is to push your own opinion and you do not have an openness to listen to other people and exchange ideas in a valid way then there is no dialogue.
Contributors of this forum become then mere solopsists and the Aiki web forum nothing but an advertising agency.

Tom

Tom Verhoeven
05-28-2012, 07:18 AM
I offer this in the spirit of learning mindfulness, not as an attack. The fact that 10 people agree upon something and derive feelings of unity and harmony from their agreement does not mean that what they agree upon is objectively correct. So long as they do not or cannot test the subject of their agreement their harmony is a product of assumption. However, those good feelings may be more important to them than discovering if the agreement is in fact based on reality, in which case it is preferable to maintain the joint illusion and remain happy.

I test everything I can since I am deeply familiar with the human tendency to cling to that which makes them feel good about what they hold onto. Spirituality is the safest ground of all since there is no test which we can all agree to, At least when someone designs a 1 winged plane we can all watch the crash.
'A scholar was being rowed across a river and by way of conversation asked the boatman," my dear chap, have you ever learnt to read?" The boatman replied, "no." To which the scholar, "well then you have wasted half your life." Sometime later a storm began and the boatman asked, have you ever learnt to swim?" and the scholar shook his head. the boatman then said, "well you just lost all yours".

Hi Alec,
It has been a few years when we last met in Leiden. Hope life is treating you well and that your dojo is flourishing.

I think people get often confused about the idea of spirituality. The word may mean different things depending on where you are coming from.
In Budo spirituality means you make an effort in sharpening and polishing the mind or the spirit. It has got nothing to do with feelings of unity or agreement whatsoever. It has got nothing to do with opinions either. Testing one opinion against another opinion will not teach you much.
And as real Budo is an internal process and not so much an external process, the aim I would say should rather be to find a subjective correctness then an objective correctness. You cannot see what is going on inside, so how would you be able to say when someone is doing it correct or not? People tend to look at the results and think that that is an objective way of judging if it is correct or not. But serious students of Budo are very aware of the fact that they can influence the results in many different ways. In archery I shoot three arrows easily into the center of the target. The onlooker will see the result and conclude that it was a good shot. But my teacher can see, due to decades of practice, that I am only aiming for a result. It is up to me to change and to sharpen/polish the mind/spirit and start real practice. To see how with each shot your own mind is trying to fool you or to disrupt your practice is the real test. And will take up the most time while learning the art of archery.
But not everyone will get to that level of practice. Or are even interested, they are just happy with form, with winning or with a bit of horsing around.
Things go haywire when people think that form or results or horsing around is the ultimate aim of Budo. Or that style is important. It leads to discussions and debates that are not very interesting or inspiring.

Greetings from the Auvergne,

Tom

DH
05-28-2012, 07:34 AM
If your only aim is to push your own opinion and you do not have an openness to listen to other people and exchange ideas in a valid way then there is no dialogue.
Contributors of this forum become then mere solopsists and the Aiki web forum nothing but an advertising agency.

Tom
But you missed the point of opinion on Spiritual and IP...having to produce results.
I could say "What is the value of thousands of people all agreeing on a thing.....then meeting someone who blows that up and they have to start over?"
I guess we can all agree.....they all agree...they were wrong.

Many organizations, frequently circle the wagons and shoot arrows...just before they give up, but in this case there are no enemies.
Dan

Mary Eastland
05-28-2012, 07:41 AM
Well if you say it, then it must be true. :freaky:

As I said, you have no way to know whether we're talking about baked beans or not, since you've never eaten the thing in question.

Best,

Chris
The same could be said for you and others that make assumptions all the time. How do you know how good Graham is or how he feels and his understanding of anything when you have not met him?

Alec Corper
05-28-2012, 07:43 AM
Hi Tom,
Glad to hear life is treating you well.

It is obvious from your reply that I have not communicated very well, perhaps that is always the case here. I understand the way you define spirituality in Budo very well, but how do you know when you have become "spiritual?" . Inevitably, unless you declare yourself to be a spiritual guide (or others do it for you), you interact with others who confirm or dismiss what you believe are your accomplishments. This is exactly what happens here on Aikiweb. Rings of sympathy are created amongst people who believe,or imagine, that others are agreeing with what they say, which means likeminded folk are confirming your reality.
However, you say that your teacher can see a deeper reality in you when you practice kyudo. That, in spite of your best effort to be " spiritual", you are in fact involving in winning and ego games. Is your teacher then not closer to an objective measuring of the " correct" state? Do you not accept that he either sees deeper than you, or is capable of retaining a state of being that you intellectually comprehend but cannot occupy? Is he not testing you at that moment, not in the form of winning and losing, but in the form of seeking accuracy in the internal state of your being?
I would like to think that the gradual deepening of subjective knowledge of self leads to the objective understanding that I do not understand very much at all. Not to do so leads to statements full of self declared truths which cannot be refuted since they are sincere, however inaccurate they may be. There was a recent post about enlightenment, I guess if someone is enlightened this does not apply.
I believe that I am wiser now than I was 20 years ago, at least i hope so ;-), back then when I was 30 I thought I was wise. Of course now that I am older i see how inflated I was. Now I know better :o , I hope in 20 more years, if I'm still around I will be saying the same thing. If not, I am finished, I have arrived, If yes then my current truths are wrong (inaccurate and subjective) and I should treat my own certainties with suspicion.

Mary Eastland
05-28-2012, 07:49 AM
But you missed the point of opinion on Spiritual and IP...having to produce results.
I could say "What is the value of thousands of people all agreeing on a thing.....then meeting someone who blows that up and they have to start over?"
I guess we can all agree.....they all agree...they were wrong.

Many organizations, frequently circle the wagons and shoot arrows...just before they give up, but in this case there are no enemies.
Dan

I don't agree. That is your point. You consistently say others are wrong. The three fingers are pointing back at you.

Contests, in my opinion, are useless. There is always someone who says they are bigger or stronger. So what? When a person is teaching a class and leading the mind as many teachers do the students are set up before they walk in the door. They already think they suck and have given away their power.

A teacher can set up a situation to make it seem like their way is the only way. I have seen it. I can see it on AikiWeb.

Chris Parkerson
05-28-2012, 08:14 AM
I got it....
Let's all study "compassionate communication" as a practice in applied aikido.
: )

Puha

Chris

Tom Verhoeven
05-28-2012, 08:19 AM
Thank you for the kind words. Oddly enought, my sangha name is "Compassionate Heart of service" in my TNH practice. I also happen to be a Christian Theologian and would introduce you to the word (Irenics). Perhaps you already know it, but I love its sound. It is the opposite of polemics (focussing upon what we cannot agree on).

Christianity is full of beliefs.... to a fault. Indeed, in Harvey Cox's (Harvard Seminary Professor) 2009 book on "The Future of faith, he called the last 2,000 years an age of belief (rather than faith). It is there that I got the differences in definition.

For me, Rumi cuts to the quick. "Sell your Cleverness and buy Bewilderment" he says (Coleman barks translation). The more we surrender our hearts to eachother, the more we will find commonality. And even when we find ourselves stuck in "attachment" (must have this; cannot have that) we can make friends with it and watch it arise and go away without even judging our judgment. he he he.

Would we could do this with eachother as well.

Namaste and Puha

Chris

Hi Chris,

Well, I am all in favour of an irenic movement in Aikido!

Irenic is a nice word.

Erasmus tried to reconcile protestants and catholics in a irenic way, did he not?

The first Dutch ship to arrive in Japan was named the "Liefde"; Love (referring to the letter to the Corinthians).

But before sailing to Japan this ship had another name, it used to be called "Erasmus".
A number of years ago they retrieved the sculpture of Erasmus that was on the back of the ship. It had been kept in a temple where people revered it as a statue of a kami.

It has been a long time since I read Rumi, will have to find another copy. I like the word bewilderment here. We do lose the capacity to be amazed because of this attachment to our own opinions. And with it we lose the capability of making friends. But when we get stuck in this attachment it is not always so easy to let it go. Even the zen way of watching it arise and go away takes practice.

Gassho,

Tom

graham christian
05-28-2012, 08:39 AM
Hi Graham,
In the sense that brave people find themselves within a "fight" and might still be described as not-fighting, I tend to agree. Otherwis, I would say many a brave person fights, too; indeed it is the brave who "fight" against injustice or who might "fight" the swift currents of a river to help someone.
Also, thank you Tom and Chris for your exchange. I've really enjoyed reading it.
Merci, et bon chance tout le monde! May we all learn to speak each others' languages a bit better.
Au revoir,
Matt

Hi Matthew.
I use the statement as a good contemplation tool. Only cowards fight. Now, holding that as a fact (purely for the sake of the exercise) then proceed to inspect all thoughts that contradict it.

It has led me to many recognition's along the way and re-evaluations.

Just the word fight implies mind and body out of harmony. Fight also is fear based so it leads to considering action where spirit mind and body are in harmony, untroubled, yet active in such a way as to bring harmony back to the scene for then the view is that someone attacking is merely the scene and it is the scene which needs addressing.

Then I found for me that bravery was more to do with spiritual flight and fear. Many 'nutters' can be very brave for all kinds of nutty reasons. So I found that the 'good' condition, where the person is calm and untroubled and spiritually there I would call courage. Thus courage is far from bravery.

Can you really fight injustice? You can see it, stand up to it, communicate it, get it changed. Yes you can handle injustice. Sometimes one may have to fight but that's last resort.com and nearly always the result of many, many lost opportunities to prevent such a dire circumstance happening in the first place. We could say it's a result therefor of laziness most of the time.

I would say Aikido teaches us these things when done from the viewpoint of harmony. It teaches us to notice the little flags that need handling before things devolve into chaos and fight.

Just my thoughts.

Peace.G.

graham christian
05-28-2012, 08:41 AM
I got it....
Let's all study "compassionate communication" as a practice in applied aikido.
: )

Puha

Chris

Ahhh, now you're talking my language.

Peace.G.

DH
05-28-2012, 08:51 AM
I don't agree. That is your point. You consistently say others are wrong. The three fingers are pointing back at you.

Contests, in my opinion, are useless. There is always someone who says they are bigger or stronger. So what? When a person is teaching a class and leading the mind as many teachers do the students are set up before they walk in the door. They already think they suck and have given away their power.

A teacher can set up a situation to make it seem like their way is the only way. I have seen it. I can see it on AikiWeb.
The discussion is about spirituality and IP
Well you can try to arrest and kidnap terms and concepts that are well established and try to make them your own. Just don't get sensitive when someone tells you it sounds silly.
Internal strength/power is well established and your founder made no end of quoting classic concepts...exactly. Many of his doka...are not his. On any other day I would say he plagiarized the classics, but he was after all, a researcher and was being fair. Aikido was originally founded on well known IP concepts. The fact that no one I have met can do them, and few can intelligently discuss what Ueshiba WAS QUOTING is on you guys...not me. No matter what, it doesn't change the fact that IP was established, is quoted from China to Japan, and your founder quoted them to a tee.

You might want to make a case that Judaism means aliens made the sun and water faeries are going to take over mars. It's never going make your version of Judaism correct. You would simply be....wrong.

I don't think your model applies to me so I don't see it's relevance. I go to other peoples dojo...without my own ukes, or to neutral territory. Mostly it is static training, but I get in scraps as well with people not too fond of my message. So far...so good.
I just don't know how to "set up" someone like Bill Gleason, Bruce Bookman, or accomplished BJJers like Chris Mckuen, so you need to help me out here. Just how did they think they suck?
Dan

graham christian
05-28-2012, 08:56 AM
I offer this in the spirit of learning mindfulness, not as an attack. The fact that 10 people agree upon something and derive feelings of unity and harmony from their agreement does not mean that what they agree upon is objectively correct. So long as they do not or cannot test the subject of their agreement their harmony is a product of assumption. However, those good feelings may be more important to them than discovering if the agreement is in fact based on reality, in which case it is preferable to maintain the joint illusion and remain happy.

I test everything I can since I am deeply familiar with the human tendency to cling to that which makes them feel good about what they hold onto. Spirituality is the safest ground of all since there is no test which we can all agree to, At least when someone designs a 1 winged plane we can all watch the crash.
'A scholar was being rowed across a river and by way of conversation asked the boatman," my dear chap, have you ever learnt to read?" The boatman replied, "no." To which the scholar, "well then you have wasted half your life." Sometime later a storm began and the boatman asked, have you ever learnt to swim?" and the scholar shook his head. the boatman then said, "well you just lost all yours".

I agree with the first paragraph, well put.

Like the boatman story too. However, spirituality being the safest ground since there is no test which we can all agree to I see as not true and believed as such would fit into the first paragraph.

What I like about Aikido is that there are physical tests for the spiritual. Nearly all spiritual people I meet find the reality of this fascinating.

Peace.G.

graham christian
05-28-2012, 09:13 AM
The same could be said for you and others that make assumptions all the time. How do you know how good Graham is or how he feels and his understanding of anything when you have not met him?

Quite simply they don't. Maybe that's hard to accept. As acceptance is one of the basics of harmony the responses make sense. I accept it ha, ha.

Peace.G.

DH
05-28-2012, 09:25 AM
There are other well known models for how real IP can cross over and inform and feel like spiritual concepts and how it feels in the body and the way it is trained was indeed tied to religious practices.
However, to say it is religious simply shows ignorance of the subject.
Chanting is a good example. Some may deeply believe that chanting certain mudras gave them power, when in reality it was using certain vowel sounds to merely change pressure. Next? What to do with that pressure.
Then you can add certain feelings that come when projecting-particularly with long weapons, and how it can form a heady rush.
We can then add Moving energy work in the body, which is a whole other ball game.

But we then go back to "talking about it" And thinking you "got it" in relation to IP, when in reality there is so much more. There are lots of Japanese and Western Shihan running around with pieces of the puzzle who would be devestated by someone more fully developed by doing it, rather than talking about it.

The truly wonderful aspect about this work is that you cannot B.S. your way out of it (well except on the internet). In person, you either got it or you don't, and you will be found out in all but an instant. Hence, why most will avoid those who either do have it...or know what it is supposed to feel like in someone who does.
Dan

DH
05-28-2012, 09:43 AM
The same could be said for you and others that make assumptions all the time. How do you know how good Graham is or how he feels and his understanding of anything when you have not met him?
By videos. Contrary to all hope....a connected body doesn't lie, nor does a disconnected one.
I have stopped analyzing them for the simple reason that it is increasingly obvious to the widening and educated crowds of teachers now training IP. I have dozens of letters of Shihan going back to their students and seeing them with new eyes and writing me that "My students are a mess!!"

They now see what I have been talking about for decades. That you and others do not see it, leaves us at an impasse. But I am not going to change my mind....ever. Apparently, neither are the hosts of people who now see what I see and are changing. Oddly...weirdly....inexplicably.....their stability and power and softness goes up as they train.
For the others?
Well, I think of what one of my Sensei wrote years ago:
Many people talk
You...shugyo
Years go by
People still talking
Then you get up to demonstrate
Then everyone knows the truth.

I don't debate this stuff anymore Mary. I keep saying it over and over. The way the arts are practiced by the vast majority has either left people weak and ineffectual, or all muscle.
In person, from Shodan to Shihan they have failed. And you are not delivering.
IP concepts and practices out of China to Japan... as stated and practiced by Morihei Ueshiba fixes that.
What's left to debate?
And....it is fulfilling his goal....
Making friends around the world by and between every known Martial art I have ever seen. Aikido Shihan, on the mat practicing with Daito ryu, Koryu, Bjjers and Wing chun and Taiji people over and over. Gaining in power, learning to understand what we all were supposed to have shared, while making friends and having a ball.
I think it is very cool.

Dan

hughrbeyer
05-28-2012, 09:55 AM
Golly, Tom. Paragraphs and paragraphs of writing on judgement which is very fine, but totally beside the point. Then this:

You cannot test ideas or skills via the internet. At best, if there is film available (youtube, dvd) you can get an impression of what someone is doing and you can try to compare it to what you are doing. I see on Aiki web a lot of conclusions that are based on bias, hidden agenda's, fixed opinions and a lack of reading with care what someone is trying to express. And worse then that; people draw conclusions about the other person's skills and experience without ever having met that person. So I can not agree with you that Aiki web is working pretty well.

Isn't that just what I was saying, that in the end you have to get together to work out what you mean? At which point, you find out what works and what doesn't. Maybe you'll say, "Yeah, what you're doing works better but mine is prettier so I'll stick with it." And I'll say, "God bless, and go in peace," because we're not in the same game at all.

But within shared goals, we certainly can and must judge. Choreographers may need to make the most of their materials, but the artists I know are their own harshest critic.

Where AikiWeb fails, I think, is when people won't meet and won't shut up. You've every right to voice your opinion--but if you won't back it it up, there's no reason why others have to respect it.

I am not a christian. But I do not think that what you say here about Jezus represents the christian faith sincerely.

Had you said I wasn't representing Christianity correctly, I'd have no issue with you, and we could have a nice debate about religion (or not). But you said I wasn't representing it sincerely, which I resent. (Augh! You're judging me! Actually, I'm assuming you're not a native English speaker so you may not have intended anything by it. But I'll make my point anyway.)

Not only does my post accurately represent one aspect of my attitude towards Christianity, I'll generalize: Every spiritual path I know includes a significant element of whacking the students to make them see the truth. Whether it's Zen masters shouting, "You sly fox spirit!" at a student and chasing them out of the room, or Jesus calling perfectly good and sincere Jews hypocrites and vipers, there's always an element of sincere teaching which is not gentle. The good students, the people who are learning, take the rebuke, think about it, and allow it to change them. The poor students get resentful and close their ears. The choice is yours.

graham christian
05-28-2012, 10:02 AM
We could also go back to doing various I/P things and thinking you got it and yet not having a clue about the spiritual.

Two different things which combine. Specialists in I/P do not necessarily have the in depth knowledge or ability of spiritual aspects.

If spiritual equals ineffective then it merely shows me the person with such belief has no reality on the real spiritual.

The real spiritual does not put down I/P either but knows the difference. In fact contrary to some's belief it can be that I/p can be found to be not very effective by some who know the spiritual aspects well.

It's all good.

Peace.G.

hughrbeyer
05-28-2012, 10:26 AM
Just to turn up the heat on this judging/no judging point:

The specific claim has been made that O-Sensei quoted classic concepts from Chinese martial arts extensively.

This claim is either true or false, isn't it? Is there any room here for how "I feel" about the matter?

If the claim is true, surely it has implications about the art we practice. Either it's based on principles which go all the way back to the Chinese or it's not. Is there any room for "what I want" in the question?

If Aikido is based on these core principles, hadn't we better understand them if we want to understand the Founder's art? Is there any "my way" here? Either you're trying to learn what the Founder had to teach or you're not--and if you're not, bless you and go in peace, but you're not really in this conversation.

Okay, so we have this specific claim, supported by the specific translations and commentary done by Chris Li, by quotes and sayings recorded by Stan Pranin, explained and discussed by Ellis Amdur, laid out in exhaustive detail by Prof. Goldsbury, with links back to various classic Chinese manuals.

Have you reviewed this material? Have you formed an informed opinion on it? Can you disprove the argument that Chinese principles drove O-Sensei's Aikido? I'm betting that the people who have really looked at it in depth are the people who have bought in... but I'm more than happy to be proven wrong. Show where the argument falls down. Do your homework. Because the people making the argument have.

And if you don't want to... if you want to say, "Yeah, whatever, but that doesn't have anything to do with MY Aikido," good enough, that's your right--but don't then go on to tell me you understand O-Sensei better than I do, or that you can do the specific demonstrations of skill he did, or that your art is devastatingly effective. Because then I'll say, "Show me" and we'll be right back where we started.

graham christian
05-28-2012, 10:40 AM
JUDGEMENT.
Interesting that judgement has come up here on this thread. I'm glad it has for it is often used within spiritual circles and religious ie: 'Judge not less you be judged' etc.

The understanding missing as I see it is to do once again with what is meant by such sayings. It doesn't actually mean you must not judge.

Judge-mental would be a better word to use in that being judge-mental is the concept being put foreward by such people. What does that mean? It means being negative, judging negatively, that's all. That's the simplicity that negative people find hard to grasp.

So of course one must judge and does so in every aspect of their daily lives. You judge how far the handle of the door is away in order to grasp it and open the door.

This also brings me back to the spiritual in Aikido. Ueshiba tried to emphasize this point with Takemuso. Emphasizing the virtues. So of course many didn't understand him for they see no connection between those virtues and Ai or Ki or ability in action. Yet they are fundamental. They are part of the spiritual.

They are not to do with being polite or rituals.

Without judging how can you put anything into perspective?

The importance of virtues in action and that includes love and compassion etc is what makes Aikido and gives it that potentially all embracing aspect. On the spiritual it's paramount. Without it there is no Aikido from the spiritual perspective.

Yet another difference between the spiritual and I/P.

Peace.G.

graham christian
05-28-2012, 11:12 AM
Just to turn up the heat on this judging/no judging point:

The specific claim has been made that O-Sensei quoted classic concepts from Chinese martial arts extensively.

This claim is either true or false, isn't it? Is there any room here for how "I feel" about the matter?

If the claim is true, surely it has implications about the art we practice. Either it's based on principles which go all the way back to the Chinese or it's not. Is there any room for "what I want" in the question?

If Aikido is based on these core principles, hadn't we better understand them if we want to understand the Founder's art? Is there any "my way" here? Either you're trying to learn what the Founder had to teach or you're not--and if you're not, bless you and go in peace, but you're not really in this conversation.

Okay, so we have this specific claim, supported by the specific translations and commentary done by Chris Li, by quotes and sayings recorded by Stan Pranin, explained and discussed by Ellis Amdur, laid out in exhaustive detail by Prof. Goldsbury, with links back to various classic Chinese manuals.

Have you reviewed this material? Have you formed an informed opinion on it? Can you disprove the argument that Chinese principles drove O-Sensei's Aikido? I'm betting that the people who have really looked at it in depth are the people who have bought in... but I'm more than happy to be proven wrong. Show where the argument falls down. Do your homework. Because the people making the argument have.

And if you don't want to... if you want to say, "Yeah, whatever, but that doesn't have anything to do with MY Aikido," good enough, that's your right--but don't then go on to tell me you understand O-Sensei better than I do, or that you can do the specific demonstrations of skill he did, or that your art is devastatingly effective. Because then I'll say, "Show me" and we'll be right back where we started.

Hugh.
I have read some. I have seen the opinions formed by those who find these little gems. I am not impressed by 1) The idea that it is all embracing extensive research for virtually all spiritual things he said are either discounted or seen as something else personal to him or more importantly thoroughly misunderstood. 2) Of course all martial arts from the east can be traced back to various sources from various countries, at least parts of them can. That doesn't equal therefor that is what is being done in said new time. It means that was one influence along with many others.

The claim that he quoted classic concepts from chinese martial arts all the time is obviously false.

He may have quoted some. I quote some too. Twisting it in that way strikes me as trying to fit some agenda.

I have many quotes of Ueshibas nothing to do with classic chinese martial arts and when it comes to repeatedly then the only thing he repeatedly referred to was shinto. The next most repeated was spiritual.

I could dig up poems or whatever from past masters or writers which I find congruent to what I am teaching and even put them on a dojo wall. That's normal isn't it? How people can say that means x,y, z, baffles me.

I'm afraid for me spiritual concepts and truths are the basis of all harmonious martial arts so without understanding them you cannot understand the person concerned. All spiritual truths fit with the principles he talked about repeatedly for they are all non-resistive and real. They all manifest in the various forms shapes and motions. To understand fully one must look hollistically. Truth is not chinese.

Peace.G.

Chris Li
05-28-2012, 11:29 AM
The same could be said for you and others that make assumptions all the time. How do you know how good Graham is or how he feels and his understanding of anything when you have not met him?

And I've never made any comment about how good he is or what he's doing - except that we're talking about someone that he's never met but insists on offering opinions about.

Best,

Chris

Chris Li
05-28-2012, 11:37 AM
If your only aim is to push your own opinion and you do not have an openness to listen to other people and exchange ideas in a valid way then there is no dialogue.
Contributors of this forum become then mere solopsists and the Aiki web forum nothing but an advertising agency.

Tom

If that were the case, maybe, but simply disagreeing with you or anyone else doesn't make someone a solopsist.

"Openness to listen to other people and exchange ideas" does not contain a requirement to accept those ideas. If it did then I would be able to accuse you of being a solipsist for not accepting my ideas.

Best,

Chris

Chris Parkerson
05-28-2012, 11:41 AM
There are other well known models for how real IP can cross over and inform and feel like spiritual concepts and how it feels in the body and the way it is trained was indeed tied to religious practices.
However, to say it is religious simply shows ignorance of the subject.
Chanting is a good example. Some may deeply believe that chanting certain mudras gave them power, when in reality it was using certain vowel sounds to merely change pressure. Next? What to do with that pressure.
Then you can add certain feelings that come when projecting-particularly with long weapons, and how it can form a heady rush.
We can then add Moving energy work in the body, which is a whole other ball game.

But we then go back to "talking about it" And thinking you "got it" in relation to IP, when in reality there is so much more. There are lots of Japanese and Western Shihan running around with pieces of the puzzle who would be devestated by someone more fully developed by doing it, rather than talking about it.

The truly wonderful aspect about this work is that you cannot B.S. your way out of it (well except on the internet). In person, you either got it or you don't, and you will be found out in all but an instant. Hence, why most will avoid those who either do have it...or know what it is supposed to feel like in someone who does.
Dan

I appreciate your position Dan. I do have a question that may or may not be related to your use of the words internal power. Are mantras solely for sound and relaxation? Can intent and tantric yoga bind and release energies bigger than your understanding of IS/IP (TM) as you have publically expressed it so far?

I am not saying just anyone on this web practices such things, but there may be some that do. I have friends that do and I, too, am a beginner at it. And I will call them shamans/windwalkers. They are an interesting group of folks.

One of the basic martial weapons systems in ancient India were those weapons that were initiated by incantations. In an earlier thread, I quipped with someone regarding "well treated wood" and using light coming from its tip. I used the double entendre of a specific tantric practice used by Little Monk Nupchen Sangye Yeshe whose practice included his personal wood as well as his wooden phurba (light coming out fo them both)..

In the text "The Great Beard of Nup" he writes that when he was 61, the bon armies had surrounded him (904 AD). He pulls out his phurba and "spun a disruptive whirlwind, destroying 37towns around Drak.

See: Taming of the Deamons by Jacob Dalton (Yale University Press, 2011), p. 50. It appears that during this era of fragmentation in Tibet, phurba wars were common according to modern scholarship.

Again,
"So, pulling a teak ritual dagger from the hem of his robes, Nupchen pronounced the life mantras of those vow-bound ones, stabbing and rolling the dagger, he recited, ri pha gi maraya phat (Mountain, over there, kill them!). Thereby, fire erupted from the mountain, incinerating and destroying all the armies." (p.51)

Does your sense of the IS/IP art explore these possbilities?

And to tie this thread with the earlier one, I conclude with this piece of info from Dalton, "To create the merit for purifying that sin, he (Nupchen) composed his "Lamp for the Eye in Contemplation" synthesizing union and liberation through violence.....

Puha
(incidently, is a term I am using in the context of Comanche "internal power". They were not very supersticious people, but they sure had a word for power that could be enhanced with internal practice. Quannah Parker had it and never lost a battle against the U.S. Army.)

Regards,

Chris

Tom Verhoeven
05-28-2012, 11:55 AM
But you missed the point of opinion on Spiritual and IP...having to produce results.
I could say "What is the value of thousands of people all agreeing on a thing.....then meeting someone who blows that up and they have to start over?"
I guess we can all agree.....they all agree...they were wrong.

Many organizations, frequently circle the wagons and shoot arrows...just before they give up, but in this case there are no enemies.
Dan

I have not missed a point. I have expressed a 2500 year old principle on how to engage into a dialogue with valid points and valid counter-arguments.

Opinions and results are irrelevant here - they are your own responsibility. Using these principles of engagement you will either be able to convince the other of your view on things or it will be refuted. It is then up to you to come up with a better argument.

Being right or thinking that you are right is not enough. You have to come up with truthful and valid reasoning. Using untruthful points of argument or invalid counter-arguments or a sophism immediately disqualify your statement(s).

Tom

DH
05-28-2012, 12:06 PM
I appreciate your position Dan. I do have a question that may or may not be related to your use of the words internal power. Are mantras solely for sound and relaxation? Can intent and tantric yoga bind and release energies bigger than your understanding of IS/IP (TM) as you have publically expressed it so far?

I am not saying just anyone on this web practices such things, but there may be some that do. I have friends that do and I, too, am a beginner at it. And I will call them shamans/windwalkers. They are an interesting group of folks.

One of the basic martial weapons systems in ancient India were those weapons that were initiated by incantations. In an earlier thread, I quipped with someone regarding "well treated wood" and using light coming from its tip. I used the double entendre of a specific tantric practice used by Little Monk Nupchen Sangye Yeshe whose practice included his personal wood as well as his wooden phurba (light coming out fo them both)..

In the text "The Great Beard of Nup" he writes that when he was 61, the bon armies had surrounded him (904 AD). He pulls out his phurba and "spun a disruptive whirlwind, destroying 37towns around Drak.

See: Taming of the Deamons by Jacob Dalton (Yale University Press, 2011), p. 50. It appears that during this era of fragmentation in Tibet, phurba wars were common according to modern scholarship.

Again,
"So, pulling a teak ritual dagger from the hem of his robes, Nupchen pronounced the life mantras of those vow-bound ones, stabbing and rolling the dagger, he recited, ri pha gi maraya phat (Mountain, over there, kill them!). Thereby, fire erupted from the mountain, incinerating and destroying all the armies." (p.51)

Does your sense of the IS/IP art explore these possbilities?

