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Old 01-05-2007, 09:42 AM   #23
Dojo: Jihonjuku/ St.Pete. FL
Location: Palm Harbor, Florida
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 87
Re: Western religion and Aikido

Dylan Clements wrote:
Thank you for letting me know that. I will try to re word it.

I meant that during your practice of Aikido you did not need to adapt his religious beliefs and that you could still believe in whatever religion you want to believe in. Aikido is just a spiritual path without having to make your religion shinto, Buddhism, or the religion that O-Sensei practiced (I don't remember the name of it).

I was wrong to criticize the partnership of religion and Aikido together. It would not ruin it, I just personally don't prefer it. I never was a church going fan, and if I had to say I was any religion it would be Buddhist. So that is why my views are different than yours. But I also believe that if Buddhism was to be integrated with Aikido it would indeed destroy it for me. I like the fact that Aikido is purely about finding the way to The Art of Peace. The religious part of any religion should stay in whatever place of worship they have. Otherwise it becomes too much of that religion and too little of Aikido. The way( ) changes to a different way. But that is only my personal view on it and is also why everyone Aikido is different. This way people find the best way to practice Aikido for themselves.

Thank you for your insight though. I think I will take you up on your offer sometime, I am really interested in seeing how it works out.
Ahh... I understand your point and yes it can always turn into a danger if "religion" is pushed or the main focus of Aikido. I and where I train/teach is a dojo noted for never loosing site that Aikido is a martial art.

A religion is often defined as a service or worship of God. Like David dancing up to the temple to honor God, perhaps that would more accurately describe what I am writing about to a degree. If you had walked up to the road and saw David's dance, you would simply see someone dancing or celebrating something. A deeper eye might see a person, dancing, temple ... and conclude this is for this man a religious or spiritual expression, and for someone else they may simply walk slowly and softly on the same road and for him/her that is expression to God. It is in the transformation of ourselves and the manifestation of that effect on the world that is the religious/spiritual path, the DO. Oops, okay so now I'm preaching. Sorry.

In order to get up that next level into the "Aiki" for me, I have to use the foundations that exist within my Catholic upbringing, my Christian Faith to draw the spiritual connect to O-Sensei's teachings. You must believe in something (In my opinion) in order to make that next jump. And yes, I do know or have heard of some of O-Sensei's uchideshi becoming members of his religious sect -just cannot remember the names (perhaps someone else can help here)- for I believe the very same reason. The other example given was Chiba becoming a practitioner of Zen B. -and he had explained why in an interview somewhere (I think AJ).

Oh and BTW, the offer to visit and train at Jihonjuku was real. We love having visitors come train with us on the mat and join us off the mat. Which reminds me, thanks to all who came and trained at the ASU Winter Intensive last week. It was awesome training and meeting old and new friends.
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