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AikiWeb System
05-15-2005, 01:30 AM
AikiWeb Poll for the week of May 15, 2005:

Should religion play a part in an aikido curriculum?

I don't do aikido
Yes
No


Here are the current results (http://www.aikiweb.com/polls/results.html?poll_id=272).

ShugyoSystems
05-15-2005, 05:19 AM
Yes 6 votes (24%)
No 19 votes (76%)

Speechless

Paul Kerr
05-15-2005, 05:22 AM
About which part?

mj
05-15-2005, 05:59 AM
He can't say...he's speechless.

Anyway...which religion? Once you open this can of worms...you will need a bigger can to put them all back you know.

ShugyoSystems
05-15-2005, 08:12 AM
I was speechless about the whole thing....

I'm surprised and somewhat disappointed to see these stats.

"The best way to beat an opponent is to use a gun"
Why practice aikido without religion?

Maybe I missed something....

stuartjvnorton
05-15-2005, 09:22 AM
Personally, I've never understood why religion has anything to do with Aikido at all.

MaryKaye
05-15-2005, 09:44 AM
There doesn't seem to be any way to answer "It's good that some dojo incorporate religion and others don't." I think the diversity, here and elsewhere in aikido, is usually a strength and not a weakness.

Mary Kaye
(didn't vote, because there doesn't seem to be a correct answer)

siwilson
05-15-2005, 10:51 AM
Todd, you've missed something!

Religion has no place in Aikido outside of what a person takes from "their" religion into their lives. O'Sensei (remember him) said Aikido is for all the world. If we start taking religion in to the dojo, then how are Christian, Muslim, Jewish, Buddhist, Hindu, etc. Aikidoka going to be able to study together. I have trained with many people of different faith, and also those of no faith, with no problem, because religion is not a matter for the dojo.

A definite NO!!!!

gstevens
05-15-2005, 10:55 AM
Well said SI!!!!

Aikido is inclusive in who it brings together. Lets keep it that way.

Qatana
05-15-2005, 11:14 AM
I think the issue is semantic. While I feel that Spirituality is integral to aikido training, that is specifically of the Spirit and has no relation to "outside divine influence".
However I do see a place for perhaps training in conjunction with specific practices (Buddhist meditation comes to mind, of course) or with specific religions ie., Akido and Christianity/Judaeism/etc, to understand how aikido Can work in a religious context.
and there's always Omoto-kyo.

SeiserL
05-15-2005, 11:24 AM
Should religion play a part in an aikido curriculum?

Should? Usually means it isn't. Should according to who?

Religion? Which religion? If we are true to O'Sensei that would be Omoto/Shinto. If by religion you mean to socio-political network used for self propagation and control, then no. If you are implying the spiritual beliefs that underlying the idea and practice that there is more to the world than my little ego and judgmental opinions about right/wrong and good/bad, then i can support spiritual teachings through the physical practice.

Play? Yes, we should enjoy ourself. IMHO, people take themselves far too seriously and too personally.

A part? Which part of the whole? How much? Implicitly taught through the techniques are explicit taught as conversion? IMHO, many of the spiritual concepts are implied in the techniques. It already is and will always be a part of Aikido whether people overtly practice it or not.

An? Not "the"?

Curriculum? According to which Sensei, school, style, or affiliation? To each there own.

So after all that, no.

oldshatterhand
05-15-2005, 11:26 AM
What is "Omoto-kyu"?.
It´s anyway better than ask " What is religion",i think .
Religion is not (only) faith.Spirituality does not need to be included in a religion,etc,etc.....etc.

Y think the cuestion is too general to demand a short answer.

But ...What IS Omoto-kyu??.

Marxama
05-15-2005, 11:37 AM
Alfredo: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Omoto-kyo I bet there are sites with better information, but this is something, I guess :)

ShugyoSystems
05-15-2005, 04:27 PM
Todd, you've missed something!

