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Old 04-09-2007, 02:24 PM   #38
Kevin Leavitt
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Dojo: Team Combat USA
Location: Olympia, Washington
Join Date: Jul 2002
Posts: 4,376
Re: Internal strength in bowling, fencing, golf, etc.

In my MMA experiences this has not happened too much. (MMA as defined as predominately grappling based jiujitsu). Either you dominate, control, or demonstrate you effectiveness, or you don't. They can deny it all they want, but it becomes quite clear very fast what someone can do or cannot do.

What I like about that environment is the fact that you pretty much lay your cards on the table everytime you train. If you could do the things that you do internally and could walk in and not only demonstrate the methodology, but also can actually do it, then you have an audience that is all ears! If you cannot, then you pretty much get the cold shoulder and for good reason.

To bring this back on topic. I think you find this pretty much with any sport or activity in which their is definitive criteria upon which to measure success. If you could show Tiger Woods how to improve his golf through the use of Jin, you'd have a very well paying consulting job.

However, if you have these tools, and cannot effectively demonstrate how they can be used for a particular purpose, then people might say, hey that is a pretty neat trick, and be impressed and then move on, failing to see the utility of it.

Aikido, I think, is different in that it primarily is not concerned with martial effectiveness, but in holisitc self improvement, which in turn hopefully can instill harmony and peace philosophically to the entire world. How does Jin play into that, and what is the realitive importance? No two people will ever agree. I'd submit that it is not so critical to perfect it, maybe even awareness of it is all that is needed, however, Obsession of possessing these internal abilities solely for the perfection of them, without regard for the other aspects that must be kept in balance and moderation...IMO is missing the point all together...missing the message of aikido and the intent of what it is designed to do.

Which is why, IMO, when we discuss MMA, internal skills, and aikido in the same breath in many cases, we are talking apples, pears, and oranges.

As far as the whole book thing. It is interesting that you bring it up. I have gone through many of my books that I held out high hope for over the years, many of them so called "internal books", and today, I find them to be pretty much garbage and not much us other than stating obvious facts, but not giving us much in the way of "how to".

I think the real revolution in your skills will be when there are people that have them that can adequately demonstrate how to apply them to various sports and practices and the participants define it as unique, different, and nothing that they have ever seen and felt before. I am talking not the average Joe in which anything that is remotely skillful is new and exciting, but highly skilled, world class athletes. It seems some head way might have been made in some aikido circles if what you say about Ikeda and Ushiro is true. That is a good thing I think, something I am looking forward to.

If what you are doing is true and geniune, I agree, eventually it will reach those that are denial and are hiding behind barriers and constructs of a fabricated environment of a dojo or organization.

The cool thing about how I practice is that on any given day, there might be a guy that shows up that is much better than me. That guy is the one that teaches...not me. It always seems silly to me to pretend to be the teacher when there is someone that is better...what a waste of time!


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