Tim Fong wrote:
So the meaning of ΊΟ in Japanese is also the same? If so then why the heck have people been translating Aikido as the "Way of Harmony??"
Regardless of how you technically translate "ai" in "aikido," there's no question that Morihei Ueshiba spent a lot of time promoting the idea that aikido is an art of love and harmony of the universe. I think that's how it gets translated as "Way of Harmony."
And not only Ueshiba, but apparently people like Sagawa were promoting this idea. I got this quote from a post on e-budo. Supposedly, Sagawa had a scroll in his dojo reading:
""The Martial Art of Aiki is Synonymous with the Way of Human Cultivation & Development"
Aiki is the harmonization of ki.
The entire universe sustains itself perfectly through harmonization. This harmony is aiki.
[Aiki] creates harmony without producing negative feelings or conflict because the ki of aiki is natural.
The harmony created by aiki must be a fundamental part of the foundation of human society.
This is known as the Global Harmony of Aiki (Aiki no Daienwa).
One should use the principle of aiki to harmonize with and de-escalate those threatening violence, and in the case where an enemy has already initiated an attack, rely completely on the principle of aiki to blend with or redirect their attack, which in turn produces a state of harmony.
We must seriously study (shugyo) the kihon (basics) - as well as the taijutsu (jujutsu), tachi no jutsu (swordsmanship), sojutsu (spearmanship), and bojutsu (staff techniques) - as passed down within the methods of aiki through its founder, Prince Shinra Saburo Minamoto Yoshimitsu, then strive to reach the Way found in the martial art of aiki (aiki no budo), which is synonymous with the Way of human cultivation and development (ningen shuyo). "
Of course, his would have been in Japanese and I have never seen it, but it does seem he was making the point that the essence of aiki is harmony of the universe.