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DH
08-27-2012, 11:49 AM
From another thread (starting a new one as suggested).
Could you envision the shared goal being that each is doing her best to connect with the other person's center?
What happens if one persons center is extremely more developed?
Can you see a huge differential?
At what point does the word "power" enter into an agreement of movement when person "a" simply has no choice against person "b" moving in whatever manner they want?
Why develop center?
Why develop ki?
At a point in time there is power differential similar to an adult doing aikido with a child. The child cannot throw the adult despite his best efforts. The adult "cooperates" and throws himself so the child can practice to his best ability. The child is then successful within his potential.
At what point does the adult get to practice?
What if the adult cannot be thrown by other adults?

By most accounts
1. Tohei could not be thrown
2. Ueshiba could not be thrown
3. Were they doing aikido when despite their best efforts.... no one could throw them?

Ueshiba thought he was doing aikido. He was listening to Uke and blending-thus uke could do nothing. At what point does the mere presence of two people mean one is excerting his will...even just by agreeing? At what point is denying you are exerting your will in a physical interaction...just simply *denial*?
What do you think?
Dan

Chris Li
08-27-2012, 11:59 AM
Add in that every connection works both ways - and that everytime you connect to someone's center they also become connected to yours.

"If you kick a tiger in the ass, you'd better have a plan to deal with his teeth"
-Tom Clancy (maybe somebody else, too, I can't remember)

Best,

Chris

Rob Watson
08-27-2012, 12:02 PM
From another thread (starting a new one as suggested).

What happens if one persons center is extremely more developed?
Can you see a huge differential?
At what point does the word "power" enter into an agreement of movement when person "a" simply has no choice against person "b" moving in whatever manner they want?
Why develop center?
Why develop ki?
At a point in time there is power differential similar to an adult doing aikido with a child. The child cannot throw the adult despite his best efforts. The adult "cooperates" and throws himself so the child can practice to his best ability. The child is then successful within his potential.
At what point does the adult get to practice?
What if the adult cannot be thrown by other adults?

By most accounts
1. Tohei could not be thrown
2. Ueshiba could not be thrown
3. Were they doing aikido when despite their best efforts.... no one could throw them?

Ueshiba thought he was doing aikido. He was listening to Uke and blending-thus uke could do nothing. At what point does the mere presence of two people mean one is excerting his will...even just by agreeing? At what point is denying you are exerting your will in a physical interaction...just simply *denial*?
What do you think?
Dan

Recently it was remarked that I was resisting ... I was just standing there and nage was unable to move me - or himself (much). I was not intending to resist but was just keeping myself balanced and maintaining my hold on nage. Even if ones center is only margianlly developed things get complicated very quickly without overt cooperation.

RonRagusa
08-27-2012, 12:07 PM
By most accounts
1. Tohei could not be thrown
2. Ueshiba could not be thrown
3. Were they doing aikido when despite their best efforts.... no one could throw them?

Could Tohei throw Ueshiba?
Could Ueshiba throw Tohei?
What if neither could throw the other?
Who then would be doing Aikido?
And do you see Aikido as being only about developing the ability to throw people; or becoming unthrowable; or both; or neither?
Is the acquisition of power that ultimately becomes simultaneously irresistible and unyielding the goal of your training?
And how will you know if you ever get there?

Ron

DH
08-27-2012, 12:10 PM
Recently it was remarked that I was resisting ... I was just standing there and nage was unable to move me - or himself (much). I was not intending to resist but was just keeping myself balanced and maintaining my hold on nage. Even if ones center is only margianlly developed things get complicated very quickly without overt cooperation.
If that is only marginally developed...what happens next?
What is the goal in Aikido?
Is it to develop centered movement?
If it is- at what point is your center better than someone elses?
What happens then?

Or is the goal...to fall down when someone less developed tries to throw you?
Does that only apply when they are learning?
If so, how does their center get better?
Do you test them again pressure?
What pressure?
Against who?
What is acceptable testing?
Is the goal testing aiki power?
Or testing fighting skill?
What if a sword cut can be cut right through and totally dominate the person cutting?
Is that bad?
Is it bad to win?
Is it bad to stop their violence by dominating them and creating a peaceful outcome?
Is it a good thing to develop center driven power to a level where few can stop you?
Is this not what Ueshiba, Shirata, Shioda, Tohei were doing and known for, looked up to...and created followers because of it?
Are they bad Aikido examples?
Why were we taught to always cooperate?
Dan

DH
08-27-2012, 12:20 PM
Could Tohei throw Ueshiba?
Could Ueshiba throw Tohei?
What if neither could throw the other?
Who then would be doing Aikido?
And do you see Aikido as being only about developing the ability to throw people; or becoming unthrowable; or both; or neither?
Is the acquisition of power that ultimately becomes simultaneously irresistible and unyielding the goal of your training?
And how will you know if you ever get there?

Ron
Why did Ueshiba and Tohei continue to demonstrate being unthrowable....as a laudable skill?
Why were we told to cooperate when they...did not?

How does one know ones skill level?
Uhmmm...Shugyo
Leave your dojo, go meet BJJ and Judo and MMA guys and let them try and throw you. Find big Somoans and tested sport winners.
Then...try experts in the Martial arts. The latter being far easier than the former.

When does cooperation...as a physical skill...mean people can only function with cooperation in physical interaction? If we change that, what are parameters? When does Ueshiba style testing to develop ki become aikido?
When does the testing become increasingly stressed?
How?
Against who?
Dan

graham christian
08-27-2012, 12:38 PM
I would guarantee Tohei was 'thrown' and that Ueshiba was too. Don't see it as a measure at all of anything really.

Cooperation has degrees and thus all training and practice has degrees of such so to me has nothing to do with resistance ie: seeing resistance as the opposite to cooperation.

The only power I know as basic is the power of truth and thus the unmoving power of universal principles which everything follows. The result of which is harmony.

Ki follows those principles and is in itself non resistive to everything else and it is up to the individual to discover these things bit by bit.

So in conclusion you must learn to cooperate with the universal principles and Ki to realize true power.

Quite a path, quite a challenge, divine.

Peace.G.

Janet Rosen
08-27-2012, 01:35 PM
What is the goal in Aikido?
Dan

Everybody or every school will have a different one.


to fall down when someone less developed tries to throw you?
Does that only apply when they are learning?
If so, how does their center get better?
Do you test them again pressure?
Dan

We are always learning along a continuum - in any dojo there will be people who cannot throw me and people I cannot throw. So yeah, with a newbie, I actually keep my idealized ukemi a step ahead of their nagewaza and not only fall for them, but guide them through my body. Past that, my willingness to allow myself to be moved is based on starting the first time as uke with total cooperation, attacking to their center and then essentially allowing nage to lead as long as she has found some kind of connection to me (the kind being related to a sense of her skill level) and letting myself follow where her leading is taking me. If she disconnects I let her know and let her refind it rather than start over. With peers and seniors of course I expect more and don't simply follow nor do I resist statically if they mess up, but gently ramp up my own attack on their center to give feedback that can be used to self-correct.


Or testing fighting skill?
Is it bad to win?
Is it bad to stop their violence by dominating them and creating a peaceful outcome?
Is it a good thing to develop center driven power to a level where few can stop you?
Is this not what Ueshiba, Shirata, Shioda, Tohei were doing and known for, looked up to...and created followers because of it?
Are they bad Aikido examples?
Why were we taught to always cooperate?
Dan

I don't see my interactions at the dojo as "winning."

FWIW, there were a couple of dojos I was a member of that were not paragons of cooperation. They also were nothing about what you would call "aiki" - they were purely into the mechanics of imposing the asked for technique with lots of muscle power regardless of the form of uke's attack. So I don't have a very high opinion of non-cooperative training.
However my view is that within cooperation there can be, and should be, the contract between partners to test one's limits.

I believe it is Chuck Clark whose teaching is based on the principle that one should succeed 90% of the time in order to learn. I think this is true, whether the partner practice is slow and aiming for feeling connection or faster and working on the form of a specific technique - it is in the 10% failure that one learns what is needed in order to progress and in the 90% success that one starts building the incremental muscle memory (for lack of a better term) that drills the skill in.

I think part of the problem may be semantic. Bear w/ me for a moment on this: I have felt/seen two very different kinds of aikido, as have many of us: the "wow that was a strong throw that sent me across the dojo" and the "wow how the heck did I end up here". I think for many of us the goal is the more elusive, harder to find latter feeling.
So when you write of "center driven power to a level where few can stop you?" I have a feeling that however you may mean it, for many on Aikiweb this smacks of the style of aikido they have experienced (as I did in dojos like the couple I used to train at a long time ago) and are not interested in doing.

chillzATL
08-27-2012, 01:50 PM
Add in that every connection works both ways - and that everytime you connect to someone's center they also become connected to yours.

"If you kick a tiger in the ass, you'd better have a plan to deal with his teeth"
-Tom Clancy (maybe somebody else, too, I can't remember)

Best,

Chris

but not always, it's a skill both ways

Jim Sorrentino
08-27-2012, 01:52 PM
Why did Ueshiba and Tohei continue to demonstrate being unthrowable....as a laudable skill?
Why were we told to cooperate when they...did not?I've told this story before, and I believe it's relevant here. I first heard it in a class taught by Dan Messisco (formerly of Aikido of Modesto). Messisco is fluent in Japanese, and at the time of this story, he lived in Hawaii and spent every other month in Tokyo training at Aikikai Hombu. One day, his training partner was a young, strong sandan or yondan on the Hombu "instructor track". As Messisco described their interaction, every time that Messisco was nage, the Japanese fellow stopped Messisco's technique cold. Messisco was getting frustrated, but then he had a realization: by trying to "do a technique" to his partner, he was attacking his partner; but because he was attacking, then he, Messisco, must have become the uke.

So every time the Japanese fellow stopped Messisco's technique, Messisco would take ukemi! After a few minutes of this, the Japanese fellow became quite angry, and sputtered, "Stop doing that! I want to take ukemi!"

Messisco replied in the most elegant Japanese he could muster, "Who is preventing you from doing so?"

chillzATL
08-27-2012, 02:16 PM
Why did Ueshiba and Tohei continue to demonstrate being unthrowable....as a laudable skill?
Why were we told to cooperate when they...did not?

It was just a demonstration, like the jo trick and unbendable arm. Something neat that you can show people and have them feel something, where you're showing them everything and nothing all at once.

Ueshiba took ukemi for kids and women, we have vids of that. I have little doubt he took at lot of it and I'm sure Tohei did as well. They were unthrowable when they needed to be and gave what they had to give to help guide people to whatever skill level they were after.

How does one know ones skill level?
Uhmmm...Shugyo
Leave your dojo, go meet BJJ and Judo and MMA guys and let them try and throw you. Find big Somoans and tested sport winners.
Then...try experts in the Martial arts. The latter being far easier than the former.

Sure no doubt, but that was never an ideal that was written into aikido, IMO. It is the beauty of the art and its biggest wart all at once.

When does cooperation...as a physical skill...mean people can only function with cooperation in physical interaction? If we change that, what are parameters? When does Ueshiba style testing to develop ki become aikido?
When does the testing become increasingly stressed?
How?
Against who?
Dan

That style testing, IMO, can't happen until you've got a few people with some level of the skills involved and it's basically what Rob described on both sides.

Mary Eastland
08-27-2012, 02:26 PM
Recently it was remarked that I was resisting ... I was just standing there and nage was unable to move me - or himself (much). I was not intending to resist but was just keeping myself balanced and maintaining my hold on nage. Even if ones center is only margianlly developed things get complicated very quickly without overt cooperation.

I wonder if your hold was logical or were you just standing there holding on in front of your nage? Did they try to break your nose or kick you in the groin? Then your resistance was probably logical otherwise it was just about you standing there hold a sack of mostly water dressed in a gi.

Chris Li
08-27-2012, 02:30 PM
I wonder if your hold was logical or were you just standing there holding on in front of your nage? Did they try to break your nose or kick you in the groin? Then your resistance was probably logical otherwise it was just about you standing there hold a sack of mostly water dressed in a gi.

