Re: Stealing techniques
I suppose it depends who is stealing from whom.
I think that if I were a direct student of O Sensei and he told me that the only way to progress in his art was to steal his techniques, I would be stealing away.
I once had a conversation with Hiroshi Tada Shihan and he was quite clear that O Sensei never 'taught' in the accepted 'western' sense. As a result (1), he himself had a constant problem with trying to replicate O Sensei's teaching methods with people who had no grasp of the culture wherein these methods were fashioned. He kept to the traditional method of requiring his closest students to 'steal' the knowledge he himself had acquired. As a result (2), one of Tada Sensei's own students, as a result of his own frustration, devised a different teaching method, to try to embody what Tada Shihan received from the Founder, but in a way that was teachable to westerners. The student was Masatomi Ikeda Shihan and his methods are still used by his students in Switzerland.
When O Sensei created the Kobukan, he had no clue about teaching methodology. This was before the era of training manuals etc and in the domain schools and terakoya they memorized ancient texts. Now dojos are more of a service to customers than extensions to a wider audience of a particular shihan's personal training methods, previously shown to a few students.
An added factor, of much importance nowadays, is that in the days of the Kobukan O Sensei never had to work for a living...