Re: Aikido vs Brazilian Jujutsu
About the Aikirobot thing. I think it depends on your goals with aikido. Some I think are concerned with learning to do aikido well, that is within the parameters of the art to better understand themselves and their relation to the world through the use of proper kineseology and proper body movement, processes etc. There is absolutely nothing wrong with this.
Personally, I have learned quite a bit from these folks as they tend to study it a little deeper and a little more technical than I do.
However, I have a different focus which is to learn the techniques, postures, etc, and then figure out how to use them in non-resistance and more spontaneous way. It is important to me to look past the basic movements and understand application etc. The only way, IMO to do this is to train with aliveness.
Yes the Gracies did do what you are talking about. I think the reason we have BJJ and this aliveness paradigm is due to their methods of training and promotion. Brazillian culture fostered the enviornment and the methods they chose to promote it. Bottomline, it worked. Most of them have matured, grown up, and frankly have enough money, prestige, respect now I suppose that they don't need to go there any more.
On Crosstraining. I have recently grown to not like that word as it applies to my training. It is a philosophical thought I guess, semantics really. My thoughts are, I have a goal and criteria that I try to keep clear in my mind. All my training focuses on developing that goal. So, I train in aikido and I train in BJJ or whatever..to help me reach that goal. I view it more as integrative training more so than crosstraining, but again...semantics. I don't separate aikido practice from BJJ so much anymore. Just two different training conditions that apply the exact same principles, so I don't see it as cross training so much anymore.