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Old 01-26-2007, 10:04 PM   #19
Dojo: Finger Lakes Aikido
Location: Cortland, NY
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 980
Re: Heir apparents to shihans

Rod Yabut wrote:

I was hoping to have a light conversation here as you would when you have a beer after a hard practice in the dojo rather than a the proverbial aikido thread lecture of "just practice, don't worry about anything else". Michael, with all due respect, I don't worry about who's next in line...I was just wondering what thoughts were of other aikidoka regarding it within their respective associations. My statement on alterior motive was meant to lighten the topic, but it looks like it made worse!

i guess i take this lighter than most people...
Well, there are some "hot button" topics that, while sounding inocuous, can set off a firestorm around here. Just happens.

As far as abilities go, all of your prospective heirs are up there. When you're thrown by someone who has been training for ~30 years ukemi is less about falling and more about landing. Whether I think sensei x is good enough to take ove for shihan y after he dies .... it's fun to speculate on, I suppose, but my perspective is that when you're talking about people like Yamada Sensei who are in their 60s, they're getting up there, they won't be around forever, and I think you should focus your attention on training with them while you can. When they're gone, there won't be anyone like them again, especially if you're talking about people who studied under O Sensei. In other words, who takes over for him after he's gone is, while not unimportant, of secondary importance, especially if you're not a potential successor.

As to talking about it over a beer .... tell me, when you have beers with training partners in real life, do you really try and handicap your organization's successors? If not, why do it here? If you do, well, that's your business. I've never heard that at gatherings I've gone too, though.

BTW, I don't drink, so when I go out, I have a soda.
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