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Well, that should let the people who wanted more about Terry Dobson know that here is at least a little something, maybe, about his teaching? Well, it is. Terry taught real Aikido, real techniqes, but he used some unusual methods to get concepts across. It's good to read "It's a lot like dancing" and "Giving in to Get Your Way" and the articles written about him that were mentioned in people's comments to my other blog entry several weeks ago called "The Ara Mitama of Terry Dobson"
It occurred to me I could have just said instead of Ara Mitama, that Terry was awesome, or "larger than life" but I don't often use those words anyway, and besides that might overshadow Terry's understated side. I didn't know Terry very well, but I was moved to realize that some of you really, really want to know more about him. This is extremely gratifying, because I was fortunate to have met him and taken a few of his classes, and am honored to be asked to share.
His teaching was not exactly unprecedented but he took it maybe a bit farther in some ways than Koichi Tohei Sensei, although Tohei did teach many people outside of Aikido and the Ki no Kenkyukai , often called Ki Society in English, has always strongly emphasized "Aikido in Daily Life" as the book was originally titled, and I think later renamed, "Ki in Daily Life." Terry may have renamed his own book Aikido in Daily Life, but I'm not sure.
I'm pretty sure Terry at least wanted to rename his book, and it may have been b
There is a picture in my mind of a brick wall with sky showing through in at least two large places.There was a zig zag outline, where the bricks had been removed. That was where the new windows would go, I found out.
There I was in Boston, Cambridge actually, and it was probably September. I remember I had taken off from Stamford, because suddenly I didn't need to be there that Saturday. So I went to Boston. I think at that visit or another soon after, someone greeted me as a visitor and invited me to come back when the new dojo was complete. But why wait for that?
I had thought at the end of summer camp that I would take a "rain check" and besides, Father Joe from California had already brought me and one of my assistants (small YMCA dojo but since they were assisting me, that's what I called them) up to Kanai Sensei's dojo it must have been the previous winter because I remember the overcoats.
Kanai Sensei was Father Joe's teacher's friend. I thought he said teacher's teacher but then again I didn't know who Francis was, just another smiling Californian at the Sacramento meeting and seminar a year or two previously. You can read about Father Joe's adopting our dojo while on loan on and off for several weeks from the company he worked for to the neighboring town of Norwalk in my previous blog entry.
Thanks to Father Joe's visit several months before, it was the most natural thing to take a rain check in Cambridge on this bright late su
Another story of the long ago little YMCA dojo here, just a few miles away.....
"Father Joe" was here, and while he didn't officiate at our marriage I think he was instrumental in its eventual occurence though he probably was unaware.... kind of interesting, come to think of it, since he was a clergyperson and part of their usual duties for most of them is performing marriage ceremonies.
Whoa! This is getting way too mysterious and not a real reflection of what Father Joe was like!
An ikkyu from California showed up at our little YMCA dojo, it probably was indeed listed in the nationwide Federation List at the time, and introduced himself. He had been sent on loan to the Norwalk affiliate of the company he worked for. He had definite preferences about the type of Aikido he wished to work on and I have to say he had a definite influence on the development of the dojo, and curiously enough, on my own personal destiny.
( The old love songs of the fifties or so had often been about "destiny" but here in the seventies who would have known
that a couple of years later I would have met my husband, at the same Y.... but later for that)
One day he mentioned an interest in "street fighting" and at the time I thought it a bit odd for an Episcopal priest. I had been raised in the Episcopal church, although once I went to college I was involved in student activities among people of various denominations and world religions, but didn't attend church services t
This is the entry I was thinking about posting before I ended up writing about autumn
A few senpai who helped out with important parts of Aikido ....
Bob, who stuck out his wrist after class to be grabbed and to throw in a forward roll "One more" Then you get up and he sticks out his wrist again and says "one more" and then you get up and he sticks out his wrist and says "one more"
This is how we learned ukemi at NY Aikikai in the old days, until you could barely stand up, and then Bob said again "one more" and you grabbed his wrist again.
This is how we learned to fly through the air something I could never have imagined when I was a kid.
And there was T.K. Lee and us little ducklings, knee walking around the mat following him. That was his specialty for teaching us every possible opportunity he had. One time he asked us if we wanted to know how he did the knee walking so effortlessly. He pulled up his hakama to his knees and said, "roller skates!" Of course we couldn't see them, but of course they were there all the same...
Ken Nisson was teaching jiyu waza and it was a small class. We were lucky in those days, sometimes there were very few of us and special pointers were given, like what to do if there is one attacker in front of you and you know someone else is starting to attack from the rear. He met the first, turned that uke and threw towards what had been the rear, at the second attacker. And said something I so often remember to tell peopl
I was thinking of writing some thoughts on free style, jiyu waza from teachers and senpais, but probably next time, because today the weather is typically early autumn and I am reminded of the different ways people think of autumn.
I once gave a little presentation for the ladies of the Long Ridge Book and Garden club. Some of you may remember I mentioned it in the blog entry Alma Mater where I mentioned the song Matsushima, where many elderly ladies got up and did the rowing exercise I showed them with the chant that accompanies the melody. Oops, maybe, I too am getting elderly so I shouldn't call them that. But I was impressed by their eagerness to participate in the spirit of the folk song.
One of them, at the tea that followed those once a month Monday gatherings in the local firehouse auditorium, mentioned that she had visited Japan and was impressed by the yellow leaves all around in a scene they had visited. Yes, there are other impressive colors besides the famous reds and oranges.
I was touched that they took to the topic so well.
In the beginning of the presentation, I mentioned that I had read that in Japan, spring flowers are considered very beautiful, of course, but autumn also is considered equal, and some say it surpasses spring in beauty. In fact, in the Tale of Genji, I seem to remember the court ladies and gentlemen had contests as to who could produce the most beautiful garden. One team picked spring, the other picked autumn. The garden