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Luke Derham
05-27-2003, 04:25 AM
I guess there are always going to be varied responses on this topic, and for all i know it has been posted up and discussed previously,
but why doesn't everyone follow aikikai? Forgive my ignorance in this subject, since aikikai is all i've known - so things like shodokan aikido and various other split off groups seem strange to me, if aikikai indeed comes directly from O sensei.
Once again, no offense intended to other groups, just curious...

Greg Jennings
05-27-2003, 06:46 AM
Why are there different religions? Different branches of the same religion?

Why are there different flavors of ice cream? Why are there different varieties of, say, vanilla?

More to the point, why are you trolling or tilting at windmills?

Sincerely,

jaxonbrown
05-27-2003, 08:37 AM
cuz everyone else is stupid

hahahah - j/k

but anyway, i guess its just human nature to 'officialize' things by forming organizations and ranks and neat looking patches. dont they realize that these things will do no good when a time comes to use their art?

opherdonchin
05-27-2003, 08:55 AM
Very often the question of 'why' can only be answered historically because there is no principled answer. Usually, it involved someone wanting to develop or pursue Aikido in a way that the framework at the time didn't accomodate. Sometimes, there can be two legitimate choices of direction and people can disagree about the best way to proceed without either of them being wrong. Sometimes, there were personality conflicts at the base of the splits. Sometimes both things happened.

Aikikai is certainly not my favorite style of Aikido, but it's an interesting one. Even within Aikikai, there is as much variety as there is homogeneity.

The real question is not which particular style O'Sensei would have approved of, but rather which style best suits your needs. If those needs include working in a style that traces the most direct possible lineage to O'Sensei, then Aikikai is a natural (but probably not the only) choice. There are, of course, lots of other good reasons to choose it.

Charles Hill
05-27-2003, 11:09 AM
I feel it should be made clear that Aikikai is not a style but an organization. For example, the Aikido of Arikawa Shihan and Tada Shihan (both Aikikai Honbu teachers) is as dissimilar as the Aikido of Ueshiba Moriteru Doshu and Tohei Koichi Sensei (The respective heads of Aikikai and Ki Society.)

The important thing is to find a teacher you like and respect and study with him/her. If that teacher is a member of a particular organization, you should support that group by becoming a member as well. It's the individual teacher that you are going to have to spend a lot of time with, not any association.

Charles

BC
05-27-2003, 11:21 AM
Why are there different flavors of ice cream? Why are there different varieties of, say, vanilla?
The only true vanilla ice cream is French vanilla! ;)

jeda
05-27-2003, 11:41 AM
In some cases (like my own) there may be a lack of choices.

Ron Tisdale
05-27-2003, 03:06 PM
I think there are different organizations because different students of Ueshiba decided to focus on the things **they** found most important in his teaching. Personality and personal preferences probably played a large role in this.

I agree that "aikikai" does not define a style, but merely an organization. Yoshinkan actually describes a teaching methodology, as well as a core set of techniques, as much as anything else. I think the same could probably be said of Shodokan...Peter Rhese will smack me around if this is incorrect...:)

I would disagree with the statement that "aikikai comes directly from the founder, and yoshinkan does not". Gozo Shioda spent more time with Ueshiba than many of the aikikai shihans...but in the end, so what? You look at what is available in your area, make the best choice possible, if information or opportunity later presents itself you reevaluate your choice. As appropriate. End of story.

Dennis Hooker
05-27-2003, 03:24 PM
Oh yes, the only true path, unless you take another that is. Here is the only true Aikido.

http://www.aikiweb.com/humor/hooker2.html

PhilJ
05-28-2003, 10:21 PM
Robert is right: french vanilla is the only true vanilla ice cream. :) Heheh.

Ron said it best. Aikido is a personal thing, everyone gets out of it what they want, not what's taught. That's what makes aikido so damn interesting. Look around in your own class, and think about what kind of classes your classmates would teach.

What saddens me is some people denigrate styles of aikido because some are too rough, too gentle, or give too many points to the winner. The "styles" of aikido don't highlight differences, but show how different viewpoints complement each other in the founder's vision.

