Camp-1 Those that believe that KI is a spiritual, or magical force
Camp-2 Those that believe that there are only good body mechanics and that there is no "KI"
Camp-3 Those that believe that there are two components that need understanding and in which to train
Camp-4 Those who train and don't think about "KI" at all
Nice formula, and as Rob said (in a very adult way I may add
) there are plenty of folks beating each other up over this on E-Budo. I guess I fall in Camp 3,5. Good body mechanics at a really high level definitely require some rearranging of the mind. Where the border line is between real mental change and spirituality falls is something that is best answered by Zen masters, neh?
There really is no need to rehabilitate ki since it has not offended anyone or anything. The endless talk about it is just that: talk. There are some things I can do sometimes with some people that could be described as good body mechanics combined with the right mental/emotional attitude, a feeling of goal-less efficiency which brooks no opposition since it perceives none.I wish I could do it always, so I'm working on just working and not wishing too much.
Doing this(effortless power) in the midst of actual combat is a whole different thing, and many exercises in Aikido (most of the tanren keiko, kihon waza, etc) including many of the so-called "warming up" practices are a way of conditioning the body/mind to cooperate in a particular way, not so dissimilar from learning Tai Chi form and then push hands.
Some people want it but don't get it
Some couldn't care less and have it abundantly
Some can talk it to death, so what?
Some know and show but it's not seen or understood
Fun, isn't it?