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-   -   aiki philosophy (http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showthread.php?t=570)

ian 02-12-2001 09:20 AM

I started aikido to do weapons work, then I realised I preferred the unarmed technique, then I realised that aikido and its associated philosophies has surropticiously changed my attitude towards life. I know this has happened to many people, even though, like myslef, they were not indoctrinated in the spiritual side of aiki in any way. I also think it is wrong to try to persuade people to follow your beliefs if they are not interested. However, what I would like to know is; has anyone been practising for a reasonable length of time (e.g. over 1 -1 1/2 tears) and not been influenced by the philosophical aspects?

Ian

Matthieu 02-12-2001 09:29 AM

Nope! Not me :p

Erik 02-12-2001 02:33 PM

I've thought about this as well and I wonder if sometimes Aikido doesn't get some undeserved credit. There's a tendency to attribute results to something outside of yourself such as Aikido or far more commonly god (not equating the two, just the context).

I wonder how many people who gave up some sort of vice attribute their results to an outside entity? I don't hear many people say, "I gave up smoking through will-power and hard work. I did all the right things, I quit smoking and while I'm grateful for the help I got from X, I still did all the work." It's almost never presented that way, rather it goes something like "I quit because of X. It saved my life."

I'm not directly answering your question, but then I'm not sure whether I changed myself or Aikido changed me.

Ian, what sort of environment were you in where you got 0.00 philosophy? Maybe I could set up an exchange program? I've heard so much philosophy in the last few months that I'd like to will some of it in that direction. Trust me, I've got tons to spare. This would allow me to spend a little bit of time with my recently rediscovered nemisis Mr. Sankyo.:)

cbrf4zr2 02-12-2001 02:33 PM

Ian,

Wow...I think that could be asked as 1-1/2 months, as opposed to 1-1/2 years. Maybe I'm open-minded, or maybe I just have a natural "connection" to aikido, but even after the first few weeks of training I found myself applying the mental/philosophical side to my life. And at my last doctor's visit my blood pressure was significantly lower. Conincidence? Maybe. But Ive only been training 5 months, and I feel myself being influenced by the non-physical side of aikido already.
Use the 4 basic points of aikido in everyday life, and it should make a huge difference in it.

Ed

Matthieu 02-12-2001 02:40 PM

4 basic points...
 
Quote:

cbrf4zr2 wrote:
Ian,


Use the 4 basic points of aikido in everyday life, and it should make a huge difference in it.

Ed


Which 4 basic points of akido are you referring to Ed?


Steve Speicher 02-12-2001 02:58 PM

i bet they are:

1. love
2. compassion
3. harmony
4. blending with hard surfaces at high velocity

cbrf4zr2 02-12-2001 03:03 PM

Well the 4 basic ones I'm referring to:

Relax Completely
Keep one point
Stay under center (word this how you may)
Extend Ki

Although I do like Steve's 4th one.

Ed

JJF 02-13-2001 03:33 AM

Hi Ian

I've changed. But I can not say wheter I changed because of Aikido or took up Aikido because I changed. I know that through years of various MA's I was looking for something that I didn't find until I walked into an Aikido-dojo.

I guess I was ready to change and Aikido became a strong influence upon the direction my life took. I can not honestly say that I 'live' Aikido, but it definately has a big influence on my life.

ian 02-13-2001 07:22 AM

Maybe you lot are right - I know at the time, although I wasn't actually looking for a 'philosophy', I had started to realise that much of Western philosophy just become arguments about terms, language and predjudice and there really wasn't any point of a lot of it. I think most Eastern philosophies (and some very rare western philosophers) are very different to what Westerners would consider philosophy - and it is possible it was this little gap in my experience which the aikido philosophy fell in to.

Ian

P.S. Ed, I was thinking more of the psycholgical/philosophical rather than metaphysical/physical aspects (e.g. ki), but I'm sure they are related as my aiki tends to be better when I'm in a friendly and happy state of mind. (probably relaxes meand I'm more sensetive to uke and observant).

ian 02-13-2001 07:28 AM

P.P.S.
Erik, unfortunately my philosophies are pretty much set now; maybe it is my onset to middle age.*

Only occasionally do I want to venture into other ideas in order to give my brain something to do., though any novel/new ideas would be worth reflecting on.

*I've heard it said that middles age is where your narrow waist and broad mind swap places.

Ian

Erik 02-13-2001 01:37 PM

Quote:

ian wrote:
P.P.S.
Erik, unfortunately my philosophies are pretty much set now; maybe it is my onset to middle age.*

Only occasionally do I want to venture into other ideas in order to give my brain something to do., though any novel/new ideas would be worth reflecting on.

*I've heard it said that middles age is where your narrow waist and broad mind swap places.

Ian
For what it's worth, I didn't intend to insult you. My apologies if I did.

I was just whining about my situation which is being in a dojo that is becoming almost all philosophy and 0.00 technique. I would like to transfer some of that philosophy in exchange for some technique.

ian 02-14-2001 04:41 AM

Yeh, I would agree with you.

I think philosophy should actually stay out of the dojo. People usually go to do Aikido rather than chat. Only sometimes is it useful/necessary to describe a concept in philosophical terms.

I asked a sensei several weeks back if he thought having an understanding of zen or taosim could improve your aikido. His response was to forget the philosophy and just think of this very moment and nothing else...


...very zen.


To me the philosophical/spiritual aspects spring from the physical (e.g. facing aspects of life/death; coming to terms with your own ego; breaking beyong your conventional approach). So I'd discuss this down the bar, but not when I'm trying to get the most out of training.

Ian

P.S. no offence taken, nor would ever be taken!

Matt 03-12-2001 11:59 PM

I think the beauty of Aikido is that it is it own philosophy in its very essence. What I mean is that to progress you have to understand it and as you struggle to get your and uke's body to do these ridiculous looking movements your mind is trying to grasp the why of the movements and you are forced to mentally grow.
At least I think so,
Matt


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