And to tie this thread with the earlier one, I conclude with this piece of info from Dalton, "To create the merit for purifying that sin, he (Nupchen) composed his "Lamp for the Eye in Contemplation" synthesizing union and liberation through violence.....

Puha
(incidently, is a term I am using in the context of Comanche "internal power". They were not very supersticious people, but they sure had a word for power that could be enhanced with internal practice. Quannah Parker had it and never lost a battle against the U.S. Army.)

Regards,

Chris
:freaky: I have no response. I stopped doing mushrooms and peyote when I was a young musician.
My IP is not my "version." It is established and old. Westerners like to push "their version" so they can validate their half-assed corruption of just about anything they touch and call it equal.

Today I focus on things that are beyond doubt and contestation. It is dividing, But truth often is.
Dan

DH
05-28-2012, 12:11 PM
I have not missed a point. I have expressed a 2500 year old principle on how to engage into a dialogue with valid points and valid counter-arguments.

Opinions and results are irrelevant here - they are your own responsibility. Using these principles of engagement you will either be able to convince the other of your view on things or it will be refuted. It is then up to you to come up with a better argument.

Being right or thinking that you are right is not enough. You have to come up with truthful and valid reasoning. Using untruthful points of argument or invalid counter-arguments or a sophism immediately disqualify your statement(s).

Tom
I am not arguing nor trying to convince anyone of anything.
I state fact and irrefutable results of training correctly that simply does not fail. And this work is well established.
It is beyond your ability to debate it.
It is best done in person.
It continues to win over at a rate of damn close to 100% of those who feel it, because;
a. it works
b. it can be taught
c. it yields incremental palpable results
and
d. I am a sweetheart!!!:D

Tom Verhoeven
05-28-2012, 12:27 PM
If that were the case, maybe, but simply disagreeing with you or anyone else doesn't make someone a solopsist.

"Openness to listen to other people and exchange ideas" does not contain a requirement to accept those ideas. If it did then I would be able to accuse you of being a solipsist for not accepting my ideas.

Best,

Chris

I never said that simply disagreeing with me makes you a solopsist! That is what you are saying!
Again, you are coming up with an invalid counterargument.

Openness to listen to other people and exchange ideas forms the essence of dialogue. I never said that there was a requirement to accept ideas. That is what you are saying!
Again, that is an invalid counterargument.

A dialogue can give you new facts, new ideas, new insights. That might very well happen with persons who express a view that is not your own. If you are willing to listen that is.

Let there be no misunderstanding here. This is not about a difference of opinion between you and me on Aikido related matters. I am only expressing simple and basic principles of dialogue. You are in fact argueing against those principles. You may do that, but it leaves no place for dialogue. And that is what a forum is all about, is it not?
Tom

Chris Li
05-28-2012, 12:49 PM
I never said that simply disagreeing with me makes you a solopsist! That is what you are saying!
Again, you are coming up with an invalid counterargument.

Openness to listen to other people and exchange ideas forms the essence of dialogue. I never said that there was a requirement to accept ideas. That is what you are saying!
Again, that is an invalid counterargument.

A dialogue can give you new facts, new ideas, new insights. That might very well happen with persons who express a view that is not your own. If you are willing to listen that is.

Let there be no misunderstanding here. This is not about a difference of opinion between you and me on Aikido related matters. I am only expressing simple and basic principles of dialogue. You are in fact argueing against those principles. You may do that, but it leaves no place for dialogue. And that is what a forum is all about, is it not?
Tom

I'm not arguing against those principles at all. I simply stated that I disagreed with a statement you made. And disagreeing is certainly a valid principle of dialogue, isn't it?

Anyway, this is kind of pointless - what's your argument, anyway?

Best,

Chris

Tom Verhoeven
05-28-2012, 12:49 PM
I am not arguing nor trying to convince anyone of anything.
I state fact and irrefutable results of training correctly that simply does not fail. And this work is well established.
It is beyond your ability to debate it.
It is best done in person.
It continues to win over at a rate of damn close to 100% of those who feel it, because;
a. it works
b. it can be taught
c. it yields incremental palpable results
and
d. I am a sweetheart!!!:D

Dan,

I could not agree with you more. It applies just as much to my own work and teachings, but you are probably better looking then me.

But it does not change the fact that Chris' counterargument is and stays invalid!

Tom

DH
05-28-2012, 12:51 PM
I never said that simply disagreeing with me makes you a solopsist! That is what you are saying!
Again, you are coming up with an invalid counterargument.

Openness to listen to other people and exchange ideas forms the essence of dialogue. I never said that there was a requirement to accept ideas. That is what you are saying!
Again, that is an invalid counterargument.

A dialogue can give you new facts, new ideas, new insights. That might very well happen with persons who express a view that is not your own. If you are willing to listen that is.

Let there be no misunderstanding here. This is not about a difference of opinion between you and me on Aikido related matters. I am only expressing simple and basic principles of dialogue. You are in fact argueing against those principles. You may do that, but it leaves no place for dialogue. And that is what a forum is all about, is it not?
Tom

That makes sense Tom, truly. But... provided we leave out conclusions.
Dialoguing about those well known training models touches on triggers for many who have been asked for decades to believe and keep training and they will "get it," and then conversely being told they weren't thinking...all while having a verbal and physical dialogue with teachers who just could not, or would not.....teach.
Hence, some of the impatiance to just engage in even more dialogue with those who;

Don't have it
Don't really know how to get it
Doubt those who actually do...
And want to dialogue with them about their own ideas that fail time and time again.
Or tell them to go shout on a street corner for all they care.


For many here that sort of dialogue is BTDT. There is a growing group of Aikido teachers who are doing many of training models Ueshiba outlined. And...surprise surprise......it works in the real world. And up against that...their method?
Does not. ;)
Testing and conclusions is very dividing...hence people wanting to just dialogue...on the net.
Dan

Tom Verhoeven
05-28-2012, 12:52 PM
I'm not arguing against those principles at all. I simply stated that I disagreed with a statement you made. And disagreeing is certainly a valid principle of dialogue, isn't it?

Anyway, this is kind of pointless - what's your argument, anyway?

Best,

Chris

You lost the thread?

Or do you expect me to repeat the argumentation.

Tom

DH
05-28-2012, 01:07 PM
Dan,

I could not agree with you more. It applies just as much to my own work and teachings, but you are probably better looking then me.

But it does not change the fact that Chris' counterargument is and stays invalid!

Tom
Oh good God...don't look at my pictures!!!
I wish I had a stand in!!
I actually see both points. But I am steering clear and more or less trying to focus on the bigger picture! :p
Dan

Chris Parkerson
05-28-2012, 01:30 PM
:freaky: I have no response. I stopped doing mushrooms and peyote when I was a young musician.
My IP is not my "version." It is established and old. Westerners like to push "their version" so they can validate their half-assed corruption of just about anything they touch and call it equal.

Today I focus on things that are beyond doubt and contestation. It is dividing, But truth often is.
Dan

As I practice shamanism along the lines of Will Taegel, Jim Garrison and a host of other recognized professors with credible backgrounds at Wisdom University, I guess I have not limited myself in such a way. Others may experience such practice as going down a rabbit hole, and that is their rightZ

Puha

Chris

mathewjgano
05-28-2012, 01:34 PM
There are other well known models for how real IP can cross over and inform and feel like spiritual concepts and how it feels in the body and the way it is trained was indeed tied to religious practices.
However, to say it is religious simply shows ignorance of the subject.
Chanting is a good example. Some may deeply believe that chanting certain mudras gave them power, when in reality it was using certain vowel sounds to merely change pressure. Next? What to do with that pressure.
Then you can add certain feelings that come when projecting-particularly with long weapons, and how it can form a heady rush.
We can then add Moving energy work in the body, which is a whole other ball game.

But we then go back to "talking about it" And thinking you "got it" in relation to IP, when in reality there is so much more. There are lots of Japanese and Western Shihan running around with pieces of the puzzle who would be devestated by someone more fully developed by doing it, rather than talking about it.

The truly wonderful aspect about this work is that you cannot B.S. your way out of it (well except on the internet). In person, you either got it or you don't, and you will be found out in all but an instant. Hence, why most will avoid those who either do have it...or know what it is supposed to feel like in someone who does.
Dan

Hi Dan,
Great points, thank you! This resonates heavily with where my mind is lately, particularly as it relates to getting out there and interacting as the basis for practice. Simple idea but some of us need to remember it more (raises hand:D). The physical is very much the spiritual for me...the omote and ura of reality maybe. I've been thinking about something the doshu said a lot the last couple days. Essentially his view seems to be that it doesn't matter so much what we're practicing as long as we're sincerely practicing and have our example of that practice. We can agree or disagree on the nature of the practice ("[enlightenment or delusion who can say...]") but without sharing, we can't determine if the other guy has something we could or should learn. It's (partly, at the least) about producing something tangible.
In Shinto there is the idea of infinite and restless movement (kannagara, if I'm not mistaken); everything is basically in a constant state of movement and interaction. The study of Aikido and Shinto is learning how to incorporate a cohesive quality to those movements, both large and very small, with the purpose of fostering life power...of learning to harmonize with nature to attain a greater state of existance, for ourselves, for our families, our neighborhoods, our countries, our planet...and outward, as circumstances allow.
This is the essence of my spirituality and the fundemental reason I've remained so attracted to Aikido as a medium for fostering it.
Take care,
Matt

DH
05-28-2012, 01:44 PM
As I practice shamanism along the lines of Will Taegel, Jim Garrison and a host of other recognized professors with credible backgrounds at Wisdom University, I guess I have not limited myself in such a way. Others may experience such practice as going down a rabbit hole, and that is their rightZ

Puha

Chris
Results Chris...results.
We are talking about internal power. I know and have trained with several people of that persuasion who have no power at all. Were people like this to "have power" one can only ask why their martial arts look like every other Tom, Dick and Harry. I see them throw and they go up on their toes, I see them making big moves that hardly effect anyone...and with all this good "shaministic power" they talk about...Okomoto and Angier....and do VERY poor imitations, mimicing their movements. I find it all very peculiar.
Results Chris...results.
In lue of that ...dialogue.....I suppose.

I like to think of authentic and true purpose that is congruent and solid, regardless of form or venue; balls to bone. And there are men like that. They are unusual and there is no doubt nor any dialogue necessary.
Dan

DH
05-28-2012, 01:52 PM
Hi Dan,
Great points, thank you! This resonates heavily with where my mind is lately, particularly as it relates to getting out there and interacting as the basis for practice. Simple idea but some of us need to remember it more (raises hand:D). The physical is very much the spiritual for me...the omote and ura of reality maybe. I've been thinking about something the doshu said a lot the last couple days. Essentially his view seems to be that it doesn't matter so much what we're practicing as long as we're sincerely practicing and have our example of that practice. We can agree or disagree on the nature of the practice ("[enlightenment or delusion who can say...]") but without sharing, we can't determine if the other guy has something we could or should learn. It's (partly, at the least) about producing something tangible.
In Shinto there is the idea of infinite and restless movement (kannagara, if I'm not mistaken); everything is basically in a constant state of movement and interaction. The study of Aikido and Shinto is learning how to incorporate a cohesive quality to those movements, both large and very small, with the purpose of fostering life power...of learning to harmonize with nature to attain a greater state of existance, for ourselves, for our families, our neighborhoods, our countries, our planet...and outward, as circumstances allow.
This is the essence of my spirituality and the fundemental reason I've remained so attracted to Aikido as a medium for fostering it.
Take care,
Matt
Hi Mat
I guess we can discuss energy being random, unidirectional and less functional, or a more pure form of constant motion that leaves one stable and supported. It is NOT all the same. Nor is the spiritual path to mind and body in creating power.
I will never agree with Doshu with "it doesn't matter so much what we're practicing as long as we're sincerely practicing[/B] model. It's so neutral and useless....by itself it has lead to more wasted decades than anything I can think of.
Dan

Tom Verhoeven
05-28-2012, 02:08 PM
That makes sense Tom, truly. But... provided we leave out conclusions.
Dialoguing about those well known training models touches on triggers for many who have been asked for decades to believe and keep training and they will "get it," and then conversely being told they weren't thinking...all while having a verbal and physical dialogue with teachers who just could not, or would not.....teach.
Hence, some of the impatiance to just engage in even more dialogue with those who;

Don't have it
Don't really know how to get it
Doubt those who actually do...
And want to dialogue with them about their own ideas that fail time and time again.
Or tell them to go shout on a street corner for all they care.


For many here that sort of dialogue is BTDT. There is a growing group of Aikido teachers who are doing many of training models Ueshiba outlined. And...surprise surprise......it works in the real world. And up against that...their method?
Does not. ;)
Testing and conclusions is very dividing...hence people wanting to just dialogue...on the net.
Dan

Dan,
I don't disagree with you here. I have mentioned Plato's allegory of the cave often enough. Some people are still in shackles in the dark, and only a few arrive in the light. Like O Sensei. The people in the dark will have a hard time accepting the person who has been in the light, they might even, as Plato puts it, ridicule or hurt him. And only slowly, maybe even only one at the time others will follow towards the light. While at the same time others still refuse to consider it.

In Plato's words the person who came to the light experienced episteme, reality or sophia, wisdom. While the others in the dark kept to their dogma (opinions).
It is not really possible to have a dialogue with someone who just holds on to opinions and refuses to be open minded to other possibilities.

So I can imagine a certain impatience with people that want to discuss about things that for you are already passed stations.

Perhaps I show the same impatience myself.
I have studied Buddhism and Taoism since a young age. It lead me towards Aikido and a study in philosophy at the university. When I started with Aikido many of the concepts were not new to me. But when I was confronted with O Sensei's words I had difficulty in understanding a lot of what he was saying. Fortunately I found a Shinto teacher who could explain the concepts. And I realized that Aikikai Aikido was only teaching basic techniques and not really or fully what O Sensei had been teaching. That started my search.
And I came across a lot of people in the Aikido world who did not understand or liked what I was looking for. And a few who were on the same search.

This was more then thirty years ago.
Imagine my surprise to come across your name here on Aikiweb and finding out that you were claiming to be the only one that had researched this and understood this.
Imagine my surprise to come across the website of Chris Li on the concepts of O Sensei - presenting this as if he had discovered something completely new.
Imagine my surprise when he, based on his fast expertise in the secrets of Aiki dismissed all the teachers that he had seen in Japan. Including the ones that could have told him more about O Sensei and could have introduced him to places and people that were so familiar to O Sensei. It would have clarified a lot for him as it has done for me.
Imagine my surprise when it appeared shear impossible to have a dialogue with him, and seeing him dismiss every thinkable argument without giving a valid counter argument.

While I agree that it is not always possible to have a real dialogue with opinionated people I do also think that we should make an effort to genuinely communicate.
In fact, if someone really understands Aiki, then noblesse oblige, that person has even a bigger responsibility to communicate. You do realize that the word dialogue has the same meaning as Aiki?

Greetings from the Auvergne,
Tom

mathewjgano
05-28-2012, 02:30 PM
Hi Mat
I guess we can discuss energy being random, unidirectional and less functional, or a more pure form of constant motion that leaves one stable and supported. It is NOT all the same. Nor is the spiritual path to mind and body in creating power.
I will never agree with Doshu with "it doesn't matter so much what we're practicing as long as we're sincerely practicing[/B] model. It's so neutral and useless....by itself it has lead to more wasted decades than anything I can think of.
Dan

That's my understanding: The goal is to take the essentially random, single-dimensional movements and make them cohesive and omni-directional. Through practice the goal is to take parts and make them more cohesive members of the whole. This is where it helps to go out and experience other methods, to find new things to consciously add to our movements.
Regarding Doshu's remarks though: I agree the part that only talks about being sincere is, by itself, not enough, but I took his meaning to include the necessity for interaction...for going out and directly sampling each others' training. I took it to mean, if we're sincere in our efforts to learn, we should feel what other people are doing; we can then take it or leave it based on whatever our personal values are.
It made me think of what you're doing, going out and sharing your training with a wide variety of people and methods of training; of your past comments about Ueshiba being a kind of MMA guy.

Chris Li
05-28-2012, 02:30 PM
Imagine my surprise to come across your name here on Aikiweb and finding out that you were claiming to be the only one that had researched this and understood this.
Imagine my surprise to come across the website of Chris Li on the concepts of O Sensei - presenting this as if he had discovered something completely new.
Imagine my surprise when he, based on his fast expertise in the secrets of Aiki dismissed all the teachers that he had seen in Japan. Including the ones that could have told him more about O Sensei and could have introduced him to places and people that were so familiar to O Sensei. It would have clarified a lot for him as it has done for me.
Imagine my surprise when it appeared shear impossible to have a dialogue with him, and seeing him dismiss every thinkable argument without giving a valid counter argument.


Dan's been talking about this stuff for more than 15 years in various places, starting back on the old Aikido-L mailing list.

Obviously, if Ueshiba and Takeda (and others) were doing it than this stuff is not new - but it is new to many people, and that is how I've presented it.

I've been in Aikido almost as long as you have - I've been to and met the places and people that were familiar to Ueshiba. I haven't made any judgements as to your experience, you ought not to make any judgements as to mine.

I've asked you several times for clarifications of statements that you made and received no answer - nothing to dismiss there...

Best,

Chris

graham christian
05-28-2012, 02:59 PM
Well, lots of interesting points made. As far as I can see they all go to show that spiritual is different to I/P.

Physical, I/P, Spiritual. Three different things.

Peace.G.

Chris Parkerson
05-28-2012, 03:33 PM
Results Chris...results.
We are talking about internal power. I know and have trained with several people of that persuasion who have no power at all. Were people like this to "have power" one can only ask why their martial arts look like every other Tom, Dick and Harry. I see them throw and they go up on their toes, I see them making big moves that hardly effect anyone...and with all this good "shaministic power" they talk about...Okomoto and Angier....and do VERY poor imitations, mimicing their movements. I find it all very peculiar.
Results Chris...results.
In lue of that ...dialogue.....I suppose.

I like to think of authentic and true purpose that is congruent and solid, regardless of form or venue; balls to bone. And there are men like that. They are unusual and there is no doubt nor any dialogue necessary.
Dan

Hal's dialogue was on the mats. His results are a matter of record. So was Quanna Parker's. I drove to Port Lavaca Friday and hung out with Hal over the weekend. If Quannah were alive, I would befriend and visit him too.

As a result of our conversations in 2009, I went back to the mats as well. I was happy with my results. I also fine tuned my skills because of it. These videos I presented were taken between 2005-2010. I am happy with my improvement as well and would be excited to train with you in search for more skill and improvement.

Please take no offense when I say "your practice" of IS/IP or "mine". I accept, that even with a teacher who teaches you from an unaltered core method, one's practice is one's own. I am responsible for my practice, how i interpret it and how i use it.

I do not claim nor want to be the toughest guy on the block. I do want to experience the fullness of life while I am here and hang out with folks who intrigue me. I also want to survive the process.

John Gilbey, Jr. Perhaps. : )

Puha

Chris

Conrad Gus
05-28-2012, 05:49 PM
Well if you say it, then it must be true. :freaky:

As I said, you have no way to know whether we're talking about baked beans or not, since you've never eaten the thing in question.

Best,

Chris

I'd like to take a stab at putting an end to this endless argument that has been going around and around on this thread and others. The IHTBF argument is fallacious. (I knew that degree in formal logic would come in handy SOMEDAY).

Here is the argument:


Dan Harden and a select minority of people have (re)discovered some special, secret training methods that are fundamentally different from what everybody else is doing
These methods yield results that are fundamentally different from and far superior to what everybody else has been able to achieve (approaching O-Sensei levels)
If you have direct experience with someone who has mastered these methods and achieved these results, it is completely obvious that everything else is lacking
If you have never had direct experience with someone who has mastered these methods and achieved these results, you can't even conceive of the difference or understand what is being done. There is no way of describing it or demonstrating it other than direct experience.

Conclusion: Anyone who hasn't trained directly with Dan (et al) can have no insight or knowledge into IP/IS and cannot make any evidence-based judgements or hold any rational opinions on the subject. (IHTBF).

This is a perfectly sound logical argument. The logic problem occurs when you use the conclusion to support the premises. If Graham Christian questions 1 and 4 based on his own fairly extensive experience and knowledge as a martial artist, and Chris Li raises IHTBF, this does not undermine Graham's argument, because IHTBF is based on the premises which are being questioned. To use IHTBF to support the premises is circular logic.

Consider the following analogous argument:


At the south pole there lives a leprechaun in a cave.
The leprechaun can show you the most beautiful thing in the world.
If you see this beautiful thing, you cannot help yourself from agreeing that everything else in the world is ugly in comparison.
There is no way of describing or demonstrating how beautiful this thing it. If you haven't seen it with your own eyes, the concept of beauty is completely beyond your grasp.

Conclusion: Anyone who hasn't travelled to the south pole, met the leprechaun and seen the most beautiful thing in the world can have no insight or knowledge into beauty and cannot make any evidence-based judgements or hold any rational opinions on the subject.
I will hereafter refer to this conclusion as "You have to go to the south pole and meet the leprechaun" (YHTGTTSPAMTL for short)

This is also a perfectly logical argument. But now imagine if I challenge the premises, and you use YHTGTTSPAMTL as a counter-argument:

There is no cave at the south pole. YHTGTTSPAMTL!
Leprechauns don't exist. YHTGTTSPAMTL!
The most beautiful thing in the world was destroyed in A.D. 768. YHTGTTSPAMTL!
The concept of beauty exists independently of any one beautiful thing and can be understood as a concept . . . YHTGTTSPAMTL!


The argument as a whole is only as convincing as the premises, and it is specious to use the conclusion to support those premises. The premises must be supported by some external evidence. This puts the IHTBF crowd in a difficult position, because by their own account there is nothing short of direct experience that will support their position.

The claims about IP, etc. may be true, and I have no doubt that the people doing it are enjoying their training and are getting something out of it. I would even like to try it some day. The further claim that it is categorically different from what everyone else in the world is doing has not been, in my opinion, supported by sufficient evidence to convince me (and a lot of other people who know a great deal more about aikido than I do). Making the same statement over and over and over again on aikiweb does not make it a true statement and does not add any evidence in support of the claim.

We could all run to Dan's seminars to try and find this evidence or discount the claims, but most of us have teachers that we already spend time sincerely learning from, teachers that we trust, teachers that we have felt and observed in real life and respect deeply. When someone comes along and claims that these teachings are all missing the essential point of what O-Sensei was trying to convey, it goes against evidence that we have experienced directly in real life, so we can't really give it that much weight. Without some counter-evidence (I know, I know, IHTBF!), it is hard to feel convinced.

So please enjoy your training, write about it and even brag about it if you like. I, for one, am interested and somewhat fascinated by the debate. However, I am not convinced that my training is a waste of time because it is not the same as yours. I realize that, according to the internal logic of the IHTBF argument, I may never know the truth without seeking out Dan or somebody and experiencing it for myself. If this is the case, then it is unfortunate for me that I have other teachers with whom I prefer to train and other ways in which I would rather spend my travel budget and precious time.

From now on, whenever somebody writes "IHTBF" I will be responding, tongue firmly in cheek, with "YHTGTTSPAMTL". Anyone else is free to do likewise.

Many paths up Mount Fuji, indeed.

Peace,

Conrad

Chris Li
05-28-2012, 06:10 PM
I

This is a perfectly sound logical argument. The logic problem occurs when you use the conclusion to support the premises. If Graham Christian questions 1 and 4 based on his own fairly extensive experience and knowledge as a martial artist, and Chris Li raises IHTBF, this does not undermine Graham's argument, because IHTBF is based on the premises which are being questioned. To use IHTBF to support the premises is circular logic.

So if I were to question your abilities in Aikido based upon my fairly extensive experience and knowledge your response would be something other than "You haven't met me, so how would you know?". ;)

None of what I post here is supposed to be a logical (or even illogical) proof - it's just shooting the breeze.

Best,

Chris

Tom Verhoeven
05-28-2012, 06:24 PM
Dan's been talking about this stuff for more than 15 years in various places, starting back on the old Aikido-L mailing list.

Obviously, if Ueshiba and Takeda (and others) were doing it than this stuff is not new - but it is new to many people, and that is how I've presented it.

I've been in Aikido almost as long as you have - I've been to and met the places and people that were familiar to Ueshiba. I haven't made any judgements as to your experience, you ought not to make any judgements as to mine.

I've asked you several times for clarifications of statements that you made and received no answer - nothing to dismiss there...

Best,

Chris

I did not imply that Dan Harden was a beginner. I am not familiar with Aikido-L. I expressed my surprise to find someone, that I had not heard of before, not only to researching the same things as I had, but claiming that he completely understood it.

The way things are presented by him and students of him like you, suggests at the least that you claim or think that Dan Harden is the only one researching this and or the only one who got it (where have I heard that before). I tried to point out that that is not the case. A bit more openness would reach more people than being so adamant.

The way you present your findings show the same pattern. As if none of these subjects could not be found elsewhere, while there is a pile of books written on Shinto by people with more academic expertise then you have shown us. This would still be fine in my book if your interpretations and suggestions were not used as facts in different threads. "Facts" that are meant to support the position of Dan Harden as the only person that got the message of O Sensei.
That I call a hidden agenda.

I would be very much interested in a dialogue with Dan Harden, because I do think that he has something worthwhile to share. Between you and me there is no dialogue. You have an established point of view and in none of the threads have I seen you accept another way of looking at things other then when it fitted into your own story.
Whether you have been practicing Aikido as long as me or not is neither here nor there.

You stated that you dismissed the shihan that you have met in Japan. You stated in an response of one of my posts that you dismissed Hikitsuchi sensei as having an understanding of O Sensei's teaching. That must mean that you think that you have an expertise on this matter that is well beyond that of these shihan. Otherwise I would call such an assumption arrogance or misguidedness. I did not judge your experiences, but I am disagreeing with this kind of attitude.

As far as I am aware I have given you plenty of clarifications in every response. But at times you are trying to press me in a direction that I do not want to go to, I will not be used for your hidden agenda.

Tom

DH
05-28-2012, 06:36 PM
Hello Condrad
I would like to point out that I am one...count them...one, of a list of people who both do and teach this stuff.
1. This is not about me.
2. We have not rediscovered anything. It is as old as the hills
3. What we state is that it is all but gone from aikido and other arts, and those that have some or most of it, are not doing a good job of teaching it.

Those are some very different points than what you portray.

One last critical set of questions that always...and I mean always fails to be mentioned in these counter arguments.
4. Why is it that all who feel it...want to train it?
This includes an incredible list of Shihan, Menkyo and Senior teachers?
Why Conrad?
5. Why has Four top world famous Japanese shihans sign off and approved of it after seeing what it is doing to their student/shihan teachers
Why?
6. Why has every....single.... one....of you failed against it and that is not acknowledged?
7. And why is that fact...never brought up? It's been stated often enough. I'm just curious.
Thoughts?

Cheers
Dan

Conrad Gus
05-28-2012, 06:38 PM
So if I were to question your abilities in Aikido based upon my fairly extensive experience and knowledge your response would be something other than "You haven't met me, so how would you know?". ;)

None of what I post here is supposed to be a logical (or even illogical) proof - it's just shooting the breeze.

Best,

Chris

Any claims made by me are considerably more humble, and less likely to attract scrutiny.

Shooting the breeze can still be free of logical fallacies.

Cheers,

Conrad

gregstec
05-28-2012, 06:44 PM
I'd like to take a stab at putting an end to this endless argument that has been going around and around on this thread and others. The IHTBF argument is fallacious. (I knew that degree in formal logic would come in handy SOMEDAY).

Here is the argument:
Dan Harden and a select minority of people have (re)discovered some special, secret training methods that are fundamentally different from what everybody else is doing
These methods yield results that are fundamentally different from and far superior to what everybody else has been able to achieve (approaching O-Sensei levels)
If you have direct experience with someone who has mastered these methods and achieved these results, it is completely obvious that everything else is lacking
If you have never had direct experience with someone who has mastered these methods and achieved these results, you can't even conceive of the difference or understand what is being done. There is no way of describing it or demonstrating it other than direct experience.Conclusion: Anyone who hasn't trained directly with Dan (et al) can have no insight or knowledge into IP/IS and cannot make any evidence-based judgements or hold any rational opinions on the subject. (IHTBF).

This is a perfectly sound logical argument. The logic problem occurs when you use the conclusion to support the premises. If Graham Christian questions 1 and 4 based on his own fairly extensive experience and knowledge as a martial artist, and Chris Li raises IHTBF, this does not undermine Graham's argument, because IHTBF is based on the premises which are being questioned. To use IHTBF to support the premises is circular logic.

Consider the following analogous argument:
At the south pole there lives a leprechaun in a cave.
The leprechaun can show you the most beautiful thing in the world.
If you see this beautiful thing, you cannot help yourself from agreeing that everything else in the world is ugly in comparison.
There is no way of describing or demonstrating how beautiful this thing it. If you haven't seen it with your own eyes, the concept of beauty is completely beyond your grasp.Conclusion: Anyone who hasn't travelled to the south pole, met the leprechaun and seen the most beautiful thing in the world can have no insight or knowledge into beauty and cannot make any evidence-based judgements or hold any rational opinions on the subject.
I will hereafter refer to this conclusion as "You have to go to the south pole and meet the leprechaun" (YHTGTTSPAMTL for short)

This is also a perfectly logical argument. But now imagine if I challenge the premises, and you use YHTGTTSPAMTL as a counter-argument:
There is no cave at the south pole. YHTGTTSPAMTL!
Leprechauns don't exist. YHTGTTSPAMTL!
The most beautiful thing in the world was destroyed in A.D. 768. YHTGTTSPAMTL!
The concept of beauty exists independently of any one beautiful thing and can be understood as a concept . . . YHTGTTSPAMTL!The argument as a whole is only as convincing as the premises, and it is specious to use the conclusion to support those premises. The premises must be supported by some external evidence. This puts the IHTBF crowd in a difficult position, because by their own account there is nothing short of direct experience that will support their position.

