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A blog written from the point of view of a martial arts beginner, which I am. You can find the full blog at http://yghmartialarts.blogspot.com. Here on AikiWeb, I'll post only those entries which are relevant to aikido.
There are many martial artists (and I used to be one of them) who take real offense at their arts being called sports. They believe they are practicing something more noble, more real, and more valuable than sport.
I don't know whether or not George Ledyard Sensei takes such offense, but he exemplified the kind of high-minded sentiment I'm talking about in a recent post to his blog George Ledyard's All Things Aikido. Here's an excerpt:
Aikido is a form of Budo. Budo is basically the use of the martial arts for personal transformation. Aikido as Budo is a "Michi" or Martial "WAY" (the "do" in Aiki-do). O-Sensei, the Founder, actually believed that through Aikido, the whole world could be brought into a state of harmony; he called our art "The Way of Peace". For him, Budo was a life and death matter. Given the right level of commitment one could truly become a better person, less fearful, stronger, braver, more compassionate. One could, in his or her own Mind and Body understand that everything in the universe is essentially connected. His creation of Aikido represents a radical transformation of how Budo was viewed historically. It is a unique art. It is not a "hobby", it is not a "sport", it is not a "workout", it is a Michi, a Way.
Before I go on, I would like to make aboundantly clear that I greatly respect and admire Ledyard Sensei and recommend his blog. I have never met Ledyard Sensei, but his online writing alone has been a tremendous influence on my fledgling for