Of course, if they're close enough to break your nose or kick you in the groin then you're close enough to do the same to them, so what's your point?

Best,

Chris

Chris Li
08-27-2012, 02:31 PM
but not always, it's a skill both ways

Of course it's a skill - I think that's part of what Dan's saying.

Suppose you have a connection (and they, you) - then what? What comes into play, and why?

Best,

Chris

Rob Watson
08-27-2012, 02:33 PM
I wonder if your hold was logical or were you just standing there holding on in front of your nage? Did they try to break your nose or kick you in the groin? Then your resistance was probably logical otherwise it was just about you standing there hold a sack of mostly water dressed in a gi.

That would be "ugly giant bags of mostly water" thank you very much.

Basia Halliop
08-27-2012, 02:42 PM
Those sound like two different abilities, to me -- to be unthrowable vs to be able to throw anyone. Or is it that the two are closely related?

The second I can see clearly the benefit of, the first I must say a lot less so. If someone can't throw me, they can still hit me or choke me or stab me or injure me in so many other ways -- and really I'm far more concerned about those things than someone throwing me. Those things all seem (to me) much more likely and more dangerous besides.

And to be honest, I'm a bit confused at the parameters of what is meant by being 'unthrowable' - what situation or conditions are meant to be implied. I weigh about 130 lbs -- I can see making it much more difficult for someone to throw me, but if my friend who is about 220 lbs simply grabs me in a bear hug or whatever -- I guess I am skeptical that anything I do would be that relevant to the situation other than evading him and either running away or throwing or pinning him before he throws me (all of which, while they may be very difficult and and require a lot of skill and perhaps luck, are at least theoretically doable). I can use my weight in different ways, but ultimately I still weigh 130 lbs and that just isn't a lot for my larger friend there (nor for most of my medium sized friends).

OTOH, to be able to be thrown and to not get hurt in the process and to be able to quickly get up again is something I can see and understand and have felt many many times. To be thrown doesn't always need to mean a catastrophe, and it offers the potential for escape. So for me if someone does try to throw me and I pass the point of being able to evade it, it feels more doable and ultimately useful to me to try to learn to go with the throw and improve my chances of landing safely and popping back up.

Is there something I'm missing in the concept of 'being unthrowable"? Does it correlate with other skills that are more, for lack of a better word, 'useful'? Am I underestimating its usefulness? Or is it more a training idea, i.e., that one should learn so our partners can then learn to move people who are extremely difficult to move?

lars beyer
08-27-2012, 02:43 PM
I wonder if your hold was logical or were you just standing there holding on in front of your nage? Did they try to break your nose or kick you in the groin? Then your resistance was probably logical otherwise it was just about you standing there hold a sack of mostly water dressed in a gi.

IMHO
Resistance training have two basic goals, the first is to learn to apply technique with the least amount of effort, the second is to (learn how to) exclude ego from the training situation.
With resistance training uke and nage have to agree on what is being resisted othervise it devolves into a useless battle of strength and will.
When two practitoners from different schools meet, they often disagree or donīt understand the other persons angle on the concept of cooperation in training.
Beginners should not to be resisted. All they need to know is how to do the technique step by step and the senior show them by leading them through the technique as their uke.
Later on the idea is to refine technique by showing your partner his weaknesses by resisting his technique at itīs weak points, by all means not to resist his learning.
It takes sensibility and putting ego aside- from both uke and nage.

chillzATL
08-27-2012, 02:47 PM
Of course it's a skill - I think that's part of what Dan's saying.

Suppose you have a connection (and they, you) - then what? What comes into play, and why?

Best,

Chris

Well, that play back and forth is a big part of what it's all about, IMO. I mean if someone grabs me, my goal is to connect, control and/or throw. If I connect to them and start applying my strength to take control and they're able to connect back to me, then chances are they're going to find a spot to push me off my center at some point, if they can. They may not be able to though, even if they can connect back to me. There are so many potential layers to that back and forth based on the skill levels or disparity of skill levels.

Chris Li
08-27-2012, 02:47 PM
Those sound like two different abilities, to me -- to be unthrowable vs to be able to throw anyone. Or is it that the two are closely related?

I would say that you can't really throw someone if you're unstable (well, you can, but not very well) - so by "unthrowable" I'm talking about a kind of stability training (in a sense).

If I am stable, unthrowable, and I occupy the center - the center of the movement is exactly in me, then everything else is on the outside, almost by definition. When you're throwing, being on the inside with things moving around you is generally where you want to be. Ueshiba actually said this, repeatedly.

Best,

Chris

Chris Li
08-27-2012, 02:50 PM
Well, that play back and forth is a big part of what it's all about, IMO. I mean if someone grabs me, my goal is to connect, control and/or throw. If I connect to them and start applying my strength to take control and they're able to connect back to me, then chances are they're going to find a spot to push me off my center at some point, if they can. They may not be able to though, even if they can connect back to me. There are so many potential layers to that back and forth based on the skill levels or disparity of skill levels.

I would say that the attempt to form the connection in the first place will tend to get you into trouble. Connections form - but it's almost (or entirely) a function of what you're doing inside yourself.

Yeah, it's a little bit of a head twister...

Best,

Chris

Gary David
08-27-2012, 02:53 PM
I wonder .

By the way...Happy Birthday Mary

Everyone.....Let us take a different approach....... Let me ask a question and have everyone answer.....

Question: Where would you want to have the ability to be stable in all directions when moving and essentially not be throw-able? What circumstances could exist where this ability could be useful?

Let's think of it from that perspective..

Gary

Chris Li
08-27-2012, 02:57 PM
By the way...Happy Birthday Mary

Everyone.....Let us take a different approach....... Let me ask a question and have everyone answer.....

Question: Where would you want to have the ability to be stable in all directions when moving and essentially not be throw-able? What circumstances could exist where this ability could be useful?

Let's think of it from that perspective..

Gary

The Hawaii answer - surfing! :D

Best,

Chris

Basia Halliop
08-27-2012, 03:01 PM
Ueshiba thought he was doing aikido. He was listening to Uke and blending-thus uke could do nothing. At what point does the mere presence of two people mean one is excerting his will...even just by agreeing? At what point is denying you are exerting your will in a physical interaction...just simply *denial*?
What do you think?

I don't think you need to go as far as O-Sensei to come across situations where one person is so much more skilled/powerful in whatever way that the terms of the interaction are decided pretty much unilaterally by them whether they even consciously mean to be that way or not -- they can cooperate, but then that's them choosing to cooperate. The other person can be successful, but it's because they're being allowed to be. I think many of us have encountered people who were enough above our own personal skill/power/everything else level that we felt this way, like we were being 'allowed' to succeed.

Basia Halliop
08-27-2012, 03:05 PM
I would say that you can't really throw someone if you're unstable (well, you can, but not very well) - so by "unthrowable" I'm talking about a kind of stability training (in a sense).

Thanks, that does make sense. Although to me it doesn't sound like being 'unthrowable' per se, so much as being un-unbalanceable. Which I can certainly see the utility of. (Though I still imagine it's not literally infinite. I mean if you get hit by a car you'll fall down :) ).

No matter how stable I am if someone strong enough bends their knees, wraps their arms around me, and unbends their knees, they can lift me. (and therefore throw me if they want)

Chris Li
08-27-2012, 03:09 PM
Thanks, that does make sense. Although to me it doesn't sound like being 'unthrowable' per se, so much as being un-unbalanceable. Which I can certainly see the utility of.

No matter how stable I am if someone strong enough bends their knees, wraps their arms around me, and unbends their knees, they can lift me. (and therefore throw me if they want)

That's why I said "stability training (in a sense)" - stability alone doesn't really cover it, although that gives you the general idea.

Best,

Chris

graham christian
08-27-2012, 03:11 PM
By the way...Happy Birthday Mary

Everyone.....Let us take a different approach....... Let me ask a question and have everyone answer.....

Question: Where would you want to have the ability to be stable in all directions when moving and essentially not be throw-able? What circumstances could exist where this ability could be useful?

Let's think of it from that perspective..

Gary

Why would you want to be unthrowable?

Peace.G.

morph4me
08-27-2012, 03:14 PM
Why would you want to be unthrowable?

Peace.G.

Why wouldn't you?

gregstec
08-27-2012, 03:25 PM
By the way...Happy Birthday Mary

Everyone.....Let us take a different approach....... Let me ask a question and have everyone answer.....

Question: Where would you want to have the ability to be stable in all directions when moving and essentially not be throw-able? What circumstances could exist where this ability could be useful?

Let's think of it from that perspective..

Gary

I think the more appropriate question would be "What circumstance could exist where this ability would not be useful?" IMO, there are none!

Greg

gregstec
08-27-2012, 03:33 PM
Well, that play back and forth is a big part of what it's all about, IMO. I mean if someone grabs me, my goal is to connect, control and/or throw. If I connect to them and start applying my strength to take control and they're able to connect back to me, then chances are they're going to find a spot to push me off my center at some point, if they can. They may not be able to though, even if they can connect back to me. There are so many potential layers to that back and forth based on the skill levels or disparity of skill levels.

What Chris said.... there is a difference between connecting to someone and having someone connect to you - too many focus on the former and not the latter - it all starts will you and it all stays with you - the control comes from them being a part of you and not you becoming a part of them - you don't look for control; it just comes as part of their connection to you when you become one; which is you :)

Greg

Mary Eastland
08-27-2012, 03:36 PM
Of course, if they're close enough to break your nose or kick you in the groin then you're close enough to do the same to them, so what's your point?

Best,

Chris

My point, as you know, is that nobody just grabs you and stands there.

Mary Eastland
08-27-2012, 03:37 PM
That would be "ugly giant bags of mostly water" thank you very much.

:D

Gary David
08-27-2012, 03:48 PM
Why would you want to be unthrowable?

Peace.G.

Graham
Ok. Change that to stable in all directions while moving........when would you not want this? It seems that if you can't be destabilized you can't be unbalanced......when would you not want this? In a changing fluid environment would you not want this?

Gary

Chris Li
08-27-2012, 03:52 PM
My point, as you know, is that nobody just grabs you and stands there.

Of course, not, but the next step after the grab is built on what happens during the grab. Both people (as I said) are in range and capable of doing something after the grab, so that's not really an issue (IMO) worth worrying about all that much. OTOH, who's stable and who isn't is going to make a big difference - IMO, but it seems like a no-brainer to me.

Best,

Chris

graham christian
08-27-2012, 04:06 PM
Graham
Ok. Change that to stable in all directions while moving........when would you not want this? It seems that if you can't be destabilized you can't be unbalanced......when would you not want this? In a changing fluid environment would you not want this?

Gary

Everyone wants to be stable while sitting, standing or moving yes.

Innately everyone would like to maintain it in 'difficult' circumstances too.

So far so good.....

Peace.G.

chillzATL
08-27-2012, 04:31 PM
I would say that the attempt to form the connection in the first place will tend to get you into trouble. Connections form - but it's almost (or entirely) a function of what you're doing inside yourself.

Yeah, it's a little bit of a head twister...

Best,

Chris

sure, with someone with skills it's very different. I had a very specific scenario playing in my head when I said that (kata otoshi), direct, irimi, , but yes, you move your connected body and the connections happen. It's always about what you're doing in you.

A head twister, to be sure, but how much more interesting is it than before?

mathewjgano
08-27-2012, 04:34 PM
Question: Where would you want to have the ability to be stable in all directions when moving and essentially not be throw-able? What circumstances could exist where this ability could be useful?

Let's think of it from that perspective..

Gary

Assuming I'm understanding the questions properly:
Always. Every circumstance. Part of my focus in ukemi is in how to find stability while in slightly-to-completely overextended positions. As Nage I'm trying to never be over extended (i.e. always stable in all directions). In both cases I'm trying to be nage, even if I might not be trying 100% such as in the case with brand new people, for example.