The claims about IP, etc. may be true, and I have no doubt that the people doing it are enjoying their training and are getting something out of it. I would even like to try it some day. The further claim that it is categorically different from what everyone else in the world is doing has not been, in my opinion, supported by sufficient evidence to convince me (and a lot of other people who know a great deal more about aikido than I do). Making the same statement over and over and over again on aikiweb does not make it a true statement and does not add any evidence in support of the claim.

We could all run to Dan's seminars to try and find this evidence or discount the claims, but most of us have teachers that we already spend time sincerely learning from, teachers that we trust, teachers that we have felt and observed in real life and respect deeply. When someone comes along and claims that these teachings are all missing the essential point of what O-Sensei was trying to convey, it goes against evidence that we have experienced directly in real life, so we can't really give it that much weight. Without some counter-evidence (I know, I know, IHTBF!), it is hard to feel convinced.

So please enjoy your training, write about it and even brag about it if you like. I, for one, am interested and somewhat fascinated by the debate. However, I am not convinced that my training is a waste of time because it is not the same as yours. I realize that, according to the internal logic of the IHTBF argument, I may never know the truth without seeking out Dan or somebody and experiencing it for myself. If this is the case, then it is unfortunate for me that I have other teachers with whom I prefer to train and other ways in which I would rather spend my travel budget and precious time.

From now on, whenever somebody writes "IHTBF" I will be responding, tongue firmly in cheek, with "YHTGTTSPAMTL". Anyone else is free to do likewise.

Many paths up Mount Fuji, indeed.

Peace,

Conrad

Pretty thorough analysis - however, from my viewpoint, everything is relative and without an agreed upon baseline, a comparison discussion is frutile - now once you get that agreed upon baseline with a IHTBF moment, then true discussion can commence - of course, YMMV :)

Greg

DH
05-28-2012, 06:51 PM
Hello Tom
I have enjoyed our exchange so far. Thank you.

Chris has never pressed that I am the only one, he is in fact hosting and training with several. On the other hand Chris has some rather unique and extensive experience training with an incredible list of Japanese Shihan.
I must say that I for one would be delighted to feel any Japanese shihan who's got it in any full measure and teaches it. I've ever felt it, seen it or read anything in writing. I think its actually a bogus claim. and I am DYING to be proven wrong. That meaning, I truly want to be wrong and get to discuss it, watch them move, see them teach, and feel their students with power.

All that said. I would add that of all the teachers from all over the world I have taught..none... meaning -not one- has been able to tell me of a single teacher who has it and is teaching it.
You keep talking of a logical argument. Okay. These men who have spent decades training with a host of Japanese Shihan have now felt me and others. They are now equipped to make comparisons that you are not. And they agree with Chris.
Why?

Who do you know that you would say qualifies?
Who are their students who have power?
Where can I meet them?
Thank you that would be a great help.
And thanks for not letting things turn ugly.
Dan

Chris Parkerson
05-28-2012, 06:56 PM
Pretty thorough analysis - however, from my viewpoint, everything is relative and without an agreed upon baseline, a comparison discussion is frutile - now once you get that agreed upon baseline with a IHTBF moment, then true discussion can commence - of course, YMMV :)

Greg

Hi Greg,

I loved the quote underneath your name:

"The external martial arts are based on the energy of movement, whereas the internal martial arts are based on the movement of energy" Warriors of Stillness.
Does this movement of energy, from your experience, extend into shamanic power as well.
Perhaps what I have heard Chinese call "foo"; or Bon practices of binding and releasing energies
as did Abaris (contemporary of Pythagoras)?

A Story Waiting to Pierce You: Mongolia, Tibet and the Destiny of the Western World (Paperback)
By: Peter Kingsley

See: http://www.amazon.com/gp/aw/d/1890350214

Anthony Loeppert
05-28-2012, 07:00 PM
everything is relative and without an agreed upon baseline, a comparison discussion is frutile - now once you get that agreed upon baseline with a IHTBF moment, then true discussion can commence - of course, YMMV :)

Greg
I am interested in this baseline myself.

http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showthread.php?t=21347

lbb
05-28-2012, 07:44 PM
The specific claim has been made that O-Sensei quoted classic concepts from Chinese martial arts extensively.

This claim is either true or false, isn't it? Is there any room here for how "I feel" about the matter?

If the claim is true, surely it has implications about the art we practice. Either it's based on principles which go all the way back to the Chinese or it's not. Is there any room for "what I want" in the question?

But couldn't the claim be true and also be a big "so what"? People say all kinds of things; not every statement is of deep significance. Unless you're some kind of fanatic, surely you don't think everything O-Sensei ever said was intended as some "here's the eternal truth" statement. And, if you accept that (and I know that many don't), surely the guy was allowed a tossoff remark now and again that just didn't mean that much. Maybe, if we really want to know the truth of history, we need to consider the context of historical figures' statements before assigning importance to them.

Chris Li
05-28-2012, 08:25 PM
I did not imply that Dan Harden was a beginner. I am not familiar with Aikido-L. I expressed my surprise to find someone, that I had not heard of before, not only to researching the same things as I had, but claiming that he completely understood it.

The way things are presented by him and students of him like you, suggests at the least that you claim or think that Dan Harden is the only one researching this and or the only one who got it (where have I heard that before). I tried to point out that that is not the case. A bit more openness would reach more people than being so adamant.

Neither Dan nor I have ever said that he was the only one - but he is one of the more accessible at the moment. We just had Sam Chin out in Hawaii (http://www.aikidosangenkai.org/zenphoto/sam-chin-sifu-in-hawaii-2012/), and I'd recommend him absolutely as well, he gets to Europe quite a bit.

My point is that Dan is not recently arrived on the scene, nor have these discussions, they've been going on in public forums for a number of years.


The way you present your findings show the same pattern. As if none of these subjects could not be found elsewhere, while there is a pile of books written on Shinto by people with more academic expertise then you have shown us. This would still be fine in my book if your interpretations and suggestions were not used as facts in different threads. "Facts" that are meant to support the position of Dan Harden as the only person that got the message of O Sensei.
That I call a hidden agenda.

I'm not an academic - and it really doesn't have that much to do with Shinto. I don't represent anything anywhere as "fact", it's all my own opinion (although I show where it comes from). There is no secret organization with a hidden agenda. There's no non-secret organization either - just Dan and people who are friends with Dan and like training with him.

Dude - it's a blog, not a little red book.


You stated that you dismissed the shihan that you have met in Japan. You stated in an response of one of my posts that you dismissed Hikitsuchi sensei as having an understanding of O Sensei's teaching. That must mean that you think that you have an expertise on this matter that is well beyond that of these shihan. Otherwise I would call such an assumption arrogance or misguidedness. I did not judge your experiences, but I am disagreeing with this kind of attitude.

As far as I am aware I have given you plenty of clarifications in every response. But at times you are trying to press me in a direction that I do not want to go to, I will not be used for your hidden agenda.

Tom

Well, for example, when the pro baseball players came to visit Morihei Ueshiba, baseball had to be explained to him. So yes, there are always going to be things that I understand better than another person, regardless of that persons expertise in any particular area. We also have the benefit and perspective of seeing the effects (and lack of effects) of Morihei Ueshiba's transmission over three and four generation to large numbers of students.

And after more than 30 years in Aikido I think that giving an opinion on other people's Aikido is far from unreasonable.

I think that it would be a dangerous world if we just assumed that everybody with more experience or knowledge is automatically correct in everything.

There is no secret agenda - even if there were, what would it be?

Best,

Chris

gregstec
05-28-2012, 09:16 PM
Pretty thorough analysis - however, from my viewpoint, everything is relative and without an agreed upon baseline, a comparison discussion is frutile - now once you get that agreed upon baseline with a IHTBF moment, then true discussion can commence - of course, YMMV :)

Greg

Futile - (hate spell checkers :()

Chris Parkerson
05-28-2012, 09:47 PM
Chris Li,

You say, "There is no secret agenda - even if there were, what would it be?"

That is an eye opening statement. So many discussions begin with a wide variety of subjects. And from that base, it feels like a large amount of them end up about IS/IT.

When I began meditating with the TNH crowd, it appeared that many sangha leaders and dharma teachers were learning Tai Chi as taught by one specific man. His teaching happened in seminar so all of a sudden sanghas were doing Tai Chi like a dance. I observed myself becoming judgmental. Then I became grateful. Most of these folks had been divorced from their bodies by a religious culture that was deeply influenced by Puritan and manichean dualism. They were reconnecting at a pace that made their practice valuable.

John Clodig, my Yanagi teacher had me accompany him for several years teaching "Key Moves" to police, fire, water works, university science departments, zoo keepers and hotel staff in order to reduce repetitive stress injuries by becoming more efficient in handling non-human objects. We used a curriculum of internal principles and applied them to CAL OSHA projects. What we did was a great help to others.

These are agendas that use the art outside of "fighting". I experience many of these back-and-forth bickering to really be about a limited agenda - that of aikido as martial prowess; something several folks seem to be reacting to because they have different agendas or different levels within which they hope to reach.

Just an observation about agenda.

Regards,

Chris

Chris Li
05-28-2012, 09:58 PM
You stated that you dismissed the shihan that you have met in Japan. You stated in an response of one of my posts that you dismissed Hikitsuchi sensei as having an understanding of O Sensei's teaching. That must mean that you think that you have an expertise on this matter that is well beyond that of these shihan. Otherwise I would call such an assumption arrogance or misguidedness. I did not judge your experiences, but I am disagreeing with this kind of attitude.

More about "dismissing"...

If you've read the "Profiles of the Founder (http://www.aikidosangenkai.org/blog/archive/2012-04-29/morihei-ueshiba-profiles-of-the-founder)" post you'll see my basic thinking on this point:

Now, am I saying that nobody got what O-Sensei was doing? Yes and no, it's not quite that simple.

Every direct student of the Founder that I've met (and I've met quite a few) seems to have gotten something from the Founder - some a little, and some a lot.

Virtually without exception, however, these students got what they got by the feel of working directly with the Founder, hand to hand. Because of this, those that got what they got seem to share an inability to comprehend exactly what it is that they got, how to explain it, and how to pass it on in turn to their students.

The results, a gradual and steady degradation of skill, ability and knowledge, are plain to see now that there are four or five of teachers descending from the Founder, for those who are honest enough to admit it.


That's not the same, IMO, as "dismissing" all of Ueshiba's students.

Best,

Chris

graham christian
05-28-2012, 10:44 PM
Hello Condrad
I would like to point out that I am one...count them...one, of a list of people who both do and teach this stuff.
1. This is not about me.
2. We have not rediscovered anything. It is as old as the hills
3. What we state is that it is all but gone from aikido and other arts, and those that have some or most of it, are not doing a good job of teaching it.

Those are some very different points than what you portray.

One last critical set of questions that always...and I mean always fails to be mentioned in these counter arguments.
4. Why is it that all who feel it...want to train it?
This includes an incredible list of Shihan, Menkyo and Senior teachers?
Why Conrad?
5. Why has Four top world famous Japanese shihans sign off and approved of it after seeing what it is doing to their student/shihan teachers
Why?
6. Why has every....single.... one....of you failed against it and that is not acknowledged?
7. And why is that fact...never brought up? It's been stated often enough. I'm just curious.
Thoughts?

Cheers
Dan

You don't have to reply to me but as I am usually put as someone who counter argues about I/P then those 'critical questions befuddle me as well as the first three points, well especially 2 and 3.

If you (3) 'plural' state it is all but gone from Aikido and other arts then it appears to me you must have rediscovered it in order to put it back in. Thus 2 don't make sense. On reintroducing it it would then allow others to rediscover it also. Mmmmm. maybe it's a language thing.

4) All??? I doubt it.

5) The answers quite obvious, they found it useful for them. I'd like to ask them myself though for I would ask for their particular reasons and how it fits into Aikido for them and where it doesn't.

6) Not true. In fact impossible.

7) Because it's not a fact and could never be.

There you are, I've now brought it up.

Note that even what I say there doesn't make me against I/P. I just disagree with certain over exaggerated statements.

Peace.G.

hughrbeyer
05-28-2012, 11:03 PM
Picking up a few dropped stitches from this fast-moving thread...

But couldn't the claim be true and also be a big "so what"? People say all kinds of things; not every statement is of deep significance. Unless you're some kind of fanatic, surely you don't think everything O-Sensei ever said was intended as some "here's the eternal truth" statement. And, if you accept that (and I know that many don't), surely the guy was allowed a tossoff remark now and again that just didn't mean that much. Maybe, if we really want to know the truth of history, we need to consider the context of historical figures' statements before assigning importance to them.

But part of the base argument is not just what he said, but where and when he said it. The translations of his only written training manual. Hardly likely to an offhand remark, surely? The doka. Suggest to a poet that any line--or word--in their poem is just tossed off, doesn't mean that much. Then duck. His students come to him and ask, "Why can't we do what we do?" A challenge within the Japanese teacher/student relationship. In that culture, this is the moment when the teacher is challenged to crystallize their teaching. And he says, "You don't understand in-yo ho."

No, these sayings were the moments when O-Sensei was trying to teach. They weren't offhand remarks.

Chris Parkerson
05-28-2012, 11:08 PM
Dismissing sounds good. Perhaps there is also a desire to "protect" young and some not-so-young students whom you believe are being instructed in an heretical or heterodox manner.

Could this be the agenda?

Could it be one you and others have appropriated without allowing the agency of the other folks to ask you for such "protection"? Could this be the core source of all the heated discussion?

Just some thoughts.

Namaste,

Chris

graham christian
05-28-2012, 11:09 PM
Chris Li,

You say, "There is no secret agenda - even if there were, what would it be?"

That is an eye opening statement. So many discussions begin with a wide variety of subjects. And from that base, it feels like a large amount of them end up about IS/IT.

When I began meditating with the TNH crowd, it appeared that many sangha leaders and dharma teachers were learning Tai Chi as taught by one specific man. His teaching happened in seminar so all of a sudden sanghas were doing Tai Chi like a dance. I observed myself becoming judgmental. Then I became grateful. Most of these folks had been divorced from their bodies by a religious culture that was deeply influenced by Puritan and manichean dualism. They were reconnecting at a pace that made their practice valuable.

John Clodig, my Yanagi teacher had me accompany him for several years teaching "Key Moves" to police, fire, water works, university science departments, zoo keepers and hotel staff in order to reduce repetitive stress injuries by becoming more efficient in handling non-human objects. We used a curriculum of internal principles and applied them to CAL OSHA projects. What we did was a great help to others.

These are agendas that use the art outside of "fighting". I experience many of these back-and-forth bickering to really be about a limited agenda - that of aikido as martial prowess; something several folks seem to be reacting to because they have different agendas or different levels within which they hope to reach.

Just an observation about agenda.

Regards,

Chris

Interesting point Chris.
It would in fact be a good exercise for people to inspect what their agenda is rather than say they don't have one. Maybe some have too much significance on the word.

I also note you mention shamanic practices. Now that's getting more spiritual I must say. It could also equate quite well with Ueshiba's type of Shinto.

In fact my partner in crime Aikido wise, who has trained with me for over thirty years is a qualified shamanic osteopath. All fascinating stuff. We ended up teaching those people too for a year.

Another interesting point you make about the spiritual folk who then started practicing tai chi. I find this type of situation often to be true where spiritual are quite divorced from the 'body' so to speak or to be more blatant from the reality of what they have learned.

I find it in those who do reiki or even forms of ki atsu, yoga, meditations of different kinds, even tai chi etc. Not all, but many. I tend to break up religions and spiritual practices now into two camps. Let's say religious philosophy and rites and rituals as one camp and religious practice as the other. Same for spiritual pursuits.

Peace.G.

hughrbeyer
05-28-2012, 11:12 PM
...Conclusion: Anyone who hasn't travelled to the south pole, met the leprechaun and seen the most beautiful thing in the world can have no insight or knowledge into beauty and cannot make any evidence-based judgements or hold any rational opinions on the subject. I will hereafter refer to this conclusion as "You have to go to the south pole and meet the leprechaun" (YHTGTTSPAMTL for short)

I'm quite a fan of YHTGTTSPAMTL, almost as much as the Invisible Pink Unicorn which made a big appearance on the religion listservs a while back.

But extend your example. So agreed, YHTGTTSPAMTL is stupid, but some pigheaded martial arts heavyweight (you know who you are) is stubborn enough to actually go to the south pole, and he comes back and says, oh my god, there actually is a leprechaun and YHTGTTSPAMTL!

And some people who know him go and come back shaking their heads saying, YHTGTTSPAMTL.

And some very high-up guys say, "This is ridiculous. We'll put an end to it." And they come back and don't say anything until the third or fourth beer, at which they can be heard to mumble, "yhtgttspamtl."

The fallacy of calling it a circular argument is that you are assuming you're operating in the closed universe of logical reasoning. You're not. You're operating in the open universe of empirical experience. In that world, there's only a limited amount of denying experience which is consistent with sanity.

Chris Parkerson
05-28-2012, 11:23 PM
Picking up a few dropped stitches from this fast-moving thread...

But part of the base argument is not just what he said, but where and when he said it. The translations of his only written training manual. Hardly likely to an offhand remark, surely? The doka. Suggest to a poet that any line--or word--in their poem is just tossed off, doesn't mean that much. Then duck. His students come to him and ask, "Why can't we do what we do?" A challenge within the Japanese teacher/student relationship. In that culture, this is the moment when the teacher is challenged to crystallize their teaching. And he says, "You don't understand in-yo ho."

No, these sayings were the moments when O-Sensei was trying to teach. They weren't offhand remarks.

This whole thing so reminds me of the first and second century of Christian formation. The original followers of "The Way" did not have a creed of belief at first. A rich variety of theological views thrived (Gospel of Thomas, Epistle of Barnabas). Once a big geographical expansion occurs (After Pentechost) and the original apostles begin dying out, apostolic succession becomes very important (1st Clement; The Gospel of Mary Magdelene) and then those who take charge create creeds, not so much to proscribe outsiders, rather, to fence out fellow Christians who's views were different (Tertullian, Nicea, Chalcedon)

These last few years of watching the debates has been an amazing one.

Gratitude,

Chris

hughrbeyer
05-28-2012, 11:35 PM
Graham, you've made a bunch of points recently which I agree with--particularly in the post about judgement--so I thought I'd celebrate by arguing with you.

We could also go back to doing various I/P things and thinking you got it and yet not having a clue about the spiritual.

Absolutely. The IS/IP skills have nothing directly to do with the spiritual aspects of Aikido. (Except, perhaps, that "HULK SMASH!" is not good budo.)

Two different things which combine. Specialists in I/P do not necessarily have the in depth knowledge or ability of spiritual aspects.

Yes indeedy.

If spiritual equals ineffective then it merely shows me the person with such belief has no reality on the real spiritual.

Speaking on behalf of the entire IS/IP community, I declare no one would say that spiritual equals ineffective. Mostly because we'd be too busy arguing your terms, but never mind.

The real spiritual does not put down I/P either but knows the difference. In fact contrary to some's belief it can be that I/p can be found to be not very effective by some who know the spiritual aspects well.

Oh crud, you were doing so well. This is where I think your argument runs off the rails. If you want to declare your aikido has leads to better spiritual growth than pursuing IS skills, that would be one thing. If you want to say it's more "effective"--I'm assuming martially effective, because that's the only interpretation which makes sense--then you're making a very serious claim which others are fully justified in challenging. And which you can only support by showing it in person.

On the other hand, I don't disagree with you on the subject of the spiritual dimension of O-Sensei's Aikido. I think it's clear that was important to him and an important part of his message--and an important part of what attracts people to Aikido. When he called in an "Art of Peace"--in post-war Japan--I think it was a clear and heartfelt ambition.

What I don't agree with is the idea that being focused on peace means that we all make nice. The Art of Peace is the art of the sword--as when Jesus said, "I come not to bring peace, but a sword." It's the sword that cuts through the lies and delusions, through the layers of appeasement, through the hypocrisy and politics and make-nice. It cuts through to the center, to the knot that keeps everyone bound--and it doesn't stop to untie it, but simply cuts it apart. That clarity of vision and singleness of action is, IMHO, the true budo. And it's what, at best, I think we should be trying to practice on the mat.

It's all good.

It is not. What does that even mean, anyway? The current situation in Syria is good? Global warming is good? Circular arguments on AikiWeb are good? It's feel-good noise.

hughrbeyer
05-28-2012, 11:37 PM
This whole thing so reminds me of the first and second century of Christian formation. The original followers of "The Way" did not have a creed of belief at first. A rich variety of theological views thrived (Gospel of Thomas, Epistle of Barnabas). Once a big geographical expansion occurs (After Pentechost) and the original apostles begin dying out, apostolic succession becomes very important (1st Clement; The Gospel of Mary Magdelene) and then those who take charge create creeds, not so much to proscribe outsiders, rather, to fence out fellow Christians who's views were different (Tertullian, Nicea, Chalcedon)

Oh, Chris, come on. We're talking about what the man himself said about his own art. There's no comparison with random documents written by unknowns over a century after Jesus' death.

graham christian
05-28-2012, 11:44 PM
Dismissing sounds good. Perhaps there is also a desire to "protect" young and some not-so-young students whom you believe are being instructed in an heretical or heterodox manner.

Could this be the agenda?

Could it be one you and others have appropriated without allowing the agency of the other folks to ask you for such "protection"? Could this be the core source of all the heated discussion?

Just some thoughts.

Namaste,

Chris

Could be close.
As I said everyone has agendas. Agendas are not a bad thing of themselves. Been on this forum a couple of years now Chris and watched the 'agenda' scenes and scenarios. There's one in particular I like.

My view on Ueshiba and how he taught is from the view that he was spiritual and it showed in his teaching. At the hombu dojo in the early days and still up to now every teacher was allowed to teach his own particular style of what Ueshiba taught them. They even then went out and formed their own set ups of their particular brand. Ueshiba seemed to actively encourage this. Very spiritual and very organic.

Meanwhile those who wanted to teach still in the official organization be it at home or abroad came under the Aikikai or affiliations. Even now the attitude of Doshu is one of let it develop. In other words the teachers across the world in the Aikikai have quite a bit of freedom as to how they teach. Thus allowed to a great extent to develop their own way, to make it theirs.

Now here's the funny thing. Those who are always griping about the hombu and complaining about it and even accusing sometimes of hidden agendas remind me only of politics where an extreme party has the freedom of speech only to then get in power and ban freedom of speech. I often wonder 'why bite the hand that feeds you?' Thus I can only assume agendas.

I t also reminds me of a crowd of guys in ladbroke grove coming down to a pub angry about another crowd who had made the pub their kind of base or local. They were angry because they considered these others less entitled as they were not originally from that area. It was war time.

I couldn't help laughing especially as I knew both sets of people. Laughing at the stupidity. I took a couple of the leaders aside and listened to their argument then pointed out a simple truth. Your area, many pubs. You don't like this one or the peolple in it then go to one of the many others. What's the problem?

It was amazing, it was like they had never considered it or looked at it that way. Harmony restored.

Agendas, even hidden from self, cause griping and complaining. Don't like somewhere, then leave, what's the problem? Otherwise you are merely the enemy within.

Peace.G.

Chris Parkerson
05-28-2012, 11:50 PM
Interesting point Chris.
It would in fact be a good exercise for people to inspect what their agenda is rather than say they don't have one. Maybe some have too much significance on the word.

I also note you mention shamanic practices. Now that's getting more spiritual I must say. It could also equate quite well with Ueshiba's type of Shinto.

In fact my partner in crime Aikido wise, who has trained with me for over thirty years is a qualified shamanic osteopath. All fascinating stuff. We ended up teaching those people too for a year.

Another interesting point you make about the spiritual folk who then started practicing tai chi. I find this type of situation often to be true where spiritual are quite divorced from the 'body' so to speak or to be more blatant from the reality of what they have learned.

I find it in those who do reiki or even forms of ki atsu, yoga, meditations of different kinds, even tai chi etc. Not all, but many. I tend to break up religions and spiritual practices now into two camps. Let's say religious philosophy and rites and rituals as one camp and religious practice as the other. Same for spiritual pursuits.

Peace.G.

It has been my experience to note that most religions are male dominated and ruled. Thus, a male mindset and attitudes predominate. Even the idea of the cross was not the original Christian sign. It was a fish. Later, once Christians began joining the Roman military, crosses appeared, likely as a sublime influence from Mithras Cult that was popular in military (Male only) ranks. And they loved blood letting on bulls....

I literally danced when one female asked Ken Wilbur, "What would Buddhism be like if the Buddha was female?" He first says it would probably not be consumed with quietly staring at walls, extreme body molification and developing equanimity. Instead, he drew from the female Christian mystics saying they would likely be kissing the puss-filled degenerating bodies of lepers, searching for the ultimate in selfless love. Well, that is definitely being in the body.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0IMxgUZJ4tA&feature=results_video&playnext=1&list=PL6003D5BC33C90F6A

Another good resource:

Therevadic Aesthetic Aloofness OR Non-dual Suchness? A good lecture.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NCiesXus7cg

In the world today, a feminine energy is covering us like a tsunami. Andrew Harvey's Book "Return of the Mother" covers this event very well from Jesus to Ramakrishna, and Aurobindo.
http://www.amazon.com/The-Return-Mother-Andrew-Harvey/dp/1585420735

graham christian
05-29-2012, 12:13 AM
Graham, you've made a bunch of points recently which I agree with--particularly in the post about judgement--so I thought I'd celebrate by arguing with you.

Absolutely. The IS/IP skills have nothing directly to do with the spiritual aspects of Aikido. (Except, perhaps, that "HULK SMASH!" is not good budo.)

Yes indeedy.

Speaking on behalf of the entire IS/IP community, I declare no one would say that spiritual equals ineffective. Mostly because we'd be too busy arguing your terms, but never mind.

Oh crud, you were doing so well. This is where I think your argument runs off the rails. If you want to declare your aikido has leads to better spiritual growth than pursuing IS skills, that would be one thing. If you want to say it's more "effective"--I'm assuming martially effective, because that's the only interpretation which makes sense--then you're making a very serious claim which others are fully justified in challenging. And which you can only support by showing it in person.

On the other hand, I don't disagree with you on the subject of the spiritual dimension of O-Sensei's Aikido. I think it's clear that was important to him and an important part of his message--and an important part of what attracts people to Aikido. When he called in an "Art of Peace"--in post-war Japan--I think it was a clear and heartfelt ambition.

What I don't agree with is the idea that being focused on peace means that we all make nice. The Art of Peace is the art of the sword--as when Jesus said, "I come not to bring peace, but a sword." It's the sword that cuts through the lies and delusions, through the layers of appeasement, through the hypocrisy and politics and make-nice. It cuts through to the center, to the knot that keeps everyone bound--and it doesn't stop to untie it, but simply cuts it apart. That clarity of vision and singleness of action is, IMHO, the true budo. And it's what, at best, I think we should be trying to practice on the mat.

It is not. What does that even mean, anyway? The current situation in Syria is good? Global warming is good? Circular arguments on AikiWeb are good? It's feel-good noise.

Brilliant. I commend you. Ha, ha.

Shame about the oh crud bit though.

I do say it is effective martially and always have. Therefor it is effective 'against' I/P. and physical. It's seen by you as an argument , fair enough. It's not an argument from my perspective.

It's not 'serious' either, it's natural. I'm never or hardly ever serious. It doesn't equal challenge either unless you think martial arts is some kind of cowboy thing. I don't accept challenges any more. Been there, done that, waste of time. It's an ego thing.

That doesn't mean I can't teach most anyone. Two different things.

I'm glad you don't agree with the art of peace means we all make 'nice'. Nor do I. Harmony is different to nice. That's pretty much how I teach the sword too. True budo? Couldn't agree more. What we should at best be practicing on the mat? Indeed.

So as they say in the advert whassssssup? I agree. It's only your false view of spiritual which leads you to assume I do different.

It's all good means I understand where you are coming from and where others are coming from and where I am coming from and with that understanding and acceptance it's all good. Debating without slandering each other or our mothers, it's all good. Look for the good and you'll begin to like it.

Peace.G.

Chris Parkerson
05-29-2012, 12:22 AM
Oh, Chris, come on. We're talking about what the man himself said about his own art. There's no comparison with random documents written by unknowns over a century after Jesus' death.

The gospel of Thomas is early source. The Hebrew disciples saw Jesus as the Liberator from Rome and Caesar..... The bringer of Shalom in the here and now upon earth.
The Greek mind saw Jesus as Christ (some neo-platonic ideal that Homer, Plato and Aristotle had prepared the way for the logos.) the Gnostics saw Christos and logos as the archetype for everyone realizing the Christ within.

So we have 3 perspectives of the event of Morehei Urshiba: first are the rough house boys who say Aikido is a martial art, others say the founder used the art to express his spiritual teachings, and others say, hey, I like the yoga of rolling and falling. It puts me into my body.

Chris Li
05-29-2012, 12:23 AM
My view on Ueshiba and how he taught is from the view that he was spiritual and it showed in his teaching. At the hombu dojo in the early days and still up to now every teacher was allowed to teach his own particular style of what Ueshiba taught them. They even then went out and formed their own set ups of their particular brand. Ueshiba seemed to actively encourage this. Very spiritual and very organic.

Not true, even in the past, even less true now. Koichi Tohei is the most obvious (and public) example of this, but I personally know people that were not permitted to teach certain things while they were at hombu. The younger generation of instructors is increasingly homogenous.

Best,

Chris

graham christian
05-29-2012, 12:41 AM
Not true, even in the past, even less true now. Koichi Tohei is the most obvious (and public) example of this, but I personally know people that were not permitted to teach certain things while they were at hombu. The younger generation of instructors is increasingly homogenous.

