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Old 02-07-2007, 08:45 PM   #40
Ellis Amdur
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Location: Seattle
Join Date: May 2003
Posts: 844
Re: Dobson and Arikawa Sensei

I just pulled out Aikido in America - The actual statement puts a slightly different spin on things: "I still feel to this day that the teacher didn't know his ass from his elbow in terms of aikido, that while he was very proficient in the martial stuff, he hadn't understood the soul of the art. And whether or not I'm right is immaterial. What is important is that O-Sensei made no effort to intervene or correct him or anything, just said, "Very good, very good. carry on," and went about his business. . . . O-sensei was very spiritual, but he never forced anyone to participate in his practice. In a sense he would include you in the same way that one might have watched Thomas a Becket pray at chapel. I f you were in the chapel with him, you were included, but he didn't give a damn what you were doing: he was praying. . . . That's what's so devilish about aikido. It deals with these primary forces but leaves pretty much all the detail work up to you . . . .He was not a moral policeman, running around telling everybody to clean up their act. . . . You see, nobody, except those people who were part of inventing another cliche, ever said that the warrior is noble and pure, . . . All that affective stuff didn't need to be laid on it, and the more that you subscribed to it, the deeper trouble you got into because for the most part you hadn't conquered those demons either."

Actually, I'd love to quote the whole chapter. It is very relevant to this discussion.


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