Basia Halliop
08-27-2012, 05:10 PM
Of course, not, but the next step after the grab is built on what happens during the grab. Both people (as I said) are in range and capable of doing something after the grab, so that's not really an issue (IMO) worth worrying about all that much. OTOH, who's stable and who isn't is going to make a big difference - IMO, but it seems like a no-brainer to me.

To a point... but you don't have to be that stable to hurt someone, especially if you're armed. I mean I can see it gives you an advantage, just not sure it's the only thing to be worrying about...

Also what if both are stable?

Chris Li
08-27-2012, 05:17 PM
To a point... but you don't have to be that stable to hurt someone, especially if you're armed. I mean I can see it gives you an advantage, just not sure it's the only thing to be worrying about...

Also what if both are stable?

You don't have to study martial arts to hurt someone either, but we do - not for the hurting, but you get my point, which is that we're trying to do things better.

Stability is not everything, of course, but it's so fundamental that you ignore it at your peril, I think. Everything builds from that. Like learning the alphabet.

If both are stable? Well, it's not an absolute quantity, but the more equal they are then the more other things come into play - but isn't it more interesting that way?

Best,

Chris

Rob Watson
08-27-2012, 05:18 PM
Why were we taught to always cooperate?

It helps condition us to pay our dues on time ...

Gary David
08-27-2012, 05:32 PM
Innately everyone would like to maintain it in 'difficult' circumstances too.

So far so good.....

Peace.G.

Graham
How do you train that? How to you structure your training, both body and mind, to have the body stable as much as possible no matter the circumstances? No matter which side of the equation it is operating on......

Gary

Gary David
08-27-2012, 05:36 PM
Assuming I'm understanding the questions properly:
Always. Every circumstance. Part of my focus in ukemi is in how to find stability while in slightly-to-completely overextended positions.

Same question...how do you train this? Thinking about it is just that...thinking. What do you do individually to program this into your body?

As Nage I'm trying to never be over extended (i.e. always stable in all directions). In both cases I'm trying to be nage, even if I might not be trying 100% such as in the case with brand new people, for example.

Same here...how do you train this?

Gary

graham christian
08-27-2012, 05:36 PM
co(together)+operate(act,work) I think that answers why you were asked to do so. That's why we have training partners.

Of course we could have training 'obstructers', which would be the opposite and thus lead to no training.

So until we recognise cooperation as a vital ingredient we cannot move forward.

Such statements as cooperation is bad thus never make any sense to me at all for it is vital and only a matter of degrees of and with what.

Peace.G.

Gary David
08-27-2012, 05:42 PM
To a point... but you don't have to be that stable to hurt someone............



In the cooperative style of training that is a part of Aikido....you are less likely to hurt someone if you are stable and give away that stability temporarily when you choice to...like taking ukemi... than you would be if you are just flying around double weighted to the same side when you attack as most do.

Gary

graham christian
08-27-2012, 05:45 PM
Graham
How do you train that? How to you structure your training, both body and mind, to have the body stable as much as possible no matter the circumstances? No matter which side of the equation it is operating on......

Gary

Simply by training, that's what training is for is it not.

Body stability firstly comes through kata, drills of motions, practice until the body is used to the moves and comfortable with them. Thus the first level of body stability.

This is repeated and true for various levels when new motions are introduced.

Mind is a matter of practice and drills too with the focus on it, thus leading to stable mind.

When the physical motion is comfortable and the mind is too you have mind and body coordination.

Peace.G.

Gary David
08-27-2012, 05:47 PM
co(together)+operate(act,work) I think that answers why you were asked to do so. That's why we have training partners.

Of course we could have training 'obstructers', which would be the opposite and thus lead to no training.

So until we recognise cooperation as a vital ingredient we cannot move forward.

Such statements as cooperation is bad thus never make any sense to me at all for it is vital and only a matter of degrees of and with what.

Peace.G.

Graham
This one seems a little out of sorts for me...not sure what you are talking to.

I never that cooperative training was not part of the mix.....it is that most are tooo cooperative, are not in themselves stable in moving, often it not always double weighted to one side..... So how do you get your pairs past this?

Gary

graham christian
08-27-2012, 05:57 PM
Graham
This one seems a little out of sorts for me...not sure what you are talking to.

I never that cooperative training was not part of the mix.....it is that most are tooo cooperative, are not in themselves stable in moving, often it not always double weighted to one side..... So how do you get your pairs past this?

Gary

Wasn't for you it was related to post 39. Was writing it while you were posting hence it came after one of your posts.

Peace.G

mathewjgano
08-27-2012, 06:09 PM
By the way...Happy Birthday Mary

Everyone.....Let us take a different approach....... Let me ask a question and have everyone answer.....

Question: Where would you want to have the ability to be stable in all directions when moving and essentially not be throw-able? What circumstances could exist where this ability could be useful?

Let's think of it from that perspective..

Gary

Gary,
How would you answer these?

After rereading this, I'd add that I would want to be unbalanced/unstable, in some way, in order to provide my training partner with something to take advantage of or to show what it feels like compared with a more stable operation.
Otherwise, I'm pretty much always trying to be balanced in all directions and to use my whole body to apply pressure to my partner's center through whatever point(s) I'm making contact with. As uke this translates into an effort for a single, well-defined attack which nage should be able to respond to in a way which allows him or her to seize control, and through that control, move me more or less at will. If nage doesn't seize control enough, then as uke, because I'm always trying to "be nage" somewhat, some part of my body rotates and I try to enter around their strength. My understanding is that, to the extent that I am balanced, my body will naturally find parts with which to enter into aite. I am always somewhat off balance in the sense that I do not use my body perfectly, so in a sense, i would think we are always being unstable, it's just that it's up to the other person to understand or otherwise be developed enough to take advantage of it.
Sorry if I am repeating anything others have already said, or if I'm missing the point. I'm juggling my lads while typing this...cyber randori!
Take care!
Matt

graham christian
08-27-2012, 06:16 PM
Graham
How do you train that? How to you structure your training, both body and mind, to have the body stable as much as possible no matter the circumstances? No matter which side of the equation it is operating on......

Gary

Gary, having answered this question above allow me to go further and add a couple of things to do with mind and thus mind stability.

Mind has a centre too and thus when centred is in a particular state, condition, which at that point is gives mind as well as body coordination.

This state of mind is one we are all familiar with and is the reason we study and practice. It is called understanding.

The second point I would make regarding the mind and the harder one to accomplish yet vital especially to Aikido is the state of mind which acts rather than reacts. The one which acts is stable yet alert and balanced and the mind which reacts is unstable and unbalanced.

Peace.G.

CorkyQ
08-27-2012, 06:31 PM
Osensei being thrown: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7nwNgKs-DnY&list=FLQ8oNq_LvwbM1qovqg55aZQ&index=17&feature=plpp_video

Chris Li
08-27-2012, 06:36 PM
Osensei being thrown: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7nwNgKs-DnY&list=FLQ8oNq_LvwbM1qovqg55aZQ&index=17&feature=plpp_video

Nobody here ever said that Ueshiba didn't take ukemi - that's really not the point of the conversation.

Best,

Chris

stan baker
08-27-2012, 06:54 PM
Could Tohei throw Ueshiba?
Could Ueshiba throw Tohei?
What if neither could throw the other?
Who then would be doing Aikido?
And do you see Aikido as being only about developing the ability to throw people; or becoming unthrowable; or both; or neither?
Is the acquisition of power that ultimately becomes simultaneously irresistible and unyielding the goal of your training?
And how will you know if you ever get there?

Ron
that is a big part
when you get there you will know
stan

graham christian
08-27-2012, 07:06 PM
Nobody here ever said that Ueshiba didn't take ukemi - that's really not the point of the conversation.

Best,

Chris

It was stated that Ueshiba couldn't be thrown. Thus it opens the door to what is the difference between taking ukemi and being thrown. Such statements need clarifying and appear contentious otherwise I would say.

Peace.G.

Conrad Gus
08-27-2012, 07:06 PM
At what point does the mere presence of two people mean one is excerting his will...even just by agreeing? At what point is denying you are exerting your will in a physical interaction...just simply *denial*?

I have been thinking about this a lot. I teach children, and I let them throw me all the time. Of course I could stop their technique, but I really want them to learn, so I go with it. If I started to believe that they were really throwing me, I would be in trouble. I think they know that I am letting them do it, but it gives them the right feeling. We can gradually increase the resistance. That's just one way of training, but it seems to be pretty popular and work well for most people.

I think there is a danger of confusing training exercises with real-life applications. We generally don't do real-life applications in the dojo because they are dangerous, so we do a lot of exercises to develop the skills that we would use in a real-life situation. If we deny, however, that these are training exercises (where we are exerting our will to simulate something or create certain training conditions), I think that can create a bad situation.

Incidentally, I would call standing in one place and letting someone try to throw you or move you an exercise as well. In real life, the mountain that cannot be moved makes a pretty great target for a knife attack.

Conrad

Chris Li
08-27-2012, 07:14 PM
It was stated that Ueshiba couldn't be thrown. Thus it opens the door to what is the difference between taking ukemi and being thrown. Such statements need clarifying and appear contentious otherwise I would say.

Peace.G.

OK, in case anything is unclear - nobody here ever said Ueshiba or anybody else never took ukemi.

Of course, anybody is capable of taking ukemi if they choose to do so. The can also roll around on without anybody being around for miles.

FWIW, Dan has taken ukemi for me many times.

Best,

Chris

graham christian
08-27-2012, 07:27 PM
OK, in case anything is unclear - nobody here ever said Ueshiba or anybody else never took ukemi.

Of course, anybody is capable of taking ukemi if they choose to do so. The can also roll around on without anybody being around for miles.

FWIW, Dan has taken ukemi for me many times.

Best,

Chris

Not being contentious here but I would say this: When being Uke as a teacher then what are you doing?

I for one am teaching the nage how to 'throw' and indeed how to 'throw' me.

Thus any teacher worth their salt is teaching how to.

So any statement of how another couldn't shows a lack of good teaching from that viewpoint, by the uke.
Peace.G.

Conrad Gus
08-27-2012, 07:27 PM
OK, in case anything is unclear - nobody here ever said Ueshiba or anybody else never took ukemi.

Of course, anybody is capable of taking ukemi if they choose to do so. The can also roll around on without anybody being around for miles.

FWIW, Dan has taken ukemi for me many times.

Best,

Chris

I don't think it's one or the other ("taking ukemi" or "being thrown"). There is a continuum that ranges all the way from letting a 5-year-old execute kokyunage on you, to finding yourself on the mat and not even knowing how you got there. The latter has never happened to me, but I've felt quite a bit of the scale over the years.

I could see how the possibilities of experiencing the higher end of the scale would diminish (potentially to zero) as one's own abilities (or whatever :) ) increase relative to those of the people with whom one is training. Under this conception, O-Sensei might experience everyone the same way I experience training with my kids' class.

I think this is the point Chris and Dan are trying to make. It makes sense to me.

Conrad

Chris Li
08-27-2012, 07:34 PM
I don't think it's one or the other ("taking ukemi" or "being thrown"). There is a continuum that ranges all the way from letting a 5-year-old execute kokyunage on you, to finding yourself on the mat and not even knowing how you got there. The latter has never happened to me, but I've felt quite a bit of the scale over the years.

I could see how the possibilities of experiencing the higher end of the scale would diminish (potentially to zero) as one's own abilities (or whatever :) ) increase relative to those of the people with whom one is training. Under this conception, O-Sensei might experience everyone the same way I experience training with my kids' class.

I think this is the point Chris and Dan are trying to make. It makes sense to me.

Conrad

Yes, I agree that there is a scale, but I don't think that is really the relevant point. That "unthrowable" stability is the expression of a certain kind of practice all by itself - that would be a little bit closer...

Best,

Chris

graham christian
08-27-2012, 08:02 PM
Yes, I agree that there is a scale, but I don't think that is really the relevant point. That "unthrowable" stability is the expression of a certain kind of practice all by itself - that would be a little bit closer...

Best,

Chris

"unthrowable" stability. I have a view on this but I know it would be different to yours and I wouldn't use such wording to describe it as I feel it leads to more confusion and indeed delusion than it does good.