Best,

Chris

What do you mean not true? All the various well known styles and associations were formed by his direct students. Tohei is hardly an example against what I said. Ueshiba was not against him teaching how he taught.

Of course there would be some things that wouldn't be allowed. As I said, if you don't like it leave. There is however quite a bit of leeway. That should be respected and honoured I would say by those in the organization. Strikes me some don't know how lucky they are.

The overall tone I hear is 'oh it's not like it used to be, oh it's getting worse. ohhhhhh.' I never knew budo people could make such good whingers. Seems a bit of a contradiction to me.

Peace.G.

Chris Li
05-29-2012, 01:16 AM
What do you mean not true? All the various well known styles and associations were formed by his direct students. Tohei is hardly an example against what I said. Ueshiba was not against him teaching how he taught.

Of course there would be some things that wouldn't be allowed. As I said, if you don't like it leave. There is however quite a bit of leeway. That should be respected and honoured I would say by those in the organization. Strikes me some don't know how lucky they are.

The overall tone I hear is 'oh it's not like it used to be, oh it's getting worse. ohhhhhh.' I never knew budo people could make such good whingers. Seems a bit of a contradiction to me.

Peace.G.

I was talking about the "teaching at hombu" part:

At the hombu dojo in the early days and still up to now every teacher was allowed to teach his own particular style of what Ueshiba taught them.

I've spent a lot of time there over the years, and I've trained with most of the main characters, and that's really not the case - even when Morihei was alive.

Notice that I didn't say that things had gotten better or worse - I just said "increasingly homogenous".

Best,

Chris

Alec Corper
05-29-2012, 02:42 AM
This thread does it for me, I'm convinced it is a waste of time and energy to talk and talk with people who either don't, won't or can't step out of their comfort zones.That's my last post here. bye bye

gregstec
05-29-2012, 07:16 AM
Hi Greg,

I loved the quote underneath your name:

"The external martial arts are based on the energy of movement, whereas the internal martial arts are based on the movement of energy" Warriors of Stillness.
Does this movement of energy, from your experience, extend into shamanic power as well.
Perhaps what I have heard Chinese call "foo"; or Bon practices of binding and releasing energies
as did Abaris (contemporary of Pythagoras)?

A Story Waiting to Pierce You: Mongolia, Tibet and the Destiny of the Western World (Paperback)
By: Peter Kingsley

See: http://www.amazon.com/gp/aw/d/1890350214

I would not know anything about shamanic power - all I can say is that all power is fueled by some form of energy....

Greg

gregstec
05-29-2012, 07:40 AM
This thread does it for me, I'm convinced it is a waste of time and energy to talk and talk with people who either don't, won't or can't step out of their comfort zones.That's my last post here. bye bye

Well, what did you expect with a topic called Spiritual and I/P :crazy:

Neither is a prerequisite of the other and neither will lead to the other. I really cannot think of any other two things that have more diverse viewpoints than these two - mixing them in one thread just could not lead to any logical or conclusive ending :)

Greg

graham christian
05-29-2012, 07:57 AM
Well, what did you expect with a topic called Spiritual and I/P :crazy:

Neither is a prerequisite of the other and neither will lead to the other. I really cannot think of any other two things that have more diverse viewpoints than these two - mixing them in one thread just could not lead to any logical or conclusive ending :)

Greg

Ahem.......Don't you mean separating them in one thread? They are not opposites you know so I'm sure you can think of more diverse things.

Come to think of it, one day I'll do a write-up on the two. (I don't mean on here) This write up will be quite brief and divided into three sections.

1) Things in the two which are the same.
2) Things in the two which are similar.
3)Things in the two which are different.

Your comment has inspired me. Nice.

Peace.G.

David Orange
05-29-2012, 08:22 AM
Instead of telling me why I'm wrong or how my view is invalid, I think folks would do better to simply offer their sense of things and move on. We cannot escape the mind's task of judging the world around us; it does that whether we're aware of it or not, but we can show each other that we respect the fact that we cannot see into each other's world, even if in fact we're 100% correct about our assumptions.

Matt, the problem here is that so many people read this site and gather ideas on which they build "understandings" about aikido and budo in general.

Is it really correct to allow utterly inexperienced "teachers" to put out goofy claims without challenge?

I thought Ellis Amdur's article on Watanabe Sensei, of aikikai, was a good example of pointing out baloney. And if it is okay (even vital) to address the serious error of someone on that level, why should we pretend that all "points of view" stated here are equal?

Graham loves to talk about "real" aikido and "spiritual" aikido day and night, but the one time he had the opportunity to get to the real root of the art, being in the same room with Gozo Shioda, neither he nor his teacher actually stepped onto the mat. From what Graham has written, they never even touched Shioda Sensei to shake his hand. So Graham never experienced the mysterious power described by Robert Mustard and Ellis Amdur in the "It Had to be Felt" thread. Instead, he is informed by contact with "plenty" of people doing "internal stuff." And even though he did meet Mark Freeman, who advised us that Graham is "no Dan Harden," Graham continues to pat himself on the back and play his crumhorn of superior knowledge and understanding, telling us he understands Ueshiba's way far better than any of us who trained with Ueshiba's direct students and uchi deshi.

This forum already serves as an international repository of knowledge of aikido and will, in the future, provide "historical" reference on the art.

It is important for current and future readers to see that people with much experience in aikido and other Japanese martial arts always call baloney on people who speak so confidently about aikido without ever having dipped more than a toe or two in the water.

You say, "we can show each other that we respect the fact that we cannot see into each other's world, even if in fact we're 100% correct about our assumptions," but we're not working with assumptions: Graham has opened his "world" wide and pushed it on us as "real" and "spiritual" and even as "aikido." We didn't go and seek him out to attack. He put on his rasta hat, filmed himself doing what he does and teaching what he teaches and invited comment. He might as well have put his foot in a fire-ant bed and asked what they thought of his hakama. He shouldn't then get upset by the intense response he gets from the ants.

I think of a guy very thoughtfully chewing up one of those plastic displays from the front window of a Japanese restaurant and pretending to appreciate the delicate pleasures of eating sushi.

Best to you.

David

Mary Eastland
05-29-2012, 08:41 AM
The problem is that there is no problem. Part of Aikido training is not blaming others for our actions. Your reasoning, David, is like blaming a woman wearing a skirt for being raped. Our responses and actions reflect on those who make them not on those who supposedly provoke them.

Inner power is defined differently for different people. I think it is a combination and blending of the 2 extremes of the 2 camps that appear on this thread. The spirituality comes from the humility of taking responsibility and letting others be on their own path.

Early on I read that Jun asked us not to get into a discussion about who was better than others.

On another note: when the 220 man pushes against you is your stance natural or in hamni?

From the Dalia Lama this morning: The many factors which divide us are actually much more superficial than those we share.

DH
05-29-2012, 08:52 AM
Alec Corper wrote:
This thread does it for me, I'm convinced it is a waste of time and energy to talk and talk with people who either don't, won't or can't step out of their comfort zones.That's my last post here. bye bye
Well, what did you expect with a topic called Spiritual and I/P :crazy:

Neither is a prerequisite of the other and neither will lead to the other. I really cannot think of any other two things that have more diverse viewpoints than these two - mixing them in one thread just could not lead to any logical or conclusive ending :)

Greg
That's unfortunate. I for one am going to try and change his mind. Three or four people don't make a forum. If I had caved, while fighting the tide of ignorance over this extremely important, even vital work, none of the teachers would have ever met me.
Alec has very worthwhile opinions and viewpoints from very broad experience. Interestingly, those embracing this work are typically people with several decades of experience in and out of Japan and China. In one sense most of the detractors don't even come close to their level of comparative ability and judgement.

Don't give up so quickly Alec. Contrary to all the unsupported hubris and huff and puff that continues to fall apart in person...not all opinions it turns out...really are equal.
Try to adopt an informative mindset as opposed to a debate mindset. I don't come on these forums anymore thinking I am debating with my equals (in skill level only of course, not as people). A wise Master Class teacher when asked why he doesn't talk on forums, looked up bemused and said. "Why argue....with students."

Of these detractors-who can stand on a mat and be tested this way?
Not a single one of them.
And Alec? They know it.
So don't take it so seriously. Remember you are talking to thousands of readers, far past a handful who will oppose you no matter what you say. Look at me. I am being asked to come to Japan and teach friends of doshu and go to China...and I am arguing with some sandan on a forum?

These seminars with me and others are all booked for a simple reason. Their stuff simply doesn't work. Ours does. How many are thrilled to see that they had wasted decades in the wrong direction? Do you think their happy about that?

The art is finally moving forward and gaining power. So, does it really matter what they say? In time...if they are not doing this type of work, they will be sidelined as not doing Aikido.. as they simply will not be able to hide it. They won't be able to stand on a mat and function with those who do.
Look ahead Alec.

Greg
On the one hand I agree, except that a lot of this work was tied to the spiritual aspects....in VERY physical ways.
Cheers
Dan

lbb
05-29-2012, 09:00 AM
"Nobody wants to be, Chevy!"

Bonus points to those who get the reference.

mrlizard123
05-29-2012, 09:05 AM
Your reasoning, David, is like blaming a woman wearing a skirt for being raped.

This is not a logical analogy but rather an appeal to emotion.

If someone had jumped Graham in the street and beaten him with a bat and David was condoning it using the argument that Graham considered his art to be effective so was "asking for it" then the analogy would hold; he's not, he's merely stating his viewpoint on the nature of Graham's presented views.

People are welcome to assert whatever they like, including that anothers assertions are a load of rubbish.

One should be prepared to justify/support/defend their opinions or should consider keeping them to themselves if responses upset them.

Chris Parkerson
05-29-2012, 09:18 AM
Dan And other's

I am pretty sure Tertullian acted upon the same passion. 
http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tertullian

The issue centered upon "who's in charge of this thing", "how do we maintain the branding?"
And "How do we keep quality control?"

The irony is that in his attempt to guide the organization, he comes into direct conflict with Origen and essentially sews the seeds that divides the church between Rome and the East. And the Gnostics? They continued their practices by going into hiding much like the first Christians did. Their ideas did not change, for, a man convinced against his will is of the same opinion still.

Their stance, as stated by another mystic medeival female Christian, (Theresa of Avilla) would be "Oh Lord, protect me from your followers".

History will repeat itself, I am pretty sure.

Namaste,

Chris

lbb
05-29-2012, 09:22 AM
Matt, the problem here is that so many people read this site and gather ideas on which they build "understandings" about aikido and budo in general.

Is it really correct to allow utterly inexperienced "teachers" to put out goofy claims without challenge?

"Correct"? I don't think that word really applies here. Sure, if someone says something that you consider "goofy", you're entitled to challenge that if you want. But that's your choice; it's not some kind of imperative. Ultimately, you don't control the dialogue; you can't control the access to information of all these people you're talking about. You can't prevent them from reading ideas that you consider "goofy", and you can't control their minds and prevent them from drawing conclusions from what they read that you consider equally "goofy".

You'll never get consensus; you'll never eliminate the goofy. You'll never eliminate the problem of bad information and silly notions. You may view it as your personal life mission to challenge the "goofy" wherever and whenever you see it. Personally, I view that as counterproductive. I imagine someone new to aikido comes into these forums, takes a brief look at this sound and fury, and forms an equally poor opinion of all the shouters. I see that bad ideas can be put forth persuasively and good ideas can be represented poorly. I don't think you solve the problem you want to solve by making it your mission to participate fully in this neverending call-and-response shouting match.

And really, when you get down to it, it's a rather paternalistic view, that new people who come to this forum need to be guided to the light (or your version of it). People don't have to have an advanced degree in martial arts history to have simple common sense. Someone who knows what bullshit smells like is going to smell it whether it's wearing overalls or a hakama. If your ideas make sense to a newbie, then they'll accept them; if not, if they require a prerequisite understanding of concepts that the newbie doesn't know yet, then where's the ethics in trying to get someone to swallow your brand of the truth hook line and sinker -- even if it's true? "Protect the ignorant from the charlatans" sounds like a good and noble thing, but it's a very slippery slope. Ultimately, I think you do more good by making information available (not spamming it into every thread on a forum) and then stepping back, showing some respect for the people you want to protect, and letting them figure it out for themselves.

gregstec
05-29-2012, 09:26 AM
Ahem.......Don't you mean separating them in one thread? They are not opposites you know so I'm sure you can think of more diverse things.

Come to think of it, one day I'll do a write-up on the two. (I don't mean on here) This write up will be quite brief and divided into three sections.

1) Things in the two which are the same.
2) Things in the two which are similar.
3)Things in the two which are different.

Your comment has inspired me. Nice.

Peace.G.

The point I was making was that the two do not have a logical relationship and can very easily stand on their own - and, that each of them has very diverse viewpoints, not that they are necessarily diverse in themselves, but I guess they could be depending on the individual. How's that for straightforward :)

Greg

lbb
05-29-2012, 09:28 AM
Inner power is defined differently for different people. I think it is a combination and blending of the 2 extremes of the 2 camps that appear on this thread. The spirituality comes from the humility of taking responsibility and letting others be on their own path.[/I]

I believe that Dan et. al. are using "internal (not inner) power" to refer to a set of musculoskeletal causes and effects, that has little or nothing to do with one's mental or spiritual state. I could be wrong about that, so hopefully they will correct me if I am -- but I don't think they've claimed the term "inner power", and I'm pretty sure they haven't claimed any spiritual component as such.

mrlizard123
05-29-2012, 09:30 AM
Ultimately, I think you do more good by making information available (not spamming it into every thread on a forum) and then stepping back, showing some respect for the people you want to protect, and letting them figure it out for themselves.

I would like to think this would be true but the reality (IMO), from my understanding of forums, is that newcomers only read the most recent posts and don't really take the time to read through.

They get the impression from the surface; hence all the repeat posts on the same topics "I like the idea/philosophy/etc of aikido but will it work in street/octagon/space?" etc.

There is no easy solution, but I think not saying anything runs the risk of allowing the signal to noise ratio to creep in the wrong direction until finally no one can see the woods for the trees.

I don't see an effective solution; other than just not caring about anyone else's views, including all the people who may be forming them as opposed to holding on to them which doesn't appeal greatly either.

gregstec
05-29-2012, 09:39 AM
That's unfortunate. I for one am going to try and change his mind. Three or four people don't make a forum. If I had caved, while fighting the tide of ignorance over this extremely important, even vital work, none of the teachers would have ever met me.
Alec has very worthwhile opinions and viewpoints from very broad experience. Interestingly, those embracing this work are typically people with several decades of experience in and out of Japan and China. In one sense most of the detractors don't even come close to their level of comparative ability and judgement.

Don't give up so quickly Alec. Contrary to all the unsupported hubris and huff and puff that continues to fall apart in person...not all opinions it turns out...really are equal.
Try to adopt an informative mindset as opposed to a debate mindset. I don't come on these forums anymore thinking I am debating with my equals (in skill level only of course, not as people). A wise Master Class teacher when asked why he doesn't talk on forums, looked up bemused and said. "Why argue....with students."

Of these detractors-who can stand on a mat and be tested this way?
Not a single one of them.
And Alec? They know it.
So don't take it so seriously. Remember you are talking to thousands of readers, far past a handful who will oppose you no matter what you say. Look at me. I am being asked to come to Japan and teach friends of doshu and go to China...and I am arguing with some sandan on a forum?

These seminars with me and others are all booked for a simple reason. Their stuff simply doesn't work. Ours does. How many are thrilled to see that they had wasted decades in the wrong direction? Do you think their happy about that?

The art is finally moving forward and gaining power. So, does it really matter what they say? In time...if they are not doing this type of work, they will be sidelined as not doing Aikido.. as they simply will not be able to hide it. They won't be able to stand on a mat and function with those who do.
Look ahead Alec.

Greg
On the one hand I agree, except that a lot of this work was tied to the spiritual aspects....in VERY physical ways.
Cheers
Dan

That's true, but maybe that is also where the problem lies in understanding and transmission because of the diversity of the two - IMO, it it not just a simple addition equation of bringing aspects of the two together but more of a logarithmic one where things get multiplied exponentially :)

Greg

Mary Eastland
05-29-2012, 09:47 AM
I think you are right, Mary M. I don't see the 2 as separate but I think others do. Thanks.

gregstec
05-29-2012, 09:47 AM
The point I was making was that the two do not have a logical relationship and can very easily stand on their own - and, that each of them has very diverse viewpoints, not that they are necessarily diverse in themselves, but I guess they could be depending on the individual. How's that for straightforward :)

Greg

meant to say: "Logical dependent relationship..."

Greg

Mary Eastland
05-29-2012, 09:50 AM
This is not a logical analogy but rather an appeal to emotion.

If someone had jumped Graham in the street and beaten him with a bat and David was condoning it using the argument that Graham considered his art to be effective so was "asking for it" then the analogy would hold; he's not, he's merely stating his viewpoint on the nature of Graham's presented views.

People are welcome to assert whatever they like, including that anothers assertions are a load of rubbish.

One should be prepared to justify/support/defend their opinions or should consider keeping them to themselves if responses upset them.

Thanks for the correction, Rich. I have never been accused of being logical. :) I agree with your point. I don't agree that Graham was asking for nastyness when he put his stuff on the net. I do agree that he will get it. But David would not be quite logical saying that Graham caused David's action. Right?

gregstec
05-29-2012, 09:55 AM
I think you are right, Mary M. I don't see the 2 as separate but I think others do. Thanks.

Yes, to many of us inner strength and internal strength are two very different things - however, with that said, IMO, aspects of inner strength can help in development of internal strength/power just like aspects of inner strength can help all endeavors of an individual.

Greg

mrlizard123
05-29-2012, 09:59 AM
Thanks for the correction, Rich. I have never been accused of being logical. :) I agree with your point. I don't agree that Graham was asking for nastyness when he put his stuff on the net. I do agree that he will get it. But David would not be quite logical saying that Graham caused David's action. Right?

No he didn't cause David's post, but we are not discussing cause and effect.

By posting a viewpoint online we are inviting others to read, consider, accept, reject, comment, etc.

Simply because we do not agree with the response does not make it wrong for the person to provide it.

Nastiness is also somewhat subjective and I don't agree that this was/is nastiness; it was phrased frankly without dressing it up, possibly a touch of frustration or exasperation (I can't really speak for David so I'm guessing here...).

DH
05-29-2012, 10:11 AM
Yes, to many of us inner strength and internal strength are two very different things - however, with that said, IMO, aspects of inner strength can help in development of internal strength/power just like aspects of inner strength can help all endeavors of an individual.

Greg

+1
Very true. While they remain important distinctions the Asians knew they intertwined. There are some specific and very logical reasons why that is so.
Dan

Chris Li
05-29-2012, 10:12 AM
I believe that Dan et. al. are using "internal (not inner) power" to refer to a set of musculoskeletal causes and effects, that has little or nothing to do with one's mental or spiritual state. I could be wrong about that, so hopefully they will correct me if I am -- but I don't think they've claimed the term "inner power", and I'm pretty sure they haven't claimed any spiritual component as such.

Of course, there are musculoskeletal causes and effects, but it has everything to do with your mental state. If you believe Ueshiba then it has everything to do with your spiritual state as well...

Best,

Chris

David Orange
05-29-2012, 10:13 AM
Where AikiWeb fails, I think, is when people won't meet and won't shut up. You've every right to voice your opinion--but if you won't back it it up, there's no reason why others have to respect it.

Yeah, the old "put up or shut up" standard. That's the bottom line, isn't it?

In ordinary discussion of most topics, if you make a claim, you can "explain" it or "back it up" with more and more words. But in budo, if you make a claim, you have to demonstrate skill or you look like a fool.

And this is vitally important because budo is directly concerned with the problem of human violence. Some methods are known to work and some work so well that the one who discovers them is loathe to share them lest they be turned against him. Part of budo spirituality is understanding who you can teach something to and who you should not teach under any circumstances. Another part is having the humility to recognize that another person knows something very important that you have no idea about, whatsoever. IP is one of these areas and Graham is an excellent representative of the group that thinks he already knows all he needs. Those who support him, then, are betraying a serious flaw in both intellectual thinking and in spiritual depth. Those who follow him, then, are placing their lives in danger even as they become intellectually mushy and spiritually vacuous.

I think the real essence here is in the matter of ki.

If you really, physically, understand your own ki, the claims of most "ki masters" and many "aikido teachers" become clearly ridiculous. Ki exists and works in the zone between mind and body. It's how the mind accesses the body. When one has too little understanding of the body, his "ki" is in fact only an intellectual abstraction and his statements about ki reflect only his own wishes or his made-up fantasies about something he has not directly experienced. From there, everything goes down the drain, including ki, technique and life, itself. How tragic is it if we allow such people to make bizarre and unfounded claims about ki, technique, aikido and spirituality without lodging protest and clarification? From one false master, thousands of people may absorb and spread the false way. I have no problem seeing it and saying that it is false. You don't have to be the greatest in the world to adhere to the true principles. But if you consistently violate all the fundamental principles of life and the universe, nothing you do can find truth.

The good students, the people who are learning, take the rebuke, think about it, and allow it to change them. The poor students get resentful and close their ears. The choice is yours.

I get "rebuked" almost daily by a ghost and it almost brings me to tears to remember when the man was alive, to understand that what I thought was a "rebuke" and harassment was actually like a pat on the back from an excellent master.

I was at the yoseikan hombu in Shizuoka, in the middle of a randori, almost worn out, doing my best to keep on, when Akira Tezuka passed through and shouted "ORENJI! GAMBARE!" ((Orange! Fight! [or "Try Harder!]))

I felt it as a poke and an unnecessary hassle, criticizing me for not trying hard enough when I was doing my best.

Now I know that Tezuka Sensei was giving me as close as he could (as a shihan) to a compliment and encouragement. It was supposed to be uplifting. He was sending me ki through his kiai and it went right through me.

Tezuka Sensei died a couple of years ago at a fairly young age and I know I'll never see him again, but every now and then I hear that voice barking, "ORENJI! GAMBARE!" and I feel such deep gratitude that it hurts my heart. But it also achieves his desired uplifting effect and I do receive his ki, now, and it helps me along life's path.

It reminds me of something attributed to Yoshida Kotaro: in life, some people can never give back to you, no matter what you give them, because they cannot "contain" what you give them. No matter how much you do, your gifts just go right through them, so they always need more and, therefore, have nothing to give back to you.

So here, we have some people who are always begging for attention and validation because they let everything go right through and can't contain what has been given to them. We have to learn to recognize this and realize that these people simply cannot contain the values we were all given. They always need more and never give anything of real value. And that is a spiritual problem, but it can be overcome by the physical work needed to 1) recognize one's own ki; and 2) develop one's own ki. Without that physical work, budo is reduced to an intellectual "argument" in which all sides are equal. And that's just another way of saying "baloney".

Another reference to Richard Kim comes from his book The Classical Man, in which a would-be spear expert begged for an audience with Yoshida Kotaro. "If he approves my ability, I'm made," the fellow said. The story that follows is pathetic. The would-be master finds that he is worthless against Yoshida. The title of the story: "He Who Seeks a Compliment Gets the Truth."

The truth is a wonderful thing if we find it by searching for it. But if we get the truth while searching for a compliment, it's usually not very pleasant.

Best wishes.

David

Mark Freeman
05-29-2012, 10:16 AM
I believe that Dan et. al. are using "internal (not inner) power" to refer to a set of musculoskeletal causes and effects, that has little or nothing to do with one's mental or spiritual state. I could be wrong about that, so hopefully they will correct me if I am -- but I don't think they've claimed the term "inner power", and I'm pretty sure they haven't claimed any spiritual component as such.

Hi Mary,

in my experience of what Dan and others are doing, it has as much to do with the mental state, as the musculoskeletal condition/ing. As for these things being separate from a spiritual component, how can you have spiritual, without mind and body and vice versa?

regards,

Mark

gregstec
05-29-2012, 10:38 AM
I think the real essence here is in the matter of ki.

If you really, physically, understand your own ki, the claims of most "ki masters" and many "aikido teachers" become clearly ridiculous. Ki exists and works in the zone between mind and body. It's how the mind accesses the body. When one has too little understanding of the body, his "ki" is in fact only an intellectual abstraction and his statements about ki reflect only his own wishes or his made-up fantasies about something he has not directly experienced. From there, everything goes down the drain, including ki, technique and life, itself. How tragic is it if we allow such people to make bizarre and unfounded claims about ki, technique, aikido and spirituality without lodging protest and clarification? From one false master, thousands of people may absorb and spread the false way. I have no problem seeing it and saying that it is false. You don't have to be the greatest in the world to adhere to the true principles. But if you consistently violate all the fundamental principles of life and the universe, nothing you do can find truth.

David

I like this part - I view Ki as the bridge between the mental and the physical and it has aspects of both in it. IMO, those that view Ki as magical or some part of a pragmatic metaphor will never understand enough to develop and manifest any high level internal skills.

Greg

David Orange
05-29-2012, 10:47 AM
I am only expressing simple and basic principles of dialogue. You are in fact argueing against those principles. You may do that, but it leaves no place for dialogue. And that is what a forum is all about, is it not?
Tom

Tom,

You're coming from a perspective in which both parties have equal validity from the beginning, but that is not the case on this forum.

If the topic is architecture, then Dan's point of view and opinions are far more valid than mine, though I have built buildings and repaired them and studied construction and so on. Dan is a professional architect, so whatever I may know about the subject, he knows almost infinitely more and his opinion matters more.

On this forum, we have people who trained for decades under direct students of Morihei Ueshiba. And then we have folks like Graham, who...well, it's not quite clear, yet, what he studied or under whom, but the one time he got close to a known master of aikido (Gozo Shioda), he did not touch him.

So are you saying that Graham's opinions on aikido are of equal weight to those of people like Ellis Amdur and Henry Ellis?

To try to put everyone on the same level of validity is ridiculous, I'm afraid.

It produces bizarre and useless perspectives.

Cheers.

David

David Orange
05-29-2012, 11:01 AM
Well, lots of interesting points made. As far as I can see they all go to show that spiritual is different to I/P.

Physical, I/P, Spiritual. Three different things.

Peace.G.

OK. I think that statement very well underlines your lack of understanding, Graham.

I/P is where the physical and spiritual coincide.

But make no mistake: the physical is the foundation of all spirituality in Japanese arts. For one thing, without the physical, there is no spiritual or mental. So we must begin with the body.

In budo, whatever you say about the "spiritual" has to be expressed through the body or other people's bodies. So "spiritual" depends on the physical. Otherwise, you're just an invisible ghost that cannot effect anything in the "real" world.

Budo is a process of developing the mind and spirit through training the body. Without that physical training, the rest is just talk, talk, talk, talk, talk.

David

Conrad Gus
05-29-2012, 11:02 AM
I'm quite a fan of YHTGTTSPAMTL, almost as much as the Invisible Pink Unicorn which made a big appearance on the religion listservs a while back.

But extend your example. So agreed, YHTGTTSPAMTL is stupid, but some pigheaded martial arts heavyweight (you know who you are) is stubborn enough to actually go to the south pole, and he comes back and says, oh my god, there actually is a leprechaun and YHTGTTSPAMTL!

And some people who know him go and come back shaking their heads saying, YHTGTTSPAMTL.

And some very high-up guys say, "This is ridiculous. We'll put an end to it." And they come back and don't say anything until the third or fourth beer, at which they can be heard to mumble, "yhtgttspamtl."

The fallacy of calling it a circular argument is that you are assuming you're operating in the closed universe of logical reasoning. You're not. You're operating in the open universe of empirical experience. In that world, there's only a limited amount of denying experience which is consistent with sanity.

Hugh,

I completely agree with you. Anyone can go to a seminar and judge for themselves. It's not at all like having to travel to the south pole!

In my case, I don't have any teachers or personal acquaintances that have come back from a Dan Harden seminar to say IHTBF. I'm not saying that the whole thing is untrue, I'm just saying that until this happens, I'm not going to prioritize a Dan Harden seminar over other opportunities (holidays with my family, for example).

So far, all I have seen is people making claims on the Internet, and a relatively small number of people jumping on to back up those claims. I know that IHTBF, but if there were some videos of the training or whatever I might be less skeptical.

I am also aware that once a person has made a commitment (travelling to a seminar, training for X number of hours), one becomes invested and is less likely to be critical of it because of the loss of the initial investment that would occur by rejecting it. Take Scientology, for example. If someone invests their life savings and decades of commitment to the "religion", it makes it very difficult for them to think critically about it. There are lots of Scientologists on Internet forums who claim that Scientology is "The Truth" (ring any bells here?), but that doesn't inspire me to run out and join up in order to prove or disprove this for myself.

The whole Dan Harden / IP phenomenon could be one of three things:

exactly what they say it is
a group of martial artists who have convinced themselves that they have found the one true way when in fact they have found one way out of many (even if it is a very good way)
complete BS

I haven't seen anything to convince me one way or the other, but I think there is a high enough chance of #2 (or maybe #3) that I'm not willing to invest a whole bunch of time, $$ and effort to find out.

Maybe one day my situation will change. I'm not ruling out the possibility.

Conrad

David Orange
05-29-2012, 11:06 AM
If Graham Christian questions 1 and 4 based on his own fairly extensive experience and knowledge as a martial artist...{snip}
Conrad

Speaks for itself.

Chris Li
05-29-2012, 11:25 AM
The whole Dan Harden / IP phenomenon could be one of three things:

exactly what they say it is
a group of martial artists who have convinced themselves that they have found the one true way when in fact they have found one way out of many (even if it is a very good way)
complete BS

I haven't seen anything to convince me one way or the other, but I think there is a high enough chance of #2 (or maybe #3) that I'm not willing to invest a whole bunch of time, $$ and effort to find out.