Religion has no place in Aikido outside of what a person takes from "their" religion into their lives. O'Sensei (remember him) said Aikido is for all the world. If we start taking religion in to the dojo, then how are Christian, Muslim, Jewish, Buddhist, Hindu, etc. Aikidoka going to be able to study together. I have trained with many people of different faith, and also those of no faith, with no problem, because religion is not a matter for the dojo.

A definite NO!!!!

Perhaps if the world trained Aikido together and included all of those religions (and the others) the world could be a nicer place.

You asked "If we start taking religion in to the dojo, then how are Christian, Muslim, Jewish, Buddhist, Hindu, etc. Aikidoka going to be able to study together" and my answer is :ai:

ShugyoSystems
05-15-2005, 05:14 PM
Should? Usually means it isn't. Should according to who?


Or, that it already is, but that's under question. Or both. Or neither. Or Noth, or Beither ;)

Religion? Which religion? If we are true to O'Sensei that would be Omoto/Shinto. If by religion you mean to socio-political network used for self propagation and control, then no. If you are implying the spiritual beliefs that underlying the idea and practice that there is more to the world than my little ego and judgmental opinions about right/wrong and good/bad, then i can support spiritual teachings through the physical practice.


Well said

Play? Yes, we should enjoy ourself. IMHO, people take themselves far too seriously and too personally.


:yuck: WE DO NOT!!!! :hypno:

heheheheehh

A part? Which part of the whole? How much? Implicitly taught through the techniques are explicit taught as conversion? IMHO, many of the spiritual concepts are implied in the techniques. It already is and will always be a part of Aikido whether people overtly practice it or not.


How much? as my Mum used to say, "About as long as a piece of string"

That second bit is gold. I was hesitant to say it in here I thought I'd start a war ;) Couldn't agree more.

An? Not "the"?


See below

Curriculum? According to which Sensei, school, style, or affiliation? To each there own.


They'll all become one, one day. Maybe when the tectonic plates all merge and we are all melted into the magma and drawn over millions of years into the core of the earth... maybe sooner ;) :ai:


So after all that, no.

Hehehehe :) Yeh I almost posted saying there should be a "maybe" button

DCP
05-15-2005, 07:01 PM
I voted "no" because of the use of the word curiculum in the poll. If it's in the curriculum, then it is something graded. To grade someone based on religion/spirituality/etc. is not a power that any instructor should have (IMHO).

maikerus
05-15-2005, 08:08 PM
I don't think religion should be taught and graded at the dojo (as Daniel said) so if there was a third choice of "Really NO!" I would've picked that one.

One thought...we've got all these hand techniques, then we've got all these weapons and techniques within them. There's really not enough time in a lifetime to learn those...where would you have time to train in religion, too, without watering everything else down? We only have a finite time at the dojo every week...go elsewhere for something else.

Is there a dojo out there that only teaches shihonage? I'd train there. One life...one thing.

My few yen,

--Michael

Chef CJ
05-15-2005, 08:22 PM
I am new to the world of Aikido, so bear with me. I voted No to this particular question for a number of reasons:

1) It is my understanding that we are to clear our minds when on the mat of all things accept learning Aikido technique. Adding the dimension of religious rigors.

2) It is also my understanding that the goal of Aikido is to acheive "the way to spiritual harmony or harmony of the mind". How can adding a controversial and very personal subject such as religion help that acheivement.

3)It is my opinion that religion and spirituality are by definition 2 different things. They at times coincide but in no way are they interdependent.

Thank you for allowing me ths time and I look foward to train in Aikido for a long time and hope to meet some of you one day.

ajbarron
05-15-2005, 09:15 PM
Quote Jo Adell

" I think the issue is semantic. While I feel that Spirituality is integral to aikido training, that is specifically of the Spirit and has no relation to "outside divine influence".
However I do see a place for perhaps training in conjunction with specific practices (Buddhist meditation comes to mind, of course) or with specific religions ie., Aikido and Christianity/Judaism/etc, to understand how aikido can work in a religious context.
and there's always Omoto-kyo."