However it does remind me of a little story from my past.

My girlfiend at the time wanted to visit her friend in a certain 'no go' area in north London as she was living with a guy who was a master of some martial art. This art she said practiced 'unpenetrable' body.

That did make me smile. She said it was Ki based and what she had been told and we discussed it.

Anyway, move forward to me being in the guys house waiting for her to return from the kitchen where she was chatting with her friend and husband and a group of guys from his school. It was called Kateda as I recall.

One guy came out from the kitchen and brought me a book to read and then another came and asked me if I would like a drink and then another came and sat down and proceede to talk about martial arts. I listened and acknowledged them but was taken by a strange type of reverence they all seemed to be giving me.

Finally my girlfriend reappeared and was ready to go and everyone came and bid us farewell and even insisted I leave with a present.

This bugged me. When we got home it dawned on me that something must have been said in the kitchen that I was unaware of so I asked what had been said.

She told me that the men had been showing her some Kateda and she had done what I said and they hit the floor. On asking her where she learned that she had told them I had taught her it.

Wow! Now it all made sense. I shook my head and laughed. "Why do people do that?" I thought.

Peace.G.

Basia Halliop
08-27-2012, 10:20 PM
Not being contentious here but I would say this: When being Uke as a teacher then what are you doing?

I for one am teaching the nage how to 'throw' and indeed how to 'throw' me.

Thus any teacher worth their salt is teaching how to.

So any statement of how another couldn't shows a lack of good teaching from that viewpoint, by the uke.
Peace.G.

I read the claim that certain people are or were unthrowable as saying simply that some people can be thrown only when they allow it, but can't be thrown against their will.

RonRagusa
08-27-2012, 10:40 PM
that is a big part
when you get there you will know
stan

And yet it's at that point
when you know you've arrived,
there's that someone
waiting around the corner
who will let you know,
that you're not there yet.

Ron

mathewjgano
08-28-2012, 01:46 AM
that is a big part
when you get there you will know
stan

Too bad it's also true (apparently) that when one is not there one will often think he or she is.

phitruong
08-28-2012, 07:36 AM
Too bad it's also true (apparently) that when one is not there one will often think he or she is.

been there. done that. :)

always wondering why folks shy away from acquiring power? as though, power is a bad thing. perhaps they don't trust themselves with it? i don't have problem with power. foods and women, on the hand, are problematic. :D

question, is a sphere (3-D) a stable shape?

DH
08-28-2012, 10:49 AM
I have been thinking about this a lot. I teach children, and I let them throw me all the time. Of course I could stop their technique, but I really want them to learn, so I go with it. If I started to believe that they were really throwing me, I would be in trouble. I think they know that I am letting them do it, but it gives them the right feeling. We can gradually increase the resistance. That's just one way of training, but it seems to be pretty popular and work well for most people.

I think there is a danger of confusing training exercises with real-life applications. We generally don't do real-life applications in the dojo because they are dangerous, so we do a lot of exercises to develop the skills that we would use in a real-life situation. If we deny, however, that these are training exercises (where we are exerting our will to simulate something or create certain training conditions), I think that can create a bad situation.

Incidentally, I would call standing in one place and letting someone try to throw you or move you an exercise as well. In real life, the mountain that cannot be moved makes a pretty great target for a knife attack.

Conrad
Well standing in one place and demonstrating dynamic stability and the ability to absorb forces and neutralize them is essential to aiki. It is worth noting that it is so essential that most every high level art in the history of planet earth based their deeper teaching on it. Aikido used to as well, it's just all but gone from the art. The benefits of it are unknown to most modern adepts. This is evident in watching high ranking people move, even those supposedly out teaching internal movement. They wobble and buckle under load. The shear volume of those who don't get it –to include a staggering number of high ranking budoka-doesn't support any counter argument. It does nothing to change the deeper work that was a staple of the higher level arts that Aikido used to be a part of under Ueshiba.

Stability
Two of the concepts Ueshiba talked about; Heaven/earth/man and six direction training were grossly mistranslated as a random sequence of words lacking any known meaning to the translators. So six direction training which had been laid out in India, in China, and as early as 1451 in Japan and taught at places such as the Katori and Kashima shrines was always categorized as imbuing an adept with power. This teaching-itself a very deep and difficult endeavor with an established pedagogy was reduced to "stand in hanmi" by some of the same people who brought us modern aikido.
There is a reason to attain central stability and hence dynamic stability. It is from this stability that the body achieves in yo or (yin yang). It is the central support system that allows the body to be soft-yet strong. Thinking it has anything at all to do with “standing still” just demonstrates the incredible ignorance of the modern martial arts community to what is really going on.
Point of fact is that once this central stability is achieved-mores the point once the method to achieve it is built into the body-you actually move faster than a normal person in space, with no telegraphing movement. This is one of the reasons that the attributes of Heaven earth man and six direction training are never argued in person, but only on the net by an uneducated and inexperienced community of teachers. Simply put, in person those who do not understand it simply fail agains those who do. Virtually all of them.
As an aside I would mention that one of the staple principles of throwing is the push when pulled or turn when pushed examples. And the model I am describing virtually eliminates the very idea, to the point that it simply doesn’t work on you. The secondary attribute I mentioned is the ability to make change in yourself that offers no telegraphing to an opponent. This has to do with the fact that the method used to connect the body to make these principles work has another benefit in that the body works in a highly efficient manner that doesn’t weight shift like normal folk. This results in rapid movement, weight transfers in and out of an opponent without your weight being applied or being “had” and incredible force in punching or kicking. Other benefits are ghosty, unreadable movements.
So in reality there really is no debate. Thinking someone can out argue you, or out talk you matters little. Very intelligent and well read “experts” in budo fall apart against it, MMA people are flummoxed trying to figure out what is happening to them. So any internet *dialogue* is the equivalent of trying to debate whether two and two equals four.

Suffice to say that Ueshiba was oft times quoting well established works-including Chinese classics, and was not the singular genius people think he was. I am not taking anything away from him here, but in fact appluading him, and just noting that he was yet another “great” using deeper level principles of the Asian arts that few know about or ever attain.
As I mentioned at the beginning of this, the debate over them has existed for centuries. Again a founder of a Japanese Koryu in 1451 uses the very same models Ueshiba was discussing:
“Once I understood the concepts of Heaven/earth/man and six direction method, (learned from esoteric training at Kashima and Katori shrine) my ken was unbeatable. No one could stop me.”

A modern martial artists not finding any of this useful is a stunning statement of their level of understanding of movement and the higher levels of Budo.
Dan

Conrad Gus
08-28-2012, 11:46 AM
So six direction training which had been laid out in India, in China, and as early as 1451 in Japan and taught at places such as the Katori and Kashima shrines was always categorized as imbuing an adept with power.


Interesting. In your opinion, are the skills you are referring to still being taught in the Katori and Kashima arts?

Basia Halliop
08-28-2012, 11:47 AM
been there. done that. :)

always wondering why folks shy away from acquiring power? as though, power is a bad thing. perhaps they don't trust themselves with it? i don't have problem with power. foods and women, on the hand, are problematic. :D

question, is a sphere (3-D) a stable shape?

Depends what it's a sphere OF. A sphere of mass in outer space (i.e., relatively far from other masses) held together by its own gravity can be very stable - it may remain spherical or almost so for millenia. A sphere of water on a table in my kitchen, not so much.

Also depends what kind of stability you're talking about. If you mean, e.g., a hard ball lying on the flat surface -- it's relatively hard to crush (harder than a cube of the same material), but very very easy to roll (unlike a cube of the same material).

Keith Larman
08-28-2012, 11:56 AM
There is a reason to attain central stability and hence dynamic stability. It is from this stability that the body achieves in yo or (yin yang). It is the central support system that allows the body to be soft-yet strong. ... <SNIP>

Dan

On just this one quote... My work with a heavy bag changed dramatically as I focused on this. Still a lot of work to do, but I found the feeling of working the bag changed too. Power went up, power changed. Delivery came at odder and odder angles for me. A friend visited recently who I used to train with and he commented that on the bag I seemed faster than I ever was before. And how did I manage that being 10 years older, a bit fatter, and a lot more injured...

Dynamic stillness. Makes for surprisingly fast striking and movement.

Still trying to grok it all... Back to my rubber bands. And I need to find some time to get together with Gary...

DH
08-28-2012, 12:00 PM
been there. done that. :)

always wondering why folks shy away from acquiring power? as though, power is a bad thing. perhaps they don't trust themselves with it? i don't have problem with power. foods and women, on the hand, are problematic. :D

question, is a sphere (3-D) a stable shape?
The idea of one point or sphere is good but basic and not really where we want to go. Ueshiba had a better, more refined idea than Tohei-even though Tohei had a lot of power.

When it comes to why modern Aikido-ka shying away from power...
a. Because beyond all protestations to the contrary-they really have no understanding of what was meant by *power* in the arts. They continue to think it is flexing and using muscle.
b. Because the teachers themselves who held this knowledge do not- or do not know *how*... to teach.
c. There are those teaching "Internal power" and "aiki" who pale in comparison to those who understand it. All they are really doing is muddying the waters even further.
It can't be helped.

Hopefully, the dialogue has served to increase awareness. As people get exposure, they are going to see the forrest for the trees and prevent themselves from getting lost in the weeds by listening to people who really have no business teaching aiki, and also those who claim to teach but don't.
Dan

DH
08-28-2012, 12:13 PM
Depends what it's a sphere OF. A sphere of mass in outer space (i.e., relatively far from other masses) held together by its own gravity can be very stable - it may remain spherical or almost so for millenia. A sphere of water on a table in my kitchen, not so much.

Also depends what kind of stability you're talking about. If you mean, e.g., a hard ball lying on the flat surface -- it's relatively hard to crush (harder than a cube of the same material), but very very easy to roll (unlike a cube of the same material).
The sphere as a metaphore is meant to be discussed in use in the body. No one really cares about wandering off into the weeds with more mechanical models that appear here that help no one-including those who draw them and have nothing unusual to show for there "understanding."
As is often discussed, go meet people who have demonstrably unusual skills...and more importantly have students..WITH UNUSUAL SKILLS???? If not why not?

Everyone else? They obviously either don't get it, or have it and won't teach it, or don't want to know. They are the Tom, Dick or Harry who make up the bulk of the martial arts. If you want to be Tom, Dick, or the average Jane...go for it. But is that really what we want for ourselves? Who we want to be?
Dan

DH
08-28-2012, 12:21 PM
Ki
The question then arises that if the balance of ki is meant to be in you BEFORE it is manifest between you and someone else "AIki in me, before aiki between thee and me" how and where does that change and engagement?
I contend that the *blending* everyone is shooting for-including the misunderstood four legged animal model-is incorrect and will leave you open for counters and being controlled youself. It is not and never was the aiki the Asians were noting as a deep level of control.

Cooperation
When is cooperation useful?
What are its limits?
When is it meaningful to create pressure?
What kind of pressure?
Against who?

When does cooperation cause more harm and hamper progress?
When is it self defeating and self deluding?
When is it antithetical to real martial skills?

Dan

DH
08-28-2012, 12:37 PM
On just this one quote... My work with a heavy bag changed dramatically as I focused on this. Still a lot of work to do, but I found the feeling of working the bag changed too. Power went up, power changed. Delivery came at odder and odder angles for me. A friend visited recently who I used to train with and he commented that on the bag I seemed faster than I ever was before. And how did I manage that being 10 years older, a bit fatter, and a lot more injured...

Dynamic stillness. Makes for surprisingly fast striking and movement.

Still trying to grok it all... Back to my rubber bands. And I need to find some time to get together with Gary...
All true and demonstrable of the basic attributes one starts to gain from a connected body. Yet another very troubling thing to try and dialogue with people about when they claim to have ki and connection and you watch them move and go "huh?"
As one ICMA grand master level guy said...."You cannot pretend dantian. You will be found out." So it is troubling for those with real connection to watch those who beyond all claims to the contrary don't have a connected body and show many structural failures while supposedly being connected and connecting to someone else.

