Re: ?? Exaggeration in Aikido ??
I think the question is a valid one. I come at it from a number of different, and of course possibly contradictory angles.
1. I agree that the "it won't make you invincible but it should improve your chances of survival" approach is a good one.
2. We've all seen Aikidoka strutting around like the the baddest mofos in the world becasue their stuff has never been tested and they're convinced what they can pull off on the mat with a compliant uke translates into street bad assery. So it's an important point and I do think it starts when the student walks through the door. If they are told from day one that it will beat larger multiple opponnents, then think that's what they experience in trainng, and if they're not the type of person to read/investigate widely outside their own dojo then you've got a recipie for the stereotypical arrogant aikidoka in 10 years time (or less)
3. Having said that, I'm often amused at the "what that art/teacher/dojo is teaching is gonna get someone killed" line that comes up so often online. Yes there are arts/dojos/teachers that teach stuff that don't work and give people false confidence - and aikido will have it's share of representitives I'm sure. But I've yet to hear a single credible story of how a student of such a school has been seriously injured as a result of that confidence. <shrug>