IMHO Jo hit it right on. Aikido can be seen through the eyes of all spirituality/religions and it would be a pity if it was not practiced in that manner.

siwilson
05-16-2005, 02:05 AM
Perhaps if the world trained Aikido together and included all of those religions (and the others) the world could be a nicer place.

Todd, how on Earth are you going to include every single religion in to Aikido? Aikido is about bringing people together, and nothing has done the opposite more than religion. It has absolutely no place in the dojo, outside of what an individual brings with them from outside. No religion should be pushed on anyone..

Dazzler
05-16-2005, 04:25 AM
My answer is a definite No.

But if they put aikido into religion the world would be a much better place.

IMHO

D

ps...absolutely no further comment on this.

ShugyoSystems
05-16-2005, 05:30 AM
I voted "no" because of the use of the word curiculum in the poll. If it's in the curriculum, then it is something graded. To grade someone based on religion/spirituality/etc. is not a power that any instructor should have (IMHO).

Very good point Daniel!

ShugyoSystems
05-16-2005, 05:40 AM
Todd, how on Earth are you going to include every single religion in to Aikido? Aikido is about bringing people together, and nothing has done the opposite more than religion. It has absolutely no place in the dojo, outside of what an individual brings with them from outside. No religion should be pushed on anyone..

I didn't say anything about pushing a religion on anyone.

You say that nothing has done the opposite of bringing people together more than religion...

Is that the religion or the people?

It's far easier to blame the religion than to admit that the people are using it as a tool for their own evils.

ian
05-16-2005, 07:45 AM
I am shocked and disappointed that people said religion should play a part in aikido. Ueshiba specifically said that he was not teaching any religion (he expressed things in certain religious ways because that's how HE understood aikido).

Least cynically, religion is a belief system which people use for interpreting reality*. Aikido may be a way of examining certain underlying physical (and even psychological) principles - however, unlike religion, it is dynamic and flexible and utlimately should be judged purely on the experiences of the individual.

Todd suggests that it is individuals which are to blame for the atrocities performed in the name of religion - and I would agree. However religion allows these individuals to hide behind a 'cause' and thus permits society to excuse them of these atrocities, and can also incite these atrocities. Religion almost always creates a them and us situation, despite what is said in (often contradictory) texts. Also anyone that believes religion (rather than spirituality) is not created by man is a fool and doesn't know the history of their own religion. (for example how many Christians have read the book of Thomas, one of the oldest gospels, which was ommitted from the bible because it didn't agree with the Catholic view of Jesus?)

Sorry to rant - I get offended when people believe that religion is more valuable than reasoned argument. Religious groups have far too much say in politics as it is; why does the public assume that a cardinal, for example, has more right to voice an opinion about world issues than a philosopher?

* (Most cynically, it is a way of changing people's behaviour to suit your own objectives.)

ian
05-16-2005, 07:59 AM
PS. if you take religion into the dojo, what then happens to the athiests that want to train. I also disagree with this hippy idea that religions should all get together - people should just see beyond their religions and realise that different ideologies don't mix, but different people can.

rogueenergy
05-16-2005, 09:45 AM
From Dictionary.com:
re·li·gion
n.

1. a. Belief in and reverence for a supernatural power or powers regarded as creator and governor of the universe.
b. A personal or institutionalized system grounded in such belief and worship.
2. The life or condition of a person in a religious order.
3. A set of beliefs, values, and practices based on the teachings of a spiritual leader.
4. A cause, principle, or activity pursued with zeal or conscientious devotion.

Should religion be part of an Aikido curriculum? According to the definition of religion, yes. Remember that to include something in a curriculum does not require grading on that item. I'm included in all of my dojo's functions, I am not required to be there.