Beyond the power model there is the aiki model and the very real attributes of spiral movement and why Ueshiba stated that the mysteries of Aiki are revealed in dual spiral movement. It takes Tohei's model to a far deeper level and expresses aiki or jins everywhere at once.
I will be at ADV in Sept if you can make it.
Dan

Basia Halliop
08-28-2012, 12:58 PM
The sphere as a metaphore is meant to be discussed in use in the body. No one really cares about wandering off into the weeds with more mechanical models that appear here that help no one-including those who draw them and have nothing unusual to show for there "understanding."

Uh, OK. So what is the metaphor of the sphere and what does it mean in relation to the body? I have never heard of this metaphor and have no idea what it refers to, and I'm probably not the only one. I have no way of knowing that there is a metaphor relating the body to a sphere unless someone says so...

My point in responding to the question about the sphere with a comment about different models of the sphere is that -- it depends what you mean by a sphere and it depends what you mean by stability. I.e., more info is needed to answer the question of whether a sphere is stable.

No one really cares about wandering off into the weeds with more mechanical models that appear here Personally I usually find mechanical models clear and metaphors just confusing unless I already know what the metaphor is talking about. So I often have no clue what people are talking about until they stop using metaphors and tell me directly what they mean. I have met people who were the opposite.

jonreading
08-28-2012, 01:16 PM
My thoughts here:
1. I have pursued aikido with the goal first to control myself and second to control my environment. As I have a tendency to say, "get your house in order before wrecking your neighbors." I like Dan's reference to compare and contrast being "un-throwable" and "throwing". For me, it makes sense that I should look first and foremost that that which improves me; and second to that which affects others.
2. The Sun don't orbit the Earth, its the other way around. When we "aiki", one center has to become submissive to the other. Whether this order is achieved artificially or naturally is relevant to training. What I understand to be "cooperation" has very little to do with falling and more to do with establishing order in aiki.

As a note to these points, I think sometimes we tend to focus on "throwing" and less on ourselves. I guess sometimes we like the false sense of power that comes from throwing someone (especially if they are bigger, or faster, etc.). Second, I think sometimes we mistake cooperating with our partner as falling for them. When I train with big center people, I appreciate that they allow my center to lead the dance, even though I am still train to create a relationship when they don't have to "let" me lead. These people don't "fall" for me because even if they let me control our centers I can still screw up waza.

Aikido does not require "cooperation". For those us us who train with cooperation we should understand that as a training aid that eventually we should shed. Similarly, to be unable to defend your center and balance as part of your training should also be seen as deficient and something to improve upon.

Besides, how could Phi and I possible fight atop the bamboo forests in North Carolina if we didn't have good un-moveable centers?

mathewjgano
08-28-2012, 03:51 PM
been there. done that. :)

always wondering why folks shy away from acquiring power? as though, power is a bad thing. perhaps they don't trust themselves with it? i don't have problem with power. foods and women, on the hand, are problematic. :D

question, is a sphere (3-D) a stable shape?

I hear it corrupts, but then again, I hear money is the root of all evil and I have generally taken the stand that I could use a little more evil roots. Then again I hear money can't buy happiness, but as one comedian put it, it does buy a jet ski; have you ever seen anyone not smiling on a jet ski?

I would think of a sphere as a stable shape, but they do tend to roll out into the street during soccer matches and get flattened, so maybe not as stable as I might initially think?

...just wanted to add I'm really digging this thread. Thank you everyone for great food for thought!

lars beyer
08-28-2012, 04:45 PM
I read the claim that certain people are or were unthrowable as saying simply that some people can be thrown only when they allow it, but can't be thrown against their will.

This is the final indisputable proof that everybody can be thrown nomatter how centered they are or how much ding dong they practiced !

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BqzunKZr3Eg

Watch, listen and learn folks ! ;)

DH
08-28-2012, 05:04 PM
Uh, OK. So what is the metaphor of the sphere and what does it mean in relation to the body? I have never heard of this metaphor and have no idea what it refers to, and I'm probably not the only one. I have no way of knowing that there is a metaphor relating the body to a sphere unless someone says so...

My point in responding to the question about the sphere with a comment about different models of the sphere is that -- it depends what you mean by a sphere and it depends what you mean by stability. I.e., more info is needed to answer the question of whether a sphere is stable.

Personally I usually find mechanical models clear and metaphors just confusing unless I already know what the metaphor is talking about. So I often have no clue what people are talking about until they stop using metaphors and tell me directly what they mean. I have met people who were the opposite.
Well that's a personal choice I guess.
The Asians I have met who had unusual power- all use metaphor.
The Tom, Dick and Harry Western guys uses mechanical models.
NONE of the Western teachers I had personally met feel any different than every other Tom, Dick and Harry. I'll change my mind when I find someone who uses the mechanical models and actually has something unusual to share. So far its been a bust.

Six direction method imparts a sphere -in theory- but it uses the mind/ body in specific ways to manifest that feel. Think of one point as a model. There is no sphere, so talking about how strong a sphere is and the qualities of it are waste of time. You cannot make a sphere out of your body and if you try, you will fail in innumerable ways. Likewise there are innumerable Aikido people who claim to use Tohei's model or to understand ki who have nothing unusual by way of power. Their one point is sort of okay under dojo conditions but fails under stress. Using the sphere as a mechanical model is inefficient. Describing what the body must do to manifest six directions is an exacting model that is a success. A success with a history.
Remember, Ueshiba was talking about the body...and not the "spiritual" things people erroneously assigned to his physical principles.

Why?
The really wonderful question is why does six direction blow up the push/pull model? The answer is simple but very hard to grok at first, harder still to do. Most simply cannot see how you could be in agreement with someone and totally neutralizing them at the same time. Moreover what that does to your own body to strengthen it and how? And if you understand THAT then you understand that making aiki between you and them like the oft quoted four legged animal between you and someone else was flawed from the start. Takeda, Sagawa, Ueshiba, Shirata had it right.

There is no debate in person. So I prefer to debate in that venue, where teachers have to provide proof of their understanding in an inescapable venue under stress.
Dan

graham christian
08-28-2012, 05:36 PM
Ki
The question then arises that if the balance of ki is meant to be in you BEFORE it is manifest between you and someone else "AIki in me, before aiki between thee and me" how and where does that change and engagement?
I contend that the *blending* everyone is shooting for-including the misunderstood four legged animal model-is incorrect and will leave you open for counters and being controlled youself. It is not and never was the aiki the Asians were noting as a deep level of control.

Cooperation
When is cooperation useful?
What are its limits?
When is it meaningful to create pressure?
What kind of pressure?
Against who?

When does cooperation cause more harm and hamper progress?
When is it self defeating and self deluding?
When is it antithetical to real martial skills?

Dan

Ki
Love and kindness in me before love and kindness between thee and me.

Co operation.

They act, I act making one co-act. A co operation.

Unlimited. Always useful. Never creates pressure. Against anyone. Never causes harm. Never self defeating, a continuous state of winning. Pure Aikido martial.

So be it.

Peace.G.

graham christian
08-28-2012, 05:40 PM
I read the claim that certain people are or were unthrowable as saying simply that some people can be thrown only when they allow it, but can't be thrown against their will.

Yes, I get that but call that delusory. Harder to be thrown maybe.

Peace.G.

Keith Larman
08-28-2012, 05:41 PM
When I read comments like Graham's above, I'm reminded of a quote.

Everyone has a plan 'till they get punched in the mouth. Mike Tyson

graham christian
08-28-2012, 05:47 PM
When I read comments like Graham's above, I'm reminded of a quote.

Maybe that applies to your comment.

Mine however is not a comment, it's a way.

Peace.G.

Gary David
08-28-2012, 05:48 PM
I'll change my mind when I find someone who uses the mechanical models and actually has something unusual to share. So far its been a bust.



Dan
I have a good friend that you and I have talked about who uses mechanical models......mostly because it is the easiest way to reach the western mechanical mind. In the short term and because it is enough for most...this works. That is not all that he is though.......
Gary

Gary David
08-28-2012, 05:51 PM
Ki
Love and kindness in me before love and kindness between thee and me.

Co operation.

They act, I act making one co-act. A co operation.

Unlimited. Always useful. Never creates pressure. Against anyone. Never causes harm. Never self defeating, a continuous state of winning. Pure Aikido martial.

So be it.

Peace.G.

Drifts in a warm sea, dreams the dreams, feels only the soft currents and occasionally the tides..........

graham christian
08-28-2012, 05:59 PM
Drifts in a warm sea, dreams the dreams, feels only the soft currents and occasionally the tides..........

Very nice, I like it. Is that yours or taken from somewhere? If it's yours then you have a hidden poetic talent.

Peace.G.

gregstec
08-28-2012, 06:05 PM
This is the final indisputable proof that everybody can be thrown nomatter how centered they are or how much ding dong they practiced !

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BqzunKZr3Eg

Watch, listen and learn folks ! ;)

Cool! but I don't think these folks were being thrown against their will - actually, I think some of them warped folks probably would have paid to be thrown like that :D

Greg

Chris Li
08-28-2012, 06:12 PM
Uh, OK. So what is the metaphor of the sphere and what does it mean in relation to the body? I have never heard of this metaphor and have no idea what it refers to, and I'm probably not the only one. I have no way of knowing that there is a metaphor relating the body to a sphere unless someone says so...

My point in responding to the question about the sphere with a comment about different models of the sphere is that -- it depends what you mean by a sphere and it depends what you mean by stability. I.e., more info is needed to answer the question of whether a sphere is stable.

Personally I usually find mechanical models clear and metaphors just confusing unless I already know what the metaphor is talking about. So I often have no clue what people are talking about until they stop using metaphors and tell me directly what they mean. I have met people who were the opposite.

Here is some (possibly) relevant stuff - keep in mind that this is the product of my own personal rantings and ravings, and certainly that I certainly do not and can not speak for Dan:

Morihei Ueshiba, Budo and Kamae - Part 3 - More on six directions... (http://www.aikidosangenkai.org/blog/archive/2012-06-24/morihei-ueshiba-budo-and-kamae-part-3)

Best,

Chris

Keith Larman
08-28-2012, 06:25 PM
Maybe that applies to your comment.

Mine however is not a comment, it's a way.

Peace.G.

Um, okay.

lars beyer
08-28-2012, 06:26 PM
Cool! but I don't think these folks were being thrown against their will - actually, I think some of them warped folks probably would have paid to be thrown like that :D

Greg

Exactly, speaking in metaphors, this is what itīs all about isnīt it ?
:)

gregstec
08-28-2012, 06:27 PM
Here is some (possibly) relevant stuff - keep in mind that this is the product of my own personal rantings and ravings, and certainly that I certainly do not and can not speak for Dan:

Morihei Ueshiba, Budo and Kamae - Part 3 - More on six directions... (http://www.aikidosangenkai.org/blog/archive/2012-06-24/morihei-ueshiba-budo-and-kamae-part-3)

Best,

Chris

As someone has said: "this is not rocket science" - the concepts and principles are really simple - the hard part is developing the skill within - too much effort is spend on making it much more complex than it really is - spend more time training making it your own! :)

Greg

gregstec
08-28-2012, 06:29 PM
Exactly, speaking in metaphors, this is what itīs all about isnīt it ?
:)

Absolutely, fun!!!! :D

Rob Watson
08-28-2012, 06:30 PM
Drifts in a warm sea, dreams the dreams, feels only the soft currents and occasionally the tides..........

The next stanza is about sharks and nasty things from the deep ... or should be. Balance and all that.

graham christian
08-28-2012, 07:07 PM
The next stanza is about sharks and nasty things from the deep ... or should be. Balance and all that.

Drifts in a warm sea, dreams the dreams, feels only the soft currents and occasionally the tides..........

From down below, rise hell's deadly foe, but meet only the water where the moon abides.....

How's that?

Peace G.

graham christian
08-28-2012, 07:19 PM
Depends what it's a sphere OF. A sphere of mass in outer space (i.e., relatively far from other masses) held together by its own gravity can be very stable - it may remain spherical or almost so for millenia. A sphere of water on a table in my kitchen, not so much.

