Re: Ueshiba taking Ukemi
I've read your posts here and elsewhere on aikido ukemi and the reversal of roles of teacher and student. I'm curious as to one thing however.
I know that when I demonstrate a technique in front of the class I take the role of nage. I also know that if I am practicing with an individual student and trying to get them to learn a specific technique, I prefer the role of uke where I will, exactly as you describe the judo teachers in your above post, throw myself in such a way as the student learns the correct throw etc..
So here's my question. Given that Takeda Sokaku travelled around and taught large numbers of people in seminar type situations, could your hypothesised teacher-student role reversal with regards to ukemi be nothing more than expediency in teaching a technique or techniques to a large number of people at one time? In other words, rather than uke for 10 relative beginners in a one-to-one way simply demonstrate the technique as nage and have them practice what they just saw?
Could it simply be down to class size and nothing more than that. No grand theoretical reason for reversing the roles, just a practical solution to a teaching situation. I don't doubt that both Takeda and Ueshiba took the role of uke when teaching on a one-to-one basis, similar to your description of him taking ukemi from Terry Dobson.