Everyone knows how to hit, kick, trip but few are born knowing how to do it well. Where the criminals, thugs and attackers have an advantage is that ... well, their mind is made up! Their intent is clear and their movement uncompromised. For the rest of us, it takes time to realize "oh, f*ck! he's actually attacking me!" and then it's too late
So why don't we start ma'ai from this standpoint more often?
We seem in aikido to get stuck in the mind set of having to read the intent "Mushashi like" and then do the whole poetic aiki thing. It is romantic, yes, but when you start discussing different context of where and when certain things are appropriate, we should explore other paradigms for time to time.
. And I think Aikido training is great for both of these facets: Aikido, more than any MA I've been exposed to, emphasizes body placement and timing - essential to an effective strike. Aikido also teaches you to act decisively under the sword -
I am trying hard not to get into the NOOB fighting focus thing...really I am.....
However, is not the reason we might be having this conversation even related to the fact that we may not be always training this properly all the time. I agree on a base level, but I think we need at some point move past this affect.
Is this what you mean by this Min?
This is what I was referring to when I tried to talk about setting the terms of engagement. That's why it seemed silly to me when I see training where nage has his hands fully up and in guard/hanmi and uke steps right in front of him to do a shomen. I mean, really, what are you teaching? For uke to learn to disregard your "target"s fully aware defensive stance and walk into his fist? For nage to learn to do a technique from a artificial condition that will not be replicated off the mat and is martially unsound?
I guess what I am pondering right now is if there is a better way to do things?
Aikido seems to teach form the outside/IN that is, we learn slowly, methodically to close distance with proper ma'ai, entering, moving your feet, entering on the angle, and all that...which is a fine methodology to teach.
It seems taboo for some reason to teach from the inside/out. That is, I learn how to deal with the close fight where the distance, space, and timing is controlled. Things are happening fast and we must learn to deal with them emotionally and physically. Develop these skills, which are realitively easy to learn in muscle memory, and actually done correctly reinforce proper posture, and alignment.
Once we have developed our loss of fear and gained confidence in the ability to control and move with in this sphere, then we can move out to the more challenging and difficult learning...the outside/in.
It seems to me, that many of us struggle with the whole fight/flight thing, and how do you control things when they fall apart.
What if we changed our paradigm, learned how to deal with non-compliance first, then learned how to deal with it a little more skillfully?
I don't know...just some thoughts I have. I am really nobody as I certainly have not mastered any particular art, only been exposed to a bunch of different things.
I do listen to my instructors when I am in their house, and fully respect their teachings so let me clarifiy that!