Also depends what kind of stability you're talking about. If you mean, e.g., a hard ball lying on the flat surface -- it's relatively hard to crush (harder than a cube of the same material), but very very easy to roll (unlike a cube of the same material).

How about communication actually being a circle and thus a perfect communication being a perfect circle? More pertinent to the topic I would think.

Then seeing that circle is merely the circumference of a sphere.

Peace.G.

Gary David
08-28-2012, 08:51 PM
Drifts in a warm sea, dreams the dreams, feels only the soft currents and occasionally the tides..........

From down below, rise hell's deadly foe, but meet only the water where the moon abides.....

How's that?

Peace G.

Drifts in a warn sea, dreams the dreams, feels only the soft currents and occasionally the tides.......

The moonlight reflects the silver sides as bubbles curtain a turning path........

From down below, rise hell's deadly foe, the alarm clock rings the Monday's dawn......

Gary

Basia Halliop
08-28-2012, 10:29 PM
Here is some (possibly) relevant stuff - keep in mind that this is the product of my own personal rantings and ravings, and certainly that I certainly do not and can not speak for Dan:

Morihei Ueshiba, Budo and Kamae - Part 3 - More on six directions... (http://www.aikidosangenkai.org/blog/archive/2012-06-24/morihei-ueshiba-budo-and-kamae-part-3)

Best,

Chris

Thanks. I just skimmed this but even that gives some idea of what you're talking about.

Basia Halliop
08-28-2012, 10:48 PM
It's actually kind of funny, but I think you're WAY overestimating how much I know what you're talking about or am familiar with any of the things you're talking about, and perhaps because of that reading way too much into what I'm saying or asking.

Well that's a personal choice I guess.
Six direction method imparts a sphere -in theory- but it uses the mind/ body in specific ways to manifest that feel. Think of one point as a model. There is no sphere, so talking about how strong a sphere is and the qualities of it are waste of time. You cannot make a sphere out of your body and if you try, you will fail in innumerable ways. Likewise there are innumerable Aikido people who claim to use Tohei's model or to understand ki who have nothing unusual by way of power. Their one point is sort of okay under dojo conditions but fails under stress. Using the sphere as a mechanical model is inefficient. Describing what the body must do to manifest six directions is an exacting model that is a success. A success with a history.
Remember, Ueshiba was talking about the body...and not the "spiritual" things people erroneously assigned to his physical principles.

Why?
The really wonderful question is why does six direction blow up the push/pull model? The answer is simple but very hard to grok at first, harder still to do. Most simply cannot see how you could be in agreement with someone and totally neutralizing them at the same time. Moreover what that does to your own body to strengthen it and how? And if you understand THAT then you understand that making aiki between you and them like the oft quoted four legged animal between you and someone else was flawed from the start. Takeda, Sagawa, Ueshiba, Shirata had it right.

There is no debate in person. So I prefer to debate in that venue, where teachers have to provide proof of their understanding in an inescapable venue under stress.
Dan

stan baker
08-28-2012, 11:32 PM
And yet it's at that point
when you know you've arrived,
there's that someone
waiting around the corner
who will let you know,
that you're not there yet.

Ron

One should study with that person

RonRagusa
08-29-2012, 10:15 AM
One should study with that person

Only if one is interested in what that person has to offer.

phitruong
08-29-2012, 10:23 AM
Also depends what kind of stability you're talking about. If you mean, e.g., a hard ball lying on the flat surface -- it's relatively hard to crush (harder than a cube of the same material), but very very easy to roll (unlike a cube of the same material).

was thinking about the yoga ball, that i used as chair, that i am sitting on top at the moment. i pushed it around, pounced on it, stretched my back, pushing it into walls, and so on. it always bounced back and/or diverted by power elsewhere. it's firm yet yielding. it flexed and held its shape. the only thing i have not tried yet is wearing leotard while using the ball. :)

a thought occur to me (i know random thought just pop in and out, must have been because of too much empty space) that if you spin the yin-yang symbol on its axis, it would be a yin-yang sphere, which doesn't really mean anything at all. :D

Rob Watson
08-29-2012, 11:29 AM
Also depends what kind of stability you're talking about. If you mean, e.g., a hard ball lying on the flat surface -- it's relatively hard to crush (harder than a cube of the same material), but very very easy to roll (unlike a cube of the same material).

Generalities fail ... hollow sphere made of cardboard crushes much more easily than a hollow box made of cardboard. Details and context matter.

DH
08-29-2012, 11:39 AM
was thinking about the yoga ball, that i used as chair, that i am sitting on top at the moment. i pushed it around, pounced on it, stretched my back, pushing it into walls, and so on. it always bounced back and/or diverted by power elsewhere. it's firm yet yielding. it flexed and held its shape. the only thing i have not tried yet is wearing leotard while using the ball. :)

a thought occur to me (i know random thought just pop in and out, must have been because of too much empty space) that if you spin the yin-yang symbol on its axis, it would be a yin-yang sphere, which doesn't really mean anything at all. :D

Okay, take your body and...go be a ball. Ya might as well use the old and tired...go relax.
It's more martial art B.S. that has produced...well...what we are looking at in modern budo.

There are things you can do with your body that will produce the effect we are discussing but arguing over the properties of spheres, and spirals is pure crap. Doubt it? Just go feel the guys using all the mechanical models. It's the neatest thing to do; take away someones waza, don't let them do a technique and see what they have. Most everyone has nothing. Nothing at all. After all this talk, after 40 years of discussing aiki, they really don't know what it means or how it is accomplished, and when put to any number of tests they simply fail and fall apart.

How the body is affected by the mind is critical.We need to arrive at a point that is beyond all debate, we should be looking at palpable results.
Does it really matter what someones internet opinion is?
What their rank is?
Is there anyone left who wants provable results?
It is the most amazing thing to hear someone and read someone talk of ki testing or internal power and aiki ..and be out teaching in public and then watch their videos as...they...wobble and fall apart with highly cooperative testing inside their own dojo then enter into a dialogue with people who are publicly known for remaining stable in highly stressed environments. I know budo is...uhm...unique and groovy with many waza and neat histories of tales of yore and all, but I think honest self-assessment of actual deliverables goes a long way.

All of our legends and the founders of our arts, are of men with unusual power, unusual fighting ability!
Who are the modern men with unusual power?
Unusual fighting ability?
Where are the students with unusual power and fighting ability?
What the heck is going on that there is a catastrophic failure of deliverables and no one cares? They seemingly just want to be a part of a groovy club doing a hobby
Budo and aiki and ki....what a weird concept, where real results don't matter to those paying and sweating. It's like a swimming coach who's students all drown and he argues "swimming" with the other coaches who produce winners.
Dan

DH
08-29-2012, 11:50 AM
One should study with that person
Not really. You would have to care about ki, aiki and testing. You would have to care about real results. Some cannot produce testable results and don't care.

DH
08-29-2012, 12:46 PM
Another interesting tidbit.
Once your soft power is developed-it can actually *prevent" you from forming a waza.
Why?
Why is it good?
How do you fix/manage that so you can govern yourself/ them/ and the waza shape and direction.
How then does soft power create and control connection?
Dan

Jim Sorrentino
08-29-2012, 12:59 PM
Once your soft power is developed-it can actually *prevent" you from forming a waza.
Why?
Why is it good?
How do you fix/manage that so you can govern yourself/ them/ and the waza shape and direction.
How then does soft power create and control connection?Please define "soft power." Also, when you say that soft power, once developed, "can actually *prevent" you from forming a waza," do you mean it can prevent the holder of the soft power from forming a waza, or the person who is trying to do the waza to the holder from forming a waza?

Inquiring minds, etc.

chillzATL
08-29-2012, 12:59 PM
Another interesting tidbit.
Once your soft power is developed-it can actually *prevent" you from forming a waza.
Why?
Why is it good?
How do you fix/manage that so you can govern yourself/ them/ and the waza shape and direction.
How then does soft power create and control connection?
Dan

prevent? Do you mean as in doing a specific technique?

phitruong
08-29-2012, 01:25 PM
Another interesting tidbit.
Once your soft power is developed-it can actually *prevent" you from forming a waza.
Why?
Why is it good?
How do you fix/manage that so you can govern yourself/ them/ and the waza shape and direction.
How then does soft power create and control connection?
Dan

i am waiting for the answers for those questions. you are planning to supply them, right? you don't expect me to come up with answers, do you? i am of the school "he who asks questions provides answers." :D

lars beyer
08-29-2012, 01:29 PM
Reading this thread and others I have noticed that nobody hardly speaks about Kokyu and since kokyu
was something Oīsensei talked about a lot I believe it is closely related to internal training/ internal power ?
Any takes on how Kokyu is manifested in the context of the internal power / internal training subject ?
Is Kokyo related to waza or is it connected to internal training, or both ?
:confused:
?

gregstec
08-29-2012, 01:59 PM
Reading this thread and others I have noticed that nobody hardly speaks about Kokyu and since kokyu
was something Oīsensei talked about a lot I believe it is closely related to internal training/ internal power ?
Any takes on how Kokyu is manifested in the context of the internal power / internal training subject ?
Is Kokyo related to waza or is it connected to internal training, or both ?
:confused:
?

There you go just stirring the pot - you know, of course, that kokyu has as many diverse meanings within the budo community as does KI and Aiki :)

Greg

lars beyer
08-29-2012, 02:10 PM
There you go just stirring the pot - you know, of course, that kokyu has as many diverse meanings within the budo community as does KI and Aiki :)

Greg

Yes, offcourse, and itīs related to the subject of this thread I feel. I donīt know much about Internal training like Danīs, but from my perception of the concept of Kokyo, I hardly know how to express it in words actually, still I hear things in the IT / IP threads I recognise intuitively.
But offcourse maybe I should have left it alone, but then again that could be said of almost everything
discussed in this forum.
Offcourse we donīt agree on everything. Why should we ? And like everybody else I am looking for answers.
:)

gregstec
08-29-2012, 02:23 PM
Yes, offcourse, and itīs related to the subject of this thread I feel. I donīt know much about Internal training like Danīs, but from my perception of the concept of Kokyo, I hardly know how to express it in words actually, still I hear things in the IT / IP threads I recognise intuitively.
But offcourse maybe I should have left it alone, but then again that could be said of almost everything
discussed in this forum.
Offcourse we donīt agree on everything. Why should we ? And like everybody else I am looking for answers.
:)

Was not trying to discourage anything here, just making a tongue-in-cheek remark that the injection of kokyu here could just add to the confusion some already have because of its diverse attributes associated with the topic points - but hey, you are right, why worry about it when that is apparently the norm here most of the time :)

Oh, and I am not focusing on you ( or anyone else) in any manner, I just picked a couple of your posts to use as a spring board into the thread :)

Greg

lars beyer
08-29-2012, 02:29 PM
Was not trying to discourage anything here, just making a tongue-in-cheek remark that the injection of kokyu here could just add to the confusion some already have because of its diverse attributes associated with the topic points - but hey, you are right, why worry about it when that is apparently the norm here most of the time :)

Oh, and I am not focusing on you ( or anyone else) in any manner, I just picked a couple of your posts to use as a spring board into the thread :)

Greg

Yes, I get your point, maybe itīs confusingly relevant... and should have been another topic.
No problemo :) Your welcome !

graham christian
08-29-2012, 02:38 PM
Drifts in a warn sea, dreams the dreams, feels only the soft currents and occasionally the tides.......

The moonlight reflects the silver sides as bubbles curtain a turning path........

From down below, rise hell's deadly foe, the alarm clock rings the Monday's dawn......

Gary

Now that's class! Good on ya....

Peace.G.

graham christian
08-29-2012, 02:40 PM
Another interesting tidbit.
Once your soft power is developed-it can actually *prevent" you from forming a waza.
Why?
Why is it good?
How do you fix/manage that so you can govern yourself/ them/ and the waza shape and direction.
How then does soft power create and control connection?
Dan

Interesting.

