Re: Latest Issue of "Aikido East" Now Available
Could this be a case of the vagueness of the East clashing with the need for absolute clarity written in triplicate of the West? Can we not accept purposeful flexibility?
Anyway, I can think of some organisations that have no shihan yet are recognised by Aikikai and are allowed to grade, albeit by inviting shihan in for rubber stamping grading day. It is only recently that their overseas numbers have been increasing. I suppose there will be a little restructuring in that respect in the future - who has the 'recognition' etc., and that might mean Japanese instructors might lose some importance. Shihan has been their monopoly, afterall.
Also, I don't think shihan has ever meant, as the original poster wrote, regional supervisor, although that is what in effect, he sometimes becomes.