Thread: Spirituality
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Old 06-28-2006, 03:03 AM   #56
Peter Goldsbury
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Dojo: Hiroshima Kokusai Dojo
Location: Hiroshima, Japan
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Re: Spirituality

George S. Ledyard wrote:
This term "spiritual" is coming to mean something specific in the American mind. When polled, some large proportion of Amereicans stated that they were "spiritual" but not religious. So the term is starting to have a meaning that counterposes "spiritual" against "religious" which I take to mean having to do with the established religious faiths.

This certainly seems to be the way in which many people view Aikido... it's somehow "spiritual" but stripped of the overtly religious aspect which it had in O-Sensei's view. O-Sensei was clear, though, that he did not see Aikido "as" a religion but rather as a practice that enhanced all religions. It is that statement that seems to leave quite alot of leeway in defining what Aikido spirituality can be for different individuals.
Hello George,

Interesting comments. I had long suspected the thruth of your first paragraph. However, the second paragraph is more problematic. You say that for O Sensei, aikido was "overtly religious" or (as you put it) "had an overtly religious aspect", but he did not see aikido as a religion. Would would think he would include his own Omoto-kyou as a religion here? I am after any distinction he might have made between his own private religious practices (which were inseparable from his aikido practice) and the 'religion' he refers to (= @j. NB. A problem arose in the Early Meiji period of translating 'religion' into Japanese.

Best wishes,

P A Goldsbury
Hiroshima, Japan
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