I would say soft power is waza. Can you feel it?

Peace.G.

lars beyer
08-29-2012, 04:44 PM
Yes, I get your point, maybe itīs confusingly relevant... and should have been another topic.
No problemo :) Your welcome !

I meant another thread, not another topic offcourse ! :o

DH
08-29-2012, 05:28 PM
prevent? Do you mean as in doing a specific technique?
At a point your power is disruptive and your hands do everything you need without much overt body movement. If you were trying to make a waza "shape" you would have to withdraw power to fit the shape, otherwise you would just control them and ruin the "shape" of a technique.

The same thing applies to weapons kata. When they touch your sword-their hitting transparent power-the ground is present in the weapon and a movement will launch them or cast their weapon without much effort. In and of itself it is disruptive to kata.
Dan

DH
08-29-2012, 05:31 PM
Reading this thread and others I have noticed that nobody hardly speaks about Kokyu and since kokyu
was something Oīsensei talked about a lot I believe it is closely related to internal training/ internal power ?
Any takes on how Kokyu is manifested in the context of the internal power / internal training subject ?
Is Kokyo related to waza or is it connected to internal training, or both ?
:confused:
?
Kokyu is only -one- aspect. In and of itself it is not enough.
Dan

chillzATL
08-29-2012, 06:26 PM
At a point your power is disruptive and your hands do everything you need without much overt body movement. If you were trying to make a waza "shape" you would have to withdraw power to fit the shape, otherwise you would just control them and ruin the "shape" of a technique.

The same thing applies to weapons kata. When they touch your sword-their hitting transparent power-the ground is present in the weapon and a movement will launch them or cast their weapon without much effort. In and of itself it is disruptive to kata.
Dan

Thanks Dan, that's what I thought you were getting at. I was going to say that when you get some measure of that soft power, you will probably already be seeing an end to techniques as they are typically performed. All of the things that the techniques are supposed to guide you to feel and achieve happen long before the end of the technique. When you're doing all the things in you that you should be doing, things happen that can't always be stuffed back into whatever technique your instructor has you doing and trying to do so becomes counter-productive to what made that all happen in the first place.

I have my thoughts of how that may or may not change when you have those skills on both sides. I think it could be a much more active thing and kaeshi, something I think most aikidoka consider "advanced", becomes the next logical step and the next thing that "just happens" as the result of what's going on in you. Unfortunately at this point it is just a thought though.

DH
08-29-2012, 06:40 PM
We are always learning along a continuum - in any dojo there will be people who cannot throw me and people I cannot throw. So yeah, with a newbie, I actually keep my idealized ukemi a step ahead of their nagewaza and not only fall for them, but guide them through my body. Past that, my willingness to allow myself to be moved is based on starting the first time as uke with total cooperation, attacking to their center and then essentially allowing nage to lead as long as she has found some kind of connection to me (the kind being related to a sense of her skill level) and letting myself follow where her leading is taking me. If she disconnects I let her know and let her refind it rather than start over. With peers and seniors of course I expect more and don't simply follow nor do I resist statically if they mess up, but gently ramp up my own attack on their center to give feedback that can be used to self-correct.

I don't see my interactions at the dojo as "winning."

FWIW, there were a couple of dojos I was a member of that were not paragons of cooperation. They also were nothing about what you would call "aiki" - they were purely into the mechanics of imposing the asked for technique with lots of muscle power regardless of the form of uke's attack. So I don't have a very high opinion of non-cooperative training.
However my view is that within cooperation there can be, and should be, the contract between partners to test one's limits.

I believe it is Chuck Clark whose teaching is based on the principle that one should succeed 90% of the time in order to learn. I think this is true, whether the partner practice is slow and aiming for feeling connection or faster and working on the form of a specific technique - it is in the 10% failure that one learns what is needed in order to progress and in the 90% success that one starts building the incremental muscle memory (for lack of a better term) that drills the skill in.

I think part of the problem may be semantic. Bear w/ me for a moment on this: I have felt/seen two very different kinds of aikido, as have many of us: the "wow that was a strong throw that sent me across the dojo" and the "wow how the heck did I end up here". I think for many of us the goal is the more elusive, harder to find latter feeling.

I think we're saying essentially the same thing. Testing in a cooperative manner as a means to grow. Actually I think most people in all forms of Budo practice and think that way. It was how most of us learned. The differences seem to be where we go -from- there.
Do we stress test? This can some into play in any art.

Stress test #1:
So if we leave Ki or Aiki out of the equation, it becomes a question of how much stress or what are our goals in learning self defense or to fight. The levels of ukemi etc. Those goals are fairly straight forward, those debates have been had, and many have found their own solutions.
Stress test #2
With IP/aiki we have the same questions to ask. How much stress, when to we up it, and against who? I see it as a very straight forward model that fits into Aikido and any other art very well.
So when you write of "center driven power to a level where few can stop you?" I have a feeling that however you may mean it, for many on Aikiweb this smacks of the style of aikido they have experienced (as I did in dojos like the couple I used to train at a long time ago) and are not interested in doing.
The culmination of attaining a level of power where few can stop you does not have to be a power play though is it? And it very much can lead and does lead to the "How the heck did that happen?" feeling. You know...the kind that leaves a smile on your face. That is the goal that most I know who pursue this work are finding fun and even amusing. I don't think anyone is seeing it as a sort of bully boy attitude. I know I don't. I see it as a heck of a lot of fun, and intriguing mind game and physical challenge that is very relaxing and mentally taxing.
I think walking away with a smile on our faces, and even laughing out loud while doing it beings a different definition to power.
I'll try to find it but a YiQuan teacher mentions much the same thing that Tohei did. THat when you practice this way and the opponent feel himself sent away, it leaves a look of surprise and wonder on their faces.
It sort of makes Ueshiba's model of making peace out of an enemy come to life again.
Dan

DH
08-29-2012, 06:45 PM
Thanks Dan, that's what I thought you were getting at. I was going to say that when you get some measure of that soft power, you will probably already be seeing an end to techniques as they are typically performed. All of the things that the techniques are supposed to guide you to feel and achieve happen long before the end of the technique. When you're doing all the things in you that you should be doing, things happen that can't always be stuffed back into whatever technique your instructor has you doing and trying to do so becomes counter-productive to what made that all happen in the first place.

I have my thoughts of how that may or may not change when you have those skills on both sides. I think it could be a much more active thing and kaeshi, something I think most aikidoka consider "advanced", becomes the next logical step and the next thing that "just happens" as the result of what's going on in you. Unfortunately at this point it is just a thought though.

It sort of goes hand in hand to what Janet and I were saying. On the one hand you can build power and aiki to the point that waza becomes all but meaningless. That's the fun stuff for me. But what the heck does that mean -we have to all quit the arts we love??? Nope. We have to learn to taper and govern the output and make it softer still to perform. We still dominate and control or cooperate and play. But the question remains:
Is cooperation and playing the game (needed to make kata work) the end of our expertise? Or can we rise above to a higher level that is all but unstoppable and then still go back in and play in the same cooperative way?
I say "Yes, It can be done."
Both are achievable. I think it was what most of the greats were in fact doing. Particularly the ones who were unthrowable. Being that good, does not mean you stop being nice or taking ukemmi when you want to.

Everyone accepts a certain dynamic in a force-on-force training paradigm. Why not with ki or aiki?
Dan

Janet Rosen
08-29-2012, 07:47 PM
The culmination of attaining a level of power where few can stop you does not have to be a power play though is it? And it very much can lead and does lead to the "How the heck did that happen?" feeling.

Dan, I agree with you. And I have felt that kind of very soft but irresistible power from you and from a few other folks coming from different backgrounds.
My point was not that you or I believe differently from that but, again, pointing out that use of language, how things may be read here, may well be leading to misunderstandings: for many aikido folk who have felt the "hard" throwing, muscling power on the mat and have decided it isn't what they want, if those folk are not familiar w/ you or other folks doing internal training, they may likely read your use of the word power as synonymous with that approach because it is their only point of reference for "power" in an aikido context.

Janet Rosen
08-29-2012, 07:50 PM
I think walking away with a smile on our faces, and even laughing out loud while doing it beings a different definition to power.
I'll try to find it but a YiQuan teacher mentions much the same thing that Tohei did. THat when you practice this way and the opponent feel himself sent away, it leaves a look of surprise and wonder on their faces.
It sort of makes Ueshiba's model of making peace out of an enemy come to life again.
Dan

There is nothing quite like hitting the floor and just busting out with laughter wondering how it happened. I think for many of us in aikido, regardless of background or "style", this is a huge part of what keeps us coming back for more. We know it's not "magical" but it still FEELS like it is when it happens. :)

DH
09-03-2012, 04:53 AM
Dan, I agree with you. And I have felt that kind of very soft but irresistible power from you and from a few other folks coming from different backgrounds.
My point was not that you or I believe differently from that but, again, pointing out that use of language, how things may be read here, may well be leading to misunderstandings: for many aikido folk who have felt the "hard" throwing, muscling power on the mat and have decided it isn't what they want, if those folk are not familiar w/ you or other folks doing internal training, they may likely read your use of the word power as synonymous with that approach because it is their only point of reference for "power" in an aikido context.
Hi kiddo
Good point. It's yet another reason that internet communication and trying to explain how things work becomes so difficult-yet in person things are much more clearly defined. In person everyone agrees center driven power is different than normal strength and feels different on contact.

No force
No force is my goal and it was the goal of many high level arts-Aikido included. Strangely, and worthy of note by virtually everyone in the deeper arts, is that most all of the high level arts had no force as a goal. And those arts??? All discussed building unusual strength, including Sagawa who was on about his "transparent power" or no force. The real hallmark was how to create a body driven by center that created a stunning "neutral force" and how that force dissolved the opponents directed force leading the engagement to zero wherever force from the opponent is applied.

It's a worthy discussion to debate/discover different uses of unusual strength and how it leads to NO FORCE, but a key component is the ability to dissolve their power and apply no force. And none of that is using muscle in the normal way.... to throw people. All of the deeper arts relied on internal power to create change (aiki) against the opponents will. Something which Ueshiba practiced, demonstrated and quoted throughout his career. Evading, by externally moving away from someone, as well as using the type of muscular strength in flexion everyone is well aware of, was not part of that paradigm. It certainly was not the type of thing that the great men were known for.

So the real discussion on the mat should be; what caused that "what the heck" moment?
Was it caused by timing?
External movement?
Use of a persons automatic responses (all present in good Jujutsu)
Again, it is worth noting that the greats never were much on talking a lot about such mundane things. They were pursuing something something truly different from the movements of normal people and quoting established principles for this higher level training.

Chasing the ability to create no force has an inherent requirement for strength. It's just not the type of strength that most people associate with normal strength. And THAT is why the Asians all talked about it and noted who was different. It is ...that strength...I am referring to and not the idea driving and pressuring a throw that all of us run into from time to time.
Dan

graham christian
09-03-2012, 08:37 AM
That's more like it.:)

Peace.G.

mrlizard123
09-03-2012, 09:02 AM
That's more like it.:)

Peace.G.

I don't think Dan's been saying any different previously; I'm reading the same thing I think he's always saying, I guess it comes down to terminology and interpretation.

We all read things through a filter composed of our experiences and arrive at a conclusion based on those which can lead to all sorts of misunderstandings and seeming contradictions.

Sometimes when someone uses a word it doesn't mean what you (one) think it means. ;)

DH
09-03-2012, 09:40 AM
I don't think Dan's been saying any different previously; I'm reading the same thing I think he's always saying, I guess it comes down to terminology and interpretation.

We all read things through a filter composed of our experiences and arrive at a conclusion based on those which can lead to all sorts of misunderstandings and seeming contradictions.

