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04-06-2004, 01:15 AM
Hello all - I've got to get this out of my mind. I would like to get your comments regarding affiation, you see I am with an independent aikido organization here in saudi arabia. If I dig down for our roots, it goes back to Koichi Tohei though we are not involved with his organization or any other big organizations for that matter.

What are the advantages of affiliating with a bigger org? If we decide to do so, which is the best org to register with? We are not that big and obviously could not afford to tie-up with japan hq.

Pointers to the right path is very much appreciated.

04-06-2004, 02:00 AM
What are the advantages of affiliating with a bigger org?
In my opinion, the best benifit to them is having better access to Shihan for seminars.

Having access to those people is just such a privledge. Always wonderful to work with them.
If we decide to do so, which is the best org to register with?
It doesn't matter really. They're all pretty amazing, they just do things differently. If your roots are with Tohei sensei's ki aikido I would definitely look into ki society.

Ki society is about... well... ki, working with that energy inside you, and Tohei sensei believed aikido was more of a way of life than a martial art.

Aikikai is about technique, good, working, efficient technique. From what I've seen you learn technique first and then slowly begin to add the ki as you get better.

I would take a look at the kind of aikido you're doing, then see which organization it would fit in with better. If you're "roots" are with Tohei sensei, then ki society will probably be a good way to go.

04-06-2004, 02:17 AM
thanks for your quick reply Nathan. I agree that they are all great and they just do it differently. I sent you a pm.

Joshua Livingston
04-06-2004, 04:23 AM
I would suggest contacting the various organizations and asking if they would be willing to send their top instructors to give seminars in your area and find out how much it will cost and how frequently they may do so. As it won't really matter what organization you are in if you are not receiving direct instruction from them, and the more the better.

As said before the biggest advantage of belonging to a large organization is being able to receive instruction from experienced Aikidoka. This way that can show you new things and help you refine what you have already learned.

So I would suggest picking the organization that is most willing to provide the largest quantity of seminars for you, even if you aren't necessarily getting direct Shihan instruction every time, as 5 seminars a year from a 5th-6th Dan is much better than 1-2 seminars a year from a 7th-8th Dan. Just make sure that you are receiving legitimate instruction. You can generally do this by making sure that the organization has a direct link to O Sensei and preferably to one of his Uchi-deshi. Then simply do a search on the web and research all the info available on that organization, and of course you can then ask opinions of that organization on here.

As for your connections to Tohei Sensei, it would seem logical to conclude that you should look into the Ki Society as it is his organization; however it really depends on what time in his life your line of instructors studied with him. If it was during the time when he still taught at Hombu or close there after, Aikikai may be closer to your style than Shin Shin Toitsu Aikido, as it wasn't until much later that he diverged significantly from the practices of Aikikai which caused the rift that lead him to leave the organization and later caused some of those who followed him to rejoin it. So if your lineage is influenced by Tohei Sensei after the early 80's then you should look into the Ki Society, but if it was before that it may be closer to some of the Aikikai organizations founded by that last line of Uchi-deshi, as they received the larger part of their instruction from Tohei Sensei in the later years.

Good luck.

04-06-2004, 05:03 AM
great advise joshua.

to my recollection the year was 1966 when tohei awarded the first line of our instructors the rank of 1st and 2 years after that same instructor was promoted to 2nd by tohei.

thank you so much - really appreciated.

Joshua Livingston
04-06-2004, 12:46 PM
Ah then I would definately guess it to be closer to Aikikai as that was even before O Sensei passed away, and Tohei Sensei did not fully introduce his Ki theories until 1971. Aikikai awarded him his 10th dan in 1970, and though this is simply a logical theory on my part, I doubt Aikikai would have awarded him the 10th Dan if at that time his techniques differed significantly enough in the manner that later caused the rift between them. Though I do imagine he may have began introducing his theories on Ki at that time, but I am very doubtful that he would have been implementing the refined methods currently practiced in the Ki Society. However, as said before, I would be less worried about getting a style who matches your roots closest in training practices and more concerned with which organization can give you good instruction on a timely and consistent basis. Afterall, though they may differ in training styles, all organizations that are teaching legitamate Aikido as passed on by O Sensei are all heading towards the same point, but simply following varied paths to get there.

It's sort of a catch 22 though, as I would guess that the larger organizations would have more instructors capable and willing to travel to your area, yet they would also be the most expensive. One way that you may find a happy medium is instead of contacting the organizations leaders, find dojo that are under that organization and are relatively close to your country and ask them if they may be able to send instructors for seminars or if they know of anyone who could. You would more than likely have to pay for their flight and lodging, but many instructors who mostly run their own dojo may have much more time to conduct a seminar of your nature and may look very forward to the opportunity to make such a trip as well, where as others who do regular seminars around the world could possibly view it as more of a chore. Just some things to think about…

Just remember the higher up on the latter in an organization the more expensive and the busier they are likely to be, so don't forget about the very qualified instructors who run small private Dojo, and may be much cheaper and much more available as well as enthusiastic in providing your Aiki needs.

And I am glad I could help. ^_^

04-07-2004, 06:59 AM
joshua - you have covered all my worries. I will keep surfing the net, and if anything comes up, ill get back to you guys for additional inquiries.

Good luck and God Bless!!