Re: Poll: How important a goal do you feel is the "aikido" notion of defending yours
"I think 'intent' is too vague a concept to tell the difference between two styles. Using technical differences would make more sense to me."
I agree it couldn't be the only determining factor. In a sense I would say all styles intend to lead to the same thing: a mastery of the human form. In that sense I'm inclined to think they're all the same in the end. What differentiates them, in my opinion, is the approach toward that "end."
"I have asked for a source for this "aikido nottion" and as far as I can remember nobody got any further than 'Aikido and the Dynamic Sphere', which for me isn't good enough. So perhaps this aikido nation was originally not a part of aikido."
"By means of the way
Call out the misguided enemy
Advance and persuade him with words of instruction
Through the Sword of Love" (<----this is a quote I read as supposedly being written by OSensei) Of course this is very vague, but I think the intent of caring for your attacker is apparent.
"If you're refering to the jutsu-do difference, I read somewhere that it's not that clear cut."
I agree it's not clear cut, but i recall being told -do is a way of emphasizing the philosophy of a principle or set of principles. It might be compared to saying "techniques for living" and "way of life" maybe. Where a distinct divide occurs, if one can be said to exist at all, is unclear to me though.
"I'm not interested in not harming the drunk, because you might have done equally well without knowing aikido."
Not sure how that makes a difference. Couldn't you say that about any situation?
"I'm interested in how to apply this 'aikido notion' when your aikido really matters, against four knife wielding attackers for instance."
Like you mentioned before, I think it's all situation based. Not knowig the story of those proverbial 4 attackers, I try not to assume too much about them. Maybe 3 of them would rather be doing something else but are caught up in a bad situation. Not knowing one way or the other though, I'd rather, if the possibility exists, not hurt them. Frankly, I'm not that good right now. If those 4 guys trapped me and I escaped harm, chances are good it would only come about through serious and permanent damage to their joints and/or lives. Maybe it's naive, but I feel pitty for people who think a might makes right attitude (eg-criminals) is a viable solution to living a good life...I also feel anger, but pitty them at the same time. If I can allow them the chance to improve as individuals, i'd like to think I would. Allowing murderous people to live is a dangerous thing...and I can't claim to have a clear-cut answer to this issue. For this reason i think everyone ought realize this danger and develop their lives accordingly.
"And one typical reply would be "O-sensei (him being the ultimate aikidoka) could have done it." Well, aikido is not about wat O-sensei could do, it is about what you can do."
I agree. One can only do what they're capable of. Coincidentally, I have no doubt that OSensei was a great man...and maybe no one will ever be as good as he was, but I don't think that's a forgone conclusion. I'd like to think that one human is as capable as the next.