Not to usurp Dan Harden's discussion of this article on AJ, but it rates a thread of its own.
Dan Harden wrote:
I thought it would be interesting to see what Ushiro was doing to instill it in others. Whether he taught what was behind the sanchin kata...things like that.
And more interestingly.why....would ikeda be making this "observation" now? Is it ...after feeling Ushiro?
What has brought him to this "Critical time or juncture in AIkido?"
Now that certain people are speaking up about whats missing? That he has actually felt things that are out there? What?
It's a good article. To me, the 2 quotes I'd pick and comment on are
(1.)the one attributed to Ikeda Sensei:
The kind of power through kokyu that Ushiro sensei has been teaching is completely different from what is usually thought of as kokyu. All of the people who came to this camp experienced this. It may have been only an introduction to this kind of practice and this kind of power, but I think it was a real plus for people to be able to experience it.
(2.) this one:
Ushiro shihan has already entered the opponent's center from the moment of contact, causing the opponent to 'float' for an instant. The subsequent throw is an 'after the fact' application. When one tries to throw without the 'float', the intent to throw is transmitted to the opponent, who then becomes tense. From there, the interaction becomes either a contest of strength, or the opponent cooperates by falling or flying to create the technique.
A few days ago I quoted a comment by a White Crane practitioner (in another thread) saying the same thing about the "float", etc. In other words, this is one of the powers of kokyu/ki/jin, whatever. Notice the comment that Ushiro has "entered the opponent's center from the moment of contact" and that any throw, hit, etc., becomes "after the fact"....this is the essence of the higher-levels of martial arts and "aiki".
But if these kinds of kokyu skills are the essence, we need to look back at Ikeda Sensei's statement and decide what he was talking about, because it's not clear. I think Ikeda is saying that the kokyu that Ushiro Sensei is teaching is valid kokyu (or else Ikeda wouldn't be wasting his time, ne?) and that the stuff usually "thought of as kokyu" in Aikido is wrong.
In other words, Ikeda Sensei is saying that the current ideas/guesses about kokyu power are wrong; he is not saying that Ushiro's version of Kokyu doesn't quite fit the accepted definition.
Just to add an opinion, I think it should be noted that the kokyu/jin skills will vary from person-to-person and probably the best thing to do would be to study the films of Ueshiba and other top students, copying their usage of kokyu.
The essence of kokyu-power is the jin skills, but the full kokyu is going to contain the ki/fascia/pressure skills (Ushiro combines all of those things, in the manner he does them, in his Sanchin form). However, some people have kokyu skills that contain a lot of muscle content; some people have well-connected bodies and don't use much muscle; some people rely on the vertical structural connection and use muscle or don't use muscle; some people know how to coordinate the kokyu-power so that it is fully controlled by the dantien.... and so on. In other words, just "learning kokyu power" is more like a start and a host of 'workable' ways open up, once the foot is in the door. Great care has to be made in the decisions of how someone approaches these skills. O-Sensei didn't develop in a year.