What religion? Aikido, an activity that is clearly pursued with zeal or conscientious devotion. All things we as human beings do can become a religion. All things we do can lead to a lack of appropriate reasoning when it comes to ethics. It depends on the core principles of the thing and the teachings of the one who inspired you to do the thing. Lastly, it is colored by your own personal views of the world.

What would Aikido be w/out religion? Would we still extend? Would we use Ki? Would Osensei have used the Kami in descriptions of Aikido? Would Osensei have been able to teach Aikido? Would Budo exist?

Should religion be part of an Aikido curriculum? Yes, but only in as much as it is required for us to be able to practice Aikido.

jss
05-16-2005, 11:23 AM
I voted 'yes'.
It might be a bit too wicked an interpretation of the question, but the moment I knew O-sensei created aikido for a large part inspired by his religious beliefs, religion became part of what I thought of aikido.
So yes, religion should play a part, in my opinion every aikidoka should have some notion of O-sensei's religious beliefs (e.g. Omoto-kyo, 20th centruy, lots of kami). What they then do with that knowledge, is entirely up to them.

siwilson
05-16-2005, 12:35 PM
I voted 'yes'.
It might be a bit too wicked an interpretation of the question, but the moment I knew O-sensei created aikido for a large part inspired by his religious beliefs, religion became part of what I thought of aikido.
So yes, religion should play a part, in my opinion every aikidoka should have some notion of O-sensei's religious beliefs (e.g. Omoto-kyo, 20th centruy, lots of kami). What they then do with that knowledge, is entirely up to them.

Of course O'Sensei didn't really "create" Aikido, but evolved it.

ChristianBoddum
05-16-2005, 04:26 PM
I voted no , the word religion makes no sense to me -

NagaBaba
05-16-2005, 08:56 PM
Spiritual aspect of aikido is developed in long term simply by practicing aikido techniques under a right instructor. I believe a big majority of very advanced instructors one day or another face a situation how to handle increasing sensitivity for spiritual dimension of aikido. Only very few of them decide to speak out loudly about their experiences. May be, cos these are very personal things and students can’t simply copy Master. That will be cheating.

So Master let students evolve themselves (remember Japanese concept that every person has his own mission to fulfill on the Earth, so they prefer not influence it), some will find right path, others will stop their development at certain level.

Spiritual aspect of aikido it is not to force others to follow certain kind of religion, and that’s why questions in the pool aren’t well thought. That will be childish. Spirituality is serious matter.

O sensei saw himself as a shaman, shaman that can connect with some deities (as M. Eliade put well: connect “profane” with “sacred”), and this role existed more then 5000 years ago and still exists in every society. Founder developed the techniques in this context. Serious study aikido techniques can prepare you well for it.

Neil Mick
05-16-2005, 09:03 PM
No.

Because Christ didn't wear a hakama. :crazy:

Nathan Gusdorf
05-16-2005, 10:42 PM
Religion should have very little to do with Aikido. Religion typically serves to separate people over large issues as well as minute details or interpretations that often start wars. The Crusades were a result of religion, as was the Spanish Inquisition. A lot of terrorism is inspired by religion. The list of religion inspired crimes essentially goes on forever.

As it is religion has far too large a part in our social affairs and government. I live in Saint Louis where this Archbishop Burke is a leader in this whole practice of denying communion to people who vote pro-choice. (Not to offend anyone however one of my favorite t-shirts says "Jesus was a liberal Jew. thats actually true) I find that religion is often not beneficial and I believe it has no place in an Aikido dojo. That said there are more peaceful religions such as Buddhism however my impression of Buddhists is that they would not be very adamant about bringing their religion into the dojo.