*Phil

PeterR
05-28-2003, 11:59 PM
Robert is right: french vanilla is the only true vanilla ice cream. :) Heheh.
As I growl from the dark and flavourful side - chocolate. French vanilla is eaten by poodles. :grr:

Correct about Shodokan Ron although I will still slap you around a bit for mis-spelling my name. :D Any little excuse for a bit of gratuitous violence. Seriously I am gentler than the aforementioned poodles and besides that too far away.

Abasan
05-29-2003, 07:59 AM
The true path of aikido, lies in the one that works for you.

As for vanillas, I love them all.

Dave Miller
05-29-2003, 02:50 PM
I have to agree with what has already been posted. I think that some of the debates between which style is best or truest to the founder's style can get kinda silly. An example of this is two Kihara guys sitting around poking fun at Tomiki-ryu. This is only funny if you know that Kihara came from Tomiki through Geist!

I would encourage you to investigate the various schools at your disposal and find one that fits you well, not only the style but also the instructors and other students.

Besides, everyone knows that strawberry is the original and perfect flavor of ice cream, handed down to man from the hand of God himself.

;)

jk
05-29-2003, 09:49 PM
Oh Lordy...you folks obviously haven't tried corn n' cheese ice cream.

PhilJ
05-29-2003, 10:49 PM
Peter, "Eaten by poodles". VERY funny, I laughed out loud on that one. :) (Not kissing *ss, but a good chocolate ice cream is my personal favorite)

When students visit our dojo, I invite them to sit in on class, then give them tips about finding a good dojo. Like the teacher, like the attitude, like the material -- these are great ways to ensure you'll love where you end up.

*Phil

PeterR
05-29-2003, 11:07 PM
When students visit our dojo, I invite them to sit in on class, then give them tips about finding a good dojo. Like the teacher, like the attitude, like the material -- these are great ways to ensure you'll love where you end up.
This is a really good idea. I think that a student who doesn't fit into a dojo put's everyone in a disadvantage. I love a warm body as much as the next but I really am more concerned about my present charges.

That said I don't turn people down or at least I never have. Tomorrows class should be interesting.

I've got two American Karate types and about three young ladies from work all joining. That's a fair chunk of my student base - should be an interesting dynamic.

Ron Tisdale
05-30-2003, 09:01 AM
although I will still slap you around a bit for mis-spelling my name.
:) Ooops! that darn keyboard!

Hey, you never know, I could come to your neck of the woods just to collect that beating!

Ron

Peter Goldsbury
05-30-2003, 09:09 AM
:) Ooops! that darn keyboard!

Hey, you never know, I could come to your neck of the woods just to collect that beating!

Ron
Hello Ron,

If you do, I'll come up from Hiroshima to watch:)

PAG

Kensai
05-30-2003, 10:34 AM
IN answer to the oringal question, I would have to say no.

I see Aikido as a style thats teachs you how to be yourself. Every style of Aikido now and in the future will reflect its founders in some way, and so those of a like mind will join. For example, curel ruffiens will do Yoshinkan Aikido, Jocks will do Shodokan Aikido and the enlightened will do Ki Aikido..... lol.

Joking aside I see every path of Aikido as the true one, as its the one that applies to that person.

Ron Tisdale
05-30-2003, 10:41 AM
Hello Ron,

If you do, I'll come up from Hiroshima to watch:)

PAG
Fibber...you'd join in too, you know you would...

:)

Ron

Actually, having probably seen both of us, you'd probably make money on the trip...

Alex Cox
05-31-2003, 06:15 PM
The only style of Aikido that is truly "O'Sensei's Aikido" is the Aikido that O'Sensei taught himself. If you have a time machine, please share, as I'd love to take a class with O'Sensei. :D

Everything else is "O'Sensei's Aikido" from the perspective of one of his students.

The way I look at it, is if my sensei's lineage can be traced back to O'sensei, that's good enough for me.

:)

siwilson
06-01-2003, 04:12 AM
The way I look at it, is if my sensei's lineage can be traced back to O'sensei, that's good enough for me.
I think this is the core of it. It is only Aikido if you can trace your lineage back to O'Sensei. The reason there are different "styles" and schools is because everyone is different. The various teachers between us all and O'Sensei in our lineages have effected the changes and then we effect changes ourselves.

This comes because we learn our teachers Aikido our way and later we find our Aikido.

Just like the chef - he makes his ice cream. I've tried a lot of ice cream and one french vanila can taste so different to another.

BTW, have you tried banana?

