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Old 01-03-2007, 12:45 AM   #31
Erik
Location: Bay Area
Join Date: Jun 2000
Posts: 1,200
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Re: Crazy Ki demonstration by Barrish Sensei

Can't say I visit these parts much anymore but funny I'd find this. This must be 15 years old as I first saw it somewhere back in the late 80's or early 90's. Anyways, onto good old Barrish.

There was "unquestionably" major tankage that flowed around him. I saw people flip their ass into the air from 5 or more feet away. Some would flop around on the ground "unable" to get up until he "released" them. Thing is, I could throw those uke's around like that too and I wasn't no black belt then much less a "ki master". It's just how it was around him so the flopping was, well, flopping. Additionally, I know lots of people want to believe in ki, and Barrish clearly did, but it wasn't his great ki powers doing it, it was the environment and people fooling themselves.

Now, to offer a personal evaluation is somewhat hard. First I was a relative beginner, maybe 2nd kyu if I recollect correctly. Secondly, I was in a school where the teachers kind of bought (one a lot) into the whole thing. That being said I don't remember ever being thrown by him like his students in that video were. He would actually get in and throw me just like everyone else did, if anything, he used more force than you'd evpect given this video. And, I'd really have liked to have gone after him about 10+ years after I got the chance. It would have been a better test. But, he did throw you, if you didn't flop, or probably more accurately, he figured you wouldn't flop.

Two other things about Barrish are that he was a training fanatic and he had an ego the size of Mt. St. Helens (prior to it's erruption). The guy would literally do a seminar for 5 hours straight with no major break. So, you'd train a bunch, then you'd talk where he would, just about every time, mention his new facility and the 900 waterfalls the place possessed. It'd be train-waterfalls-train-talk about Barrish-train--waterfalls-Barrish-train.......it used to drive me nuts after about the 33rd time I heard about the waterfalls. But, he was in great shape, he was dedicated in his own way to the art and practiced a ton from what I heard.

It should also be noted that as far as I know he had no lineage in that he taught himself. I don't know if that's correct, for certain, but I've never heard a thing about him having a direct teacher. He just sort of annoited himself an aikido guy, formed his style and started issuing rank. Actually, I doubt that's even his real name. He doesn't exactly look like a Koichi.

Anyways, in conclusion, from the perspective of a 2nd kyu at the time, it was almost all flopping, but, he had some skill too. Overall though there are an awful lot of other people I'd go to for training before him.

Last edited by Erik : 01-03-2007 at 12:50 AM.
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