Re: Poll: How necessary are organizations in aikido?
I agree completely with Leydard Sensei. I would also add that humans have no other way than organizationalism to transmit presence and authority. In their essence, organizations are transmitting the "presence" of a single individual or a group of people through hierarchical levels of people. This transmission is artificial in that it doesn't pass directly to the last level but indirectly from person to person. Authority is transmitted the same way so there is distance between the person at the top and the recipients down the line. As it is transmitted down the hierarchical levels, distortion of the original intent occurs and then there are problems at each level and especially for the last person to receive the transmission. Abuse therefore sometimes happens at the lower levels. That's how all organizations work due to human nature but they are all we have. The less levels you have, the easier it is to be in an organization and and things tend to work better. You can bypass the levels by the person at the top communicating directly with the lower levels but that effectively reduces the reach of that person thus negating the reason for having an organization in the first place. Doing that also increases the accountability at the top and makes the person responsible whereas if the person at the top hides from the lower levels, then all the responsibility remains with the individual levels.
The Aikikai can extend the presence of Doshu throughout the world due to the size of their organization. There is tremendous distance between Doshu and the guy who joins Aikido tomorrow and yet Doshus decisions will eventually reach that person but Doshu can have little feeling (speaking organizationally) for someone so distant. It is not to his advantage to intervene down the levels because of taking on too much responsibility but he does have to be aware of any ripples he can cause- especially in the levels close to him where he is exposed to criticism that might diminish his standing. The organization "extends" the presence of the man because it transmits his thoughts and ideas. It extends his authority as well in the decisions and pronouncements he makes. That is essentially how and an Aikido group, a government, or a company work. The more you want to do, the bigger organization you will need. This is the way humans band together to do anything that is bigger than one man.