:)

Shelley
06-01-2003, 04:59 AM
and why there are PS2s, X-Boxes and GameCubes? wait, those things caused more fanboy wars than I ever wanted to know.

Oops, bad example.

DanD
06-04-2003, 10:21 PM
Aikikai is certainly not my favorite style of Aikido, but it's an interesting one. Even within Aikikai, there is as much variety as there is homogeneity.
Opher,

Can you add more on that ? (comparing to the school you're part of and in general).

Not to start a “war of the worlds”…:eek: . just curious.

sanosuke
06-05-2003, 01:54 AM
look at the bright side, every style still regards Ueshiba as O'Sensei. That means among the differences actually the style comes from the same source, only that it was adjusted to the time and personal preferences of the senseis themselves.

Edward
06-05-2003, 02:22 AM
look at the bright side, every style still regards Ueshiba as O'Sensei. That means among the differences actually the style comes from the same source, only that it was adjusted to the time and personal preferences of the senseis themselves.
Hmmm,well, not all.... There are a few styles who believe they invented aikido before Osensei... ;)

PeterR
06-05-2003, 02:33 AM
Hmmm,well, not all.... There are a few styles who believe they invented aikido before Osensei... ;)
:D - Peter drowns in his coffee cup.

But as a matter of point - I've never heard Ueshiba M. referred to as O'sensei in any JAA dojo. It is always Ueshiba sensei.

What about Yoshinkan?

I was under the impression that the O'sensei was a particular usage of some members of the Aikikai and Ki Society. As I understand it many members of the Aikikai simply refer to him as Kaiso.

Nathan Pereira
06-05-2003, 04:18 AM
Well in my experience I can honestly say MU is never even mentioned in the Yoshinkan. Also unlike most we do not have his picture at the front of class just one of Shioda Sensei which I suppose is the same principal.

What about the other "styles" do you have MU as a figure head of your particular "style" founder.

PeterR
06-05-2003, 04:36 AM
Hi Nathan;

Aikido is pretty much teacher/student driven so as expected I mention my own teacher to my students far more than either Tomiki K. or Ueshiba M. and my teacher mentions Tomiki K. much more than Ueshiba M.. There is no Ueshiba cult in that he is a respected teacher in the path of transmission for what we do.

MU on the other hand in mentioned frequently enough - it means nothing and everything. ;)
Well in my experience I can honestly say MU is never even mentioned in the Yoshinkan. Also unlike most we do not have his picture at the front of class just one of Shioda Sensei which I suppose is the same principal.

What about the other "styles" do you have MU as a figure head of your particular "style" founder.

Nathan Pereira
06-05-2003, 05:45 AM
Thats the same for us and i think most Yoshinkan schools. As you said my teacher talks about the particular person in the Yoshinkan that we try to emulate and he in turn talks about Shioda Sensei as that was his direct teacher.

Glad you mentioned the "Ueshiba cult" thing as this is something that I am sort of facinated by but goes completely over my head.

Seems to much time is spent trying to figure out the man rather than the martial art. Each to there own I suppose.

Charles Hill
06-05-2003, 08:31 AM
Peter,

Could you describe what you mean by "Ueshiba cult?"

Charles

akiy
06-05-2003, 10:46 AM
look at the bright side, every style still regards Ueshiba as O'Sensei.
Not necessarily. There are styles such as Nihon Goshin Aikido that do not have Morihei Ueshiba in their lineage at all.

And, yes, most folks in Japan who refer to Morihei Ueshiba call him "kaiso."

(Trivia: the kanji character used for "oo" in "O-sensei" is often not the kanji for "big" ("dai" -- 大 ) but is the one for "revered" ("okina" -- 翁 )...)

-- Jun

Chuck Clark
06-05-2003, 10:57 AM
Within the Jiyushinkai we respect Ueshiba Morihei Sensei as one of the teachers in our lineage. We don't refer to him as O-sensei.

We don't put pictures in our kamiza. On a back wall of the dojo we have pictures of the respected teachers in our history.

For the answer to the original question, look in the book "Best Aikido" in the answers to questions section. There's a very strong definitive statement about this. It should leave no doubt as to the "official" answer from the Ueshiba family.

ikkitosennomusha
06-05-2003, 11:48 AM
Hi Everyone!