Maybe one day my situation will change. I'm not ruling out the possibility.

Conrad

Just to note - no one is saying that Dan's way is the one true way, least of all Dan.

Best,

Chris

David Orange
05-29-2012, 11:31 AM
It would in fact be a good exercise for people to inspect what their agenda is rather than say they don't have one.

What is your agenda, Graham?

It seems you want to be the standard bearer for an art in which you have pretty much zilch for experience.

If not that, then what?

Best to you, bud

David

mrlizard123
05-29-2012, 11:37 AM
Hugh,

I completely agree with you. Anyone can go to a seminar and judge for themselves. It's not at all like having to travel to the south pole!

In my case, I don't have any teachers or personal acquaintances that have come back from a Dan Harden seminar to say IHTBF. I'm not saying that the whole thing is untrue, I'm just saying that until this happens, I'm not going to prioritize a Dan Harden seminar over other opportunities (holidays with my family, for example).

So far, all I have seen is people making claims on the Internet, and a relatively small number of people jumping on to back up those claims. I know that IHTBF, but if there were some videos of the training or whatever I might be less skeptical.

I am also aware that once a person has made a commitment (travelling to a seminar, training for X number of hours), one becomes invested and is less likely to be critical of it because of the loss of the initial investment that would occur by rejecting it. Take Scientology, for example. If someone invests their life savings and decades of commitment to the "religion", it makes it very difficult for them to think critically about it. There are lots of Scientologists on Internet forums who claim that Scientology is "The Truth" (ring any bells here?), but that doesn't inspire me to run out and join up in order to prove or disprove this for myself.

The whole Dan Harden / IP phenomenon could be one of three things:

exactly what they say it is
a group of martial artists who have convinced themselves that they have found the one true way when in fact they have found one way out of many (even if it is a very good way)
complete BS

I haven't seen anything to convince me one way or the other, but I think there is a high enough chance of #2 (or maybe #3) that I'm not willing to invest a whole bunch of time, $$ and effort to find out.

Maybe one day my situation will change. I'm not ruling out the possibility.

Conrad

I figured that the stuff Dan was talking about was either:

a) some interesting methods/tricks/etc that would be handy
b) something which was inflated beyond it's purported effects

I ummed and ahhed and wondered about it, an easy thing to do when I wasn't about to swim across the pond to check and I'm too poor for a speculative holiday.

I happened to stumble across the notice for a UK seminar, thought about it and decided that I would go for a weekend away and invest that time to see for myself what the fuss was.

Let's be clear, I largely expected to come away feeling robbed of a weekend (sorry Dan!)... reality was far far from that - it's something that is a fascinating thing to take and run with.

You're faced with two choices; pretending that you can put the genie back in the bottle and acquire selective amnesia or accept that there are skill sets that really can be focused on, developed and deployed into your martial arts.

There is a danger when discussing it because there are phrases such as "move from centre" that people would jump on with "we do that already!" possibly... that depends on what you mean by it. It's easy to see how you could take a dozen sound bites from a workshop with Dan and have other people (devoid of the face time and hands on comparison) who would state confidently that it was already in their repertoire but the devil is in the details; what do these terms mean when we say them? Why are they important? How do we do them?

To believe that the number of people who've seen Dan and the number of people who are/were not just sceptical (as I was) but downright disbelieving and incredulous I simply cannot believe that you can expect we are all just confused/deluded/protecting our "investment".

Where are the posts by people who've met Dan and said there was nothing special?

Considering the assumptions required for 1000 odd people from all manner of arts, from wide levels of skill to all be confused/deluded/worried about appearing foolish Occam's razor suggests that actually we might be right in that perhaps Dan isn't just talking out of his hat.

David Orange
05-29-2012, 11:43 AM
Your reasoning, David, is like blaming a woman wearing a skirt for being raped.

Mary, that is a low, unworthy and Foul thing to say.

You have no right to say that and when you do, you seriously undermine your image as a responsible thinker or any kind of serious person.

I demand an apology and I am not kidding!

That is entirely uncalled for, dishonest and insulting.

I want an apology NOW!

Our responses and actions reflect on those who make them not on those who supposedly provoke them.

Your statement above is a glaring example of exactly that.

There is no excuse for such an insipid comment here.

David

David Orange
05-29-2012, 11:44 AM
Your reasoning, David, is like blaming a woman wearing a skirt for being raped. Our responses and actions reflect on those who make them not on those who supposedly provoke them.

Jun, I think this comment deserves at least a WEEK of suspension. It's absolutely uncalled for here.

David

David Orange
05-29-2012, 11:56 AM
The whole Dan Harden / IP phenomenon could be one of three things:

exactly what they say it is
a group of martial artists who have convinced themselves that they have found the one true way when in fact they have found one way out of many (even if it is a very good way)
complete BS

I haven't seen anything to convince me one way or the other, but I think there is a high enough chance of #2 (or maybe #3) that I'm not willing to invest a whole bunch of time, $$ and effort to find out.

Maybe one day my situation will change. I'm not ruling out the possibility.

Conrad

Conrad, it might help you to consider the backgrounds of the people who have met Dan and been incredibly impressed by what he can do and how easily he can teach others to do it. We're talking about people with decades of experience with direct students of Morihei Ueshiba, many of them having lived a number of years in Japan.

On the other side of the argument, who ya got? Graham?

Show me someone with decades of experience and time in Japan who has met Dan and found him lacking. Give me one name, huh?

David

Conrad Gus
05-29-2012, 11:57 AM
I figured that the stuff Dan was talking about was either:

a) some interesting methods/tricks/etc that would be handy
b) something which was inflated beyond it's purported effects

I ummed and ahhed and wondered about it, an easy thing to do when I wasn't about to swim across the pond to check and I'm too poor for a speculative holiday.

I happened to stumble across the notice for a UK seminar, thought about it and decided that I would go for a weekend away and invest that time to see for myself what the fuss was.

Let's be clear, I largely expected to come away feeling robbed of a weekend (sorry Dan!)... reality was far far from that - it's something that is a fascinating thing to take and run with.

You're faced with two choices; pretending that you can put the genie back in the bottle and acquire selective amnesia or accept that there are skill sets that really can be focused on, developed and deployed into your martial arts.

There is a danger when discussing it because there are phrases such as "move from centre" that people would jump on with "we do that already!" possibly... that depends on what you mean by it. It's easy to see how you could take a dozen sound bites from a workshop with Dan and have other people (devoid of the face time and hands on comparison) who would state confidently that it was already in their repertoire but the devil is in the details; what do these terms mean when we say them? Why are they important? How do we do them?

To believe that the number of people who've seen Dan and the number of people who are/were not just sceptical (as I was) but downright disbelieving and incredulous I simply cannot believe that you can expect we are all just confused/deluded/protecting our "investment".

Where are the posts by people who've met Dan and said there was nothing special?

Considering the assumptions required for 1000 odd people from all manner of arts, from wide levels of skill to all be confused/deluded/worried about appearing foolish Occam's razor suggests that actually we might be right in that perhaps Dan isn't just talking out of his hat.

Thanks for the excellent first hand account! I wish I had 1000 more like it.

I'm not saying Dan's talking out of his hat. I'm just saying that it is one of my personal mantras to never underestimate the human capacity for delusion.

David Orange
05-29-2012, 11:59 AM
I'm just saying that it is one of my personal mantras to never underestimate the human capacity for delusion.

That's why length of experience and time in Japan carry weight in one's opinion.

Cheers.

David

Anthony Loeppert
05-29-2012, 12:01 PM
Mary, that is a low, unworthy and Foul thing to say.

You have no right to say that and when you do, you seriously undermine your image as a responsible thinker or any kind of serious person.


+1 I was thinking to myself: "She couldn't shoehorn in a Hitler comparison too?"

David Orange
05-29-2012, 12:12 PM
+1 I was thinking to myself: "She couldn't shoehorn in a Hitler comparison too?"

:cool:

Conrad Gus
05-29-2012, 12:17 PM
Conrad, it might help you to consider the backgrounds of the people who have met Dan and been incredibly impressed by what he can do and how easily he can teach others to do it. We're talking about people with decades of experience with direct students of Morihei Ueshiba, many of them having lived a number of years in Japan.

On the other side of the argument, who ya got? Graham?

Show me someone with decades of experience and time in Japan who has met Dan and found him lacking. Give me one name, huh?

David

That's a good argument, but there could be other reasons why nobody has publicly come forward with a negative opinion. In the public sphere, Dan has a history of being somewhat aggressive in the face of criticism. Most people would rather not get dragged into a public conflict.

To clarify, I'm certainly not arguing that IP/IS is BS. I'm simply pointing out that I don't feel convinced based on what I've read on the Internet (absent of direct experience, admittedly) that it is the holy grail of martial arts and the missing component in 99% of the world of aikido. The rhetoric around it has been pretty hot and heavy.

That's a pretty small and personal claim to make, in my opinion. I don't think any rational human would begrudge me the right to apply the usual critical thinking skills. Once you give that up, things get cultish pretty quickly.

Conrad Gus
05-29-2012, 12:21 PM
That's why length of experience and time in Japan carry weight in one's opinion.

Cheers.

David

Again, I agree, but Japanese can be deluded too, as well as people with a lot of experience.

Still, I would give more weight to an opinion with a great deal of experience behind it.

mrlizard123
05-29-2012, 12:21 PM
That's a good argument, but there could be other reasons why nobody has publicly come forward with a negative opinion. In the public sphere, Dan has a history of being somewhat aggressive in the face of criticism. Most people would rather not get dragged into a public conflict.

To clarify, I'm certainly not arguing that IP/IS is BS. I'm simply pointing out that I don't feel convinced based on what I've read on the Internet (absent of direct experience, admittedly) that it is the holy grail of martial arts and the missing component in 99% of the world of aikido. The rhetoric around it has been pretty hot and heavy.

That's a pretty small and personal claim to make, in my opinion. I don't think any rational human would begrudge me the right to apply the usual critical thinking skills. Once you give that up, things get cultish pretty quickly.

Don't give it up, just don't try to assume it's bunkum either.

My suggestion would be to take an opportunity to train with Dan or someone teaching the sort of skills being discussed if you get the chance.

David Orange
05-29-2012, 12:23 PM
That's a good argument, but there could be other reasons why nobody has publicly come forward with a negative opinion. In the public sphere, Dan has a history of being somewhat aggressive in the face of criticism. Most people would rather not get dragged into a public conflict.

Maybe that's people who can't put up so they decide to shut up?

Usually, however, if people have that kind of mind, in my experience, they just throw insults at Dan from a distance because they are too frightened even to meet him. They have black belts and they're proud of those black belts, but their real power is in the tongue, which has no bones.

To clarify, I'm certainly not arguing that IP/IS is BS. I'm simply pointing out that I don't feel convinced based on what I've read on the Internet (absent of direct experience, admittedly) that it is the holy grail of martial arts and the missing component in 99% of the world of aikido.

Thus, it has to be felt. You really can't comment until you've felt it. And Dan's not the only one who can show it. He has often said that.

But what is it that compels people with NO experience on the subject to make continual repetitive comments about it?

I don't think any rational human would begrudge me the right to apply the usual critical thinking skills. Once you give that up, things get cultish pretty quickly.

They also get very cultish among people who refuse to experience it but assure everyone that they understand it.

David

David Orange
05-29-2012, 12:26 PM
Again, I agree, but Japanese can be deluded too, as well as people with a lot of experience.

Still, I would give more weight to an opinion with a great deal of experience behind it.

Good. So people with a lot of experience in aikido (decades with Ueshiba trainees), who are well-established teachers with hundreds of students AND who have felt what Dan, Mike, Ark, Rob and so many others are teaching....I would think they would be best able to comment here. I would also think they'd be the ones you'd listen to more than some who come out of the mist wielding swords like magic wands.

Good luck.

David

Mark Freeman
05-29-2012, 12:35 PM
Thanks for the excellent first hand account! I wish I had 1000 more like it.

I'm not saying Dan's talking out of his hat. I'm just saying that it is one of my personal mantras to never underestimate the human capacity for delusion.

Hi Conrad,

I share your views on the human capacity for delusion, and my post will make you 999 away from your pursuasion target. I first met Mike Sigman with exactly the same head on as Rich, I was sceptical, but like him was prepared to gamble a weekend of my life, finding out the truth for myself. I have seen Dan each time he has been to the UK. Take it from me, Dan's not talking out of his hat. I've been with a great teacher for 20 years, and was happy with the progress I have been making. The last 2 years, after having experienced these guys, has moved both my practicing and teaching up another level. You have to be prepared to put the work in yourself, but being given a clear set of mind/body exercises, to work on and develop, for me as an aikidoka, is what I search for.

Personal investment can be measured in time, money, effort, blood, sweat and tears etc... Learning what they have to teach, for me, is worth it. Everyone else has to work it out for themselves.

regards,

Mark

mathewjgano
05-29-2012, 12:39 PM
The whole Dan Harden / IP phenomenon could be one of three things:

exactly what they say it is
a group of martial artists who have convinced themselves that they have found the one true way when in fact they have found one way out of many (even if it is a very good way)
complete BS

I haven't seen anything to convince me one way or the other, but I think there is a high enough chance of #2 (or maybe #3) that I'm not willing to invest a whole bunch of time, $$ and effort to find out.

Maybe one day my situation will change. I'm not ruling out the possibility.

Conrad

I would characterize it as 1.1) A very highly informed mode of training working on subtle aspects of body dynamics. The form isn't much different than other practices, but I get the impression the depth of understanding of specific aspects is the real difference. And there's always something to be said for inspirata to make a person focus better.

I think the hype tends to drown out the message. I'm not exactly an awesome martial artist, but I do think I have a realistic (enough) view of things. It's not BS. Perhaps it's more than some folks think it is, but I'm inclined to think it just comes across that way because of the hype.
I attended the first time just out of curiosity for the kind of training and went back because it struck me as worthwhile and the people I got to meet were incredibly nice, so my wife gave me the second go 'round as a birthday present.
I sympathize with the blowback because I think the message has come across as a bit pushy at times. I've decided to chalk that up to differences in communication styles as well as the natural problems the internet creates.
For what it's worth.
Take care,
Matthew
p.s. I'd like to add I agree with David's idea that it's not either-or when it comes to spiritual or physical. There is a high degree of biofeedback training (I believe) which demands such a high amount of mental focus that it is a great place for the two to come together.

Conrad Gus
05-29-2012, 12:45 PM
Maybe that's people who can't put up so they decide to shut up?

Usually, however, if people have that kind of mind, in my experience, they just throw insults at Dan from a distance because they are too frightened even to meet him. They have black belts and they're proud of those black belts, but their real power is in the tongue, which has no bones.

Thus, it has to be felt. You really can't comment until you've felt it. And Dan's not the only one who can show it. He has often said that.

But what is it that compels people with NO experience on the subject to make continual repetitive comments about it?

They also get very cultish among people who refuse to experience it but assure everyone that they understand it.

David

David,

I'm just defending my right to withhold judgement on the issue until I've encountered some convincing evidence (I know, IHTBF).

I'm not hurling insults at Dan (though I believe you that some do), and I'm not commenting on his ability to do things or teach things.

I can still comment on the quality of the evidence, the quality of the arguments in favor or against, the general quality of the discussion around the topic, and the attitude and demeanor of those who participate. These are all public sphere, open for observation and comment, and I use these publicly observable phenomena to decide how much energy to invest in further investigation. In the end, it is my own decision and it only affects me.

You seem very convinced and very sincere, and maybe one day I will be a believer as well. Until then, I don't see any reason why my criticality should be seen as an insult. After all, IHTBF, right?

I'll take your to determination to convince me and others as a genuine enthusiasm to share something that you feel is special and awesome. Thank you for that.

Cheers,

Conrad

lbb
05-29-2012, 12:47 PM
I don't see an effective solution; other than just not caring about anyone else's views, including all the people who may be forming them as opposed to holding on to them which doesn't appeal greatly either.

Eh. You don't control the truth, and you can't protect people from falsehood. You have to not treat them as children and let them protect themselves. It's not your responsibility to keep people from barking their shins and scraping their knees (and a damn good thing, too, because you have no power to do so).

DH
05-29-2012, 12:52 PM
Hugh,

I completely agree with you. Anyone can go to a seminar and judge for themselves. It's not at all like having to travel to the south pole!

In my case, I don't have any teachers or personal acquaintances that have come back from a Dan Harden seminar to say IHTBF. I'm not saying that the whole thing is untrue, I'm just saying that until this happens, I'm not going to prioritize a Dan Harden seminar over other opportunities (holidays with my family, for example).

So far, all I have seen is people making claims on the Internet, and a relatively small number of people jumping on to back up those claims. I know that IHTBF, but if there were some videos of the training or whatever I might be less skeptical.

I am also aware that once a person has made a commitment (travelling to a seminar, training for X number of hours), one becomes invested and is less likely to be critical of it because of the loss of the initial investment that would occur by rejecting it. Take Scientology, for example. If someone invests their life savings and decades of commitment to the "religion", it makes it very difficult for them to think critically about it. There are lots of Scientologists on Internet forums who claim that Scientology is "The Truth" (ring any bells here?), but that doesn't inspire me to run out and join up in order to prove or disprove this for myself.

The whole Dan Harden / IP phenomenon could be one of three things:

exactly what they say it is
a group of martial artists who have convinced themselves that they have found the one true way when in fact they have found one way out of many (even if it is a very good way)
complete BS

I haven't seen anything to convince me one way or the other, but I think there is a high enough chance of #2 (or maybe #3) that I'm not willing to invest a whole bunch of time, $$ and effort to find out.

Maybe one day my situation will change. I'm not ruling out the possibility.

Conrad
Hi Conrad
I take no offense to critical analysis when it is applied.
Unfortunately it is almost never applied.

Here you leave out critical pieces.
a. This isn't the Dan show. It would be more incredulous, even ridiculous, were we discussing some "method" I found or as you put it "rediscovered. That is not the case. Others teach this-though they are rare and although Ueshiba discussed it, people didn't even know what he meant or how to translate material that you can have found in any number of internal Chinese sources. Hence, the lack of real education of Ueshiba's students and biographers remains self-evident.
b. To wit; you left out "what" it is...because you and the vast majority don't know, and of those that know some things, they don't know how to train it or really use it.
c. Any reasonable person would accept the fact that thousands are going out to meet me and others training and teaching this. Indeed, it becomes incredulous as a counter argument to avoid the seriously experienced people opting to train this way.
d. Total B.S. can then...only apply If you want to call 14 Shihan 6 6th Dans and a host of Go dans, who have trained for decades....deluded idiots susceptible to B.S. and not being able to differentiate. Thats seems rather desparate and dismissive to me as a counter.

On the whole, credibility needs to win over emotion, prejudice, bitterness and anger, so we can all see certain truths or at least highly probable answers. At this point "total bullshit" as a possibility and counter protrays either total ignorance of the narrative thus far, or a willing denial of some pretty obvious facts, that this work is larger, older and more established than any single individual.
People have hired contractors and spent hundreds of thousands of dollars trusting them with a project with less word of mouth recommendations than has been shown here.
Cheers
Dan

lbb
05-29-2012, 12:55 PM
Hi Mary,

in my experience of what Dan and others are doing, it has as much to do with the mental state, as the musculoskeletal condition/ing. As for these things being separate from a spiritual component, how can you have spiritual, without mind and body and vice versa?

That's a bit like saying "How can you have a sandwich without mayonnaise?" It's not on me to prove that; that's a whole separate discussion, and not one that I care to engage in in current company (in other company, I might, but this one? hell no). I'm simply pointing out that when you're using two similar (but not the same) terms that are composed of words that have multiple meanings, it's a mistake to assume or assert that the two parties using them mean the same thing.

lbb
05-29-2012, 01:04 PM
I would characterize it as 1.1) A very highly informed mode of training working on subtle aspects of body dynamics. The form isn't much different than other practices, but I get the impression the depth of understanding of specific aspects is the real difference. And there's always something to be said for inspirata to make a person focus better.

Not having seen it or done it, this is also my impression.

I think the hype tends to drown out the message.

As do issues in personal style and attitude about things beyond martial arts.

David Orange
05-29-2012, 01:10 PM
I sympathize with the blowback because I think the message has come across as a bit pushy at times.

I think the "pushy" feeling comes from replies to people who push in a passive aggressive way, haha!

They dismiss valid statements with no proof or experience and then up the ante when a reply comes in. They don't know what they're talking about, but they just love to talk.

If "put up or shut up" is pushy, then people have just lost touch with the real nature of budo.

Best to you.

David

Nicholas Eschenbruch
05-29-2012, 01:19 PM
Hi Conrad,

I thought we were long past first hand accounts being important in this, but it does seem the internet forgets... A while ago, in a different age of aikiweb history, I wrote this:
http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showpost.php?p=265142&postcount=23
If anything, I have become a lot more enthusiastic of Dan's work since. So make it 997.

Is that the ONLY way to me? Hell no. To each their own. I'd still find it presumptious to even say its mine.

Now, considering all the people in history who have fooled themselves about all sorts of quite relevant things, could it conceivably be that Dan is some sort of high-power con artist who manages to fool hundreds of people, including myself?

I personally dont think so at all, but, as an exercise of mind, it could conceivably be. But you know, I remember the good times had, I see what I get out of the exercises I learned, how it deepened my understanding of what aikido could be and how it could work, and I really could not care less. In a way, I do not even understand the reasoning behind the thought (which you, admittedly, did not put that way, but it is a continuous implication here on aikiweb), because for me it is a question of whether I want to Find Out About Things In My Own Life Myself. And not just exchange opinions.

BTW, IP is spiritually relevant to me in a non-trivial way - but I am not going to discuss that here. :D

mathewjgano
05-29-2012, 02:47 PM
I think the "pushy" feeling comes from replies to people who push in a passive aggressive way, haha!

They dismiss valid statements with no proof or experience and then up the ante when a reply comes in. They don't know what they're talking about, but they just love to talk.

If "put up or shut up" is pushy, then people have just lost touch with the real nature of budo.

Best to you.

David
Passive-aggressive!? Why must you hate freedom, David? :p
I agree the pushy feeling has been experienced on both "sides" of the debate. The nature of past conversations has definately colored the present. Human politics as usual, I suppose.
Also, I'd like to be clear, I don't think people are trying to be pushy, just that it comes across that way sometimes.
And I think there's something to be said for the fact that we are martial artists to some degree or another (me to a lesser extent than just about anyone else here, I know). My perhaps not-so-humble opinion is that many people who have very assertive natures tend to be attracted to martial arts and that assertive quality can make a "colorful" conversation "pregnant with pushy." Then agan, I'm often told I'm not assertive enough, so maybe my vantage is biased in that regard.
Regarding put up or shut up, I agree with the principle of proving through example, but I don't believe in the "shut up" part. For lack of a more subtle description, people have the right to be wrong, never mind the "half-right" things that might get said. I think the "shut up" side of that equation poisons conversations that could be better, if not, plain ol' good. In person it makes more sense than on a forum of communication, at least.
I dunno...maybe I'm not a budo-dude. I understand the severity to budo; even like it, but I don't think it's automatically the best way to handle people. I'd rather be severe with myself and soft on others...but I'm rambling now...
...and hey, wasn't I going to post less?:o
Take care, David!
Matt


As do issues in personal style and attitude about things beyond martial arts.


Aint that the truth!

Mary Eastland
05-29-2012, 03:10 PM
Mary, that is a low, unworthy and Foul thing to say.

You have no right to say that and when you do, you seriously undermine your image as a responsible thinker or any kind of serious person.

I demand an apology and I am not kidding!

That is entirely uncalled for, dishonest and insulting.

I want an apology NOW!

Your statement above is a glaring example of exactly that.

There is no excuse for such an insipid comment here.

David

Don't hold your breath. You are completely obfuscating the issue.

Conrad Gus
05-29-2012, 03:17 PM
Here you leave out critical pieces.
a. This isn't the Dan show. It would be more incredulous, even ridiculous, were we discussing some "method" I found or as you put it "rediscovered. That is not the case. Others teach this-though they are rare and although Ueshiba discussed it, people didn't even know what he meant or how to translate material that you can have found in any number of internal Chinese sources. Hence, the lack of real education of Ueshiba's students and biographers remains self-evident.
b. To wit; you left out "what" it is...because you and the vast majority don't know, and of those that know some things, they don't know how to train it or really use it.
c. Any reasonable person would accept the fact that thousands are going out to meet me and others training and teaching this. Indeed, it becomes incredulous as a counter argument to avoid the seriously experienced people opting to train this way.
d. Total B.S. can then...only apply If you want to call 14 Shihan 6 6th Dans and a host of Go dans, who have trained for decades....deluded idiots susceptible to B.S. and not being able to differentiate.


Dan,

No argument here.

a. Point taken, and I'll remember this for future threads. I'd be curious who else you would put on the list, inside or outside of aikido.
b. I left it out on purpose. It would be disingenuous of me to try to describe something I don't understand (never claimed to).
c. I think it is evident that you're not making up the fact that you have lots of students and lots of positive endorsements from those students.
d. As for myself, I've ruled out total BS (based on c).

As for the pushiness thing, I think this particular forum thread has civil and enjoyable. I've learned something and I'm grateful for the well-written posts.

What I'm still withholding judgement on is the claim that this teaching is integral to "real" aikido (or "O-Sensei" aikido) but that almost nobody can teach it or do it. It just seems a bit far-fetched considering all of the great, dedicated teachers out there.

So let me re-direct the discussion. How do you know if someone is doing aikido without IP? In order to make the claim that almost nobody can teach it or do it, you either need to go around challenging everybody (which I highly doubt is what is going on) or you have to judge them based on videos or interacting with their students.

Doesn't IHTBF apply in both directions?

Thanks again for the interesting discussion.

Conrad

David Orange
05-29-2012, 03:18 PM
Don't hold your breath. You are completely obfuscating the issue.

Don't worry, Mary. It takes some character to apologize for a statement like you made. I expect none from you.

David

David Orange
05-29-2012, 03:29 PM
Passive-aggressive!? Why must you hate freedom, David? :p

You, know, of course, that I wasn't referring to you?

Regarding put up or shut up, I agree with the principle of proving through example, but I don't believe in the "shut up" part. For lack of a more subtle description, people have the right to be wrong, never mind the "half-right" things that might get said. I think the "shut up" side of that equation poisons conversations that could be better, if not, plain ol' good. In person it makes more sense than on a forum of communication, at least.



Well, it's "put up or shut up...or be recognized as a phony," really.

The thing is, someone makes an idiot statement that they cannot back up with actions. Then they have to expect to be called on it.

And then others rush in crying that you told a phony to "put up or shut up." :hypno:

I don't see the "shut up" as "poisoning" conversations that "could be" good or even better.

If a "scientist" claims E=MC3, for instance, what will all the other scientists say? Prove it!

What was Einstein's achievement?

He proved E=MC2 with mathematics.

In budo, claims have to be proven with ability, or they are simply BS. Or, as in the case of Ueshiba's many references to Chinese concepts, you have to have documentation.

Now with so many of our passive-aggressive posters, they cannot show because they don't have ability, but they also reject documentation of Ueshiba's statements, claiming that the existing translations are perfectly fine, though they, themselves cannot read Japanese....

They can't prove what they, themselves claim and they reject claims that others have thoroughly proven.

What kind of useful conversation can come of that, ha ha? :p

Best to you.

David

lbb
05-29-2012, 03:37 PM
And then others rush in crying that you told a phony to "put up or shut up." :hypno:

I don't see the "shut up" as "poisoning" conversations that "could be" good or even better.

Do you see any "poisoning" -- or, never mind that word, anything problematic -- in your characterization of what Matthew said as "crying"?

I think it's a loaded word, at the very least, and I think it's problematic.

Gary David
05-29-2012, 03:38 PM
Folks
This has gone on way to long........it went on way to long last time.........

There are any number of folks on here that push back hard against the idea of the training that Dan is providing.......some of these folks are within hours of where Dan lives, some are within miles of locations that Dan visits regularly doing workshops.....and will not take the opportunity to see what is going on..........

Now if you have never wondered what was on the other side of the fence, across the street, down the road or on the other side of town....then you don't need what Dan is offering.....

If you let what you see as Dan's hard to take personality keep you away (which is not the case in reality) then you are better off staying you own back yard...you really didn't want to know anyway.....

If you think that you can already do that and don't need to verify or validate your personal understanding then you don't need to visit Dan or feel what he is doing.........

If you have never questioned your instructor (no matter who he or she may be)...that is wondered about some aspect of what they were doing...if you could stop it or jam it up or counter it....then you don't need what Dan is offering....

If you don't have 5 or more years to just explore this.......just to retrain you body out of the bad habits it has now......then you don't need Dan.........

(Heck....I am not sure I will live long enough to get a solid understanding and then integrate it in to the other components that make up the whole....)

NOW....

If you have ever tried to look through a crack in the fence, tried to cross the street or take the bus to get to the other side of town.......then you need to check out what Dan is offering.....

If you have wondered while taking those falls for your instructor....Then you need to go check out Dan.....

If self-discovery is not quick enough or it has stalled....then go check out Dan.......

CONSIDER......Dan has not even started training on the other components.....or on Aiki....come on out...may he will get to it.......

CONSIDER.....Dan has not displayed his IP (and other components) through techniques.....he is not teaching from that perspective.....come on out...may he will get to it........

CONSIDER....in my 38 years at this art I have only personally gotten touches on what Dan is providing and talking to from 3 of the major players in post war Aikido...Two have passed on and one is still teaching. I got clues that several others were in this group, but I didn't feel it or see it displayed in a recognizable way.

REMEMBER....... you can replace Dan's name with number of others and get a start at this......