In Aikido we seek answers and try to achieve goals of being more peaceful and knowledgeable. Oftentimes religion seeks to answer complex questions with simple answers. This is essentially a method of control. Politicians use the same tactics with short overused sound bytes such as: "we need to stop frivilous lawsuits" and "Kerry's a flip-flop" or "Kerry's the lesser of two evils". I had a long list, but it escapes me now. Im sure you alll know of some though. These are simple answers to complex problems that require serious thought and plannign to overcome yet politicians convince people that there is a simple answer. Many religions do just this, they answer complex questions that are hard to explain or unknown with a simple sound clip about how a mysterious powerful being up in the sky made it that way. To do implement this system in Aikido in my opinion would be contrary to the nature of the art. If we seek to become more enlightened per se, then in general religion must not be incorporated. It can repress thought and when it doesnt it can serve to separate people.

Aikido can be spiritual however. I find many aspects of Aikido to be meditative in a way and this for me is spiritual. Spirituality is a kind of personal growth or improvement whereas a lot of times religion is following a set of beliefs meant to control large groups of people.

If you arent easily offended, I highly reccomend George Carlin's bit on religion. Its hilarious and true.

Rupert Atkinson
05-16-2005, 11:30 PM
I am shocked and disappointed that people said religion should play a part in aikido. Ueshiba specifically said that he was not teaching any religion.
...

Sorry to rant - I get offended when people believe that religion is more valuable than reasoned argument.


Glad to see a sensible voice exists out there. What do I think? Straight to the point: Man made God in his own image.

xuzen
05-17-2005, 02:14 AM
[QUOTE=AikiWeb System]AikiWeb Poll for the week of May 15, 2005:

Should religion play a part in an aikido curriculum?[QUOTE]

It was definitely a NO vote from me. Assuming if it is a YES vote, then what religion does one want to teach in an aikido dojo? For the sake of argument, let us assume the group of practitioner are predominantly Roman Catholic, who is going to teach the religion part? Assuming the aikido sensei is going to teach religion, is he qualified to do it? Unless the person teaching aikido and religion (using Catholicism as an example) is a certified aikido teacher and a church sanctioned priest; I won't be listening to him about Catholicism and aikido.

In aikido, I learn budo. To study religion, I'll go to either church, mosque, synagogue or temple etc. I'd keep them separate.

Boon.

siwilson
05-17-2005, 02:53 AM
No.

Because Christ didn't wear a hakama. :crazy:

No.

Because Zeus didn't wear a hakama. :crazy:

ShugyoSystems
05-17-2005, 03:19 AM
No.

Because Zeus didn't wear a hakama. :crazy:

Hehehehehe :D

PS I love the pic from your sig man!!

New Aiki-religion: Disney-Bashiologism! Who's with us? ;)

siwilson
05-17-2005, 03:53 AM
PS I love the pic from your sig man!!


Well, he deserved it.

rogerw
05-17-2005, 09:32 AM
There are three concepts: spirituality, religion and church (or synagog, or temple). Spirituality represents a personnal growth or path. Religion is an answer to philosophical or essential questions adressed to the people, to every man that wants to ear it. Church - or the institution that materializes religion - is an application of religion with the objectives of controlling and manipulating peolple, history has prooved it.
As O-Sensei said, Aikido is not for Japanese or for Omoto-Kyo members, it is for everyone. He was a very spiritual person and I think the way of Aiki should be combined to spirituality. He dedicated his practice to some Kami or superior strenght and created the principles of Aikido with "divine shapes".
Spirituality is a personnal path, something that each does for himself, but it is the root of what O-Sensei really called Aikido.