There are a few organizations in the Aikido world but thre is only one Aikido. Aikido principles will forever remain the same but the variations, however, always has room to mutate. O-sensei said that he never did the same technique twice in the sense that a human cannot duplicate the exact angle, stance, etc as the previous technique if you were to repeat it. He also said that depending on the situation, you may have to create new techniques to fit the ordeal you are in.

So, if O-sensei were still alive, I believe his fundamental principles would remain the same but his ideaology would could continue to grow.

George S. Ledyard
06-05-2003, 11:55 AM
Within the Jiyushinkai we respect Ueshiba Morihei Sensei as one of the teachers in our lineage. We don't refer to him as O-sensei.

We don't put pictures in our kamiza. On a back wall of the dojo we have pictures of the respected teachers in our history.

For the answer to the original question, look in the book "Best Aikido" in the answers to questions section. There's a very strong definitive statement about this. It should leave no doubt as to the "official" answer from the Ueshiba family.
Clearly another heretical position. The Inquisition would like to speak to you about these ideas...

Matt Gallagher
06-05-2003, 12:54 PM
Didn't realise that some aikidoka might think that their particular style or organisation was "the true path" of aikido.

"a true path" might be a more accurate way to put it if it needs to be said at all.

Coming from "the false path" of Shudokan, I frequently find myself taking away ideas from students of other aikido styles and consider that training with these students is a great way not to stagnate and to keep learning and improving. I hope that don't ever close my mind to that, or ever become convinced that there is no value in learning from another path.

ps Shudokan Rules OK!

pps All other styles suck

Harhar

Happy training

Matt

Don_Modesto
06-05-2003, 01:40 PM
On a back wall of the dojo we have pictures of the respected teachers in our history.
Sorry. I'm not familiar with your organization. Who are your teachers? Thanks.

George S. Ledyard
06-05-2003, 06:03 PM
Sorry. I'm not familiar with your organization. Who are your teachers? Thanks.
Hi Don!

This is from Chuck Clark Sensei's website:

C. E. Clark, born 1947, began budo training at the age of six and has continued his practice through the present. Clark has studied in the U.S., France, Japan, Canada, and Republic of South Vietnam, and holds the ranks of Jiyushinkai Shihan, 8th dan, and 6th dan judo, (has also practiced karate do, jujutsu, Shinto Muso Ryu Jo and T'ai chi ch'uan). Clark has trained under a number of top-level teachers, and has been most strongly influenced by F. Fujita, R.L. Willingham, E. Cates, F. Hatashita, K. Geis, T. Miyake, P. Relnick, and T. Nishioka. He founded his own organization, the Jiyushinkai, in 1984. A U.S.M.C. veteran of Vietnam and former hospital manager, Clark is now a professional budo teacher at the Jiyushinkan in Tempe, AZ. He has a son, Aaron, two grand-daughters, a dog and a cat.

As long as this is it represents only the tip of the ice berg. As one poster earlier stated Chuck Clark Sensei should write a book...

- George

Dave Miller
06-05-2003, 06:17 PM
George,

My dojo is under the direction of some of Clark's students. However, we are more of a Fugakakai style than Jiyushinkai. We actually try to stay fairly eclectic as much as possible.

:)

Don_Modesto
06-05-2003, 06:49 PM
As long as this is it represents only the tip of the ice berg. As one poster earlier stated Chuck Clark Sensei should write a book...
Hi, George, and thanks.

I'd like to read that book, too. I quite enjoyed his seminar in Orlando a while back.

siwilson
06-05-2003, 07:25 PM
On the O'Sensei question:

The Shudokan looks back at its lineage to O'Sensei and places the pictures of those Masters in our lineage who have passed away on our Shomen wall: Ted Stratton Sensei, Gozo Shioda Sensei, & O'Sensei.

PeterR
06-05-2003, 07:44 PM
Charles - you are lucky that you train in Japan. The "cult" tends to manifest itself outside usually amoung those who would never even think about coming to Japan but the source of much of it can be directly traced to those that have and continue to do so. Go figure.

Stick around the bulletin boards enough and you will see examples.

O'sensei was the greatest swordsman, most religious, most ....... This coupled with attributions to other god-like features and a near slavish attention to translated doka.
Could you describe what you mean by "Ueshiba cult?"

Charles Hill
06-05-2003, 10:30 PM
Peter,

I trained at the Aikikai Honbu for over four years and the only time I heard anyone talk about Morihei Ueshiba was in a beginner class taught by Okumura Shihan. That was only one time and I think he was answering someone's question. What does that mean? I have no idea.