THOUGH in the end, for those of you that won't come and take a chance....but continue to carp.......I will refer to a quote from an old movie "Gone With the Wind"

Rhett Butler: Frankly, my dear, I don't give a damn.
[Rhett walks off into the fog]

have a good day......
Gary

graham christian
05-29-2012, 03:38 PM
Matt, the problem here is that so many people read this site and gather ideas on which they build "understandings" about aikido and budo in general.

Is it really correct to allow utterly inexperienced "teachers" to put out goofy claims without challenge?

I thought Ellis Amdur's article on Watanabe Sensei, of aikikai, was a good example of pointing out baloney. And if it is okay (even vital) to address the serious error of someone on that level, why should we pretend that all "points of view" stated here are equal?

Graham loves to talk about "real" aikido and "spiritual" aikido day and night, but the one time he had the opportunity to get to the real root of the art, being in the same room with Gozo Shioda, neither he nor his teacher actually stepped onto the mat. From what Graham has written, they never even touched Shioda Sensei to shake his hand. So Graham never experienced the mysterious power described by Robert Mustard and Ellis Amdur in the "It Had to be Felt" thread. Instead, he is informed by contact with "plenty" of people doing "internal stuff." And even though he did meet Mark Freeman, who advised us that Graham is "no Dan Harden," Graham continues to pat himself on the back and play his crumhorn of superior knowledge and understanding, telling us he understands Ueshiba's way far better than any of us who trained with Ueshiba's direct students and uchi deshi.

This forum already serves as an international repository of knowledge of aikido and will, in the future, provide "historical" reference on the art.

It is important for current and future readers to see that people with much experience in aikido and other Japanese martial arts always call baloney on people who speak so confidently about aikido without ever having dipped more than a toe or two in the water.

You say, "we can show each other that we respect the fact that we cannot see into each other's world, even if in fact we're 100% correct about our assumptions," but we're not working with assumptions: Graham has opened his "world" wide and pushed it on us as "real" and "spiritual" and even as "aikido." We didn't go and seek him out to attack. He put on his rasta hat, filmed himself doing what he does and teaching what he teaches and invited comment. He might as well have put his foot in a fire-ant bed and asked what they thought of his hakama. He shouldn't then get upset by the intense response he gets from the ants.

I think of a guy very thoughtfully chewing up one of those plastic displays from the front window of a Japanese restaurant and pretending to appreciate the delicate pleasures of eating sushi.

Best to you.

David

Ahhhh, an expert on me. Nice to see how a person can translate things in their own mind. It's very informative.

Did I 'push a world on you?' Strange view. I don't see even one sentence there as straight. No wonder second hand views are so untrustworthy.

Entering a room with Shioda and missing opportunity? Another false statement.

I give my understanding, only you may call it superior or inferior.

I understand Ueshibas views quite well, I hope you do or will. You seem to have a problem with it.

Mark informed you I walk the talk. That doesn't mean better or worse but merely according to what I say I do. You seem to have a problem with that too.

Try filming yourself and putting it up, could be interesting. When you can take one video and explain technichally and spiritually what was being done at that particular moment then we can talk. Until then you can see what you prefer to see.

I compliment you though on your fertile imagination. Don't forget about my personal invitation to you though, I'm sure one day in the distant future you may venture over here. I promise you'll leave smiling.

Peace.G.

graham christian
05-29-2012, 03:44 PM
The point I was making was that the two do not have a logical relationship and can very easily stand on their own - and, that each of them has very diverse viewpoints, not that they are necessarily diverse in themselves, but I guess they could be depending on the individual. How's that for straightforward :)

Greg

That's straightforward my brother. Nice.

Peace.G.

David Orange
05-29-2012, 03:57 PM
Do you see any "poisoning" -- or, never mind that word, anything problematic -- in your characterization of what Matthew said as "crying"?

As I told Matthew, I was not referring to him, but to the hand-wringers who rush out and wail and rend their garments because people are bullying Graham or whoever makes passive-aggressive shots, then hides behind "spirituality", etc.

It reflects an attitude that is incompatible with budo.

I think it's a loaded word, at the very least, and I think it's problematic.

I think it well applies to those who demand an immediate halt to all questionings of the P/A posters and insist that we value their "point of view" (inexperienced and without ability) as highly as those of people with vast experience and proven ability.

It would be nicer of me not to phrase it like that, ha ha!

But it would be nicer of the P/A posters just to shut up and for their defenders, also, not to defend the indefensible.

Cheers.

David

David Orange
05-29-2012, 04:03 PM
Entering a room with Shioda and missing opportunity? Another false statement.


Graham, are you, then, saying that you did get on the mat with Shioda?

You went on and on in another thread about how your Sensei was invited as the Guest of Honor at a seminar taught by Gozo Shioda and he had you accompany him.

But when I asked if you actually trained with Shioda, you repeatedly avoided saying yes or no.

Now, if I had ever had the chance to step onto the mat with Gozo Shioda, I would have done whatever it took to feel his technique even once. And I would have considered it one of the great highlights of almost 40 years of aikido.

So...I had to conclude that you did not take the opportunity to experience one of the indisputable world masters of aiki.

If I'm wrong, then please tell us plainly what it was like to train with him.

Thanks.

David

mathewjgano
05-29-2012, 04:08 PM
You, know, of course, that I wasn't referring to you?
I did! Sorry, that was my poor attempt at humor.

I don't see the "shut up" as "poisoning" conversations that "could be" good or even better.

I shouldn't have said "poisoning." I just meant that, whether our message is right or wrong, tone of response affects how the message is received and that we then are stuck with dealing with that too. This isn't to say speaking gently to folks is always the best response either. It was an aside I probably shouldn't have entered into.
What I was trying to point to is just the idea that in order for some conversations to "work" we have to adjust our normal responses. If we don't care if the other person accepts our understanding, then it doesn't matter.
Take care,
Matt
p.s. I like Gary's summary of who should and shouldn't go check out folks like Dan. Curiosity certainly got the best of me and I'm glad I got to meet him in person (anyone who can tell me I need work by quoting Pink Floyd is ok in my book:D). Funds providing, I'll try to check out other folks too.

graham christian
05-29-2012, 04:13 PM
OK. I think that statement very well underlines your lack of understanding, Graham.

I/P is where the physical and spiritual coincide.

But make no mistake: the physical is the foundation of all spirituality in Japanese arts. For one thing, without the physical, there is no spiritual or mental. So we must begin with the body.

In budo, whatever you say about the "spiritual" has to be expressed through the body or other people's bodies. So "spiritual" depends on the physical. Otherwise, you're just an invisible ghost that cannot effect anything in the "real" world.

Budo is a process of developing the mind and spirit through training the body. Without that physical training, the rest is just talk, talk, talk, talk, talk.

David

I think your statements there underline our difference of opinion. Does that make mine wrong?

Without spirit the body is dead. Without mind it's usually but a vegetable. So let's not get things backward shall we. They work interdependently. Martial arts start with all three. Those less open to one leaves them with but two.

Budo is more mind and spirit discipline than body I would say. Spiritual does not depend on the physical, ask any yogi.

Spirit rules as it is you. Unifying the three is Aikido.

So once again from my view you have it backwards. There you are, two diverse views.

I demonstrate this fact regularly thank you.

When a person trains the body in movement it gets the body used to it and all the body cell memory. Meanwhile the mind is also getting used to it and meanwhile spirit is feeling and overseeing it.

Once the body is used to all the various movements then when movement is incorrect it's because of the mind or spirit. All corrections then lie with those two. They thus change the body and correct the body not the other way around.

Spirit and mind(unfortunately in some cases) affect all things in your life and in the physical surroundings so hardly anything to do with ghosts. What does your body on it's own affect? Not much at all.

Peace.G.

David Orange
05-29-2012, 04:29 PM
I think your statements there underline our difference of opinion. Does that make mine wrong?

That we differ does not make you wrong. It's the incorrectness of what you say that makes you wrong. ha ha!

Without spirit the body is dead. Without mind it's usually but a vegetable. So let's not get things backward shall we. They work interdependently. Martial arts start with all three. Those less open to one leaves them with but two.

No, they still have all three, but in budo terms all three are useless.

Budo is more mind and spirit discipline than body I would say. Spiritual does not depend on the physical, ask any yogi.

I know you would say that, but it, again, would be in fundamental error. Budo trains the body to reach the mind and spirit, which cannot be touched in any other way. And ask a yogi? You mean someone who does yoga?

Don't forget that yoga means "the yoke" as in a harness for work. Its ultimate aim might be to affect the mind and spirit, but it depends on a physical method. If the physical method is baloney, so will be the spiritual results. And if they spirit is deluded, of course, the mind and body will be, too.

Show me a yogi without a body, Graham.

In both yoga and budo, and even in Zen, the training is through the body to the mind and if the physical training is fundamentally wrong, there is no way for the mental/spiritual to be correct.

So, then, how was the experience of training with Shioda?

Looking forward to hearing it.

David

graham christian
05-29-2012, 04:37 PM
Graham, are you, then, saying that you did get on the mat with Shioda?

You went on and on in another thread about how your Sensei was invited as the Guest of Honor at a seminar taught by Gozo Shioda and he had you accompany him.

But when I asked if you actually trained with Shioda, you repeatedly avoided saying yes or no.

Now, if I had ever had the chance to step onto the mat with Gozo Shioda, I would have done whatever it took to feel his technique even once. And I would have considered it one of the great highlights of almost 40 years of aikido.

So...I had to conclude that you did not take the opportunity to experience one of the indisputable world masters of aiki.

If I'm wrong, then please tell us plainly what it was like to train with him.

Thanks.

David

Yes you are wrong, of course you are. You take what I said and somehow translate it into a negative. Thus you must be adding some other understanding.

Once again you appear to me to lack some perspective on the subject being discussed at the time, you know, perspective. I don't know why. Of course it could be that my communication wasn't clear enough for you.

A seminar was the happening. It was a Yoshinkan Seminar. It had schools from all over England and who knows where else doing demonstrations. Yoshinkan demonstrations.

Now the subject was my teacher and who was he and who knew him etc. I had given another of my recollections on said subject. I had also pointed out before how those same yoshinkan folk had borrowed our dojo before when they had a bit of trouble with a certain Japanese teacher. So I was giving a scene, a relationship my teacher had with that school and it's teachers. They held him in high regard was the point. In fact when they had that certain trouble at that time they came to him for protection.

Now, as a mark of respect they invited him to come 'as a viewing guest' along with many other 'dignitories' and no doubt performers family members.

Now how that equates with him or me (ha, ha, I was just a student) joining in with their demos I don't know.

If I recall afterwards my teacher may have met and exchanged a few niceties with him, no big deal.

Funny thing is that as a student of those times then all I can give is accounts of what happened regarding my teacher and so all I saw was different Aikidoka, teachers from various organizations visiting him, knowing he had no affiliations, yet always coming to him for advice or technical correction in Aikido.

But there again I could of course have taken off my jacket revealing my superman costume and leapt onto the mat uninvited just to get a feel. Ha, ha.

Peace.G.

David Orange
05-29-2012, 04:43 PM
Yes you are wrong, of course you are. You take what I said and somehow translate it into a negative. Thus you must be adding some other understanding....

(etc., etc., etc., snip)

Oh. I see. Quite a bit different than the way you previously described it. Much different. So different that I understand, now, why you didn't get on the mat with him.

Makes plenty of sense that way.

Would've helped if you'd told it that way the first time, when you made it sound as if your teacher was a kind of "guest of honor" and you and he were up in the limelight.

This version makes much more sense.

Thanks.

David

David Orange
05-29-2012, 04:45 PM
But there again I could of course have taken off my jacket revealing my superman costume and leapt onto the mat uninvited just to get a feel. Ha, ha.

Peace.G.

I would have (except that I don't wear a Superman costume under my coat).

Well, I wouldn't have leapt out there, but there's no way I would have had Shioda come to town and not done whatever it took to be on the mat with him. In fact, for your teacher not to have done whatever it took is just baffling to me.

Do you wear a hat with your Superman costume, btw?

David

DH
05-29-2012, 04:50 PM
Dan,

No argument here.

a. Point taken, and I'll remember this for future threads. I'd be curious who else you would put on the list, inside or outside of aikido.
b. I left it out on purpose. It would be disingenuous of me to try to describe something I don't understand (never claimed to).
c. I think it is evident that you're not making up the fact that you have lots of students and lots of positive endorsements from those students.
d. As for myself, I've ruled out total BS (based on c).

As for the pushiness thing, I think this particular forum thread has civil and enjoyable. I've learned something and I'm grateful for the well-written posts.

What I'm still withholding judgement on is the claim that this teaching is integral to "real" aikido (or "O-Sensei" aikido) but that almost nobody can teach it or do it. It just seems a bit far-fetched considering all of the great, dedicated teachers out there.

So let me re-direct the discussion. How do you know if someone is doing aikido without IP? In order to make the claim that almost nobody can teach it or do it, you either need to go around challenging everybody (which I highly doubt is what is going on) or you have to judge them based on videos or interacting with their students.

Doesn't IHTBF apply in both directions?

Thanks again for the interesting discussion.

Conrad

Conrad
May I be the first to say thanks for a response in kind. If you notice we are actually listening to each other and considering and not just harping on points?
Thank you also for being among the small group willing to acknowledge the wisdom of listening to the Assessment of over a thousand teachers who are voting with their feet. As I said, I cannot possibly do justice to how jaded some of these shihan are, and their incredible wealth of experience, who by no stretch of ANYONES imagination is going to be deluded. Talk about hard cases!! And many were actually against me...before becoming my students. Trust me...those were NOT fun days. Here is a quote from a Shihan at the start of a seminar. We have never met.
Me "Any questions before we begin?"
Shihan "Yes." Who the hell are you, what is this bullshit, and why should I care."
That....was the start of a seminar.
Ya....I deluded him :hypno:
He is an avid and staunch supporter who has trained with me for years now and is teaching it.

The work and was it Ueshiba's work?
So here we have a body of work that people don't know.
They were unable to explain it anywhere I have read, and they were unable to translate it.
That work?
Is a staple in Koryu, Daito ryu and the Internal Chinese arts. In fact in many places he was actually quoting them.
Here is a question.
If everyone knows this Conrad? Why could they not explain it, or translate it or do it? It remained a mystery until early last year when Chris Li ( another student of mine) started to re-read Ueshiba's words in their original Japanese (mind you, I never read them before) And there he was, all but quiting me, and many other established internal principles.

You asked how we know it's not there?
Most telling
They cannot explain or teach it.
Next, it is the way they move. A connected body actually moves and functions different, and as it moves against resistance certain things happen, others do NOT happen. Knowing what those things are, can appear to be like speaking in code. However, as we teach people, they in turn go back and freak out watching so many of the greats and seeing all the failures as well. The funniest one was an extremely high level Aikikai shihan who is in charge of countries...who said to me "Oh my God ...my students are all a mess!! Why did't I see it? Its my faults. I have to fix everyone!"
Others stand there stunned at what it feels like and they simply want to change.

Again please understand that no one...least of all me, is claiming proprietary knowledge. Yes we each have our own training regimens and ways to get people to do it. SOme of those gel better with some people, others like other methods. But no one...NO ONE..is all full of themselves over this work. Instead we are all fans of it. I may be father along the path than many, but there is a crowd up ahead of me!!

The real trick is finding someone who can show you methods that work and has students that have power. Then you know you may be getting involved in a method moving you forward. There are certain teachers out there claiming to teach this stuff and they have no language for it, and no real models to follow. How is that really going to help?
I have to go train
More later
Dan

Gary David
05-29-2012, 05:05 PM
I did! Sorry, that was my poor attempt at humor.

I shouldn't have said "poisoning." I just meant that, whether our message is right or wrong, tone of response affects how the message is received and that we then are stuck with dealing with that too. This isn't to say speaking gently to folks is always the best response either. It was an aside I probably shouldn't have entered into.
What I was trying to point to is just the idea that in order for some conversations to "work" we have to adjust our normal responses. If we don't care if the other person accepts our understanding, then it doesn't matter.
Take care,
Matt.

Matt
There are many ways to tell someone they are full of it....and I read that in to many of the comments here from those who want no part of Dan or what he is providing. Face to face when talking to someone you can tell from the tone, from body language, facial expression and the like what is real and what is not. On here, like other sites on the internet, you are not face to face......but you can tell by the choice of words, how they are put together, and such....what the true meanings are..... What I perceive in many is ...."you don't know what you are talking about........I know what I am doing and I learned it directly from my teacher who is........I am already doing this...you can't teach me anything I don't already know.....I am good at this so....what do I need you for........" Mostly for me this kind of responses mean something more like "..I have placed so much into what I am now.....I can't afford to change directions now...." These are not rude and unfriendly comments to you? Isn't this approach unacceptable also?

How I cam to this view, I am still working and received around 130 work related email last week. This is normal. While many of them are just informational, a large number require responses, some put you in the middle of situations...all of that. You learn to understand what is mean as well as what is said...and you learn to be very careful on how you respond...or start email strings

As for my comments about not living long enough to get very good at what Dan is offering..... I'll be 70 in about a month...I see this, knowing what little I know now...as a long term effort.....10, 15, 20 years.... add in the other components....along with living life in general.....puts a premium on your time. And I am trying to work in other stuff from another very close friend of mine who is on a level with Dan in his own way. I am happy with my journey so far, but know there is more that can be added..

The lost for me with these folks is the lost in time.......what if they discover 20 years from now that maybe there was something to all of this IP stuff...wow...they have lost 20 years...... If you check it out and diceide it is not for you...at least you know that you didn't miss the opportunity.....

Gary

Gary David
05-29-2012, 05:21 PM
Well, I wouldn't have leapt out there, but there's no way I would have had Shioda come to town and not done whatever it took to be on the mat with him. In fact, for your teacher not to have done whatever it took is just baffling to me.

Do you wear a hat with your Superman costume, btw?

David

David
In 1983 Shioda came to the Norwalk area here near where I live. He was sponsored by either a Japanese American organization or the associated Kendo/Aikido club.. He came to conduct a small class at the location where the combined Kendo and Aikido club worked out.. Our dojo had friends in both groups and we were invited over. There were no more than about 30 individuals in the small training area and we all got hands on him. First impression....so small......second...what a gentleman he was, both in his manner and his demonstrating on us locals. He had 2 young guys with him and he tossed them around quite easily.

As for my feeling of him...of course I was not going to test him.....but he did tenchi nage on me...was under me to start with of course and I didn't feel the movement until I was already going backwards. He is one of the those I said previously that I had felt something in who had since passed on.

I think I still have the flyer signed by one of his deshi...if I can find it I will post it.

Gary

graham christian
05-29-2012, 05:27 PM
I'll cut to the chase here shall I.

Zen. I have informed how I started Aikido and it was called Zen Shin Kan Aikido. Emphasis....spirit.

Most conducive method.....Ki Aikido...shin shin toitsu. Overall purpose.....Harmony. Overall policy.......Effectiveness.

So, similar to Ki Aikido with emphasis on immovable mind and effectiveness.

Everything I have heard Dan say or any one else to do with I/P with regards to 'stopping' or showing how ineffective much Aikido is against it I witnessed as standard procedure by my teacher years ago. Much to my bemusement at the time.

I learned that doing such things eventually is easy hence personally not being impressed by such stories or even realities. Note I said personally. I do not consider it a thing to shout about and so this is the first time I've said it.

Being somewhat of a specialist therefor in the spiritual side and much to my amazement it seems effective spiritual side don't exist in manys minds or experience I choose to inform people that is is and can be so don't give up on your path.

Finding the ways of Aikido as a perfect vehicle for effective spiritual pursuit then for me there is plenty to say.

Thus there are many things I don't say for by listening to the responses of those who compare my way without any reality on it cannot but seem strange or amusing to me. I translate. I translate spiritual into mental and physical actions and in this way those who have experienced what I do find the difference and how effective and powerful spiritual concepts actually are.

You cannot get more humble than complete non-resistance thus humility in action and the surprise of how powerful that is. You cannot get more loving than compassion and universal or unconditional love. Thus the surprise of just how effective and powerful they are too. All such things can be demonstrated through the vehicle of Aikido because of the great insight of Ueshiba. A great discipline, the ultimate budo.

Where others may call out to a student 'fight' I would be calling out something else, to great effect.

My way is spiritual emphasis and it's very good and effective and life changing. Hope your way is as well.

Peace.G.

graham christian
05-29-2012, 05:29 PM
I would have (except that I don't wear a Superman costume under my coat).

Well, I wouldn't have leapt out there, but there's no way I would have had Shioda come to town and not done whatever it took to be on the mat with him. In fact, for your teacher not to have done whatever it took is just baffling to me.

Do you wear a hat with your Superman costume, btw?

David

You have to reach a certain level first.

Peace.G.

Gerardo Torres
05-29-2012, 05:34 PM
Yikes! :crazy: It is at times like this that I'm glad I'm a simple and humble engineer :cool:. I might not have the philosophical chops or prose (or the time/inclination) to engage in the type of revolving discussions so common here, but one thing I'm more prone to do is apply the good ol' Scientific Method to a problem:

1. Start with a question. For example, "How does this work?", or "am I doing what I think I am doing?"
2. Gather data. Read, research, go out, meet people, ask questions, etc. Aikiweb and Aiki News can be very helpful tools.
3. Formulate a hypothesis. For example, "I already do that", or "Damn, I suck".
4. Experiment. Test your hypothesis. This is the really fun part. Be honest, no "cherry picking" of facts!
5. Conclusion/Theory. You might not like it, but that's beside the point. Be honest and mature about it.
6. Oh wait, somebody has a better experiment and theory based on more/better data, and it disproves your theory? Well, it is your due diligence (ahem) to either change your theory or disprove theirs.

Done. You might have to repeat the process or reformulate some steps, but hopefully you have now taken a step towards progress. Less fence-sitting (which seems to be the permanent state of some people here), endless philosophizing, arguing for the sake of arguing, or potentially leading others astray in the process (a terrible legacy if you ask me). Less poetic license, rhetoric, or free interpretation of facts. Less personal issues, politics, delusions, or ego getting in the way of research. Heck if it wasn't for this line of thinking we'd still be sitting in a cave mulling about whether rocks were edible, or we wouldn't have Aikido considering O Sensei was a voracious scholar and researcher (imagine him dwelling in a state of complacency, never going out to meet Takeda).

I think the same process (even though it's empirically bound) can be applied to matters related to spirituality in Aikido. For example I might ask, can the spiritual side of Aikido be its own exclusive thing? Or, does it have value on its own? My current position is that if you disassociate the martial context from what O Sensei said, most of his words are nothing but a bunch of platitudes -- things that are neither original or have particular universal value. Most of his doka and other words carry correct meaning only when associated with the model of Budo that he studied and trained and made him stand out as a Budoka.

5-6 easy steps, people. Guaranteed to save you precious time. Try it! :D

Chris Parkerson
05-29-2012, 06:04 PM
Folks
This has gone on way to long........

REMEMBER....... you can replace Dan's name with number of others and get a start at this......

THOUGH in the end, for those of you that won't come and take a chance....but continue to carp.......I will refer to a quote from an old movie "Gone With the Wind"

Rhett Butler: Frankly, my dear, I don't give a damn.
[Rhett walks off into the fog]

have a good day......
Gary

That was Eloquent Gary. Moe and I are biting at the bit to fly out and train with Dan when he comes to Orange county. Moe needs to know early so he can plan for it. How can we get approval to get enrolled?

Chris

graham christian
05-29-2012, 06:34 PM
Yikes! :crazy: It is at times like this that I'm glad I'm a simple and humble engineer :cool:. I might not have the philosophical chops or prose (or the time/inclination) to engage in the type of revolving discussions so common here, but one thing I'm more prone to do is apply the good ol' Scientific Method to a problem:

1. Start with a question. For example, "How does this work?", or "am I doing what I think I am doing?"
2. Gather data. Read, research, go out, meet people, ask questions, etc. Aikiweb and Aiki News can be very helpful tools.
3. Formulate a hypothesis. For example, "I already do that", or "Damn, I suck".
4. Experiment. Test your hypothesis. This is the really fun part. Be honest, no "cherry picking" of facts!
5. Conclusion/Theory. You might not like it, but that's beside the point. Be honest and mature about it.
6. Oh wait, somebody has a better experiment and theory based on more/better data, and it disproves your theory? Well, it is your due diligence (ahem) to either change your theory or disprove theirs.

Done. You might have to repeat the process or reformulate some steps, but hopefully you have now taken a step towards progress. Less fence-sitting (which seems to be the permanent state of some people here), endless philosophizing, arguing for the sake of arguing, or potentially leading others astray in the process (a terrible legacy if you ask me). Less poetic license, rhetoric, or free interpretation of facts. Less personal issues, politics, delusions, or ego getting in the way of research. Heck if it wasn't for this line of thinking we'd still be sitting in a cave mulling about whether rocks were edible, or we wouldn't have Aikido considering O Sensei was a voracious scholar and researcher (imagine him dwelling in a state of complacency, never going out to meet Takeda).

I think the same process (even though it's empirically bound) can be applied to matters related to spirituality in Aikido. For example I might ask, can the spiritual side of Aikido be its own exclusive thing? Or, does it have value on its own? My current position is that if you disassociate the martial context from what O Sensei said, most of his words are nothing but a bunch of platitudes -- things that are neither original or have particular universal value. Most of his doka and other words carry correct meaning only when associated with the model of Budo that he studied and trained and made him stand out as a Budoka.

5-6 easy steps, people. Guaranteed to save you precious time. Try it! :D

So that's empirical.....aha. 5-6 easy steps. Gerardo, that's good. That's what I expect most dedicated folk do.

You can indeed apply it to the spiritual, that's my whole point. So as a bit of information for you, yes you can. Then you find there are no platitudes. Only if you want to of course.

Then you also find 'oh my God, Ueshiba was being quite literal'....

Peace.G.

Conrad Gus
05-29-2012, 06:57 PM
Conrad
May I be the first to say thanks for a response in kind. If you notice we are actually listening to each other and considering and not just harping on points?
Thank you also for being among the small group willing to acknowledge the wisdom of listening to the Assessment of over a thousand teachers who are voting with their feet. As I said, I cannot possibly do justice to how jaded some of these shihan are, and their incredible wealth of experience, who by no stretch of ANYONES imagination is going to be deluded. Talk about hard cases!! And many were actually against me...before becoming my students. Trust me...those were NOT fun days. Here is a quote from a Shihan at the start of a seminar. We have never met.
Me "Any questions before we begin?"
Shihan "Yes." Who the hell are you, what is this bullshit, and why should I care."
That....was the start of a seminar.
Ya....I deluded him :hypno:
He is an avid and staunch supporter who has trained with me for years now and is teaching it.

The work and was it Ueshiba's work?
So here we have a body of work that people don't know.
They were unable to explain it anywhere I have read, and they were unable to translate it.
That work?
Is a staple in Koryu, Daito ryu and the Internal Chinese arts. In fact in many places he was actually quoting them.
Here is a question.
If everyone knows this Conrad? Why could they not explain it, or translate it or do it? It remained a mystery until early last year when Chris Li ( another student of mine) started to re-read Ueshiba's words in their original Japanese (mind you, I never read them before) And there he was, all but quiting me, and many other established internal principles.

You asked how we know it's not there?
Most telling
They cannot explain or teach it.
Next, it is the way they move. A connected body actually moves and functions different, and as it moves against resistance certain things happen, others do NOT happen. Knowing what those things are, can appear to be like speaking in code. However, as we teach people, they in turn go back and freak out watching so many of the greats and seeing all the failures as well. The funniest one was an extremely high level Aikikai shihan who is in charge of countries...who said to me "Oh my God ...my students are all a mess!! Why did't I see it? Its my faults. I have to fix everyone!"
Others stand there stunned at what it feels like and they simply want to change.

Again please understand that no one...least of all me, is claiming proprietary knowledge. Yes we each have our own training regimens and ways to get people to do it. SOme of those gel better with some people, others like other methods. But no one...NO ONE..is all full of themselves over this work. Instead we are all fans of it. I may be father along the path than many, but there is a crowd up ahead of me!!

The real trick is finding someone who can show you methods that work and has students that have power. Then you know you may be getting involved in a method moving you forward. There are certain teachers out there claiming to teach this stuff and they have no language for it, and no real models to follow. How is that really going to help?
I have to go train
More later
Dan

Dan,

I'm guessing you won't reveal the names of these shihans out of respect for their privacy, but I have to admit these are good stories and I'm curious about the identities!

It seems like you are saying you can tell by watching someone (youtube or whatever) that they are doing technique without IP. I can understand how that could work. If a person has felt it and can do it then they might know how to recognize the lack of it, even if it is subtle.

So in theory, you might not be able to teach IP with a video (reasonable enough), but you could comment on an existing video of someone and explain how you know that the person is not using IP. That would be interesting to me because I could start to conceptualize what you are talking about, at least in a rough way. I have to admit that the chinese theory-based explanations are not comprehensible to someone without a reference point.

Of course, it wouldn't be very gracious to grab random videos of top shihans and tear them apart in public. It would have to be on a voluntary basis. Now where is that video of my last test . . . :D On second thought, I'll take the critique in private some day.

You know what would be really useful? A video of someone doing the same technique with IP and without IP. A person could observe the differences and get some idea of where they come from. Is it possible to do the same exact technique with and without IP? I'm guessing adding IP would also change the technique. Anyway, I'm talking about stuff I don't understand, so I'll shut up.

Cheers,

Conrad

Gary David
05-29-2012, 07:01 PM
That was Eloquent Gary. Moe and I are biting at the bit to fly out and train with Dan when he comes to Orange county. Moe needs to know early so he can plan for it. How can we get approval to get enrolled?

Chris

Chris
Contact Dan directly through the email links he lists in the Events Listings: Non-Aikido Martial Traditions were it is suggested that inquiries be sent....which should be:

dojoseminars@gmail.com

Give it a shot.....

