Stefan Stenudd wrote:
Allow me to express a personal opinion, almost an aikido credo.
But is that aikido? To me it is not.
My impression of Osensei is that he wanted to move away from that, and I am sure that I would not be doing aikido for as long as I have, if I felt that it had to be aggressive.
Stefan, a little presumptuous to interpret O'Sensei's wishes. If you read "Budo" you will see Aikido has offensive techniques as well as defensive. While almost all offensive techniques are not taught, it is clear to me that O'Sensei originally included them.
While I agree we all have our own interpretation of what Aikido is, to call one person's ideas not aikido (I know that wasn't your exact words, but that was the thought conveyed) because they don't agree with your own is wrong. I think the beauty in Aikido is the ability to be either soft or hard. You control the amount of force or damage, immobilize or incapacitate-the choice is yours. I think O'Sensei's intent was to give that kind of knowledge and foster an attitude towards compassion rather than destruction. However you truly can't be a pacifist until you have the ability to destroy and choose not to.