Charles

PeterR
06-05-2003, 11:16 PM
Hi Charles;

Your experience meshes with mine. Training is training - most of what I've got story wise was over beer. I remember several instances in the dojo where one particular teacher's views were explained but those instances are rare and usually associated with a special event.

Although I had watched a few Aikido classes before I came to Japan - I had never trained in the art. I had done other budo but not Aikido so its safe to say my Aikido view was colored primarily from what I experienced here. I was a little prepared for what I would face when I returned to the real world because of the Aikido mailing lists and for the most part everyone was fine but let's just say I was shocked by the fervor of a few people when I first faced it. Within Japan when I visit an Aikikai dojo I have always been welcomed with the most critical going only so far as to say there is no competition in Aikido. Once or twice (after I returned home) I was faced with a level of aggression by true believers that would make Atila the Hun wince.
Peter,

I trained at the Aikikai Honbu for over four years and the only time I heard anyone talk about Morihei Ueshiba was in a beginner class taught by Okumura Shihan. That was only one time and I think he was answering someone's question. What does that mean? I have no idea.

Charles

erikmenzel
06-06-2003, 03:27 AM
Stick around the bulletin boards enough and you will see examples.

O'sensei was the greatest swordsman, most religious, most ....... This coupled with attributions to other god-like features and a near slavish attention to translated doka.
And of course they will defend their ideas and believes in such a manner that they trample on anyone claiming that O sensei was just a man who smoked and drank beer.

Edward
06-06-2003, 04:19 AM
Peter,

I trained at the Aikikai Honbu for over four years and the only time I heard anyone talk about Morihei Ueshiba was in a beginner class taught by Okumura Shihan. That was only one time and I think he was answering someone's question. What does that mean? I have no idea.

Charles
I agree too. I have never heard any aikikai hombu instructor I've met talk about Osensei unless asked, and even in that case, they usually refered to him as Ueshiba Sensei.

On the other hand, I have the feeling that the new trend in the aikikai under the third doshu is to accomodate all aikido styles and develope friendly relations with every body.

PeterR
06-06-2003, 04:57 AM
On the other hand, I have the feeling that the new trend in the aikikai under the third doshu is to accomodate all aikido styles and develope friendly relations with every body.
I hope so - the relevant section is Best Aikido sure didn't give that impression.

Peter Goldsbury
06-06-2003, 09:37 AM
I hope so - the relevant section is Best Aikido sure didn't give that impression.
Hello Peter,

I have "Best Aikido" and also the Japanese original, which was published in 1997, just two years before Kisshomaru Doshu's death. The English translation is by John Stevens and it is, shall we say, 'delicate'.

How are your reading skills, by the way? Here is the Japanese original:

Q: 合気道の分派はあるのですか。

A: 確かに巷には合気道とは別に「○○合気道」と名乗っている団体が存在します。中には、素性の知らぬ訳の判らぬようなものもあるようです。

 しかし、開祖・植芝盛平に連ならないもの、その教えを逸脱したものは、いかに外見を似せようが、深遠そうな哲理を語ろうが、合気道ではありません。例えば、競技試合を行 っているようなものは明らかに合気道本来の姿を忘れたもので、合気道と呼ぶことはできません。

 私どもで言う合気道には分派は存在しないと考えています。分派がいくつもあるという考えは、それ自体が合気道を貶めるものでしょう。

This certainly goes against what one commonly sees on aikido bulletin boards, for example. I think the matter of 'kyougi-shiai' is one on which the Aikikai is unlikely to change its thinking for some time to come, even though it is against the current. FS and I discussed this on his recent visit to Hiroshima and our views actually differ.

That said, I suspect it is a common occurrence for the student to accept his/her teacher's view of the history of the art. Of course, different teachers place differing degrees of stress on history, but were this not to happen, I think it would be seen as questioning the teacher's integrity.

Actually, we have a picture of the Founder on the wall of the dojo. Unusually, it is right next to a picture of Jigoro Kano. My students were somewhat bemused when we put up the picture: they knew about Kano alright, but really had little clue of who Morihei Ueshiba was and are comparatively uninterested in history and we have never had any questions. Which is fine: it is the training that matters.

Best regards,