Gary

graham christian
05-29-2012, 07:06 PM
What is your agenda, Graham?

It seems you want to be the standard bearer for an art in which you have pretty much zilch for experience.

If not that, then what?

Best to you, bud

David

Missed this gem. Good first question though. Shame about the following statement.

A few agendas I would say as I have already said, everyone has them.

One would be to seek and find others views and how they see things aikido related.

One would be to share with others of similar reality to mine. (not so easy, ha, ha.)

One would be to promote and encourage those who inherently feel or believe that Aikido is and can be a spiritual path.

As it turns out one comes to be to show that no matter how real the spiritual aspects are to you you will get plenty trying to put you down so don't worry about it. 'Forgive them they know not what they say' ha, ha.'

One is to promote the idea that Aikido is indeed all about harmonious action and effective results without harm or damage. A budo of love.

There's a few for you.

Standard bearer?.....ha, ha. Very quaint. I don't think or act in such terms.

Peace G.

Gary David
05-29-2012, 07:07 PM
Dan,

You know what would be really useful? A video of someone doing the same technique with IP and without IP. A person could observe the differences and get some idea of where they come from. Is it possible to do the same exact technique with and without IP? I'm guessing adding IP would also change the technique. Anyway, I'm talking about stuff I don't understand, so I'll shut up.

Cheers,

Conrad

Conrad
Dan is in the Seattle area 3 or four times a year...he has been at George Ledyeard's dojo any number of times. Just go down and take part....saves the video production and crew costs......and it is real time with you feeling the differences.
Gary.

Chris Parkerson
05-29-2012, 07:25 PM
Chris
Contact Dan directly through the email links he lists in the Events Listings: Non-Aikido Martial Traditions were it is suggested that inquiries be sent....which should be:

dojoseminars@gmail.com

Give it a shot.....

Gary

Thanks Gary.

mathewjgano
05-29-2012, 07:45 PM
Gary,
I agree. Very good points. I'm relatively new to to the game, but I can see incremental progress and am hopeful for the future.
Take care,
Matt

Gary David
05-29-2012, 07:48 PM
Talking to the idea of agendas



One would be to share with others of similar reality to mine. (not so easy, ha, ha.)

One would be to promote and encourage those who inherently feel or believe that Aikido is and can be a spiritual path.

Graham I think you are going to have to create your own others and those.....or find another route to them.

As it turns out one comes to be to show that no matter how real the spiritual aspects are to you you will get plenty trying to put you down so don't worry about it. 'Forgive them they know not what they say' ha, ha.'

Graham This sounds to me with the way it is written like (again) yours is the true understanding...and to forgive us because we are lost....in the wilderness.....can you see how this might seen by others?

One is to promote the idea that Aikido is indeed all about harmonious action and effective results without harm or damage. A budo of love.

Graham I think the difference here is with the results ..most of us would like to see the ending without harm or damage......I just don't think this is possible every time.

Standard bearer?.....ha, ha. Very quaint. I don't think or act in such terms.

Graham I think that I have called you the avatar ....as for being the standard bearer......to me it looks like you have been placed in this position by many of those who step up to defend you. You know how truth goes...perceived and actual.....actual always plays catchup to perceived,

Peace G.

and peace be with you. Good luck on your journey and as one old movie cowboy used to say....."happy Trails"

Gary

graham christian
05-29-2012, 07:51 PM
The problem is that there is no problem. Part of Aikido training is not blaming others for our actions. Your reasoning, David, is like blaming a woman wearing a skirt for being raped. Our responses and actions reflect on those who make them not on those who supposedly provoke them.

Inner power is defined differently for different people. I think it is a combination and blending of the 2 extremes of the 2 camps that appear on this thread. The spirituality comes from the humility of taking responsibility and letting others be on their own path.

Early on I read that Jun asked us not to get into a discussion about who was better than others.

On another note: when the 220 man pushes against you is your stance natural or in hamni?

From the Dalia Lama this morning: The many factors which divide us are actually much more superficial than those we share.

I like this Mary very much.

Also that the problem is there is no problem. Excellent. It's quite amazing how that is one thing many can't tolerate so they have to make one or try to make someone one.

When posts I make turn into me as the subject I always find that aspect fascinating and amusing as it's not about me it's about views gained.

So many expert opinions on me ha, ha, I'm famous.

It's all good. The other facet I find amazing is the continued attempts to tell me how I am, how I should be, what I should do, who I should meet, wow! Such caring folk.

Some believe I should be out there selling my way.

No, I believe that's not necessary, organic, or my way of doing things. It's that simple really.

I like and specialize in translating into practice the spiritual sources of the art, that's my way. Thus finding that all spiritual principles and virtues do certain things come to realize what Ueshiba was talking about. For instance they all blend in their various ways hence when I see an Aikido style which emphasizes this I like it and see why.

Myself, I have my own developed way. My advanced students will go on to teach it in their own personal way and so on. So for me no selling needed. No touring doing shows needed. No have to meet so and so needed. No corporate thinking needed.

Those of negative thought towards me are welcome to have them for it's their mind not mine.

All I know is my way works, is good and is beneficial. People come to learn, they improve, they achieve.

Ha, ha, there is no problem.

Peace.G.

Mary Eastland
05-29-2012, 07:58 PM
The attempts to shut people down that can do what they do in Aikido is obvious. Maybe a threat is perceived. The response seems over the top to me.

graham christian
05-29-2012, 08:13 PM
Talking to the idea of agendas

Graham I think you are going to have to create your own others and those.....or find another route to them.

Graham This sounds to me with the way it is written like (again) yours is the true understanding...and to forgive us because we are lost....in the wilderness.....can you see how this might seen by others?

Graham I think the difference here is with the results ..most of us would like to see the ending without harm or damage......I just don't think this is possible every time.

Graham I think that I have called you the avatar ....as for being the standard bearer......to me it looks like you have been placed in this position by many of those who step up to defend you. You know how truth goes...perceived and actual.....actual always plays catchup to perceived,

and peace be with you. Good luck on your journey and as one old movie cowboy used to say....."happy Trails"

Gary

Hi Gary, I don't think I need another route really. I notice some may not reply directly but then see new threads bringing up and discussing things I mention like enlightenment etc. It's all good.

Not sure about like to see the ending bit or why or if you really do even. I say this because it appears most already have a set ending in mind and so if they see anything different may not understand it, as in my videos.

The one that comes across as 'superior understanding' may well be. I apologize not. For it is not superior just true. People mentioning spiritual tend to get ridiculed due to the commonly held beliefs that it equals ineffective and various other things. Just a fact. Come across as it may I understand this phenomenon and why.

I don't think it's so much defend me Gary, it's usually more to do with pointing out bad behaviour or the unwarranted negativity.

I saw one on this thread where a person asked Jun to ban someone. That's like schoolboy behaviour.

In other words I say its not good, I am talking about it rather than defending the person it was aimed at.

Peace.G.

Anthony Loeppert
05-29-2012, 08:17 PM
The attempts to shut people down that can do what they do in Aikido is obvious. Maybe a threat is perceived. The response seems over the top to me.

Hilarious! Mary, I will share something with you: I have only placed two people on my ignore list (many months ago) on this site. You and Graham. Neither are on it now after personal reflection. I'm reconsidering my decision on you.
Oh no! I'm threatened! OR just tired of reading BS.

Chris Parkerson
05-29-2012, 08:20 PM
An interesting formula:

Freedom versus Form
Too much form leads to Tyranny
Too much freedom leads to anarchy

Another witty thought:
If something has substance, it need not be defended.

And finally:
Be careful when you fight the monsters, lest you become one.
Friedrich Nietzsche

graham christian
05-29-2012, 08:29 PM
The attempts to shut people down that can do what they do in Aikido is obvious. Maybe a threat is perceived. The response seems over the top to me.

Yes it has seemed like that to me too many a time. Agendas?

Being against another is being against self. Another spiritual rule. Thus any complaint is as to why they are against themselves so much.

Peace.G.

graham christian
05-29-2012, 08:33 PM
An interesting formula:

Freedom versus Form
Too much form leads to Tyranny
Too much freedom leads to anarchy

Another witty thought:
If something has substance, it need not be defended.

And finally:
Be careful when you fight the monsters, lest you become one.
Friedrich Nietzsche

Sankyo very much.

Anthony Loeppert
05-29-2012, 08:35 PM
An interesting formula:
Freedom versus Form
Too much form leads to Tyranny
Too much freedom leads to anarchy


I'm a Yoshinkan practitioner. Form is very important to us. However the form is not a dictator, but a teacher. My teacher's teacher has mentioned that (paraphrasing) the form cleans the (wine) glass. What you pour into it is yourself. Would you drink from a dirty glass? Would you pour something valuable (yourself) into a dirty glass?

Gary David
05-29-2012, 08:46 PM
.

The one that comes across as 'superior understanding' may well be. I apologize not. For it is not superior just true. People mentioning spiritual tend to get ridiculed due to the commonly held beliefs that it equals ineffective and various other things. Just a fact. Come across as it may I understand this phenomenon and why.

Graham You are free to follow your course..... I see you as having one of many views on the truth not the one truth....... That is what sets you apart from me

I don't think it's so much defend me Gary, it's usually more to do with pointing out bad behaviour or the unwarranted negativity.

Graham Bad behavior is not one sided here........

I saw one on this thread where a person asked Jun to ban someone. That's like schoolboy behaviour.

Graham This is big time stuff here.....any man in this country is at the effect of any woman who decides to make statements like this that lead to follow on statements that can spiral out of control and can cause immeasurable damage to a man's life. Even if cleared it leaves a stain. I doubt that you could find any American male making statements about women on this forum that carry the same accusatory effects as the one directed at a male earlier in this thread.

Peace.G

and peace be with you.......

Gary

Chris Parkerson
05-29-2012, 09:02 PM
I'm a Yoshinkan practitioner. Form is very important to us. However the form is not a dictator, but a teacher. My teacher's teacher has mentioned that (paraphrasing) the form cleans the (wine) glass. What you pour into it is yourself. Would you drink from a dirty glass? Would you pour something valuable (yourself) into a dirty glass?

I Love that analogy.

Puha

Chris

hughrbeyer
05-29-2012, 10:29 PM
In budo, claims have to be proven with ability, or they are simply BS. Or, as in the case of Ueshiba's many references to Chinese concepts, you have to have documentation.

Incidentally, "prove it" doesn't have to happen by knocking someone out in a cage or putting them into a submission hold or kicking their teeth in. There's lots of ways of playing on the mat which allow you to see who has control and who doesn't.

Ellis Amdur has a description on pushing on someone--who he doesn't name, but having had exactly the same experience, I think I know--and feeling that he not only was having no effect on the other guy, but he was simply pushing himself off balance. That was all the test it took to know that the guy had something he didn't have.

David Orange
05-29-2012, 11:21 PM
David
In 1983 Shioda came to the Norwalk area here near where I live....

...of course I was not going to test him.....but he did tenchi nage on me...was under me to start with of course and I didn't feel the movement until I was already going backwards. He is one of the those I said previously that I had felt something in who had since passed on.

I think I still have the flyer signed by one of his deshi...if I can find it I will post it.

Gary

Excellent! You should post on the It Had to be Felt thread, where Robert Mustard talks about Shioda! Add details!

Of course, Shioda was not spiritual at all. Purely physical, you know, but charming, wasn't he? :D

Hey, and happy upcoming birthday! Hitting 70, huh? Do the years between 57 and 70 go very fast, by the way? I should probably get ready somehow...oops. Just got older! :p

Best to you, man!

David

David Orange
05-29-2012, 11:47 PM
Zen. I have informed how I started Aikido and it was called Zen Shin Kan Aikido. Emphasis....spirit.

Are you sure the "Zen Shin" referred to Zen as in Buddhism? It could mean "All New." From what I've seen of your teaching, that makes more sense. Long ago, I read an article by an expert who explained that the "dan" in shodan, nidan, etc. meant "man." When you reached shodan, he said, you are "first man." At nidan, you become "second man." Problem was, the "dan" meaning "man" is written with a different character entirely than shodan, nidan, etc. It means "level" or "floor," as in "first floor," "second floor," etc.

Who created the Zen Shin Kan? What did they split off from to create it? Who taught them?

Most conducive method.....Ki Aikido...shin shin toitsu. Overall purpose.....Harmony. Overall policy.......Effectiveness.

So, similar to Ki Aikido with emphasis on immovable mind and effectiveness.

That second bit, there...bit unclear...sounds like being casual, but could be method of disguising actual meaning. What are you trying to say? Or are you just trying to imply with careful omission of actual meaning?

Everything I have heard Dan say or any one else to do with I/P with regards to 'stopping' or showing how ineffective much Aikido is against it I witnessed as standard procedure by my teacher years ago. Much to my bemusement at the time.

I learned that doing such things eventually is easy hence personally not being impressed by such stories or even realities. Note I said personally. I do not consider it a thing to shout about and so this is the first time I've said it.

Sure, Graham. And whose aikido did your teacher "stop"? Did he go up to the Hut and stop Henry Ellis? See, that is real aikido and I doubt your teacher ever met people on the level of those at the Hut. So....anyone can beat a paper samurai...unless they're just really, really pathetic....

Being somewhat of a specialist therefor in the spiritual side and much to my amazement it seems effective spiritual side don't exist in manys minds or experience I choose to inform people that is is and can be so don't give up on your path.

Again....your "spirituality" has no resemblance to that of real aikido masters like Shioda, Mochizuki or Ueshiba, himself, which was much closer to the spirituality of judo and men like Kano, Toku, Mifune and other great masters. The "spirituality" and "philosophy" of Japan is glamorous, though, to the uninitiated Westerner, and many try to copy the surface image of it without understanding that it can only be expressed and developed through physical training.

...those who compare my way without any reality on it cannot but seem strange or amusing to me.

Just as your claim to practice aikido is very strange to those who have met and trained with real masters of the real art. You claim "without any reality on" aikido. People notice and comment. It seems strange, but definitely not amusing.

David Orange
05-29-2012, 11:59 PM
The attempts to shut people down that can do what they do in Aikido is obvious. Maybe a threat is perceived. The response seems over the top to me.

The only threat I perceive (in both you and Graham) is to the poor, pathetic souls seeking some kind of enlightenment, hearing of Morihei Ueshiba's ability and finding very poor mimics in black belts and hakama who not only cannot do what the average sankyu of thirty years ago could do but are sweating blood to redefine aikido not as what Morihei did but as the vapid space dance most commonly advertised these days as "aikido".

But your responses definitely reflect a fear of something. I think it's "fear of being found out."

Good luck with that.

(It will take longer if you stop posting vids, BTW.)

David Orange
05-30-2012, 12:06 AM
People mentioning spiritual tend to get ridiculed due to the commonly held beliefs that it equals ineffective and various other things.

Most of the physically and technically excellent judo, karate and aikido people I have known are highly spiritual. Mochizuki was. Shioda was.

So it's not just "people mentioning spiritual" who get ridiculed. It's the people "mentioning spiritual" in a way that experienced people can instantly recognize as way off the point and usually a "homemade" kind of spirituality--Zen teachers who never trained in Zen, etc.

I don't think it's so much defend me Gary, it's usually more to do with pointing out bad behaviour or the unwarranted negativity.

Yeah. To paraphrase a "master," it's not negativity: it's just true.

I saw one on this thread where a person asked Jun to ban someone. That's like schoolboy behavior.

A spiritual guy like you shouldn't need the passive-aggressiveness, Graham. The comment was on this thread and it was made by me. In response to a scurrilous statement about me. And you, in your "sly" passive-aggressiveness carry it a bit further by calling me "boy". But you don't mind at all the low-brow slander against me...

You're transparent, dude. It's weaselly. Depedestalize yourself and get real.

David Orange
05-30-2012, 01:28 AM
Yes it has seemed like that to me too many a time. Agendas?

Being against another is being against self. Another spiritual rule. Thus any complaint is as to why they are against themselves so much.

Peace.G.

I guess I really shouldn't feel so insulted by Mary's remark. She was just trying to protect you. Of course, she views you as a rape victim in a short skirt....

At least she didn't accuse me of actually raping you....

Still...why bring in a sexual analogy at all on a forum like this?

Mary...I said earlier that you seem to be afraid of "being found out," but here, you've exposed yourself and shown us what you're really like underneath. See?

If this were aikido randori, what you did would be easily recognized as a very cheap shot.

Again...agenda????

David

mrlizard123
05-30-2012, 04:07 AM
Eh. You don't control the truth, and you can't protect people from falsehood. You have to not treat them as children and let them protect themselves. It's not your responsibility to keep people from barking their shins and scraping their knees (and a damn good thing, too, because you have no power to do so).

Sorry for the delayed response, been training...

No one said I could control truth, that would be something of a burden... but I think you can go some way to help people decide between truth and falsehood by commenting on it.

People can be allowed to protect themselves and as adults they should, though they have better chances when they're informed which is probably why they're doing looking around on the internet; my point was that people coming to the site looking for information without sufficient experience are analagous to children, not in maturity but simply in their understanding and ability to sift wheat from chaff in a new field.

The point has been made repeatedly; if people wished to do anything they wanted and say that it fulfils them, be it flower arranging or hitting themselves over the head with sticks more power to them. When people start saying things like "doing what I do produces X result" be that, the ability to fly, breathe under water, outrun a tiger etc. people with experience with flying, underwater activities or tigers might feel that the information provided is misleading to people who don't know better and feel that there is benefit in refuting it for those who do not have any experience.

Peer review is a reasonably good thing.

If I were to go on another site on another topic, say one on slimming perhaps, and post that I had an effective weight loss programme which allowed you to eat as many pies as you liked provided you drink an 8oz. glass of water with each I imagine there would be people who would view it with a variety of reactions and some would likely post their responses.

Some would dismiss it as nonsense, some would ask for explanation on how it worked, some would wish to see proof, some would declare it as being irresponsible to suggest such a method to people looking to achieve the goal of slimming...

What's a novice slimmer who likes pies (and who doesn't like pies?!) to do? I'd suggest the best method would be investigation, probably starting with the information that seemed to be supported by those with experience in the field.

If several qualified dieticians pointed out that there was no way this could work and no evidence to support it and I had a video of me eating a pie but I looked a bit portly or maybe a pie-maker pointed out that I wasn't eating pies at all they were lettuce leaves I'd expect people reading/viewing to knock it down their list of possible methods to try.

If however several such qualified people spoke out in support of my pie method, historical record indicated that this method had been previously used successfully over a long period of time and I had reviews from many people who had used this method and seen positive results people might push it higher up their list of things to investigate/test, if they are serious about slimming, but it only works when people with experiences in the fields provide their opinions and perspectives on the subject either supporting or refuting the methods and activities in question.

It's not about controlling truth and falsehood, it's about ensuring that people who are thinking about selecting a method or methods to add to their training are able to select based upon reasonable peer review, such as is possible via the medium of the internet.

Lorel Latorilla
05-30-2012, 05:16 AM
I believe that Dan et. al. are using "internal (not inner) power" to refer to a set of musculoskeletal causes and effects, that has little or nothing to do with one's mental or spiritual state. I could be wrong about that, so hopefully they will correct me if I am -- but I don't think they've claimed the term "inner power", and I'm pretty sure they haven't claimed any spiritual component as such.

Just wanted to add to this. A couple of weeks ago, I almost got into a fight out of anger and discovered that one's mental/emotional state definitely (one's spirit is also intertwined with INTERNAL power but I won't get into that) is involved in musculo-skeletal causes and effects. If you try to observe yourself really really angry, you have a great sensation of power, and this sensation of power essentially comes from tensing (even slightly) the upper back, especially the shoulder area. For internal power, this is no good because tensing that part even slightly and moving in that way pretty much nullifies skills that manipulate energy from both gravity and the ground.

graham christian
05-30-2012, 06:03 AM
Graham You are free to follow your course..... I see you as having one of many views on the truth not the one truth....... That is what sets you apart from me

Graham Bad behavior is not one sided here........

Graham This is big time stuff here.....any man in this country is at the effect of any woman who decides to make statements like this that lead to follow on statements that can spiral out of control and can cause immeasurable damage to a man's life. Even if cleared it leaves a stain. I doubt that you could find any American male making statements about women on this forum that carry the same accusatory effects as the one directed at a male earlier in this thread.

and peace be with you.......

Gary

Bad behaviour is very one sided here as is negativity. Some posters cannot help but say negative things, use put downs of another, continuously. Funny thing is they are the first to complain, usually at great length and complete with even more insults. On the other hand some don't, in fact most don't.

I would even go further and say Aikido and indeed other martial arts have as one of their main rules and functions that of teaching how to be respectful towards others, politeness and good behaviour. That means refraining from insults, put downs, ridicule etc. If one of my students was going around insulting people or bullying or even continually being negative I would stop teaching them. Simple.

It's big time stuff is it? Or only when you want to make a point? You seem to take what a person gave as an analogy, once again pointing out bad behaviour, rather personally. It was not a personal attack. Wow. Some people love playing the victim in order to get others in trouble. Look at yourself not others I say.

Don't go into the gender thing, that's not the issue. It's a behaviour and good manners thing.

Peace.G.

graham christian
05-30-2012, 06:24 AM
Are you sure the "Zen Shin" referred to Zen as in Buddhism? It could mean "All New." From what I've seen of your teaching, that makes more sense. Long ago, I read an article by an expert who explained that the "dan" in shodan, nidan, etc. meant "man." When you reached shodan, he said, you are "first man." At nidan, you become "second man." Problem was, the "dan" meaning "man" is written with a different character entirely than shodan, nidan, etc. It means "level" or "floor," as in "first floor," "second floor," etc.

Who created the Zen Shin Kan? What did they split off from to create it? Who taught them?

That second bit, there...bit unclear...sounds like being casual, but could be method of disguising actual meaning. What are you trying to say? Or are you just trying to imply with careful omission of actual meaning?

Sure, Graham. And whose aikido did your teacher "stop"? Did he go up to the Hut and stop Henry Ellis? See, that is real aikido and I doubt your teacher ever met people on the level of those at the Hut. So....anyone can beat a paper samurai...unless they're just really, really pathetic....

Again....your "spirituality" has no resemblance to that of real aikido masters like Shioda, Mochizuki or Ueshiba, himself, which was much closer to the spirituality of judo and men like Kano, Toku, Mifune and other great masters. The "spirituality" and "philosophy" of Japan is glamorous, though, to the uninitiated Westerner, and many try to copy the surface image of it without understanding that it can only be expressed and developed through physical training.

Just as your claim to practice aikido is very strange to those who have met and trained with real masters of the real art. You claim "without any reality on" aikido. People notice and comment. It seems strange, but definitely not amusing.

Obviously you can't help but question anything I say. Shame. Mmmmmm. I train in Zen Shin Kan by a teacher who promotes zen and you wonder if I know what the zen referred to. Amusing.

Don't see what's unclear on the second bit.

You comment on my spirituality without knowing. Nice that you keep comparing me to masters though.

Peace.G.

graham christian
05-30-2012, 06:35 AM
Most of the physically and technically excellent judo, karate and aikido people I have known are highly spiritual. Mochizuki was. Shioda was.

So it's not just "people mentioning spiritual" who get ridiculed. It's the people "mentioning spiritual" in a way that experienced people can instantly recognize as way off the point and usually a "homemade" kind of spirituality--Zen teachers who never trained in Zen, etc.

Yeah. To paraphrase a "master," it's not negativity: it's just true.

A spiritual guy like you shouldn't need the passive-aggressiveness, Graham. The comment was on this thread and it was made by me. In response to a scurrilous statement about me. And you, in your "sly" passive-aggressiveness carry it a bit further by calling me "boy". But you don't mind at all the low-brow slander against me...

You're transparent, dude. It's weaselly. Depedestalize yourself and get real.

Doesn't matter what the reasoning for doing so is the act of ridiculing and insulting is what is unnecessary, uncalled for, bad behaviour. The act. No excuses. Budo.

Peace.G.

David Orange
05-30-2012, 08:06 AM
Obviously you can't help but question anything I say.

Well, Graham, everything you say and show is completely questionable and your command of the Japanese language is known to be rather lacking. Beginners can swallow whole whatever claim you make, but those with some experience start to smell fish rather quickly.

Shame. Mmmmmm. I train in Zen Shin Kan by a teacher who promotes zen and you wonder if I know what the zen referred to. Amusing.

Right. Again, Zen Shin Kan could mean "All New House".

And if your teacher "promotes Zen" the same way you "promote aikido," of course, there is every reason to question what he's doing. Association with you alone stimulates that question.

Please tell us about Zen, bud. What's your teacher's background in Zen? What are his qualifications to "promote" it? That's probably even more exploitable than aikido, so it seems very, very questionable at best.

You comment on my spirituality without knowing. Nice that you keep comparing me to masters though.

Comparing you to masters? Hardly, pal. I'm measuring you against the established masters. The hat does give you a little extra stature, but I think if we press a little, we'll find it rather mushy up there....:D

Is the hat something your "Zen master" encouraged?

This just gets better and better. Please tell.

David Orange
05-30-2012, 08:21 AM
It's big time stuff is it?

Yes, Graham. In the US, it's like arsenic. We have another little thing called "the race card," which is a dirty tactic generally used only by cowards.


Or only when you want to make a point? You seem to take what a person gave as an analogy, once again pointing out bad behaviour, rather personally.

Don't be just willfully stupid. It was made as a personal attack of a calculated and vicious type. There was no call for it. It was wrong, to begin with. Asking a questionable character to prove his claims has nothing to do with "blaming a woman for being raped because she was wearing a short skirt." And to suggest that it does has no usefulness and no good intent. It's precisely the kind of attitude we very commonly find among people with ineffective aikido. They can't do, so they have to tear down those who can by any means necessary, typically by kuchi-waza, spreading untrue rumors about people, claiming (as some do about Dan) that the person in question will hurt you on the mat and so on. The toughest, most honest aikido I ever met was extremely dangerous for the average person only because it takes serious concentration and technical excellence. The "softest" aikido classes I attended were always where I was most likely to get a cheap shot.

Psychologically, Mary's comment is an attempt at castration, nothing more or less. Good thing mine are brass.

It was not a personal attack. Wow. Some people love playing the victim in order to get others in trouble. Look at yourself not others I say.

You're a victim only if you let the low-life succeed. So now you're saying that the woman who is raped is trying to get the rapist "in trouble". Didn't the rapist do that himself? Mary made a seriously wrong comment and simply showed her true colors. Whatever "trouble" arises from this came in with her. So look at yourself. The bad behavior is in equating our efforts to protect aikido's hard-won reputation for valorous action to "blaming a rape victim". It shows utter lack of character and the refusal to apologize for it shows an attitude of superiority born of having never experienced real struggle.

David Orange
05-30-2012, 08:50 AM
Doesn't matter what the reasoning for doing so is the act of ridiculing and insulting is what is unnecessary, uncalled for, bad behaviour. The act. No excuses. Budo.

Graham....the act of coming on here and lecturing us on everything from aikido to Zen while burrowed in safely behind the keyboard is bad behavior. You get what you pay for and you have bought yourself a boatload.

About twenty years ago, when I was living in Japan but before I became Mochizuki Sensei's uchi deshi, I had a phone conversation with an old training partner in the States. He told me that the organization I had co-incorporated ten years earlier had passed a "regulation" stating that anyone who went to Japan and was promoted by Mochizuki would not be recognized in the US without the approval of the technical director.

I found that so insulting to both myself and Mochizuki Sensei that I got extremely angry. I was EXTREMELY angry: an organization supposedly representing Mochizuki but intending to dispute a rank awarded by Mochizuki? It was mere jealousy that I had the guts to go and train directly with Mochizuki when the technical director wanted to rule while living a cushy life at home. It was utterly disgusting. But I found myself so incredibly angry, I didn't know what to do.

Then I recognized that this anger was a response I had learned in my early days of martial arts training. It was a response to fear. I was so incredibly angry because I was afraid that these people could actually enforce this idiot regulation in all their ego.

So, to overcome the anger, I decided to do something to face my inner fear. I'd read Richard Kim's story about training spear in a graveyard at night to face one's fear of ghosts, so I decided to go to the nearest graveyard and do zazen as long as necessary for the anger to pass.

I walked up the street to a little path that led up the dark, wooded mountain and hiked up the rugged trail alone in the dark. It was about a 20 minute climb to a Zen temple that overlooked the broad valley. I intended to go into the graveyard, but it turned out that the graveyard was inside the temple wall and I found the gate locked. So I sat down in the gate in seize on the concrete foundation pad. And there I sat in the Japanese night, on a mountain in the woods.

In Kim's story, he was in the graveyard with his Sensei and a training partner, each of them alone in a separate part of the cemetery. Kim conquered his fear by continuing to train hard with the spear and after a time, he went to find his friend. When he found him, the man was not training, but staring into the blackness with a look of horror on his face. Then suddenly, the man dropped his training weapon and ran down the trail into the darkness. "The last I heard of him," Kim said, "he was selling umbrellas in Yokohama."

So I expected some horribly frightening experience, but I was determined to face it as Odagiri Ichiun faced his terminal illness: sitting in zazen alone in the dark.

But nothing happened. I sat and sat and was as still as I could be for a long, long time, my knees against the concrete pad, until my anger had completely passed. And then I got up and headed back down the dark mountain trail.

But just as I got to the edge of the dark trail, I heard a bizarre and incredible scream from the trees nearby. It sounded like some strange bird or some animal I could not identify, but I was sure it was a person trying to scare me and no telling how many of them or who they might be. It shocked me and sent a chill through my whole body. I had the powerful urge to run! Of course, I quickly saw that I would probably go right off the mountain if I did that.

Instead, I thought, "Well, I came to face my fear, so let come what will," and I put my mind at my one-point and corrected my posture and walked calmly on as if I were still sitting in zazen.