Yo-Jimbo
05-17-2005, 03:10 PM
I know that the basics of aikido can be taught and learned without mentioning the religion of O-Sensei, just as the basics of physics can be taught and learned without discussing Newton's experiments with cylinders. Solving simple problems in each area can be accomplished without deeper understanding. Still, I wouldn't consider either of these a complete education on either subject without touching on how these influences effected the development of each body of knowledge. The question was whether religion should play a part in an aikido curriculum. To this I have to say that at the advanced level this must be yes. There is a difference between studying and practicing a religion; knowledge of physics does not a physicist make (mores the pity). :(
A separate question could be if the belief in or practice of a particular religion should be compulsory to the practice or curriculum of aikido. To that I would say no. Should a religious outlook (set of ethical conduct) be a part of aikido curriculum? I think every responsible sensei should do that. There is a difference between teaching respect for oneself and others and attempts at conversion to the religion of The Founder (or others). :hypno:
This is a classic hot button topic with many people, I can see that in the answers of many people to this question. Like so many times in society, the argument isn't really even about the original question, but about a related but different question. I bet that the majority of those that voted against the first proposition did so out of fear of the implications of the second that I mentioned. Many people read "play a part" and heard in their mind "have a major/dominating role" or "be the central soapbox issue for sensei in the dojo" reflexively instead. :straightf
Next time sensei can change my entire world view with a simple word and a gentle brush of ki (without the use of hallucinogens of course) I will remember to say, "Please sensei, may I have another!" :D
Note that the above statement doesn't imply that I or any sensei I know has ever used hallucinogenic substances to my knowledge or any reasonable suspicion on my part. :drool:
Note that the above explanation of the preceding statement was not meant to imply that I am a sensei myself (except perhaps in the area of physics and in whatever other areas that others are willing to endure).

ian
05-18-2005, 06:28 AM
I know that the basics of aikido can be taught and learned without mentioning the religion of O-Sensei, just as the basics of physics can be taught and learned without discussing Newton's experiments with cylinders.).

I would really compare it with having to know what religious beliefs Newton had to understand how he developed the theories. Sure it must have had an influence, but it doesn't mean that understanding it is in any way dependent on knowing his religion.

Admittedly I was one of those who James suggested leapt onto their soap-box. And doing aikido has undoubtedly opened me up to eastern philosophy. However, although changing someone's perception to enable aikido to be understood better may be useful (e.g. discussions on yin/yang) - I don't think omote-kyo as a specific religion has any relevance for understanding aikido - only for understanding Ueshiba.

Personally I agree with Ueshiba, when he said "aikido is a flower that just happened to bloom in Japan".

happysod
05-18-2005, 07:22 AM
I'd presume you'd vote no if you can compartmentalize (or don't have a) religion from how you conduct yourself throughout life. A yes vote to me would indicate their religion infuses their life already so they couldn't imagine practicing aikido without it. Both to me are equally valid ways of approaching the universe.

Being a godless watchmacallit I'll go with the no vote and am currently trying to think positive thoughts about those who insist on mixing their own personal belief system with any sort of universal truth for how anything (not just aikido) must be approached for true rapport.

rcoit
05-18-2005, 07:27 AM
The power of the ki originates in the spirit. Aikidoka not only know this; they experience it.

Yo-Jimbo
05-19-2005, 05:14 PM
I would really compare it with having to know what religious beliefs Newton had to understand how he developed the theories. Sure it must have had an influence, but it doesn't mean that understanding it is in any way dependent on knowing his religion.
Actually, it is interesting to observe the bias/insight great physicist and astronomers had because of their religious beliefs. Perhaps religious influence on physics could even be compared to the religious influence on a martial art (A => B; A => C).
I agree, but stand by my first comparison (A => B; C => D). My reason is not that I desire to be right (although I do have a healthy one), but that I was trying to show similarity in experiences during the development process (or what each would commonly reference when explaining ideas within formulation), where you are showing a true common influence (like whether they were both male or wore beards). Without a metric to determine which of our comparisons is better (and as they are different types), it is an empty argument. If the point was to parallel the influence of religions on two very different bodies of knowledge, then mine is quite deficient having not made that comparison in both cases. :D
If I knew more about Bruce Lee's religious beliefs, then I could compare apples to apples (A => B; A => B), but I don't know what new insight that would show.
Admittedly I was one of those who James suggested leapt onto their soap-box. And doing aikido has undoubtedly opened me up to eastern philosophy. However, although changing someone's perception to enable aikido to be understood better may be useful (e.g. discussions on yin/yang) - I don't think omote-kyo as a specific religion has any relevance for understanding aikido - only for understanding Ueshiba.
I'm willing to agree with you here if when you write "aikido" you mean just the physical (but not the whole of the art) and when you write "understand" you mean to have competency (but not total mastery of the entire subject).
A person can be a pro-basketball player without knowing who invented it (James Naismith) or why, but that doesn't mean the persons education is complete without that knowledge (of course, that knowledge doesn't help me enough to play in the NBA). Before saying that the inventor is irrelevant to play... actually, go right ahead, but I would bet that some would have a lot of trouble with that statement if it were applied to living a Christian life without knowing Jesus. :) Then again I suppose some people have ignored that Jesus was a Jew when it was convenient (then again, Jesus wasn't a martial artist). :(
Personally I agree with Ueshiba, when he said "aikido is a flower that just happened to bloom in Japan".
I agree totally (as brave as it is to agree with O-Sensei). ;)
It just seems to me that there is nothing gained by then trying to omit that it came originally from Japan.

