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Old 06-04-2005, 02:44 PM   #5
Stefan Stenudd
 
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Dojo: Enighet Malmo Sweden
Location: Malmo
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 530
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Interesting perspectives!
I have to say that I get very tired of too many too "realistic" discussions about aikido as self defense et cetera. We all practice aikido a number of times a week, year after year. The meaning of aikido is what happens in keiko, not what might happen in a bar brawl.

That said, what is the highest?
Awaking your center and making it grow, opening up the flow of and extending it. A Japanese concept that comes to mind is misogi, purification.
To me, for some time now, the highest of is healing. Both tori and uke are healed in the process. And healing, repeated several times weekly, brings it reward.

A friend of mine with a very profound knowledge of metaphysical traditions, once told me: If the supernatural is real, then it's simply natural. No mystery to it.
Some people nurture an attitude toward the 'yet to be proven', which is rooted in the demand that it should remain supernatural, magical, unreal. But magic, when learned, is not that magic at all.
Aikido is one way of learning this.

One can also say that aikido is an art. That is not lessening it in the least.

As for the self defense perspective, I believe that the ultimate aikido is to have an attitude, a state of mind, that makes it impossible for others even to think about attacking. To disappear as a target for aggression.
This is done by relaxing.
It's not easy.

Stefan Stenudd
My aikido website: http://www.stenudd.com/aikido/
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