After I took a few steps, the scream came again, but I had full confidence, now. Whatever it was, I would face it with the help of God.

I just kept my center and walked calmly back down the dark, winding path through the woods and back to my home.

Next time I saw the teacher who had promised to negate a rank given by Mochizuki, he could not move me in any way, even though I didn't do anything to resist him. I'd been in Japan four years by then, training regularly with three sixth dans under Minoru Mochizuki's direction. I was also teaching my own classes at the dojo. The American teacher's body was simply stiff and slow, even though he was not yet fifty years old. He was just a desk worker with a black belt, head of an organization, but not much on budo training. When I attacked, the way he set up his technique, it put me back on balance instead of inducing kuzushi. I didn't resist him: his technique just pushed me into a balanced position and made it impossible for him to throw me. He tried once, then twice and I felt rather embarrassed, worrying that people would think I was trying to make him look bad, so the next time he tried, I went limp and forced myself to remain in position for him to sweep my foot. Even then, he left me with so much balance I had to just fall to keep from looking like I was trying to show him up.

After that, I never did think much about that guy. Last I heard, he was selling aikido somewhere in the southern US.

Kewl.

Gary David
05-30-2012, 09:35 AM
I would even go further and say Aikido and indeed other martial arts have as one of their main rules and functions that of teaching how to be respectful towards others, politeness and good behaviour. That means refraining from insults, put downs, ridicule etc. If one of my students was going around insulting people or bullying or even continually being negative I would stop teaching them. Simple.

Peace.G.

Graham
One last story and I let this drop.... Back in the 80's a fellow came out of no where, much like you, claiming skill and expertize. He was using Aikido as a tool to move on to what he really wanted. Aikido got him entrance into an existing community that could provide him with support. As I recall our dojo was ask to support him by having him in for a Saturday class...this was to present him to a new audience. Well he came and conducted class....he brought his own uke and used them only. He would not let any of us touch him.. I tried to grab a wrist and he pulled it back. His skill was kyu level at best. He has moved on to what he really wanted and seems to be quite successful......his Aikido really isn't any better and he never comes out.

He was there seeking acceptance and confirmation.....but not verification or validation by outside sources. This is the same approach you have taken...seeking confirmation and validation on the web and have found some who will. Much like this other fellow you refuse to seek verification and validation from independent sources. Maybe you will end up as successful as he seems to be....

As for politeness and good behavior.....it is like respect....it is given where it is earned and returned..

good luck with it all....

Gary

Kevin Leavitt
05-30-2012, 09:51 AM
Really, if someone wants to continue to believe the world is flat, they certainly have a right to believe that. There are also many out there who will support this belief.

I kinda reached that conclusion a while ago and don't really see the value in continuing to argue with someone that you have such an extreme difference in paradigms.

TimB99
05-30-2012, 10:00 AM
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4V-8HfEglHI

There we go.. Figured it's time for me to throw in something to think about :) (Kevin made me do it.. with his flat earth stuff ;p.. Apparently it's quite relevant :D)

Plus an added bonus in science, for those who are into that ;)

MM
05-30-2012, 10:10 AM
Don't be just willfully stupid. It was made as a personal attack of a calculated and vicious type. There was no call for it. It was wrong, to begin with. Asking a questionable character to prove his claims has nothing to do with "blaming a woman for being raped because she was wearing a short skirt." And to suggest that it does has no usefulness and no good intent. It's precisely the kind of attitude we very commonly find among people with ineffective aikido. They can't do, so they have to tear down those who can by any means necessary, typically by kuchi-waza, spreading untrue rumors about people, claiming (as some do about Dan) that the person in question will hurt you on the mat and so on.


The weak cannot abide standing next to the strong as, in their eyes, it points out their weakness doubly so. Instead of rectifying the lack and building strength, the weak, instead, take action to undermine the strong. If that fails, then the weak attempt to use other people to remove those that are strong. This allows the weak to appear strong (without the strong present, they are now "strong") and they do not have to face their own faults.

Unfortunately, Modern Aikido tends to attract these kinds of people. By the very nature of "cooperative" practice, the weak force the strong to build a baseline of weakness. Whenever anything strong appears, it must either conform (i.e. undermine strength) or go away (i.e. remove those who are strong) so that these faults (being weak without pursuing change) will not see the light of day.

The weak will group together so that no one individual gets singled out and all keep to an appearance of strength in numbers. They will appeal to higher authorities at any opportunity when things do not go their way. They would rather undermine strength than fix their own faults, would rather make the strong go away than take a long, hard look at themselves to acknowledge the fault.

Spiritually, this kind of character can not progress very far. They will never reach enlightenment. The enclosed, self-team building, cooperative training of the weak character cannot step outside those boundaries until they make an internal change. Without some impetus, this is rarely done. IP/aiki is a catalyst for that change. Not the only one, just one of many.

What's funny is the fallout from this kind of training on other people, most notably the strong. They make a voluntary change in themselves to train cooperatively and "get along" with the group. For the most part, it makes them build character that they might not have ever done. For them, it's a plus. But, again, they are making changes in who they are for a purpose that is more good than bad. The weak have no change, only wanting other people to lower themselves to their level so that they do not have to face the faults in character.

As for Graham ... personally, I'm reminded of "The Sphinx" character from the movie, "Mystery Men".

Mark

graham christian
05-30-2012, 10:14 AM
Graham
One last story and I let this drop.... Back in the 80's a fellow came out of no where, much like you, claiming skill and expertize. He was using Aikido as a tool to move on to what he really wanted. Aikido got him entrance into an existing community that could provide him with support. As I recall our dojo was ask to support him by having him in for a Saturday class...this was to present him to a new audience. Well he came and conducted class....he brought his own uke and used them only. He would not let any of us touch him.. I tried to grab a wrist and he pulled it back. His skill was kyu level at best. He has moved on to what he really wanted and seems to be quite successful......his Aikido really isn't any better and he never comes out.

He was there seeking acceptance and confirmation.....but not verification or validation by outside sources. This is the same approach you have taken...seeking confirmation and validation on the web and have found some who will. Much like this other fellow you refuse to seek verification and validation from independent sources. Maybe you will end up as successful as he seems to be....

As for politeness and good behavior.....it is like respect....it is given where it is earned and returned..

good luck with it all....

Gary

Thanks for the reasoning Gary. Shame you equate me with such a fellow. I'm not him. I need not or desire not to move into your community especially for your support. So ther'es a couple of differences.
I don't seek your acceptance or your confirmation. So far that makes me nothing like him.

I suggest it's you who feel I should want those things and therefor are confused by the fact I don't.

Politeness and respect ie: good behaviour does not need to be earned. Woah, all badly behaved youth I meet have that opinion.

Let me tell you a story.

A few years ago I had to go do a job at a top school in England called Eton. Now, I may have many views about how lacking the system is or how it isn't fair that those with money get the best quality education etc. etc. Anyway I turned up at the place and worked there for those two weeks repairing and painting windows.

The place was like a throwback to victorian times. There used to be a series caleed 'tom browns schooldays' it was just like that.

Here we had the cream of youth so to speak, it was like a factory churning out the future prime ministers, leaders of industry etc.

You know what? I've never met a bunch of more polite, respectful, well behaved folk in my life. Amazing.

There is no excuse for bad behaviour. This is in my opinion a fundamental difference between those of true budo and class and the 'brawlers' for want of a better word.

Tysons behaviour was thuggish. Lennox had class. Spot the difference.

Peace.G.

graham christian
05-30-2012, 10:23 AM
The weak cannot abide standing next to the strong as, in their eyes, it points out their weakness doubly so. Instead of rectifying the lack and building strength, the weak, instead, take action to undermine the strong. If that fails, then the weak attempt to use other people to remove those that are strong. This allows the weak to appear strong (without the strong present, they are now "strong") and they do not have to face their own faults.

Unfortunately, Modern Aikido tends to attract these kinds of people. By the very nature of "cooperative" practice, the weak force the strong to build a baseline of weakness. Whenever anything strong appears, it must either conform (i.e. undermine strength) or go away (i.e. remove those who are strong) so that these faults (being weak without pursuing change) will not see the light of day.

The weak will group together so that no one individual gets singled out and all keep to an appearance of strength in numbers. They will appeal to higher authorities at any opportunity when things do not go their way. They would rather undermine strength than fix their own faults, would rather make the strong go away than take a long, hard look at themselves to acknowledge the fault.

Spiritually, this kind of character can not progress very far. They will never reach enlightenment. The enclosed, self-team building, cooperative training of the weak character cannot step outside those boundaries until they make an internal change. Without some impetus, this is rarely done. IP/aiki is a catalyst for that change. Not the only one, just one of many.

What's funny is the fallout from this kind of training on other people, most notably the strong. They make a voluntary change in themselves to train cooperatively and "get along" with the group. For the most part, it makes them build character that they might not have ever done. For them, it's a plus. But, again, they are making changes in who they are for a purpose that is more good than bad. The weak have no change, only wanting other people to lower themselves to their level so that they do not have to face the faults in character.

As for Graham ... personally, I'm reminded of "The Sphinx" character from the movie, "Mystery Men".

Mark

That's a very nice summation, I like it. Shame about classing of 'modern Aikido' though like it's all the same. Apart from that, very good.

Don't know the sphinx charachter though so don't know if thats good, neutral or an insult. Either way, it's a nice write up.

Peace.G.

graham christian
05-30-2012, 10:56 AM
Behaviour is an interesting thing. On the spiritual side of all budo and all things you will find it is a must, a discipline of the utmost importance.

Takemuso and virtues was an attempt by Ueshiba to point out this import in my opinion.

All Masters with any class have this quality about them and expect their students to take note and learn from it. Thus spiritually it is very much a part of Budo.

Thus I think you will find those top boys with class didn't go around 'bitching' all the time. They were generally very polite and well mannered. It's not an accident, it's a discipline.

Now some may be opinionated and fierce and 'take no prisoners' but nonetheless would conduct themselves in life and in their communications with others in a respectful manner ie: without insulting or belttling etc.

Thus it is a spiritual discipline. O'Sensei may by some have been known for a fierce temper at times but his behaviour was impeccable. Everyones prone to a bit of frustration now and again.

Thus if you study budo for real you will notice that those who lose their calm, resort to such behaviour, are considered unbudo.

Many talk about budo and are enthralled by it meaning fighting and bravery. However, if I obseRve O'Sensei, Tohei, even Musashi I can but laugh at the thought of them running around complaining and bitching about he said she said blah blah blah. I wonder why?

Even in Toheis situation he found himself in he didn't stand around bitching about it, he left and gave his formal letter of resignation etc. I have no doubt that he saw the amount of bitching going on and on seeing that's no good for him or the organization took a budo course of action. Unfortunate yet the solution was very budo.

In my experience a lack of such virtues shows in and through the performance of the practitioner. Thus another example of the connection and relationship of spiritual, mind, body, action. (or indeed spiritual, mind, body, communication.)

Peace.G.

David Orange
05-30-2012, 11:07 AM
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4V-8HfEglHI

There we go.. Figured it's time for me to throw in something to think about :) (Kevin made me do it.. with his flat earth stuff ;p.. Apparently it's quite relevant :D)

Plus an added bonus in science, for those who are into that ;)

Hmph. Flat earth, indeed.

Basic logic will tell you the Earth cannot be flat.

How can something flat also be hollow?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ekDWZzWUG3s&feature=fvwrel

:p

David

David Orange
05-30-2012, 11:11 AM
The weak cannot abide standing next to the strong as, in their eyes, it points out their weakness doubly so. ...

That's been my experience for forty years, so far.

As for Graham ... personally, I'm reminded of "The Sphinx" character from the movie, "Mystery Men".

Mark

Ah, yes. The Blue Rajah, wasn't he? And if I'm not mistaken, the actor is Hank Azaria, the voice of Homer J. Simpson...the connections deepen.

:)

Peace!

David

David Orange
05-30-2012, 11:22 AM
Behaviour is an interesting thing. On the spiritual side of all budo and all things you will find it is a must, a discipline of the utmost importance.

And the first element of behavior and discipline in martial arts is to pass on the teacher's art exactly as it came from the teacher.

Clearly, whoever taught you does not adhere to Ueshiba's way, but everyone loves to use the name of his art.

You like to talk about spirituality, but your depth of understanding seems similar to your understanding of Japanese language. For instance, now you have twice spelled "takemusu" as "takemuso". We know what you are referring to, but clearly you don't understand the concept any more than you understand the spelling. It comes off as either sloven laziness or just dismal dimness. I can appreciate a dim person much more than one who is just too lazy or egoistic to learn the right way.

What is the right way?

IN AIKIDO, THE OPPONENT IS KILLED AT A SINGLE BLOW!

If you don't know how this is done, it shows shallowness in your aikido.

There is no "fight" but the opponent is killed in an instant.

Now, reconcile that with your "spirituality."

In budo, there is no contradiction.

In Graham Christian....there is no consistency.

Gassho.

David

Conrad Gus
05-30-2012, 11:45 AM
Well this was an interesting thread, but it kind of went south overnight. Too bad.

graham christian
05-30-2012, 11:56 AM
And the first element of behavior and discipline in martial arts is to pass on the teacher's art exactly as it came from the teacher.

Clearly, whoever taught you does not adhere to Ueshiba's way, but everyone loves to use the name of his art.

You like to talk about spirituality, but your depth of understanding seems similar to your understanding of Japanese language. For instance, now you have twice spelled "takemusu" as "takemuso". We know what you are referring to, but clearly you don't understand the concept any more than you understand the spelling. It comes off as either sloven laziness or just dismal dimness. I can appreciate a dim person much more than one who is just too lazy or egoistic to learn the right way.

What is the right way?

IN AIKIDO, THE OPPONENT IS KILLED AT A SINGLE BLOW!

If you don't know how this is done, it shows shallowness in your aikido.

There is no "fight" but the opponent is killed in an instant.

Now, reconcile that with your "spirituality."

In budo, there is no contradiction.

In Graham Christian....there is no consistency.

Gassho.

David

Bless you. No one is killed in Aikido. But I know what you mean. If you would like to refrain from the slurs it would help. If you have a personal grudge then I suggest getting in touch with me via p/m and we can thrash it out.

I fully understand what Aikido is thank you but it's not for me to debate it with you on this thread or until you sort out your problem with me.

Peace.G.

David Orange
05-30-2012, 12:53 PM
Thus I think you will find those top boys with class didn't go around 'bitching' all the time. They were generally very polite and well mannered. It's not an accident, it's a discipline.

You think? That's because you never met any of them. You give us your fantasies about people we personally knew and things we directly experienced. And this is why most people on here respond to you in ways you find hurtful.

Mochizuki Sensei, for instance, could discuss world history, Judaism, the Bible, Christianity, Buddhism, Yoga, the Kojiki and all manner of esoteric subjects his major students didn't always understand. But Sensei was deep in that. He received a commendation from the Japanese Prime Minister for negotiating a settlement with the Tokyo University students who were occupying the University in the 1960s. He got the French Medal of Culture from the President of France. He got one of two scrolls presented by Morihei Ueshiba (Kenji Tomiki got the other) and O Sensei sent Kisshomaru Ueshiba (whom many called Doshu) to live and train with Mochizuki after the War.

Sensei was quite dignified and very kind, most of the time. And while I never saw him lose dignity, he hated BS, especially in regard to martial arts, including aikido. He would say so and just as harshly as he felt was required to get his point across. Ueshiba could also get furious with people and he could be quite scathing. Jesus, too, was an ace with the snappy comeback.

You are living a total fantasy about such people and their "classy behavior". The Japanese standards for things like that are not the same as the standards you use. The last thing the world needs is more BS fantasies about "the masters" and how the samurai did things....:yuck:


Thus it is a spiritual discipline. O'Sensei may by some have been known for a fierce temper at times but his behaviour was impeccable. Everyones prone to a bit of frustration now and again.

Thus if you study budo for real you will notice that those who lose their calm, resort to such behaviour, are considered unbudo.

Can you give us the Japanese form of that "unbudo" term?

Many talk about budo and are enthralled by it meaning fighting and bravery. However, if I obseRve O'Sensei, Tohei, even Musashi I can but laugh at the thought of them running around complaining and bitching about he said she said blah blah blah. I wonder why?

Well, Musashi didn't bitch because he would just knock you out, if not kill you.

I imagine he probably got letters from people like you, correcting him on his behavior, but those letters were never delivered in person.

Even in Toheis situation he found himself in he didn't stand around bitching about it, he left and gave his formal letter of resignation etc. I have no doubt that he saw the amount of bitching going on and on seeing that's no good for him or the organization took a budo course of action. Unfortunate yet the solution was very budo.

It's great that you have such a capacity for "no doubt" about things you were never involved in or even close to. (And can you give us the Japanese term for "very budo"?) But look at the back-stabbing behind Tohei's resignation. It was between him and Kisshomaru, a personal dispute that went back and forth. Tohei didn't leave because it was the budo way, but because Aikikai was the personal property of Kisshomaru Ueshiba and Kisshomaru was very effectively forcing him out, with the backing of most of the aikikai instructors. So please get over the fantasies of what constitutes proper behavior among Japanese budoka.

In my experience a lack of such virtues shows in and through the performance of the practitioner.

Which is what everyone has been telling you about those incredible videos you posted. :crazy:

Does that start to make sense now? (I'm sure it doesn't.)

If you want to understand "takemusu," you can get it from tai chi, where the ability to put the attacker down decisively is the gold standard. The attacker approaches the tai chi man but cannot reach him. And when he withdraws, he cannot escape the tai chi man. That is the essence of "takemusu," being "tied" to the opponent by ki.

I had a similar experience recently, when a fellow came to my house for the specific purpose of attacking me. He tried to work into a position from which he could attack (we were standing on a porch, about 12 feet above the ground in a space of 5' X 6' (less than 2meters by 2 meters), about one tatami in area.

I felt that he intended to hit me in the head with a right, knocking my head into the door jamb. I felt this in his ki and I also understood (felt) that he had used this method on some older people before. He intended to knock my head against the door jamb with a right, give me a body shot with the left, then another right to the side of my head as I fell, where he intended to kick me several times and flee within one minute of having shown up unannounced. I think he's done this to people before and no one knew who had done it because he came specifically to attack with sudden viciousness and escape.

So I stood in this one-tatami space with this little (#$XX!!!) in a boxing stance, me standing upright with my hands down. I felt his intention and as he maneuvered, I thought, well, I'm going to have to shove this sucker off the porch. And as soon as I thought that, I saw him realize that he was standing with his back to a flight of eleven brick stairs, teetering on the edge with me in front of him. A look of shock and terror crossed his face and I had not even lifted a hand or taken any kind of defensive stance, but he felt his death in his spine. He moved out of what he thought was the danger zone, but the tiny area where we stood was surrounded by iron rails and bricks. I could have slipped his attack, put both hands on his ribs and shoved him into any wall or rail and flipped him over into a void with concrete at the bottom. He kept "maneuvering" and acting like he was looking for an opening, me standing relaxed right in front of him with my hands down, but he couldn't find an opening. I told him to get in his truck and go calm down before he got into serious trouble. He yapped and cursed, but he didn't attack and he did exactly what I told him to.

That ability to feel each other's ki and intention is the meaning of "takemusu," tied together, ki-to-ki, which locks his body to you, as well.

Later, after he had gone, I realized I could still feel that connection and when I mentally "spoke" to him, I could feel that he could hear me, though I had no idea where he had gone. I could feel the connection for days and I felt that he was sweating because he still couldn't shake me from a hundred miles away. Finally, I told him "Get the hell out of here and don't come back or you will regret it." and I felt the connection break and he never came back.

That is Takemusu Aiki. I had the technical ability to destroy him, but I had the philosophical will and spiritual intent to let him live. The choice was his, just like "Should I ram my head into that brick wall, or go have a beer?" I'm sincerely happy he decided to go have a beer and left no mark of death on my door.

That is the experience of an uchi deshi of Ueshiba's uchi deshi.

FWIW

David

David Orange
05-30-2012, 01:00 PM
Bless you. No one is killed in Aikido. But I know what you mean. If you would like to refrain from the slurs it would help. If you have a personal grudge then I suggest getting in touch with me via p/m and we can thrash it out.

I fully understand what Aikido is thank you but it's not for me to debate it with you on this thread or until you sort out your problem with me.

Peace.G.

Graham, I have no problem with you. You have a problem in insisting that you claim to know and practice aikido, lecturing to everyone on matters you simply don't understand.

As a teacher, uchi deshi to Ueshiba's uchi deshi, it's simply my duty to call BS when it rears its butt.

I'm sure I'd probably like you as a hang-out buddy, but I would always correct your uneducated statements about aikido and would be glad to show you physically what it means without having to do violence.

Real aikido is as scary as a horrible dragon coming at you out of the mist. It comes at you from inside your own mind. And it only comes into your mind because your mind is so full of untruth. It's simply that and nothing more.

Bless your kokoro.

David

graham christian
05-30-2012, 01:41 PM
Graham, I have no problem with you. You have a problem in insisting that you claim to know and practice aikido, lecturing to everyone on matters you simply don't understand.

As a teacher, uchi deshi to Ueshiba's uchi deshi, it's simply my duty to call BS when it rears its butt.

I'm sure I'd probably like you as a hang-out buddy, but I would always correct your uneducated statements about aikido and would be glad to show you physically what it means without having to do violence.

Real aikido is as scary as a horrible dragon coming at you out of the mist. It comes at you from inside your own mind. And it only comes into your mind because your mind is so full of untruth. It's simply that and nothing more.

Bless your kokoro.

David

Good, at last we come to the cause. An uchi deshi of Ueshibas uchi deshi with a duty as he sees it.

Well done for explaining.

I'm sure you would like to show me. If you keep that view however of me you might get a shock or even a pleasant surprise.

There is one thing out of all your protests that is a 'weakness' in my Aikido. The rest is unfortunately based on you never having met me colored with such words as B/S.

Peace.G.

David Orange
05-30-2012, 01:45 PM
Good, at last we come to the cause. An uchi deshi of Ueshibas uchi deshi with a duty as he sees it.

He gave me a personal charge to uphold the truth of aikido.

There is one thing out of all your protests that is a 'weakness' in my Aikido. The rest is unfortunately based on you never having met me colored with such words as B/S.

It does appear that the argument has boiled down to IS vs BS.

Cheers.

David

graham christian
05-30-2012, 01:58 PM
He gave me a personal charge to uphold the truth of aikido.

There is one thing out of all your protests that is a 'weakness' in my Aikido. The rest is unfortunately based on you never having met me colored with such words as B/S.

It does appear that the argument has boiled down to IS vs BS.

Cheers.

David[/QUOTE]

It does appear that way to you.

It does to me too if B/S means Budo Spirituality.

Here's a nice chinese saying for you which will suit your use of communication. In English: 'He talks rubbish in eight directions'

I'm sure you can use it on your 'quest'.

Have fun.

Peace.G.

DH
05-30-2012, 02:00 PM
Might I suggest you two have exhausted your arguments?
We all get it. Nothing is to come of it unless you meet.
Can we go back to the topic now?
Dan

graham christian
05-30-2012, 02:09 PM
Yes please. Dan, did you really just say that? I'm impressed. Nice to be on the outside for once. ha, ha.

Yes, for the sake of the thread and anyone who has things to discuss on the subject, carry on.

Peace.G.

Lorel Latorilla
05-30-2012, 02:36 PM
Gotta commend some of yall for incredible display of patience towards some people here. Jeez, it is out of control.

mathewjgano
05-30-2012, 02:43 PM
Hi Mat
I guess we can discuss energy being random, unidirectional and less functional, or a more pure form of constant motion that leaves one stable and supported. It is NOT all the same. Nor is the spiritual path to mind and body in creating power.
Dan

Hi Dan,
Would you be willing to go further into this idea of constant motion that leaves one stable and supported?
Is this the same kind of thing as motion in stillness...possibly related to the feeling of lines unfolding in my body when I'm trying to be extended-but-relaxed in my kamae? Or, if none of that...what?

Also, how do you view this energy as relating to spiritual efforts?
Any further thoughts you'd be willing to share would be appreciated!
Take care,
Matt

David Orange
05-30-2012, 02:44 PM
Might I suggest you two have exhausted your arguments?
We all get it. Nothing is to come of it unless you meet.
Can we go back to the topic now?
Dan

I don't know if you ever heard this one:

tofu no kado ni atama butsukeru shinjimai.

I agree that this has gone as far as it can.

Cheers.

David

David Orange
05-30-2012, 02:58 PM
Hi Dan,
Would you be willing to go further into this idea of constant motion that leaves one stable and supported?
Is this the same kind of thing as motion in stillness...possibly related to the feeling of lines unfolding in my body when I'm trying to be extended-but-relaxed in my kamae? Or, if none of that...what?

Also, how do you view this energy as relating to spiritual efforts?
Any further thoughts you'd be willing to share would be appreciated!
Take care,
Matt

The Japanese spirituality is much closer to a physical thing than a philosophy.

They don't see the spirit as being a separable thing from body/mind, with laws drastically different from those of the human body and they don't assign it qualities like Christianity does. It is essentially to unite Heaven and Earth through the human body: Heaven-Earth-Mankind (to avoid the sexist "Man"). And Heaven-Earth-Mankind means to unite yin and yang (in/yo) in the human body. It does not mean to obey various superficial behaviors of niceness and such. It's far less abstract than it is physical since it refers more to the mental/physical nature of ki in the body than to a substanceless, independent energy that can be "me" after the body dies. I don't believe the Japanese see the individual as continuing to exist in a separate form after death, but that the spirit of the individual re-assimilates with the cosmic oneness. And it doesn't mean that people behave by a set of rules. Instead, proper action depends on the moment and the situation. You might have to kill, you might be able to show mercy. Neither is a violation if it is "proper" for the moment. For instance, there's the story of "misplaced benevolence," in which an enemy army is crossing a river. One of the commanders urges the General to order the archers to decimate the enemy while they are bogged down in the river. The General says, "No, that wouldn't be fair. Let's let them cross over and then slaughter them fairly, like men." Of course, the benevolent General and all his troops are destroyed by the enemy they allowed to cross.

To say that budo is love reflects that it is trained not for the individual's personal benefit, but for the benefit of his family and his people. It is a service performed for the common good and it may well mean destruction of the enemy. But we don't do it for the sake of destruction of enemies, but for the love of our families and nations.

As to the technical details, I don't pretend to understand what Dan talks about--only that the little bit I got from him and others has let me glimpse inside the doorway of IP, given me quite a boost, but left me needing to learn much, much more before I can really get anywhere with it.

Cheers.

David

lbb
05-30-2012, 04:27 PM
Graham This is big time stuff here.....any man in this country is at the effect of any woman who decides to make statements like this that lead to follow on statements that can spiral out of control and can cause immeasurable damage to a man's life. Even if cleared it leaves a stain. I doubt that you could find any American male making statements about women on this forum that carry the same accusatory effects as the one directed at a male earlier in this thread.

Honestly, Gary, I think this is quite a stretch. An analogy was made -- one using loaded terms, sure. I can understand the emotional response. But there's a difference between saying "Your mode of argumentation is similar to those who accuse a rape victim of having 'asked for it'" and saying "You are accusing a rape victim of having 'asked for it'", much less "You're a rapist" -- nor is it a small difference. it's disingenuous to on the one hand berate people for failing to understand the semantic nuances in your argument, and on the other hand fail to make this distinction.

mathewjgano
05-30-2012, 05:14 PM
Hi David,
That's very in keeping with what little I've learned through the Jinja Shinto of Tsubaki OKami Yashiro. If I am not mistaken, there is a large emphasis on developing intuition; of harmonizing with the heartbeat and breath of kamisama to understand correctness...one must look to Great Nature to understand the way of being virtuous. "A time for every purpose under the sun," comes to mind.
Coincidentally, I think it's interesting to consider the role of the breath and heartbeat for understanding the powers of the universe. Maybe some day I'll have more than vague notions...study study study, I guess. Seems like it would be very fun to be able to embody the universe.:D
Take care,
Matt

David Orange
05-30-2012, 05:20 PM
Honestly, Gary, I think this is quite a stretch. An analogy was made -- one using loaded terms, sure. I can understand the emotional response. But there's a difference between saying "Your mode of argumentation is similar to those who accuse a rape victim of having 'asked for it'" and saying "You are accusing a rape victim of having 'asked for it'", much less "You're a rapist" -- nor is it a small difference. it's disingenuous to on the one hand berate people for failing to understand the semantic nuances in your argument, and on the other hand fail to make this distinction.

Mary, you make some good points and I appreciate your dispassionate manner in making them.

But...where is the need to bring that yardstick into the discussion?

As Gary points out (or as I understood him to be saying), just bringing those terms into the conversation tends to shut the male down right away. It's like playing the race card. Once that comes up, you can quickly get wrapped up in a mess that will stick to you. So the disingenuous woman can bypass all truth and reason and just shut down the discussion by bringing up the subject as Mary Eastland did. It was a low and unworthy comment and it merits an apology.

On the other hand, it was a bit unusual for her to go so far. So maybe it was just a bad choice of words. A very, very bad choice.

Someone recently told me, "You are a Christian. You believe in forgiveness. I don't."

Well, I do believe in forgiveness. I'm not really mad at her, but I felt it deserved some really harsh and inescapable confrontation to underline how seriously wrong it is to make a statement like that. As someone pointed out about the Nazi card, when you fling that about too easily, it minimizes the real evil of the Nazis.

When a woman resorts to comments as were made, she is actually using rape as a tool, herself.

That's what really made me mad.

Graham, for whatever else he may be, is a man and he can stand up for himself as a man without someone comparing him to a rape victim in a short skirt. It metaphysically neutered him in her attempt to neuter me. Really just unbelievable.

So thanks for your comments as well as your understanding.

David