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There is another thread about a person having questions about experiencing the Kohai/Sempai (K/S) thing at a dojo. Thus far many of the replies vary in degree of what it is and how it practiced. None of which I read are from those in Japan who are experiencing it.
I suggested as an offer of help to the situation in terms of understanding the K/S thing is to look at Sumo. Why, well Sumo is said to be the model for today's martial arts in terms of cultural practice.
I went hunting, because I not in Japan and I wanted to know some things and on my journey I ended with...you guessed it Sumo to explain the K/S model- as a benchmark, or what have you.
What I found along the way I will post in quotes below. But during my journey, I found these two Japanese words; Mibun and Kakushiki that kept being associated to the Tokagawa period. Many scholars site this period to be very important in terms of change and formation of laws and social structures in Japan. It sees during this time social hierarchy was really stressed, and so was laws (includes the system and social protocol-from what I gathered.
It seems from my experience and of that I read from others and there dojo's the K/S outside Japan vary greatly in knowledge, practice, and importance. It would be interesting to me to know if that is the case in Japan?
This is what I found:
Overall K/S is thing about respect and responsibility, a mentor program, an apprentice program. A sports team where the pros ar
We just can't sweep the ugly truth under the rug and forget about O'Sensei's war experiences and the horrors of the way the Japanese, at that time, acted during the war. But many would love to do that, to sweep the ugliness under the rug and forget it. To bury what is too shameful to remember forever. Some will not face it, some distract out of embarrassment with glossy folklore romanticism. Some, well they flavor it with mystical salt and pepper. Others are very happy the ugly truth is redefined and misunderstood. But, this ugly truth, the history, is very vital in understanding Aikido and what is behind it. Because as time marches on history gets further away from the truth, from accuracy, as it slips into misty obscurity. It becomes forgotten or ill-remembered, at best. The result is the distortions and twisting of the truth, or the real reason behind why we practice Aikido, and why it is about love, and what that truly means.
This truth is something, unbearable for some as it is, should be the first lesson taught in Aikido. If this was done, it would best serve Aikido and be truer to O'Sensei and his Aikido.
I don't think there is enough people in the world of Aikido who knows about what I spoke of in my blog entry. We kind o
"It is one of the hardest things in this prison life: the strain caused by being continually in the power of people who are only half-sane and live in a twilight of reason and humanity." Wrote Sir Laurens Jan van der Post, during his internment as a prisoner of war, of his Japanese captors in WWII.
Pls read links first. Caution war isn't pretty- some links have graphic images and content. Could be disturbing and upsetting to some.
Once you have read all this, does O'Sensei's philosophy of love, peace, harmony, and so on make more sense? Does his philosophy become more clearer? Does Aikido make more sense?
O'Sensei being a soldier and then a prisoner of war, I can't imagine he wasn't effected by the brutality and inhumanity impose on the Chinese, Americans, and Philipino soldiers and people. After the hideous war crimes committed by the Japanese army and their obsessive and fanatical power lust, I can't imagine that he didn't want to change the world.
O'Sensei's process of change was evident in his life after the war, and it obviously profound and lasted a life time. It was a very powerful change, that effected his entire way of life and for us how he would practice budo. He clearly had a fierce love for budo. Budo was something that was his soul. It wasn't a hobby, but the very culture he grew up