View Single Post
Old 01-24-2007, 12:30 PM   #7
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 1,996
Re: Article: Restoring Harmony by Ross Robertson

Joshua Reyer wrote:
Well, here we are getting into higher interpretations of a compound. Which is fine. Ueshiba said once that the ki one matches is not the opponent's, but rather that of the Universe, and that once one has done that, any encounter is beyond victory/defeat, because your opponent simply can't go against the Universe. If one wanted to take that comment and suggest that thus "'aiki' means 'Harmony with the Universe'", I see no problem with that, provided one makes clear that's an interpretation made in conjunction with Ueshiba's lectures/writings.

Kondo's definition is a higher order interpretation as well. There's simply no way "taking balance" can be derived from the linguistic elements. However, as I understand it, aiki in used in Daito-ryu to obtain kuzushi instead of the usual jujutsu methods. Instead of pushing or pulling the opponent off-balance, the aiki practioner "applies aiki" at contact, (seen in demonstrations by uke either falling at a touch, or standing immobilized on his toes, his knees bent), and then applies the throwing/locking technique. I qualify this by saying I have no personal experience with DR, and am basing this judgment purely by what I've seen here on the net, and what I've read in books and in various forums. I welcome any correction or refinement in this area.

So, I would hazard that Kondo was essentially pointing out how aikijutsu was theoretically used in conflict, rather than providing a working translation of "aiki". I would tentatively agree with Mr. Pranin that "aiki" as a single word has different implications in aikido compared to Daito-ryu, but then I'd raise the question of whether it should have those implications, at least from a technical standpoint.
Hmmm ... so, maybe Ueshiba Morihei changed the way aiki is viewed in his aikido? Maybe he kept the DR definition of aiki but added a variation on the definition by using it in a verb sense in regards to the Universe?

In other words, aikido should have the aiki of DR where one "applies aiki" at contact, but also have the aiki of "Harmony with the Universe". Noun and verb at once.

Rambling again,
  Reply With Quote