Sometimes when someone uses a word it doesn't mean what you (one) think it means. ;)
Precisely
As Janet pointed out, some thought I meant rough housing and using strength to throw. Which is not what IP/aiki is about. Power? Yes, but on the other hand, it produces crazy, disruptive, neutralizing, softness along with that incredible power to break bones and do damage or be soft. The decision or choice is the adepts. More's the point it can happen instantly back and forth ats they are one and the same. The difference is ....velocity and not "Jacking up" like some gym rat.
If you think about it; that ability to go from neutralizing softness to increbible power in wierd positions and at rapid speed is one hell of a set of skills for any martial artist to posess.It's really no wonder why those who possessed those skills were sought after, and set apart from other martial artists and started traditions and lineages around their teachings.

At any rate, soft...has always been about power. Soft power as a teaching is old. My opinion, yours or anyone else's means nothing.
The requirements to produce no-force start with the ability to emit soft power; sustain load and resist pulls as one...without moving. The greater you are at that, the greater your ability to produce no-force. Hence the reason Takeda, Sagawa, Ueshiba, Shirata, Shioda, Tohei etc, demonstrated it all the time. It's why people went on and on About Takeda and Ueshiba being "so strong."

What I find interesting is that we are all a part of that tradition, but don't demonstrate the same skills. I've wondered why that happened?
That central power, is THEE Ki power everyone is on about and what all the big shots were famous for. It spans time and cultures. It's one of the ways they divided the internal from external arts, or the courser arts from the deeper ones. Interestingly enough it is also one of the hallmarks of the esoteric pursuits and why monks and others who trained in certain temples were known for soft power.

Interestingly my signature line is from one of the giants of Aikido. Notice the first line? The immovable body? It is a requirement. It is NOT about standing still but of a central power that produces speed and wierd advantages due to connected movement,
The next line is a strategy partially produced from the the first ability.
The next line is what connected non-dedicated skills feel like; blinding strikes, and movements.
The last is the result of high level work.
Dan

DH
09-03-2012, 09:57 AM
Soft power that produces strategy and dominating ability to neutralize agression....all as one...through aiki.
Dan

graham christian
09-03-2012, 10:36 AM
I don't think Dan's been saying any different previously; I'm reading the same thing I think he's always saying, I guess it comes down to terminology and interpretation.

We all read things through a filter composed of our experiences and arrive at a conclusion based on those which can lead to all sorts of misunderstandings and seeming contradictions.

Sometimes when someone uses a word it doesn't mean what you (one) think it means. ;)

Most times I use words that do mean what they say and not what others think they mean too.;)

Dan's types of questions he poses are standard procedure in my way of Aikido. Thus I don't think it's down to culture or hiding things but more down to enquiry on both sides of the coin, teacher and student.

Unfortunately there is not enough and that has always been the case.

Peace.G.

DH
09-03-2012, 12:22 PM
Lovely saying...and it is not my own. It's from a Chinese grandmaster who taught in Japan for 11 years. Including two of Sagawa's students.

Many people in Japan talked to me about Ki.
When asked "Where is yin? Where is yang?
Many.....failed.
So where then, is this Ai-ki?
You cannot pretend Dantian
You will be found out.

The quandary for most is that
You cannot be soft
Without being strong
How can this be?
How is it done?
I say the answer lies in
"Aiki in me, before aiki between thee and me."
Ueshiba knew that and cited that...Heaven/earth/man...released the mountain echo.
A body so tough and resilient that the opponent...bounced...or echoed off.
He was famous for it?

For those taking part in his lineage....
How did he do it?
What did he mean?
Why does it have immeasurable value in producing aiki?
Dan

Gary David
09-03-2012, 12:58 PM
Graham
Some thoughts.....

Most times I use words that do mean what they say and not what others think they mean too.;)

I am sure that the words you use are clear to you......though many of them have multiple meanings depending upon the context in which they are framed and the environment they describe. That is ok because I have to use them framed in my environment and context.

Dan's types of questions he poses are standard procedure in my way of Aikido. Thus I don't think it's down to culture or hiding things but more down to enquiry on both sides of the coin, teacher and student.

Much of what I was shown and taught comes from the same line as yours, so we have similar starting point. As for the drills and tests taught back then......I am just now getting the substance to place on the frame work. I have gotten bits and pieces from a number of people over the years and I struggled to incorporate these clues into a patchwork of this and thats. It is only been lately that with the help of friends like John Clodig and Dan Hardin that I have kind of reached a tipping point and can make some sense of out the drills we got 35 years ago. And in looking back it is clear to me that we were not given all of the tools...and people were asking then...... so the question remains.....did these teacher know the answers and not pass the information on or did they them selves not know..... You decide.

Unfortunately there is not enough and that has always been the case.

I think the approach here should be inquiry between peers.....then both the teacher and the student...all teachers and students...benefit. I don't see enough of this.

as always

Gary

graham christian
09-03-2012, 01:48 PM
Graham
Some thoughts.....

I am sure that the words you use are clear to you......though many of them have multiple meanings depending upon the context in which they are framed and the environment they describe. That is ok because I have to use them framed in my environment and context.

Much of what I was shown and taught comes from the same line as yours, so we have similar starting point. As for the drills and tests taught back then......I am just now getting the substance to place on the frame work. I have gotten bits and pieces from a number of people over the years and I struggled to incorporate these clues into a patchwork of this and thats. It is only been lately that with the help of friends like John Clodig and Dan Hardin that I have kind of reached a tipping point and can make some sense of out the drills we got 35 years ago. And in looking back it is clear to me that we were not given all of the tools...and people were asking then...... so the question remains.....did these teacher know the answers and not pass the information on or did they them selves not know..... You decide.

I think the approach here should be inquiry between peers.....then both the teacher and the student...all teachers and students...benefit. I don't see enough of this.

as always

Gary

Hi Gary.
Interesting that you point out your history for I understand it only too well.

Most times, and I mean most, on meeting other Aikidoka or other martial artists over the years they too had little reality on Ki and non-resistance and how and why. Having learned apparently differently to them I therefor put it down to bad teaching for many years. Now however I would say it's a matter of both sides of the coin both teacher and student. Students may say they were never taught and teachers may say such students would never study enough.

However each case is different. A person can know and demonstrate and yet not be so good at getting it across to others. So in this case it's not a matter of not knowing the answers but more of not knowing the differences in the different students and how to get them from their point to the desired point. On the other hand a student may not want to do the things the teacher says because they are in a hurry or many other reasons. Either way it slows progress. Many reasons for how things get lost and omitted.

peace.G.

Gary David
09-03-2012, 04:39 PM
Hi Gary.
Interesting that you point out your history for I understand it only too well.

Most times, and I mean most, on meeting other Aikidoka or other martial artists over the years they too had little reality on Ki and non-resistance and how and why. Having learned apparently differently to them I therefor put it down to bad teaching for many years. Now however I would say it's a matter of both sides of the coin both teacher and student. Students may say they were never taught and teachers may say such students would never study enough.

However each case is different. A person can know and demonstrate and yet not be so good at getting it across to others. So in this case it's not a matter of not knowing the answers but more of not knowing the differences in the different students and how to get them from their point to the desired point. On the other hand a student may not want to do the things the teacher says because they are in a hurry or many other reasons. Either way it slows progress. Many reasons for how things get lost and omitted.

peace.G.

Graham
I think you misunderstand me......I said we had the same beginnings, but we don't have the same realities. I am real clear on what was being taught at the time by the source instructors, I know folks who had close ties (in the 70's) with Tohei Sensei, who had long talks and discussions with him...we didn't get more than preliminary understandings and thought that was enough. The question still has to be answered as to what these teachers actually knew and were willing to pass along....or....what they didn't know to start with.

It has only been recently that there has been enough cross training with folks in parts of both Japanese and Chinese martial arts, arts with established applications of internal training with IP/IS, other folks who can actually translate, who have access to written documents that we can even question what we were originally given, Questions that even though only partially answered so far add doorways to reaching depth and substance were maybe only a framework existed before.

I am not asking you to accept what I see as reality, and I am surely not going to try to change what you see as real.....just telling you how it is for me.

as always
Gary

graham christian
09-03-2012, 06:22 PM
Graham
I think you misunderstand me......I said we had the same beginnings, but we don't have the same realities. I am real clear on what was being taught at the time by the source instructors, I know folks who had close ties (in the 70's) with Tohei Sensei, who had long talks and discussions with him...we didn't get more than preliminary understandings and thought that was enough. The question still has to be answered as to what these teachers actually knew and were willing to pass along....or....what they didn't know to start with.

It has only been recently that there has been enough cross training with folks in parts of both Japanese and Chinese martial arts, arts with established applications of internal training with IP/IS, other folks who can actually translate, who have access to written documents that we can even question what we were originally given, Questions that even though only partially answered so far add doorways to reaching depth and substance were maybe only a framework existed before.

I am not asking you to accept what I see as reality, and I am surely not going to try to change what you see as real.....just telling you how it is for me.

as always
Gary

Well put. I do understand where you are coming from and I do understand what your reality is.

Actually I do accept what you see as reality why shouldn't I? I accept it, I see it, I recognise it, I understand it. The only question is whether I fully agree with it.

In my world disagreement doesn't equal against.

Peace.G.

graham christian
09-04-2012, 07:25 AM
Lovely saying...and it is not my own. It's from a Chinese grandmaster who taught in Japan for 11 years. Including two of Sagawa's students.

Many people in Japan talked to me about Ki.
When asked "Where is yin? Where is yang?
Many.....failed.
So where then, is this Ai-ki?
You cannot pretend Dantian
You will be found out.

The quandary for most is that
You cannot be soft
Without being strong
How can this be?
How is it done?
I say the answer lies in
"Aiki in me, before aiki between thee and me."
Ueshiba knew that and cited that...Heaven/earth/man...released the mountain echo.
A body so tough and resilient that the opponent...bounced...or echoed off.
He was famous for it?

For those taking part in his lineage....
How did he do it?
What did he mean?
Why does it have immeasurable value in producing aiki?
Dan

I would say yin and yang come from one point. They are one, inside and outside.

Anything in me exists before between me and thee so obviously that would apply to Aiki or anything else so I fail to see any other significance to the statement if there is any.

Don't know what the significance of bouncing off is apart from a skill based on stillness. Hardly all embracing Ai ki as I see it. Part of maybe but wholly? No, not to me.

Valuable? Yes. Limited as far as Aikido potential? Depends solely on your intention and purpose.

Peace.G.

Gerardo Torres
09-04-2012, 01:11 PM
I would say yin and yang come from one point. They are one, inside and outside.

Anything in me exists before between me and thee so obviously that would apply to Aiki or anything else so I fail to see any other significance to the statement if there is any.

Don't know what the significance of bouncing off is apart from a skill based on stillness. Hardly all embracing Ai ki as I see it. Part of maybe but wholly? No, not to me.

Valuable? Yes. Limited as far as Aikido potential? Depends solely on your intention and purpose.

Peace.G.

This would help with all the above conjecture and missing information:

http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showthread.php?t=21690

graham christian
09-04-2012, 02:27 PM
This would help with all the above conjecture and missing information:

http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showthread.php?t=21690

Conjecture to you my friend.

Peace.G.

DH
09-05-2012, 08:45 PM
I would say yin and yang come from one point. They are one, inside and outside.

Anything in me exists before between me and thee so obviously that would apply to Aiki or anything else so I fail to see any other significance to the statement if there is any.

Don't know what the significance of bouncing off is apart from a skill based on stillness. Hardly all embracing Ai ki as I see it. Part of maybe but wholly? No, not to me.

Valuable? Yes. Limited as far as Aikido potential? Depends solely on your intention and purpose.

Peace.G.
There really is no debate. The one point model for yin and yang is severely limiting. This is -of course- why Ueshiba hardly discussed it at all. The things he actually discussed were far more advanced and more difficult to do.
As for power and bouncing off "releasing the mountain echo?" Well...why was it so desperately significant....that Ueshiba continued to practice it and demonstrate the very thing you just dismissed....... his entire life.
As I said there really is no debate; he did what he did, he said what he said, and it all fits nicely into the same model that has been written and passed down for ages.
I guess another interesting debate point is who can do what he did? And to what degree of success?
Maybe the ones who have more of his power and softness are the ones who understand more of his message.
Dan