Re: "Traditional budo" and "Fighting art"
Sorry for the delay in replying, been out of town over the weekend.
One thing I miss from Aikido is the diversity in people it brings. Men, women, young, old, white-collar, blue-collar, etc. Everyone in my Sambo classes are 22-35 years old, fit males. I think this is because of the more "rough n' tumble" nature of the class that these type of people are ready for. Everyone was either a football player or a wrestler or something of the like in high school or college.
They have little to no hesitation in attempting any technique, pin, fall, escape, etc. These are people already used to a risk-prone environment and do not mind putting themselves in harm's way; Something that I think that has to slowly be acquired by most of the people who begin to practice Aikido.
Training exclusively with fit and motivated people definitely makes training much more intense. However, there is something lost by the lack of diversity. What's to be done for it? I don't know. But something about it definitely bothers me. I guess I just have to try and keep a foot planted in both places, although it's becoming increasingly difficult to do so.
RE: The Lowery book. Did you ever find it? I really enjoy his books. I find his insights in regards to budo in contemporary matters insightful. I'd be interested in knowing the title. Thanks.