Dan - a couple of misreads of my writing. 1) I was not criticizing Takeda in the "no opening" comment. That would be boring and silly. I'm simply noting that his described character is one that would, for example, not allow him to teach in the manner that my koryu teachers taught me. Further, I'm not saying anything about superiority or inferiority here - it's phenomenology. Takenouchi-ryu and Araki-ryu are taught one way - and produce a different type of fighter than Daito-ryu. However, I've seen other brilliant teachers whose revolutionary method of teaching - somewhat off the beaten path - leads to a regress of students' skills over the generations. (My 1st xingyi teacher is a perfect example).2) I was not talking about either Takeda or Ueshiba in my reference to grandiosity, even though the latter, in particular, could have that adjective applied to him. I was referring to the products of their teaching - many of their students, who become "frogs in a well" - looking at the disc of blue at the mouth of the well and believing they can see the entire universe. 3) I was not judging or criticizing Takeda or Ueshiba by their students - I was looking at their teaching methods and noting if that method could lend itself to the development of the type of successors it seems to. 4) I SUPPORT the idea of "unthrowable" - read the 2nd paragraph again. "Unthrowable" - "uncuttable" - "unbludgeonable" leads to the ability to truly provide ukemi as a teaching device. I could not take the ukemi I do with weapons at the intensity we practice if my students could cut me (often
- I'm not God and they're catching up anyway). And yet, the kata require that I put myself at total 100% vulnerability, at various points - otherwise they won't learn.
Given that I not only agreed with most of your generally voiced thesis, but provided a link with extant koryu training where most don't see it - ----- happy holidays to you too.