I appreciate that you treated my post with respect. I disagree on minor points out of respect and to bring attention to when the query is subtly changed to support the answer. I don't think that my statements are incompatible/incongruent with yours. I'm just putting it out there for people that it is a lot harder to say what is meant and mean what is said than it might seem. Most conflict and erroneous ideas snowball from these misunderstandings. Hopefully practitioners of aikido are prepared to move straight ahead and turn that part of society around.

To summarize, I still think that the results of the poll boils down to a semantic argument of what is meant by the question. Since it is not clear, if interpreted in one way it has only one logical answer, but if interpreted the other the other answer is the only one that makes sense.

In one camp:
a is an element in set A
A has elements other than a
Should a be listed if all the elements in A are being listed?
They vote yes. I personally believe the poll question is closer to this form.

In the other:
a is an element in set A
A has elements other than a
Is the listing of element a necessary for the listing of all the other elements in A?
They vote no. This is a qualified interpretation of the poll question. The first question is skipped as trivial in the mind and it is ignored that this is also trivial.

Then there are the questions of whether A exists without a (trivial) or if A' has all the elements of A other than a if it is more or less valuable than A.

Irakli Baramidze
05-20-2005, 02:29 AM
No it shouldn't, that's my perspective but not my idea, O'sensei used to say: Aikido is a religion itself. and I think Aikido unites all kinds of men of different cultures and religions if they're open hearted and truly understand the meaning of Aikido.

ShugyoSystems
05-25-2005, 12:30 AM
There is a difference between studying and practicing a religion....

Exactly

Erick Mead
06-03-2005, 05:14 PM
No, not exactly.

I would note the following reported by Andre Noquet, an uchideshi of O-Sensei in 1955, and later, I think, president of the European Aikido federation :

"[One day] I said to Ueshiba Sensei, "You are always praying, Ueshiba Sensei. Then aikido is a religion." "No, that's not true. Aikido is never a religion, but if you are a Christian, you will be a better Christian because of aikido. If you are a Buddhist, you will be a better Buddhist." ..... Ueshiba Sensei had a great deal of respect for Christ. I was living in a four-mat room in the dojo and he would knock on the door and enter. He would sit down beside me and there was a portrait of Jesus Christ. He would place his hands together in a gesture of respect. I asked him one day if there wasn't a similarity between his prophecies and those of Christ. He answered, "Yes, because Jesus said his technique was love and I, Morihei, also say that my technique is love. Jesus created a religion, but I didn't. Aikido is an art rather than a religion. But if you practice my aikido a great deal you will be a better Christian." Then I asked, "Sensei should I remain a Christian?" He replied,
"Yes, absolutely. You were raised as a Christian in France. Remain a Christian." "

siwilson
06-03-2005, 06:31 PM
Erick,

Exactly!