Re: Poll: How important a goal do you feel is the "aikido" notion of defending yourself while minimizing or negating damage done to your attacker?
I voted "critically important" because that's what I thought Aikido was all about and why I was so attracted to it. I don't want to hurt him/her/them anymore than I want to get hurt myself. As compounding factors change, so will my ability to prevent damage. A single guy who's staggering over towards me saying I offended his honor is something where I could probably handle not hurting him or getting hurt in the process. But lets say I'm walking through a back alley and a group of, oh lets say, four guys with bats, knives, etc. (assuming I can't just turn and run), if it was like that, while I'd like to avoid hurting them, me personally at my skill (aikido and other skills), I'd have to try and hurt them to avoid being hurt or killed. Now if I was a 1,000,000th dan, and not a skinny bean-pole, I could probably get through without too much hurt.
Now in the dojo, I say pain is not good. I've been a reciever and a giver of pain, accidentily of course. While practicing I try to avoid giving or recieving pain, by either doing something or not doing something. I know the pins can hurt, but usually my (insert joint here) is usually not tingling by the time it's about to be pinned again.
Just my opinion with my limited experience, ask me again in a year and it very well might be different.