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Old 06-05-2005, 03:49 PM   #27
Mike Sigman
Location: Durango, CO
Join Date: Feb 2005
Posts: 4,123
Re: Highest Level Martial Arts and Aikido

Kevin Leavitt wrote:
...your point is well taken though, when diverting your intentions to "other things" becomes an excuse because it is "too hard" or you are not "patient" enough to learn the internal aspects of an art (KI and Kokyu, as you define it), then you are missing the point.
Well, a lot of people are not really interested in the point. The Taiji community has even more people in it for other than serious reasons. They're looking for the "Tao" (Taiji is not Taoist or Taoist-derived), a quasi-religion, a "martial art" that is fairly safe where no one will beat them up, they're doing it as a cry for help, etc., etc. And of course you have people who are mixed into that crowd that make a living "teaching", psychotherapyzing, talking about peace and harmony, playing Taoist sage, networking the community for customers, etc., etc. It's OK that all those people are there and any "easy" martial art will have a larger percentage of these types than a "hard" martial art... but the serious people can be put off by atmosphere if the less serious begin to dominate.

Reminds me of a curious thing that happened in the Taiji community. When the really "big dogs" started coming to the U.S. after China finally opened its borders, the New Age and less serious practitioners suddenly got a whiff of what Taiji the martial art was about.... and they won't come to workshops (as a rule) of the really skilled Taiji experts. It is hard to get people to attend a Chen Xiao Wang workshop, for example, while the guys spouting "peace and harmony" and "taoism" get large crowds. In other words, it's not so much a problem with "distraction", in many cases... it's that a lot of a particular community wants to hear what they want to hear and they'll deliberately quash anything they don't want to hear. And of course many Chinese instructors simply play to what a lot of westerners want to hear.... they're here to make a living, not teach everything they know (and so many of them don't really know Taiji, but it's where the money is). Some parallels to this happen in the Aikido community, as most people know.


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