David Knowlton wrote:
"Perhaps the real question is, "Where do you set the boundaries of your aikido?" What is inside and outside your field of study?" - Ted Ehara
Stolen from the thread - "Why are you Here?" asked by D. Hooker Sensei.
Ted, aikido serves my life, not vice versa. Aikido is a way to see my (sorry) self reflected in others. It is my current path for turning my violent carnal desires into peaceful expressions, in a socially appropriate way - and it costs less than psychotherapy.
I say 'sorry self' not because I am pathetic, but because there is plenty for me to work on.
After writing that, I realized our personal boundaries were the cause of most of the arguments seen on these threads. How we defined our identities and aikido practices becomes the various positions that we take online.
Most of the time we're unconscious of our boundaries. Only when we start reading threads from people outside of our group/mindset, do we see where we stand. Because this web site draws from a large slice of the aikido community, we see many different perspectives in varying views. The popularity of this web site also draws in people who don't regularly practice aikido but can have things to contribute because of their own experiences.
You can react to this flood of viewpoints emotionally. Flaming is an art that developed along with the Internet. An alternative is to see these viewpoints and find your own position in relation to them. This helps you to define or redefine your own concepts.
Most of the time we're unaware of of our ideas until they're brought to the surface of our consciousness through thread titles like Spiritual Practice in Aikido?, Aikido and Street-Fighting, Cross-Training in Aikido and ***
. For those who have read the discussions for more than a few months, the same topics seem to keep rotating though the forums ad infinitum. Perhaps that is because these are basic questions that should be constantly asked.
Sometimes if you start looking thought a discussion, you might find a kernel of objective truth. Often you'll discover a tailor-made truth. Something completely subjective that it applies directly to your life. In this world of one-size-fits-all clothes and fast food lines, finding a personal truth isn't so bad.