The reason that I take aikido with such fervor, other than that it is a wonderful graceful and compelling art, is so that I DON'T need to utilize blinding or instantly bone breaking atemi. I took a watered down form of Tae Kwon Doe for quite some time, and I think that despite my lack of flexibility, I can probably still make some pretty nasty kicks to an attacker's knees and general lower regions- but if I know aikido, then I can deal with an attacker without maiming them, or possibly even injuring then(well, if I knew a few more osae waza...I'd probably just have to throw them, but that doesn't hurt nearly as much as a broken knee) But the point is, I wish to train myself to be able to subdue my attacker with no harm to them or myself.
PS- I see a lot of police officers posting here, and though this is highly off topic, I would like to note that the level of force I see used against protestors(Many of them trained specifically in being peaceful, and sadly they must also train in being beaten by police officers) is vastly higher than the level of force used by said protestors. Pepper spraying a bunch of people who are simply sitting down is not an equal use of force, and highly unaikido. Perhaps in the courses mentioned by some officers there could be a little bit on aikido spirituality. Many protestors are treated much worse than violent offenders who willingingly and forthrightly attack police.
Sorry, that was a bit of a rank, but I think it does apply to aikido spirituality. And my friend was recently rather injured in a protest- he made no violent moves, and was simply marching down a street. Thanks for bearing with me.
PPS- Please don't misconstrue this as accusing- I realize that not every police officer is out there beating protestors(though there were 800 police versus 100 protestors at the latest rally hear in Mpls,MN), but I'm sure you have some fellow officers who do draw such duty, and you can at least attempt to make a difference in their mindset. Again, thanks.
3 months of aikido and still going.
[Edited by Axiom on July 30, 2000 at 10:31am]