Thread: "Doka"
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Old 03-30-2007, 09:27 AM   #13
mjhacker's Avatar
Dojo: Renshinkan
Location: Arizona
Join Date: Sep 2000
Posts: 200
Re: George Ledyard on the Future of Aikido

Bryan Bateman wrote: View Post
...whilst "aikidoka" is actually adding the word "ka" (professional) to Aikido, i.e. a professional aikido person.
I think you make an excellent point here... one which, I think, is generally not understood by Aikidō people who don't speak Japanese. The suffix -ka suggests a degree of seriousness and accomplishment in one's pursuit.

家 (ka/ke) means "house" or "family." As such, it shows that you're considered by the family to be one of them. I think that's significant.

When referring, for instance, to the Ueshiba family, you could say 植芝家 (Ueshiba-ke), whereas a serious Aikidō practitioner would be 合気道家 (Aikidō-ka). There may be a bit of poetic license involved in translating Aikidō-ka as being part of an "Aikidō family," but poetic license never kilt nobody. (A poetic license to kill, on the other hand...)

It is, IMO, just as improper for an writing enthusiast to refer to himself as an author (作家 sak-ka) as it is for a relatively junior Aikidō student to refer to him or herself as an Aikidō-ka. Maybe this all just boils down to cultural-linguistic differences.

Or... maybe I'm just too serious about this language stuff. :-)

Michael Hacker
Jiyūshin-ryū AikiBudō - Renshinkan

自由心流合気武道 - 鍛心館
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